Thursday, July 21, 2011


When Dan Savage married Terry Miller, his partner of ten years, the wedding was a rush job. Sometimes in my reading I come across people describing things that happened to them that happened to me pretty much the same way. I will title posts about such instances “Notes Toward an Autobiography by Others” (see where I’m from in the tags). I’m not giving this post that title. But there are some parallels. The wedding Kent and I put together was a rush job. Although, if you believe Dan’s account in his book, The Commitment the rush of theirs makes ours look slow and deliberate. Actually, Dan and Terry had a reception carefully planned – with help from professionals – that they’d intended only as an anniversary party, celebrating their ten years together. Yet shortly before the party they decided they had to tie the knot legally. (Read the book to get the whole story on that.) Living in Washington state the closest place they could get a legal ceremony was Canada.

The Canadian official who agreed to perform the ceremony on short notice told them to meet her at such and such a time with their rings. Terry knew a shop in Chinatown where they could get rings with no waiting. To help their young son get in the spirit of the thing Dan told him he could pick out the rings. DJ looked in the display case and pointed at two silver rings that featured skulls. Dan’s protests were quelled when DJ offered his reasoning:

”You’re going to promise to stay with Terry until you die. So when you look at your ring, you’ll see a skull and you’ll remember that you and Dad will be together until you’re both dead and you’re both skeletons and both your skulls are showing.”

After a day of various hilarious mishaps (only funny to those of us reading about it later), the newlyweds collapse in their hotel bed, their son snoozing between them. Dan, like me, a sometime insomniac, stares awhile at the ceiling.

I was about to roll over when I noticed that Terry was awake, propped on an elbow, watching me turn my wedding ring round and round on my finger. Terry made a fist with his left hand and held it out, above our sleeping son, his silver skull glinting in the dark. I made a fist with my left hand and we knocked our knuckles together, our silver skulls clacking as they smacked into each other.

“Powers of gay marriage activate,” Terry said, smiling sleepily.

Kent and I, we tap our rings together, too. And some sort of secret powers active.

source: The Commitment: love, sex, marriage, and my family by Dan Savage


Art Durkee said...

i wondered how those powers got activated! Now I know.

Great stories! :)

Glenn Ingersoll said...

We all have secret powers.

It's nice to gain access to them.

Art Durkee said...

I'd tell you my secret powers, but then they wouldn't be secret any more. . . .

David Lee Ingersoll said...

Sarah and I knock rings too. And then we say "Wonder Twins! Power of .... Activate!" The power varies depending on whatever we were just talking about.

I don't remember seeing the version of SuperFriends that had the Wonder Twins. But there you go.