When we were getting married last year, we applied for our license in July. That way we won’t have to rush around in October trying to make sure we are legal. We found a parking spot at the courthouse, a miracle unto itself. Up to the Marriage License office we trot, all happy and rosy. I think we were both nervous, at least I know I was.
They nice clerk handed us a form to fill out. I let Mr. Bernie do that, as he has much nicer handwriting, printing, than I do. There is a spot on the form for race. Instead of filling in a race, Mr. B wrote, “human”. I so wanted to kill him. There we were applying for a marriage license and I was debating how to choke him to the ground quietly. He was quite pleased with himself. My glaring and telling him that he was being ridiculous was ignored.
Next it came to the point to fill out my married name. After having the same name for 40 years, it took me a bit to decide. Did I want to keep my last name, hyphenate it, or take his. Mr. Bernie told me that it was up to me. That he didn’t care what I did. However, over the past several months he has made it clear that he prefer I take his name. So I went back and forth about it in the clerk’s office. Finally, I told him to put his last name as my new last name and hand it in quickly. (Just in case I changed my mind.)
He handed in the paper, looking all smug about his “human” under the race category. The clerk took it and looked surprised. She walked back to her desk and called over her co-worker with help as what to do. They talked it over quite a bit. I wanted to die on the spot. Mr. Bernie was looking smug and I was wondering if my wooden kitchen sink purse would give him a concussion if I hit him with it. Yes, I’m classy and carry a purse that looks like a sink to apply for a marriage license. No need to be jealous.
While we were waiting, a dewy-eyed young couple came in. Perhaps they were 12 or maybe 21, I was not sure. They were all cutsie wootise while waiting for their paperwork. Young love, so sweet. She was looking at her future husband with adoration and love. Meanwhile back in the old people section I was wondering how to push Mr. B down a flight of stairs and have it look like an accident.
The clerks were still discussing how to fill out our license and giving us odd looks. The young couple was done before us. Before they could sign this license, they had to raise their right hands and swear under oath that everything they put down was true. I nudged Mr. B and suggested if we get a license, that we should say, “Ya, sure, you betcha” when we had to take our oath. He agreed.
Finally, our license was typed up and presented to us. In the race box, it was blank. I guess they decided it was easier that way. It was time for us to swear that everything we wrote down was true and so on. We said, “Ya, sure, you betcha!” The clerk didn’t even crack a smile. Which of course, Mr. Bernie pointed out. “Oh, geez. We didn’t even get a smile out of her.” She looked up and smiled and said, “Oh, that was funny.” I don’t think she meant it though.
Our receipt in hand, we left the courthouse. All the while I was debating about going back upstairs and changing my last name back. I’m not a good at spelling and didn’t want to have to learn a new name. I still find myself using my maiden name for things. Not on purpose, it just happens.
This was a post I had originally posted on the Lemon Tree Cards Blog