Engagemenopause Update: Puns, NBA Jokes, Cocaine & More!!!

We're at the seventh-inning stretch of our engagement, the calm before the storm, the beginning of the end. We have checked off a number of major tasks for the wedding, so there's been a bit of a pause (engagemenopause) in engagement-related news.

To recap: We have a date, a place, a bride and a groom. We have a DJ named Deejay, a rabbi we call Rabbi, and we're looking for a florist named Florist. I even know what I'm watching on the YouTube before the rehearsal dinner to calm my social anxieties.

So I'd like to use this pause in the action to go public with some information. As everyone knows, Valerie Bertinelli has written a new book to admit that she snorted coke while preparing for the ceremony of her wedding to rocker Eddie Van Halen (see above): “The priest we tapped to perform the ceremony gave us questionnaires so he could get to know us better and offer more personal words. As we filled out the forms at home, we each held a little vial of coke.”

Since we're often compared to Valerie and Eddie, Bertinelli's book has made some wonder about us. I'm going on the record now, once and for all, to assure you that when we did our homework before our last meeting with the rabbi -- reading the "Under the Huppah" chapter of "The New Jewish Wedding," which unravels the many mysteries of the broken-glass-mazel-tov -- illicit stimulants were not involved.


WEIRD NEWS: Groom Sees Bride Before Wedding Day

NEW YORK -- Chaos ensued early Saturday evening when a groom busted through a "No Gentlemen Beyond This Point" sign at Macy's bridal salon in Herald Square to check out the dress that his fiancee will wear to their wedding.

Saleswomen, other brides and various family members expressed shock, then horror, then curiosity after the groom, Matt Katz, 29, spit in the face of tradition and odd superstition by viewing the white garment before the appropriate time.

Katz said he was invited by the bride herself to view the dress, which, he added, "looked fucking awesome."

"I just like to involve him in decisions," said Deborah Hurwitz, the bride, matter-of-factly.

Katz agreed with Hurwitz's top pick for a dress -- a classy neo-Grecian number with a hot neckline -- and the purchase was made at approximately 8:41 p.m.

The couple was told that it will take a four months for the dress to arrive, and then another few weeks for alterations, which shocked the shit out of the groom.

Spry 74-year-old saleswoman Sylvia -- a part-time historical romance novelist -- agreed with the groom and assorted onlookers when she said Hurwitz looked "breathtaking."

Among the onlookers was a 21-year-old Macy's employee who was neither engaged nor dating anyone but had come to the Macy's bridal salon to "live in the moment."

The employee, who asked not to be named, tried on a flowing white gown with an even longer veil, stared at herself in the mirror, and repeated this -- "damn, wow, damn, wow" -- for a disturbingly long period of time.

She then turned to those staring at her, which is what happens in the bridal salon when anyone tries on a dress. "You're living in my moment," the employee said, smiling.

"Wow this is weird," Katz said. "How come women are allowed to play out their wedding fantasies in here, but 'gentlemen' aren't allowed to check out their fiancees' dresses?"

Still, he said he was thrilled that his fiancee found a dress she looks and feels gorgeous in, and he rejected the idea that seeing the dress before the wedding will cause bad luck.

"And I'm also glad I never have to go back to a bridal salon," he said.

Apparently that wouldn't be possible anyway. A Macy's spokesman said Monday that the store would not tolerate another intrusion past the "no gentlemen allowed" sign, and at the first sight of Katz the police will be called.


Free Food = You're Hired

"I was told there would be samples," I said.

This is how I open up every visit to a wedding caterer. My first experience with these food pushers was at a bridal show when we first got engaged, which must have been four or five years ago by now, and I ate enough roast beef-horseradish sandies to keep my GERD on overdrive until two weeks ago. It was fabulous.

But recently we've had a string of bad luck with caterers: No free food, no free booze, no free pharmies. Then why am I here? If there's nothing to consume couldn't we just have done this on the phone or on the interwebs? I hoped for a fruit platter, perhaps. Maybe a nice Goat cheese sampling with crisps, or pigs in a blanket and wine in a box.

