When one of my cowboy friends tells me he’s getting married, my first question is, “Does she have a job?” This particular wedding took place in the pines of Arizona. I thought that I would never again see such a group of ill-prepared misfits as these groomsmen. Then came the 2020 lineup running for president. But whatever magic took place, it must have worked — they’re still married and she’s still got a job.
There are two things a cowboy’s afraid of: Bein’ stranded afoot and a decent woman. I went to a cowboy wedding recently where the bridegroom had found him a decent woman. This was not yer normal “walk down the aisle, kiss the bride” kind of wedding. This was the merger of two Arizona ranching families complete with rings made outta barb wire, a fiddle playin’ “Here Comes the Bride” and mosquitoes.
The families had worked for weeks gettin’ everything ready. Three days before the main event, they set a big tent up in the meadow for the reception and dance. Up came a big storm and blew down the tent. They said when it blew down it looked like a fat lady settin’ on a roll-away bed.
The bridesmaids all looked beautiful in their long dresses. The groomsmen, however, presented a different picture. Putting a suit coat on some of those cowboys was like puttin’ croutons on a cow pie. The sisters had made them all gray suit coats and bandanas. Weddings seem to make cowboys uncomfortable. These fellers looked like they were still hanging in the closet, paralyzed.
Part of their condition could be attributed to the 48-hour bachelor party which preceded the knot tyin’. The groom was maneuvered around on the wedding day like a NASA moonwalker. Sleep had not been allowed and, with the bride’s permission, his blood alcohol level was just below Extremely Flammable.
The appointed hour arrived. The priest got up and explained that this was not a normal Catholic wedding (he was wearing a sport shirt and jogging shoes), but it would be legal just the same. Everybody, and there was a bunch of them, got seated in this pretty little cove complete with a lagoon in the background. It was like God had made this spot just for the wedding.
It rained a little but no one cared. The bride was lovely. She stood out like a penguin in an asphalt parking lot. The priest asked Dad who gives this woman in matrimony. He replied, “Her mother and I and the Valley Bank.” When it came time to kiss and seal the vows, the bride and groom spit out their chew and laid to it.
At the bride’s request, we played “Walkin’ the Dog” as the wedding party marched out. It was fitting, I guess, ‘cause Billy’s ol’ dog Bronc caught the bouquet.