catherine yronwode & tyagi nagasiva

NUPTIAL CEREMONY

December 31st, 1999 through January 1st, 2000


CAST
   The Ministers: Ken and Carla Selfridge
   The Bride: catherine yronwode
   The Groom: tyagi nagasiva
   The Flower Girl & Ring-Bearer: Ariel
   The Daughter of the Bride: Althaea Yronwode
   The Dependent of the Groom: Eris, Doggess of Discord
   Witnesses for the Defense: D.J. and Heather



At the pre-nuptial party Cat wears a necklace of Thai penis amulets;

Ariel relaxes with her uncle nagasiva (Ariel's flowers by June);

Althaea receives her corsage as the Wedding is about to begin.

CEREMONIAL MOVEMENTS
     1. Places, Everyone
     2. The Wedding March
     3. The Reading of the Rights
     4. We are Gathered Together
     5. The Vows
     6. The Rings
     7. The Couple Kiss
     8. The Kissing Moment (Midnight)
     9. Auld Lang Syne
   10. Departure of the Newlyweds (Sword Arch with Beans and Rice)
   11. A Loving Cup (The Marital Reception Toast)
   12. The Cake Cutting
   13. The Verdict


1. Places, Everyone

(music) "Chapel of Love" by the Dixie Cups

Ushers present the Guests with gilded saucers containing white Bride-and-Groom candles. The Flower Girl provides matches from her flower-basket and assists Guests to light their candles.

June, Mark, and Laura hold their candles and dance to the Dixie Cups.


2. The Wedding March

(music) Mendelssohn's "Wedding March"

The Ring Bearer carries in the Rings; nagasiva is accompanied to place by Eris; catherine, guided by Althaea, approaches the altar; and Althaea releases Eris, who then begins to wander amongst the celebrants spreading good cheer.

Ken the Minister, Eris the Doggess, nagasiva the Groom, and Heather, one of the Witnessnes for the Defense, take their places. The Groom wears a hooded black, red, and purple faux-primitive pseudo-woollen shamanic robe bordered with archaeo-Nordic geometrics woven along the bottom and a circular Chinese dragon on the back. His beard is plaited in nine scorpionic braids terminating in silver jingle-bells and he carries a wintry scepter-bouquet of curly willow twigs and black silk flowers (hair by catherine; flowers by June). Eris' retro-fluff coiffure by Shampoodle of Santa Rosa; her classic black nylon leash and steel choke-collar by Frizelle-Enos Feed Store of Sebastopol.

3. The Reading of the Rights

The Ministers read the Bride and Groom their Miranda Rights.

(Ministers of the Law, Ken and Carla:)

   You have the right to remain silent.
   Anything you say can and will be used
       against you in a court of law.
   You have the right to talk to an attorney
       before answering any questions.
   You have the right to have your attorney
       present during the questioning.
   If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be
       appointed for you without cost, before or
       during questioning, if you desire.
   Do you understand these rights?

(catherine & nagasiva, in unison)

   We do.

Ministers call upon Heather and D.J., the Witnesses for the Defense, to sign the appropriate spaces in the Marriage License.

(The Ministers:)

   Will the Witnesses approach the bench.
   Sign here, and here.


4. We Are Gathered Together

(Ministers:)

   Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today
   in the sight of gods, spirits, ghosts, demons,
   fishes, puppies, and kitties to witness the
   giving and receiving of the marriage vows of
   catherine and nagasiva.

(The Ministers speak briefly about Marriage, in their own words and from their own experience)

Ken explains what his Marriage to Carla means to him.

5. The Vows

(Ken to nagasiva:)

   nagasiva, do you take this woman catherine
   to be your lawfully wedded wife, the living
   embodiment of Kali, the Final Prophet, and
   the Wish-Fulfilling Quim, to have and to
   hold, in sickness and in health, for richer
   or for poorer, to stand with her in the face
   of adversity and bask together with her in
   the light of good fortune?

