Familial Duty Calls

My 27-year-old daughter Adrian is in Quincy right now and she came over for a visit. It was so good to see her, after about a year! She’s a very beautiful young woman; Adrian works as a nurse in Portland, Oregon. I’m proud of her!

She drove me over to visit with my folks, which was pleasant, but then I had to fulfill a promise reluctantly granted during the course of an earlier phone call.

Adrian and her guy Martin are getting married this summer out in Portland. She had asked me if I would consent to being measured for a suit.

Damn! A suit? I haven’t worn a suit since I was sixteen years old. But it was my daughter asking me for this favor, so after visiting my folks we stopped at a formal wear store on Broadway.

Obviously I was out of my realm.

I asked Adrian, “What — they’ll take my measurements without being paid?”

“Yeah, it’s kind of a courtesy places like that do.”

“So you will take the measurements to some place in Portland?”

“Yeah, I’ve printed out a form for them to fill out.”

Oh, gosh, I didn’t want to do this. We went into the store, which was deserted at that time of day. The clerk took me into the back of the store and submitted me to a ritual of holding my arms outstretched, keeping my feet together, and suchlike while she measured me with a cloth tape.

My daughter and I got back into her borrowed car.

“I hope that wasn’t too stressful for you, Dad!”

“The only thing that made it tolerable was that she was such a good-looking young woman. Did you notice how she would drape the measuring tape over the back of her neck between measurements?”

“And did you notice she was barefoot?”

“No! But no customers — I suppose she just wanted to be comfortable on a hot day… ”


4 comments on “Familial Duty Calls

  1. Joan says:

    Yay! I’m so happy for Adrian and for you, Larry. You must be thrilled to be giving away your daughter in marriage. I would have loved that, but my father passed away 4 years before I was married, and I was accompanied down the aisle by an accommodating but obviously bored uncle. There is nothing that takes the place of having your father at your wedding. Portland should be lovely (and much cooler than here) in July.

    As for the suit, you guys are so lucky to be able to rent for formal occasions while women must purchase their apparel. I had two , never to be worn again bridesmaid’s dresses to prove it.

  2. Larry says:

    The whole concept of “giving away” a daughter is rather archaic, Joan. It reeks of the medieval era and arranged marriages. I’m not giving my daughter away, I’ll just be witnessing a ceremony legally validating a union.

  3. Joan says:

    That’s pretty cold, Larry. The point of my personal narrative was not the escort situation but that I missed my Dad, and wanted him there, and Adrian is lucky that you will be there. As for yourself, no matter what form the ceremony takes, whether the bride walks down the path by herself, or on the arm of her father, there is usually that portion of the marriage ceremony which says ‘who giveth this woman..’. unless (or maybe even if, I do not know) it’s a civil ceremony. In Jewish unions, I believe the mother and father participate. Many things have changed with weddings.

    None of that matters. Archaic or modern or religious or civil or taking place outside in a meadow or park, it’s Adrian’s wedding and she will make a beautiful bride. I hope you realize that she feels that having you there is very important to her and I hope you are joyful.

  4. Larry says:

    I admit that I can be cold at times, but I’m doing what I can for Adrian’s wedding. Think of “The Big Bang Theory” character Sheldon. I’m an analog.

    I’m happy for Adrian but this human stuff is hard for me.

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