Love: It’s Better Than a Sharp Stick in the Eye

Before I delve into my Valentine’s Day post, I’d like to take a moment to honor my state’s sesquicentennial. Happy 150th birthday, Oregon! You don’t look a day over 4.5 billion.

And now, our featured attraction!

Just about three years ago my boyfriend and I began planning our nuptials. We wanted a party that everyone would remember as the best wedding they’d ever been to. No formal attire, no gifts, just a big, happy bash. We decided to have an outdoor wedding at my brother’s property in Estacada. In lieu of gifts several people were asked to bring a cake of their choice. Humor, naturally, would have to play a large role in the affair.

First, we sent out invitations that were made to look like the form a person would fill out when ordering their invitations from the printer. Bob filled all these in by hand.

Then we wrote our own vows:

Do you, Bob, take Lisa to be your lawfully wedded wife

in obsessive obstinacy and in rare moments of blissful peace,

to adopt each of her current and future cats as your own,

and to listen to endless revisions of her damned book,

until you roll off to that great wrecking yard in the sky?

Do you, Lisa, take Bob to be your lawfully wedded husband

in moments of whimsy or when more laid-back than a cat in a coma,

no matter how many times he tells you to take your feet off the dashboard,

fails to replace the toilet paper, or bumps his movies to the top of the NetFlix queue?

The ceremony was a big hit, though a few of our older, more traditional friends did find it a little perplexing.

After we exchanged vows, the band began playing. The bass player was a good friend of ours and also our Snap-on dealer. I’d been practicing a song with them for weeks, The Ballad of Thunder Road by Robert Mitchum, and was nervous about singing it. But to add to my jitters, I’d decided to give a speech to explain something that had happened to me a few days before the wedding. Something that was so pathetic it was funny: A black eye.


First, I’d like to thank all of you for coming way out here today to help Bob and I celebrate this truly earthshaking occasion.  And, of course for bringing the food.

I guess some of you are wondering about the black eye.  Well, you can stop giving my husband that look.  He had nothing to do with it.

What it was, actually, was the proverbial sharp stick in the eye.  Literally.  Monday I came half an inch from having a very, very bad day.  Any day you don’t lose an eye is a glorious day indeed.  And I’m gonna try to remember that the next time I blow up the engine in my car.

It could have been worse. I could have been the pirate bride, today, with an eye patch.

“Lisa, do you take Bob to be your lawfully wedded husband?”


What happened was that I was doing some yard work.  I bent over to water a plant and poked myself with a bamboo stake.  And people used to tell me that racing was dangerous.  Stock car racing has nothing on landscaping.  Heck, I rolled a car and didn’t come out of it looking this bad.

It’s no big deal, really, other than it happened five days before my wedding.  Wedding.  Now there’s a scary thought.  Who would’ve guessed that either Bob or I would ever get married?

A friend of mine sent me this card.  “Heard you were getting married.  Missed the report on hell freezing over.”  You laugh, but my family knows it’s true.  They didn’t think they’d ever see this day.

But here I am. And you know what my first impression of marriage is?  It’s better than a sharp stick in the eye.

Well, I know you people want to go sample all that food, but before I let you get to it I have just one more story to tell…

Hit it, boys!

(segue into The Ballad of Thunder Road)

After people hit the refreshments table (catered by Costco), our minister lead the crowd in the hokey pokey, and then it was time to cut the cakes. There were many of them—red velvet, German chocolate, lemon—and our official, very non-traditional, American Chocolate Cake from Costco. For our bride and groom figures we used tiny replicas of Lightning McQueen and Sally Porsche from the movie Cars.

"And they lived happily ever after"

"And they lived happily ever after"

Rather than feeding each other cake, Bob and I plucked our automotive representatives from the top and licked the frosting off each other’s undercarriages.


Starting our own tradition

It was a perfect day, a perfect wedding, and even the little kids had fun.

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5 Responses to Love: It’s Better Than a Sharp Stick in the Eye

  1. Roxie says:

    It was a wedding I will NEVER forget! The kids in the swimming pool,everyone dancing the hokey pokey, and the bride doing a really rockin’ version of Thunder Road! Oh, and the parade of fancy cars on those twisty woodland roads. I followed a vintage convertible and they led me right to the door.


  2. Now THAT’S a wedding! Hilarious, Lisa–and I’m glad you didn’t have to say “Arrr!” during your vows!


  3. Barb says:

    This is So hilarous!! Marriage is kind of like that isn’t it? Sometimes you’re sitting on the hood and sometimes you’re trying to plug a leak from a loose oil pan bolt. It’s all a grand ride!

    What a wonderful way to relive Valentine’s Day.


  4. susanls says:

    Yep…Lisa singing! That was a hoot. And the vows were perfect. We just used the church vows but should have come up with a few of our own.

    I, Susan, take you Jenny, to drive you nuts until I put you in the home, to make sure you never forget who is younger and taller, to help you find your way without GPS,…….etc.


  5. Roxanne says:

    I really enjoyed this piece about your wedding. Bob kept telling me how good the piece was you wrote about it. You looked great by the way! Glad I finally found it to read.


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