Thursday, June 24, 2010

The One With Something Old and Something New

As it turns out, they weren’t actually married. At least not in the eyes of the State of California. But one should not put the horse before the carriage.

Once upon a time (three years ago, today) in the beautiful land of Newport Beach, a beautiful princess married her Prince Charming, and they set about very busily living happily ever after. The prince was finishing his first year of UCLA Law School. We are not permitted to disclose his grades (all A’s with one A+… you did not hear it here), but one might say that the prince was wise and studious. So, they were living happily ever after. Which, incidentally was going quite well, until one fateful day when the princess needed to obtain a California Driver’s License.

The prince and princess had been selected to rule over a fair portion of the UCLA graduate student housing in lawless downtown Los Angeles, but in order to secure the throne and reap the income thereof, they each had to produce a valid California Driver’s License. Sadly, Princess Jessica was only in possession of a most inferior Utah license. So she set out one day on a quest for the elusive little card… to the dark and evil kingdom spoken of only in hushed whispers to scare little children… known as the DMV. The princess brought her marriage certificate which had been given to her by the Newport Beach temple, along with her other identifying papers, and after braving hordes of angry peasants and fire-breathing employees with the one-year-old crown prince balanced squarely on her hip, she presented the royal documents to Window 24. And then Window 13. And hours later, Window 5. And there, the wicked witch cackled with glee and informed her that in the kingdom of DMV, they do not accept marriage certificates… only marriage licenses. Without a marriage license, the princess would not be recognized as part of the royal family.

The pregnant princess was exhausted as she and Crown Prince Jif arrived back at the castle after a frustrating day, but the next morning they set out on the quest once again, this time to the Dreaded Courthouse in the kingdom of the County of Orange, where she hoped to purchase a certified copy of the license, provenance of her royal marriage. Once again, there was a confusing array of windows. Endless lines. Many, many fire-breathing dragons, and a coven of wicked witches and wizards. After several hours of standing in those lines and facing down witches and wizards and dragons, Crown Prince Jif, who had recently learned how much he likes to run, and who did not wish to sit in the royal pram or be held any longer, began to cry. One of the wicked witches with a particularly heinous wart on her nose told the princess that she would have to leave because the crown prince was crying! The princess joined him and began to cry herself. After several hours in the Dreaded Courthouse, the princess was given the terrible news. It seems that the royal marriage license had been misplaced somewhere between the Dreaded Courthouse and the beautiful Newport Beach Temple where she was married. Perhaps it had been intercepted by thieves on the treacherous road, or perhaps simply lost by the inept postal service, but either way, the license was nowhere to be found. According to the law of the land, the poor unfortunate princess was not even truly wed.

Day three of the increasingly desperate quest dawned gray and threatening rain, and the prince had to forgo a day of his education in order to join the princess’ quest to obtain a new license from the land of California… this time, in their county of residence, the lawless and degenerate kingdom known as Los Angeles County. The prince and princess had to produce two witnesses who would swear that they had been present at the alleged wedding some three years before, so the prince’s parents braved the busy thoroughfares and countless highwaymen to reach the dungeon known as the County Courthouse in Norwalk, where they hoped to come to the aid of the weary prince and princess, who had so recently and embarrassingly found themselves unwed. Dozens of brides and grooms waited in the endless lines there in the dungeon. The lines, apparently cursed with a wicked and powerful enchantment, seemed never to move, and as soon as one finished at Window A, then she had to get in line at Window C, and at each window she was greeted by condescending toads who made her fill out more and more forms, which they would then type up with their evil enchanted toad fingers and send her to yet another window.

The wicked toads forced the prince and princess and their witnesses to swear solemn oaths, and then they were obligated to purchase another license for ninety gold pieces, even though it was the Dreaded Courthouse who had lost the first license. They told the princess that if she wanted to receive the license in an expedited manner, some nine days’ hence, that she was required to travel to the inept postal service and seek an Express Mail envelope for the mailing. The prince frugally, but incorrectly purchased a Priority Mail envelope for $4.95 instead of an Express Mail envelope. After all, the envelope was only to travel a short distance to the castle. A single First Class stamp would ensure one-day delivery. But no... the princess was informed that if they used a Priority Mail envelope, it would take six weeks to receive the coveted license. So they traveled back to the inept postal service to make the purchase. Inept though the postal service may be, it seems that they had found a very effective way to extort extra funds, as they were apparently in collusion with the dungeon guards.