(nagasiva:)

   I do.

Ken reads the Vows to nagasiva as catherine looks on; her dress is a black rayon post-hippie tie-back frock with embroidered velvet inserts and she wears a crown-like tribal Thai wedding headdress of embossed aluminum panels surmounting a black cloth cap appliqued with dozens of silver balls, cowrie shells, and red legume seeds, and finished with multiple strings of Job's tears seeds, aluminum dangles, and red feathers; her bouquet contains roses, alstroemeria, bells of Ireland, felicia, and baby's breath against a backdrop of ferns (flowers by June).
(Carla to catherine:)

   catherine, do you take this man nagasiva
   to be your lawfully wedded husband, the
   living embodiment of Siva, the Chosen One,
   and the Wonder -Working Phallus, to have
   and to hold, in sickness and in health, for
   richer or for poorer, to stand with him in
   the face of adversity and bask together
   with him in the light of good fortune?

(catherine:)

   I do.


6. The Rings

Ariel brings forth the Rings and presents the yellow-gold Ring to nagasiva

(Ken:)

   nagasiva, take this ring, and place it
   on your bride's finger, and state your
   pledge to her, repeating after me:

   With this ring,

(nagasiva:)

   With this ring,

(Ken:)

   I thee wed,

(nagasiva:)

   I thee wed,

(Ken:)

   a sign of my constant faith,

(nagasiva:)

   a sign of my constant faith,

(Ken:)

   and abiding love.

(nagasiva:)

   and abiding love.

Ken and Ariel stand by as catherine prepares to place the Ring on nagasiva's finger. As can be seen, the Couple is already fairly heavily invested with Rings; also visible in this picture are the Bride's silver and mother-of pearl Sun-and-Moon motif engagement ring (symbolizing the astrological link between her Sun and nagasiva's Moon, which are conjunct in the sign of Taurus) and her primitive silver Nepalese lapis lazuli and red coral ring and the Groom's Nepalese turquoise ring and his blue glass All-Seeing Eye ring (an apotropaic charm against the evil eye).

Ariel presents the white-gold Ring to catherine.

(Carla:)

   catherine, take this ring, and place it
   on your groom's finger, and state your
   pledge to him, repeating after me:

   With this ring,

(catherine:)

   With this ring,

(Carla:)

   I thee wed,

(catherine:)

   I thee wed,

(Carla:)

   a sign of my constant faith,

(catherine:)

   a sign of my constant faith,

(Carla:)

   and abiding love.

(catherine:)

   and abiding love.

(Ken and Carla in unison and carefully timed!:)

   By the authority vested in us by the State
   of California, we now pronounce you husband
   and wife. May your affectionate kiss spread
   throughout the world as the Great Odometer
   in the Sky shuffles off the last of 1999!

Having collaborated on the writing of the ceremony, the Bride and Groom know what is coming next and they can scarcely restrain themselves as the moment of State Approval and Odometer Shuffling approaches.


7. The Couple Kiss

Catherine and nagasiva start the kiss
JUST BEFORE midnight.

Carla ad Ken read the Pronouncement as nagasiva and catherine commence kissing; fireworks are heard to explode as the False Millennium is celebrated by the populace of Milpitas.


8. The Kissing Moment (Midnight)

MIDNIGHT IS SOUNDED
General excitement and hugging and stuff.

LIGHTS GO OUT AT THE STROKE OF 12:00!
White Bride-and-Groom candles provide the only light.


9. Auld Lang Syne

(music) The Ministers Incite the Singing of the Song, a capella, by the Guests, the Bride and the Groom

   Should auld acquaintance be forgot
   And never brought to mind?
   Should auld acquaintance be forgot
   And days of auld lang syne?

