I love Fall. It’s my favorite season until Spring rolls around and I claim that as my favorite.

Fall has arrived late this year, and about a week ago I had a “seasonal bleed” of the nose. It’s kind of like allergies, I guess. Nothing too serious, although I woke up early this morning with a bit of a doozie.
Here’s a run down of what happens:
1) wake up with runny nose sensation
2) realize it’s a nosebleed (haven’t bled on my pillow since I was 10)
3) go to bathroom, gently blow nose... it’s the only way to truly assess the bleed
4) wet tissue, insert
5) watch TV
6) eat a popsicle

I don’t know what that asshole in the picture is doing. In over a quarter century of nosebleeds I’ve never done that. Maybe it works for thinbloods.

Oh, wait. I tried this new nose cooling device called the NoseBuddy or something like that. It like a mini-iced-gel pack that you keep in the freezer, then place over your nose. It didn’t work in this case, but it felt good.

Having failed with the lesser measures, I resorted to Stimate, a nasal spray that boosts my clotting factor. That did the trick. About five music videos later and I was ready to go back to sleep. I didn’t want to wake Gwenn, so I just slept on the couch. Also, you never know if you’ll have to get up again if the nose is being bratty.

OK, the nosebleed portion of this blog is over. The timing of the nosebleeds, however, couldn’t have been better. They started two days before I played a Synthetic Division show, but held off during the gig. Then another came a few days later, then nothing. Then yesterday, no nosebleed... which was huge. Why? I was performing a wedding ceremony!

No, not as Synthetic Division. I was officiating a wedding, in an unofficial

Oct 23, 2004, planting one on my sweetie.

My friend, Riki, asked me if I’d officiate his wedding about eight months ago, and I was pretty nervous about it. Yes, I do public speaking. But this? Ultimately, I took on the challenge and the tremendous honor, and was ready to roll with Gwenn acting as an unofficial wedding planner of sorts. Plus, I kind of owed Riki, he’s a fabulous baker and he made our wedding cake, which friends are still talking about today. And he flew in from Las Vegas, where he was working at the time as a pastry chef at the Bellagio, to do it.

The wedding took place yesterday, at the same venue as ours’, King Family Vineyard, and the same time of year as well, which is why Fall ultimately trumps Spring. On Friday at the rehearsal, there were scattered thunderstorms, but like the nosebleed they timed themselves perfectly, and on Saturday there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. 71 degrees... incredible.

One thing I botched was that I asked everyone to stand for the bride, Kawai, but I’d forgotten to cue the musicians. There was a slight wind in the air, so they had to get to the sheet music for the processional. Is that the right word? Remember, I was unofficial.

But all was well. This just gave everyone an extra moment or two to stand, and see Kawai and her parents in the distance. Kawai was a trooper, she waited for the cue, and when the musicians started, here came the bride.

The wedding was attended by Riki and Kawai’s families, most of whom traveled from Hawaii and Japan. Riki and Kawai assured me along the way, “It’s all laid back!” but Japan is a long way to come to see some hack botch your daughter’s wedding.

Once everyone was in place, I started by saying some nice words about the couple, which made Kawai cry... I didn’t mean to do that, but took it as a good sign... oh, and I did something that our (me and Gwenn’s) officiant did, one of the few things I remember about my own wedding ceremony: I stated that the entire wedding process means nothing without the couple getting married, and had them look at each other and take the moment in.

It was funny, because Riki’s face said, “Oh wait, we didn’t rehearse this!”

Then he did as I commanded, and the beautiful couple smiled at each other. It made us all less nervous. They did a traditional sake ceremony called San San Ku Do, which included their families and involved little cups filled with sake. Riki and Kawai drank, then they distributed the cups of sake to their family. With Riki and Kawai facing me, I discreetly asked Kawai, “... now they all drink?” She smiled and nodded, and in my loud authoratative-albeit-friendly voice I proclaimed: “Now the family will drink together!”

Once they polished off their sake I told everyone else there was a cocktail hour immediately following the ceremony, the rest of which flowed so naturally. Both families came up to me and thanked me afterward... I hadn’t botched it- yay!

Gwenn and I spent the rest of the evening talking to friends, making new ones and enjoying the nice weather and reception: there couldn’t have been a more perfect way to celebrate our anniversary. Thanks to Riki and Kawai for the honor, and thanks to my nose for its patience.

I’m going to get a popsicle.
Positively Yours,