Plan B

And the story continues….


I was holding two paddles without a river in sight. With Bobby out of action I was without a best man for the wedding, and I didn’t want to have Mr. Pedantic, also known as Stephen Kurt, Linda’s younger brother, be that man. Nope, this was the one thing under my control, the one concession to the idea that once I proposed I let go of the reins of my life until my wedding night.

So I made a quick mental checklist.

No male siblings, in fact no siblings at all.

Cousin Ray was somewhere in the mountains of Afghanistan and I doubted the Army would ship him home just for the occasion.

That left Paul. My next door neighbor, my old friend from Kindergarten all the way to Chatterley High, Mass.  Could have been my first choice, should have been my first choice except for one thing. His twin sister Rebeca. While brainiac Paul went to Harvard, Rebeca and I went to U-Mass, where we dated for three years before we broke up.

It was a long walk to the riverbank.

I called Paul. “Hey Paul, how you doing?”

“Johnny, wassup!”

“Oh…nothing. I just have this little problem and I was hoping that maybe, you know, you might help me out with, if you don’t mind,” I said.

Half a minute passed. “What kind of a problem, John?”

“Ahem, ya see, my buddy, Bobby, he sort off ended up on the wrong, well, end of a bike and now he, well, he is in the hospital, so…I need a new best man, stat!”

Another minute passed. “Let me get this straight. You’re getting married on Christmas day, your best man is out of action and you want me to fill in.”

“Exactly. It’s suit tie, no penguin tails or top hats or anything, simple tux, I can pick it up for you, my treat, just be on the church around–”

He jumped in. “I didn’t say I was going to do it.”

“Well, you haven’t said that you were not going do it? C’mon man. I’m desperate. You just have to show up, stand there, maybe say a few words at the reception and you get to spend a few hours with the bridesmaids,” I said hoping he would take the bait.


Oh no.


“Kiky, my sister. You need to talk to her,” he said.

“I do?”

“Yeah, you do. You screwed her up badly back in college. And you didn’t invite her to the wedding,” he said.

“I invited you. And now you get an upgrade. Not even airlines do that on such short notice.”

“I’ll do if, and only if, you talk to my sister and square things out.”

The reason why Paul was not the best man was that Rebeca’s name would have come up, and I didn’t know how Linda would react to my college sweetheart showing up at our wedding. One that I knew since I was about five, by the way. “That was  like, umm, four years ago.”


“Isn’t she living in Boston these days, happily married?”

“Divorce and she moved back home six months ago.”

Talk about grabbing a guy by the short hairs. “So, if I talk to her, apologize, make sure everything is fine then you will do it?”


“OK, text me her phone number.” Which he did. I called her and set up a little get together in a local restaurant.  She looked nice, as she came in the door. Her dark brown hair done in a bun, and wearing a nice blue dress.

Why did I break up with her?

Oh yeah, because the relationship had run its course and I had slight mental breakdown during my sophomore year.  A woman gave us a strange look as we made our way to our table.  I decided that the truth, or at least an indirect version of it would be the best approach. “Rebeca, I know this is short notice, but you probably heard that I’m getting married, soon.”

She took a zip of wine. “Yeah, Paul told me about it.”

“I’m sorry didn’t invite you. To be honest, that’s not really under my control and–”

“And future wives don’t like to see their husbands-to-be exes in the reception line,” she said.

“Exactly. However, I heard, that is Paul told me, that you were town and considering how things ended with us– Scratch that, the way I screwed the break up, I thought that maybe I could, umm, set things right?”

She bobbed her head to one side. “I’m listening.”

“Ya, well, the thing is I’ve been thinking about life in general, and all those loose ends, not that you’re a loose end, mind you, just, well you know.”

“I forgive you.”

“You do?”

“Sure. I was so long ago, and I know that you had your thing with the grades and the fraternity and the scholarship, it was lot of pressure and–” Her eyes grew wider by the second. She stared at the space above and behind my head. “What’s the name of your fiance?


“Is she blond?”

Oh god no.

I slowly turned around, “Yes.” And there Linda stood, in the middle of the restaurant, none to happy.

“Hi honey,” I said.


Time is running out for John. What is a desperate groom to do?

Now, I hope that YouTube doesn’t delete this song as well, so I’m crossing my fingers.

With you tonight is (again) the Trans-Siberian Orchestra- Christmas Canon Rock

3 comments on “Plan B

  1. Cue the shark music from Jaws. 🙂

    I really hope you keeping posting this, I want to know how things turn out for John. I know how I’d like them to turn out, but I’m not the writing this. 😉


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