Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Today the pace of weddings was some slower, but I still did several. Things were going along, nice and normal. Pretty white dresses, lots of guests, great happiness. AND then I knew something was wrong. The clerks were in huddles whispering, a California ID was being checked by a supervisor. Every clerk was coming to the back. They were all upset. What was going on?

Then clerk C brought me the license. And I understood what was going on. She was totally disgusted, upset, mad. She wanted me to see how I felt about the couple, and to stop the wedding if I was uneasy. The problem you ask? The bride A was born in 1912, yes she is 97. The groom was born in 1958, yes 51 years old. He was not the same ethnic group as this woman. Neither were the two witnesses. The bride was in a wheelchair, she seemed frail, and had a dowager hump so she had trouble holding up her head. She just looked feeble. I started to question her and the groom answered for her. I told him I was not talking to him. I needed to talk to A. I asked if she wanted to get married today? Did she understand what we were doing? She was clear headed, not drugged, not confused. She wanted to get married, today, on her birthday. So we went upstairs. Every question I have ever asked a couple, I asked her. She wanted to do this, she was clear headed not senile. But I still didn't feel good about it.

He knelt beside her during the ceremony. He was affectionate not gushy, she held his hand against her check at one point. She seemed to really care for him. The witnesses made a big deal over her. But it made me sick to my stomach. We all are afraid he and the others are conning A. There was no legal reason not to do this wedding. But it just felt wrong.

As I was leaving ( it was close to time to lock up the building) a couple stormed in. She is in a white pant suit, he in a black suit. Looks like a wedding couple to me. But it is past time to do marriages. I was willing to stay so I waited to see if they wanted to be married there or they were just buying a license. They are loudly bickering, she does not seem to want to be there. They came up to where I was talking to the deputy and the information clerk. The man wanted to "re consummate their marriage. We want to consummate it now." Several more times he said consummate and I am dying inside. The info clerk told them it was too late for them to be married today and to come back tomorrow. They stormed back out, still fussin'. I laughed and said to the deputy, I guess you wouldn't let them consummate their marriage. The the guard looked at me and said, "What does consummate mean?" And the clerk didn't know either. So I explained to them it was the act of sexual intercourse after a wedding ceremony.

I told you, I can't make this stuff up.

1 comment:

Janet Rudolph said...

What a day! The age disparity between the first couple was pretty great, but it was her birthday. Maybe she just wanted to celebrate? :-( don't think so, but...

love the vocabulary lesson!

No one would believe this in a book.