One caterer kept us 2 1/2 hours without even offering a glass of water, and then after refusing to talk money at the table she never even ended up sending us an estimate! Cold-hearted, food-hoarding bastards.

Well, I'm happy to report, on Sunday we got our first real free meal on the backs of a caterer. And we weren't freeloading off just any caterer -- we ate off a caterer that gives his proceeds to AIDS/HIV patients!

We hit the motherf'nload. For more than an hour Deb and I sat in the office of a warehouse and chowed: "Traditional" coleslaw, multi-colored chips with salsa AND guac, two-potato salad (who knew there were two kinds!), mini-pulled beef sandwiches in little buns ("Mini sandwiches are very in," we were told) and mini-pulled chicken sandwiches. Caterer Dude even gave us leftovers -- so much that the two of us have already had FIVE follow-up meals between us, and as you can see from this pic we've got more shreds of meat chilling in Tupperware.

Even after we're married we're going to go for lunch and food shopping at caterers like this one every week. How are they gonna know if we're already married? Make up a few bogus names and email addresses, and the scam could go on for years. Then, we move.


And Now, We Rejoice

"Without music life would be a mistake. " ~ Nietzsche

"Music is what feelings sound like." ~ Unknown

"Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life. " ~ Beethoven

"Music is the shorthand of emotion." ~ Tolstoy

"Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without. " ~ Confucius

"What we provide is an atmosphere... of orchestrated pulse which works on people in a subliminal way. Under its influence I've seen shy debs and severe dowagers kick off their shoes and raise some wholesome hell." ~ Meyer Davis

We now officially have a DJ. There will be music, and it will be kick-ass. All is well, and nothing else now matters.

PHOTO: Anna Kuperberg


Marriage Is Just A Series Of Tubes

There's a number I came across last week that I can't stop thinking about. The online dating behemoth eHarmony -- you've seen their ads featuring very, very regular-looking people in front of a blue screen -- now claims it is responsible for 120 weddings a day. That's 2 percent of annual marriages in America.

Take all the weddings you'll ever go to in your life and multiply that by four. Now imagine all of those weddings every day, created and constructed by a company that does such a good job that it doesn't even allow you to browse for your own dates. It also doesn't let you search for M4M, if you're so inclined, let alone F4F or MF4MF.

As much a social engineering tool as online dating site, eHarmony has banned browsing and taken the whole "finding love" thing into its own hands. Daters answer a 258-question personality test (so far 19 million people have taken it), and their answers are compiled into a secret, trademarked algorithm to determine whom you are most likely to fall in love with. Unlike other sites, which allow daters to set the criteria for matching, eHarmonizers let the computer weed out the losers automatically.

Clearly the eHarmony model has been effective, but when Deborah and I tested a similar system at PerfectMatch.com for a dating column two years ago, it straight up didn't work.
I came out as an RACV -- risk taker, high energy, cautious, seeks variety. Deb was a RAOV -- instead of "cautious," she was "optimistic," which doesn't even make any sense.

Apparently, RACVs and RAOVs don't hook up, because even though I was emailed 14 "matches" of women of varying ages and hometowns, my wife2be was not among them. And instead of matching with me, Deborah got some well-dressed French dude in Manhattan. I'm not sure what that was about. I think they still talk. It's awkward.

I say all that just so I can brag about this: Last week the science writer for The New York Times essentially Jason Blaired my ass and tried an identical experiment using eHarmony with his wife. Just like us, even after dozens of offerings, he and his wife did not match at all.

So much for you and your fancy computers, eHarmony.

CREDIT: The uber-talented Deborah Hurwitz herself.


Reading Is For Losers; Listen While You Work

For no particular reason whatsoever, The Engaged Guy now has an audio function. Instead of reading this blog, you now have the option of reading something more interesting online while listening to your computer read the blog for you. Just click on the "listen now" button under each headline, or have the blog automatically downlooaded to your iTunes by clicking on the Odiogo Feed on the left-hand side of the page.

Web 2.0!

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