       For auld lang syne, my dear
       For auld lang syne
       We'll take a cup of kindness yet
       For auld lang syne

The Flower Girl and Usher hand out muslin bags of White Rice and Red Beans as June leads the Auld Lang Syne Singing Sword-Bearers -- Rory, Ellen, Laura, Althaea, and Ariel -- to form an arch outside the Chapel of Love. The rest of the singing horde tromps after the Sword-Bearers while the Newlyweds ready themselves for departure. The Ministers gently herd the Doggess and other stragglers out of the Chapel.

10. Departure of the Newlyweds (Sword Arch with Beans and Rice)

Catherine and nagasiva proceed outside through the Sword Arch.
The White Rice and Red Beans are packaged in small muslin bags and bear the following informative legend:

WHITE RICE is a traditional offering to couples who are being married. Rice symbolizes a full larder and enhances the wedded couple's potential for fertility, both physical and spiritual. Contrary to urban legend, uncooked rice is not harmful to wild birds, but is a good source of the carbohydrates they need to keep warm on cold winter nights.

RED BEANS are a traditional symbol of good luck and prosperity for the New Year. In Japan, priests in rural Shinto and Kami temples clap their hands and bow three times, then throw handfuls of uncooked red beans onto their parishioners on New Years' Day to ensure prosperity in the coming months. In Northern Europe and America edible beans of various types form the basis of cooked dishes like Hopping John that are served at New Years' Eve celebrations such as Hoggamany or First Footing.

Holly pelts The Newlyweds with White Rice and Red Beans, symbols of a happy marriage and a happy New Year.

The crowd shifts inside, initiating and/or continuing toasts to the New Year, statements of resolutions, etc. as the Happy Couple embarks on a journey in the dark, processing around the building.


11. A Loving Cup (The Marital Reception Toast)

The Newlyweds eventually arrive at the Front Door, where they ring the bell and are admitted by Valerie, who offers them a very large chalice of champagne.

In a scene adapted from Tod Browning's film "Freaks, " all the Married Couples who are present accept the Bride and Groom as a Wedded Pair, Ken and Carla Selfridge and June and Valerie Delane accept catherine as their sister-in-law, Ariel accepts catherine as her Aunt, and Althaea Yronwode accepts the former tyagi nagasiva as nagasiva bryan w yronwode, The Fourth Singing Yronwode.

(June and Valerie, holding up the chalice of champagne, proclaim in unison:)

   We'll make them one of us!

   A loving cup!
   A loving cup!

As Valerie and June drink from the Loving Cup, Althaea leads the guests to begin the chanting:

   We accept them -- one of us!
   We accept them -- one of us!

The Loving Cup is passed among the guests as they continue to chant and drink:

   Gooble Gobble!
       Gooble Gobble!
   We accept them!
       We accept them!

   Gooble Gobble!
       Gooble Gobble!
   One of us!
       One of us!

June presents the Loving Cup to her Grandfather Tate; Ken R. (one of The Three Kens at the wedding) stands in the background.

The above two verses are chanted over and over until all the guests have drunk from the chalice, then it is passed to the Happy Couple, who attempt to finish it off as a general cheer seals the moment.

Relative body size and genetic differences in the way people of various ethnicities metabolize alcohol help determine how much champagne any given Newlywed will likely consume; 5'3" Ashkenazy-Jewish catherine gamely imbibes a single ceremonial sip; 6'4" Anglo-Norwegian nagasiva enjoys prolonged quaffing.

12. The Cake Cutting

When the toasting and speeches and what-not die down, catherine and nagasiva join forces to slice the Cake and eat thereof.



The Cake in its chocolate-raspberry glory, surmounted by a painted terracotta Bride and Groom statuette from Bolivia; fountain and flowers by Marge;

Catherine and nagasiva cut the Cake with the Family Ceremonial Silver Cake-Cutting Knife, which has been sanctified by use at the Weddings of Marge and Ken, June and Bryan, and June and Valerie;

The Newlyweds daintily feed each other small morsels as Ken P. (one of The Three Kens), videotapes them.

13. The Verdict

AND THEY ALL LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER

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