What your view of sports and life would be if you had too many concussions
Today is the last of the twelve greatest Saturdays of the year. College Football hits the tape with everybody having their big, season ending rivalry games, and somewhere, some typical joyless woman is fucking that up for hundreds of people because she needed to have a fall wedding. If you are stuck at a wedding on a college football Saturday, place every single shred of blame for that on the bride. She did this to you, and she did it on purpose. At some point, all brides become just like ISIS; everything has to be all about them all the time, and if it isn’t, carnage on an epic scale is the result.
I know this because five years ago, I was killed in just such a college football Saturday wedding terrorist attack. It was the day Northwestern played Illinois at Wrigley Field, and I couldn’t go because Osama Bin Future Mrs. J-Dub insisted on a fall wedding.
You might be thinking “killed” might be a strong word in this case, but it’s an open secret that all married guys point to their wedding day as the same as their life ended. I’m no exception.
You also might be thinking it’s dangerous for me to write this. My wife says she reads this blog, but that’s a bigger lie than ObamaCare. Having said that, let me walk you through how we got to this point.
First of all, our wedding was supposed to not be a “big deal.” After all, we were both around 40 and even though neither of us had been married before, we decided we were too old for all that “real wedding” horseshit. Then one day, I get a call from Osama Bin Future Mrs. J-Dub informing that her mother will have a stroke and die if she doesn’t get a “real wedding” because none of her three daughters have given one yet. After I said “I’m struggling to see where that’s my problem” came a full 30 seconds of that special kind of silence that says more than any number of words.
So, now I’m in my mid-40’s having a wedding meant for somebody twenty years my junior. Fuck me hard.
Then I find out that Osama Bin Future Mrs. J-Dub wants to have this wedding in December. That’s a problem because that introduces the very real possibility of winter weather in the midwest. The people who are coming to this event from my side are coming from either Minnesota, where it can snow so hard actual polar bears fall from the sky, or Los Angeles, where everybody thinks everything east of Las Vegas might as well be Ice Station Zebra.
So, December was out of the question.
Then I find out that if Osama Bin Future Mrs. J-Dub can’t have December, she really wants a fall wedding. Fuck me harder than a Kardashian in an NBA locker room.
Now I realize I’m dealing with the worst-case scenario. Short of an imminent birth or a pissed-off daddy toting a 12-gauge, there’s never an excuse to have wedding on a college football Saturday. You might be able to get away with this in some limp-wristed state like Vermont where nobody cares about college football, but forget it anywhere else.
But let’s say you’re like me and stuck with this shit. Don’t judge me because I let the terrorists win, be thankful I figured out a way to accommodate football and still not have to bury my future mother-in-law. That was serious shit; she’s got a bad heart and literally tried to die at least two times that I know about during this process.
The first big problem I had was I live in a B1G Ten town, which means that there’s is no way the wedding can be on weekend in which there is a home game, because there won’t be a hotel room available for fifty miles in any direction. That also means I can’t burn one of the those quasi-useless Saturdays in September where every big conference school schedules home dates against South Central East Western No Place A&M.
That places me squarely in the heart of the conference schedule. Now, to be fair, Mrs. J-Dub is also a football fan, so eventually we get to a date we can make work; neither of our teams are playing somebody we care about. Her Purdue Boilermakers were on the road to East Lansing, and my Penn State Nittany Lions were having their annual seal-clubbing of Indiana.
Now that we’ve got the date, the issue became the time. Here in the land of the B1G Ten, we love a noon kick-off. That means a early-afternoon wedding was not possible. We B1G Tenners also love the prime-time football, so the game plan was a a 4:30 p.m. ceremony, a quick but full dinner, and bada-bing! Everybody gets to see the noon game, and still has time to get piss-drunk before the 8 p.m. kick-offs.
Obviously, for just such planning principles, avoid college football Saturdays entirely if at all possible. But if you are like me and married a terrorist or worse yet, a non-football fan, take some heed from what I learned:
1) Damage Control
If you have to lose a college football Saturday, pick the one that hurts the least to lose. A cupcake in September, an easy road-win in the conference schedule, or your team’s bye weeks are all good bets. But by all means, NEVER schedule a wedding on rivalry week, homecoming, or conference championship week. Osama Bin Laden hit New York City, and as a result America spent a decade finding him just so we could blow a tunnel through his head. Had he blown up East Tree Stump, Ohio, he’d still be molesting goats to this day.
2) Live With The Fact Your Guests Will Be Pissed At You
Accept it right now. All those people who will be attending you wedding think you are a bad person for scheduling this event as you did. No matter how thin you slice the buffet ham, you still made a conscious decision to to this to them. Your bride wasn’t just happy to have day where every fucking thing is about her anyway, she has to do it on a day that means something to everybody else. They aren’t going to forget that. Not only that, but be fully prepared to see during your ceremony people grumbling, huddling around phones, smuggling in a TV, or just straight up sneaking out.
3) Expect Shitty Gifts
Remember, you’ve taken one of the twelve greatest Saturdays of the year from these people, so don’t think somebody is buying you a new wall-sized television. In fact, just to be assholes, they might just get together to get even. They know what’s on your registry, and it won’t be an accident when you get seven coffee makers as wedding gifts. They want you to spend another Saturday in the return line at Target.
4) Attempts at Reprisals Will Not Go Unnoticed
A while back, I told the story about how I sneaked in a Joe Paterno appearance at my wedding. The flogging I took was worth it. In other words, if you are going to pull a stunt like this as a protest, get your money’s worth because you are going to pay for it.
Lastly, if you are invited to a wedding on a college football Saturday, there’s no law that says you are required to attend, but you will have some decisions to make. For example, the people who really matter in terms of attendance are the people in the wedding party. If you aren’t in the head table committee, then nobody will really notice if you aren’t there. That means you have real options. You can just send a gift, show up just to be seen in the reception line and split, or lat one of the twelve greatest Saturdays of the year go up in smoke.
Naturally, if a wedding has an all-night open bar, the equation here changes drastically.
During my Gainesville days, as I vaguely recall because a lot of those memories are kind of foggy, nobody I knew that had a pulse or a conscience got married on game day.
As a result, that made for tremendously busy weddings for churches and the town’s lone synagogue on the two off Saturdays a season.
And I actually have the perfect wedding gift for the couple that gets married on an autumn Saturday… A FUCKING COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCHEDULE!!!