Though I lived in Buffalo (and by that time Helaine was living with me) we were married just outside Philadelphia. Guests were coming in from all over. My parents, relatives and friends were all still in New York (though none are today).
We had basically taken over the Sheraton in Fort Washington, PA. I was there along with my rented tuxedo and additional clothing for our honeymoon in Acapulco.
Everything was moving smoothly. My parents were in a good mood because they knew Helaine would be joining our family. Helaine’s parents weren’t as lucky–they were getting me!
By mid afternoon it was time to get everything in order, including my wedding attire. I went to the closet, picked up the garment bag with my clothes and unzipped it. There where my black tuxedo had been sat a beigey yellowish polyester tux!
Are you kidding? I was getting married in a few hours.
I’d picked up and tried on the tuxedo earlier. I’d carried it to the hotel. I’d seen the tuxedo in the bag. There was no way it wasn’t there… except it wasn’t.
Instead of thinking the problem through I believed my eyes… and then I panicked!
Remember this was ’83. No cellphones. No computers.
I began to scramble. I called the tuxedo shop where my suit had been rented and explained what had happened. They would stay open for me to go and get another tux. It would be touch-and-go, but I had no choice.
I was very upset. How could this happen?
I ran to my car, started it up and began to pull out of the hotel’s parking lot. I would be cutting it close for my own wedding.
It was then one of my friends jumped on the hood of the car to stop me!
It was a joke! I was punked twenty years before the term was coined.
The photo that accompanies this entry shows me on-the-phone trying to arrange for a replacement tux. I am flanked by my friends Howard and the secretive guy from the San Fernando Valley (here’s the three of us from last month).
We are still friends today. How I ever forgave them is beyond me.
Footnote: The same polyester tux turned up at Howard’s wedding and the wedding of his brother Jeff. I’m unsure who has custody of the tuxedo now, but a suit like that can’t be killed.