Dawson: Lenoir County man to wed unsuspecting woman
I've written about my friend Correai Moore many times over the years - usually in an attempt to get the guy married off. As Chris Rock once famously said, no one wants to be the one old guy at the club.
Finally, after years of first dates and Mrs. Not-Quite-Rights, Correai has coerced a lovely woman by the name of Reah into marrying him. For nearly a year I've been telling Reah we can get her out of this mess, but she's determined to marry the man the Kinston High School graduating class of 1991 voted Most Likely To Legally Change His Name To A Dungeons and Dragons Character.
Not only is my buddy getting married, he's asked me to be his best man. I'm sure that somewhere in a landfill under a few metric tons of garbage lies a list of potential best man candidates. I'm also fairly positive that my name is way down the list, possibly on a second-tier of alternates between Correai's pizza delivery guy and some dude who opened the door for him at Walmart once. Even so, it's a big-time honor for me.
Traditionally the best man is in charge of throwing a bachelor party, but like me, Correai isn't really a party guy. I asked him what he'd like to, and we landed on a mildly fancy-schmancy restaurant/bowling/billiards place near his home in Durham. My next best man obligation is to give a short toast at the reception, and I've already cracked that problem by memorizing the George C. Scott speech from 'Patton'.
With the bachelor party and the speech all sewn up, there would be only one hurdle to jump/duck under, and that would be the tuxedo.
I have a long, complicated history with tuxedos. Be it a prom, a wedding or my ceremonial duties as ribbon cutter at the grand opening of a new Arby's, tuxedos and I just don't get along. I understand that certain occasions require fancy dress, but one would need to be a mechanical engineer to properly assemble a tuxedo in under two hours.
The pants and shirt are usually manageable, but no matter the size of the shirt you'll need a crowbar to button that top button. In 1996, the New England Journal of Abnormal Medical Conditions published an article on the rise in tracheal injuries due to ultra-tight-necked tuxedo shirts, the first case of which was reported by Miles Davis in 1969.
Ever heard an interview with Miles Davis on YouTube? You know why his voice was so scratchy? He had to wear a tux to a Columbia Records party commemorating the release of his classic album In A Silent Way. After a few hours of his throat being in that vice grip of a shirt, his voice was scratchier than Lucille Ball's after 20-years of Chesterfield cigarettes.
Next comes the dreaded cucumber bun. I'm not sure why a man needs a waist-level piece of fabric to mask the area where the shirt meets the pants, and I'm even less sure why it's called a cucumber bun. You're already constrained at the neck by the shirt (and compounded by a bow tie), you've got the pants that may or may not be a size or three smaller than you ordered, and on top of all those constraints they throw in a cucumber bun. A man in a tuxedo is nothing more than a bough on the verge of breaking.
I don't like procrastination, so with the wedding being in September I went for my tux fitting in June. It was a fairly painless affair, and it felt good to have all of my best man responsibilities handled.
Neuse News Editor Bryan Hanks makes fun of me for my insistence on punctuality, planning, realistic time management and not changing an agreed upon plan at the last minute. If Hanks were the best man he wouldn't even get fitted for his tux until the bride was halfway down the aisle. That being said, you have to love Hanks. Seriously, he insisted Neuse News Publisher BJ Murphy add a "must love Bryan Hanks" clause to all our contracts. Sometimes Hanks will call in the middle of the night just to make sure.
Correai, the groomsmen and I will be getting together for the bachelor dinner/bowling event in a few weeks. Unless someone can talk some sense into the bride before then, I'll report back here with a detailed account.
Contact Jon Dawson at email@example.com and www.jondawson.com.