There were probably two hundred souls bartering with the evil toads for licenses there at the dungeon that day, and given the fact that there were five of the royal family there, one could conservatively figure that 98 percent or so were Latino. Princess Jessica was by no means the only pregnant bride. But she was probably the only one who did not exit the lovely chapel adorned with silk flowers and bathroom wallpaper, wearing a very short, tight strapless white dress with plenty of cleavage spillover. The princess bride wore denim, and the wedding was toasted with frosty mugs at A&W… the feast: cheese curds and hamburgers, which, miraculously, the pregnant princess managed not to vomit immediately thereafter.

And so once again, the prince and princess were married in the eyes of the land. The crown prince was once again the legitimate heir to the throne, and they were free to live happily ever after, ruling over their fair portion of the UCLA Graduate Student Housing, plunging toilets in the middle of the night or unlocking doors for those peasants who find themselves without. And, indeed, they are doing just that, on this third anniversary of their first marriage. Their second marriage is the stuff of legends… known only by a few, and documented by just a single photo:

Happy anniversary!


Garden of Egan said...

I can't decide if that is hilarious or sad. Please tell me?
It's hilarious because what a great story the royal family will have to tell all the days of their life.
But sad.
That there are so many stoopid dragons in the dungeons.

Glad they ain't livin' in sin no more. Sheesh she coulda been all classy n' stuff hanging out of her tube top and all.

Victoria said...

It was actually sad, because after three days of battling the dragons and the exhaustion, she almost lost her baby that night... spent the night in the ER bleeding, and the next few weeks resting. However, she is now well into the second trimester, and so now we can laugh about it, right?

Cherie said...

OK that is a funny story except it would be so exhausting.
My husband - The Bishop - just performed his first marraige (out of the Temple obviously) and it was HIS responsibility to make sure that that wedding license was turned in to the proper place.
He married the couple on a Saturday and on Monday the brides mom called our house because her daugher couldn't figure out why the bank wouldn't cash her paycheck with her new name on it. So cute :D That was then my husband realized he still had the license on his desk. I called and found out all that needed to happen and we got on it pronto. So it is quite possible that someone at the Temple messed up and didn't get the document where it needed to go, or it got lost in the mix.
But I am glad it all worked out in the end and I hope the baby is doing fine.
Can you just imagine the panic of not thinking you were married - Oh my!!

Carolyn said...

Oh of those horrible things that you made sound fanciful and fun.

I love it.

Cindy said...

My cousin's son and his wife were truly not married! Their license was for one city, and then a blizzard came and all the roads were closed so they had to move the venue to another. The bishop came and married them. They went on a month long honeymoon to Cancun, and when they got back, the awful news: they really weren't married!!! It was across the county line. So the bishop had to come over to their house that evening and marry them again!

Totally for real!

Glad they got it all straightened out and the baby is fine. Oh, life's experiences...

Just ME the MOM said...

A great tale m'lady! Encore Encore!

I'll share one of my own, only I can't possibly speak in a similiar language. Kinda funny though - I recently took my two daughters to Paris for a week for a girl's trip type vacation. We fly standby since my Dad is a retired Delta Airlines employee. My daughter who married last August realized when checking in at the airport that her passport had her unmarried name on it and her airplane ticket had her married name on it.

Not a compatible match - "no way" they said, "you're not going anywhere with this passport". She explained she was married recently, they discussed the options of finding and faxing marriage licenses but finally decided it was a "no go". I'm already in Paris - and happened to be out shopping at a grand department store when she called my cell phone in tears.

I dashed back to our hotel, leaping many small buildings in a single bound trying to get her a new ticket issued in her maiden name that matched her passport. (One of the benefits of flying standby - there are only a few . . .)

Fortunately, I had her standing by the ticket check in counter as her flight was about to depart, they issued the e-ticket, she checked her bag, dashed through security with her passport and matching ticket. And hopped on the plane at the last instant.

The most hilarious thing though - she was paranoid all week that some police / security officer was going to show up and haul her off to jail for traveling under an assumed name (her maiden name). We almost stamped her new married name of Donovan on her forehead because she was so paranoid all week, she was certain it must be displayed there loudy for everyone to see that she really wasn't a "Klein" at all.

Just thought I'd share :)


Fawn said...

Bureaucracy at it's best--ridiculous! Glad everything worked out finally, but wow, crazy.

Amy said...

You made such an exhausting story into such a funny read.
Thank goodness that's over.
I hope Princess Jessica feels better soon.

Loralee and the gang... said...

Wow! That is one outrageous story, and I only say that because I know how ruthless those DMV and county courthouse people can be! More and more paperwork, just to justify their jobs. Bleh. I am glad they got it all worked out, and that the baby is doing OK.