The Ceremony

We wrote our ceremony ourselves, and gave John the ability to improvise, within reason. Here's the text.

procession
A Love Supreme, John Coltrane

convocation
John:
We are gathered here today, in the presence of friends and family, for the purpose of uniting in matrimony meriko lynn blink and Russell Andrew Bornschlegel.

On behalf of Russell and meriko, I’d like to thank you for joining us. We are here not to mark the start of a new relationship, but to recognize and celebrate the depth of the bond that already exists between these two. In the years that meriko and Russell have been together, the strength of their mutual love and understanding has grown and matured. Today they are here to show their commitment to a life together as husband and wife.

My name is John Vinopal, and I’ve known meriko & Russell since they met. [John to amplify within reason] In officiating at their wedding, I pledge to support Russell and meriko not just today, but throughout their marriage. I know that they would like the same from you – the people they have chosen to witness this ceremony.

Because Russell and meriko feel a great closeness and respect for all of you here, they chose each of you to witness their vows today. .Marriage is an intensely personal act, but in order for the couple's marriage to gain strength to last throughout the years, their union must be supported by their greater society of family and friends. We remember and include those who couldn’t make it here today, and those who are no longer with us.

reading
John:
Russell and meriko threatened a scientific wedding – it seems they have decided to go through with it. They would like to share with you a few words from The Cyberiad by Stanislaw Lem: A love poem, lyrical, pastoral, and expressed in the language of pure mathematics. Tensor algebra, mainly, with a little topology and higher calculus. But with feeling, you understand, and in the cybernetic spirit.

R/M: The Cyberiad

more words
John:
Russell and meriko both grew up with, and have always shared, a scientific curiosity – therefore it is very appropriate for us to be here at a science museum on this occasion. They have always tried to see and understand the endlessly changing patterns in the world around them, and the patterns of thought in their own minds. Some of their greatest joys come from discovering these patterns together, and in following the same trains of thought to the same unlikely destinations.

These explorations of ideas have led meriko and Russell more than once to these appropriate words from Ranier Maria Rilke:

“…once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side-by-side can grow up for them if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of always seeing each other as a whole and before an immense sky.”

In keeping with their history of changing traditions to make them uniquely theirs, Russell and meriko are choosing a new surname to share as part of their new family. They will be taking the name Borogove, from Lewis Carroll’s poem Jabberwocky – they will keep the same initials, but create a new identity.

vows
John:
Now I will ask Russell and meriko to recite their marriage vows, after which I'll ask all of you to pledge your support of the happy couple by saying "we do".

Russell, do you choose meriko to be your lawfully wedded wife?

Russell:
I, Russell, choose you, meriko, to be my lawfully wedded wife.
I promise to love you, hold you, and care for you.
I promise to dance with you, walk with you, cook with you, play with you, and laugh and talk with you.
I promise to share my joys and sorrows, my hopes and fears with you, and to accept my share of yours.
I promise this from today until the end of my life.


John:
Thank you.
Do you, meriko, choose russell to be your lawfully wedded husband?

meriko:
I, meriko, choose you, Russell, to be my lawfully wedded husband.
I promise to love you, hold you, and care for you.
I promise to dance with you, walk with you, share adventures with you, travel with you, play with you, and talk and laugh with you.
I promise to share my joys and sorrows, my hopes and fears with you, and to accept my share of yours.
I promise this from today until the end of my life.

John:
Now that you have heard Russell and meriko exchange their vows, do you, their family and friends, promise to encourage them and love them, to give them your guidance, and to support them in the promises that they have made?

Guests:
We do.

rings
John:
Russell and meriko have chosen to exhange rings made with an old Japanese metalworking technique called Mokume Gane -- "wood grain metal". This was a decorative technique for samurai sword hilts, using layers of different metals folded together into a pattern which looks like wood grain, reflecting similar patterns developed in the forging of the sword blade. The pattern of every ring is unique, but these rings were cut face-to-face from the same billet, and so match each other, and none other.

May we have the rings, please?

Russell:
I offer you this ring as a token of our love.

meriko:
I offer you this ring as a token of our love.

declaration & kisses
John:
Now, by the power vested in me by the Universal Life Church and the State of California, I pronounce you husband and wife. You may now kiss, but please try to keep it within the bounds of good taste.

<kissin'>

This concludes the ceremony; the bride and groom are going to head to the DNA for a much-needed glass of wine. I encourage you to follow them and offer your congratulations before moving inside. The lyrics to the recessional are on the back of your program, if you’d like to join in. Thank you.

recession
Tom Lehrer, The Elements

just The Cyberiad
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last updated 30 September 2001 by mko.