Thursday, June 06, 2013

False Start

Today was the day we were to get our marriage license.  I saw a notice in a local gay publication (Letters From Camp Rehoboth) that said "Wedding Licenses Available June 3".  So, the planner that I am I thought I would get our licenses plenty ahead of time (they're good for 30 days).  

So I talk Bill into going with me to Georgetown this gorgeous, sunny spring morning, which is no easy task believe me. Prying Bill from his domestic haven is always a challenge.  

We drive down Rt. 9 to Georgetown, encountering an accident on the way (of course, what else)?  I almost run a red light trying to get around that accident.  Then I get into Georgetown.  The building where the marriage license bureau is located is right on the traffic circle.  Where to park?  And I can't parallel park so I know I'm going to get an "I should've driven" from Bill which I did.  

I find a parking spot about two blocks away and we do our Old Man Walk up to the administrative building. 

We get in the building, then we look for room 268.  We get their (after some helpful direction from a county employee, I'm sure we looked like what we are TWO CONFUSED OLD MEN). 

Top of the stairs when I still had hope we could get our marriage license today

There is a sign on the door "Back in 10 minutes."  Uh....okay.  We wait, not too long before an officious woman comes by and unlocks the door to the marriage bureau.

I go up to the window (with Bill hanging back trying to blend in with the background as is his wont when he's out in public as a gay man - no way out sometimes) and tell her "I'm here to apply for a marriage license." She glances at us, figuring out what the  situation is very quickly and says "Is this a same sex couple?" I say "Yes."

She tells me  "You can apply for a civil union license but a same sex marriage license won't be available until July 1st." Say what?  I repeat to her that I read  that I could apply for a same sex marriage license now but she was adamant, "No, you cannot apply for a marriage license for a same sex couple until July 1st." Okay, wasted trip?  No, not really.  I'll just count this as a trial run.  Of course I now have to deal with Bill since I pried him out of his comfort zone at home and he's got his feathers all ruffled.

I get back home and call the office of the local gay publication "Letters."  I told them my tale of woe. Sal, the very helpful guy on the other end of the line told me "I'll have to check this with Steve (Elkins) and we'll get back to you." 

Hey folks, no one said it would be easy.  

Thwarted again!


Bob said...

Always good to have a trial run, I'm guessing.

Jon said...

Ron, you have a knack for making frustrating things sound amusing. I enjoyed hearing about your "trial run" and I really laughed when you said you and Bill were doing the "old man walk" I can relate to that.....

The entire situation reminds me of an old movie. Do you remember "The Clock" with Judy Garland and Robert Walker? - - when they're running around New York City at the last minute, trying to get a marriage license.

anne marie in philly said...

sweet baby cheeses! WTF?

Anonymous said...

It's the government. "Hello left hand. I'm right hand. What'cha doin'?"

Jeff said...

I've been down this road with our domestic partnership here in NV. The clerk accepted our paper work in Carson City. Then they sent them down to LV and we got rejected there for some clerical error. We went back to Carson City and got it all straightened out or should I say fixed.

Ron said...


I wasn't kidding about that "old man walk". You should see us, not spring chickens anymore. We should have gotten married 49 years ago.


Ron said...

Anne Marie,

One hurdle after another. Why am I not surprised?


Anonymous said...

All kidding aside, I hope you're able to get this sorted out.

Anonymous said...

Your "Letters" publication should pay the license fee for publishing misleading information. They owe you one.
But the better outcome would be that the license office worker was "wrong" and will have to eat crow when you
reappear. OHHH I'd like to hear that outcome. Keep us posted.
Also, now that the weather is nice you guys should be taking an evening walk through the neighborhood to get
your heart rates up and keep the muscles moving. You may not need it as much as Bill might. I'm sure you
would have to go to get him out there too.

Ron said...


I called "Letters" to inform them of their error. They claim they got a press release from the Justice of the Peace John Brady that marriage licenses were available June 3rd, which made sense to me if the licenses are good for 30 days and we can start getting married July 1st. But what do I know?

As for our "Old Man Walk", we both get plenty of exercise but we are stiff when we get out of the car (not"that"stiff).


David Jeffreys said...

So will Bill be driving on the next attempt, so he can parallel park, and you won't have to do the Old Man Walk"?

Suggestion: Next time, call the Marriage Bureau just before you leave home to make sure. It will be awfully close to the holiday weekend, so you know that anything goes with the guvment!


Ron said...


I'm not surprised that I encountered yet another hurdle on my journey to making our relationship legitimate (in the eyes of the law). I expect a few more speed bumps but we'll get there. I can see the finish line now.


Ron said...

You got that right Sean.

Ron said...


I'm a "trial run" kind of guy. Drives Bill crazy.


Ron said...


The thing is I DID call the marriage bureau a few days before I went down. I told them that I wanted to get a marriage license. The women on the other end of the line (don't know her name) said "Come on down and we'll take care of you!" She was very friendly. Yesterday the office was closed temporarily with a sign on the door "Be back in 10 minutes." We waited and a woman did come back. She was indifferent (not friendly but not hostile either) but very adamant that we COULD NOT GET OUR MARRIAGE LICENSE UNTIL JULY 1ST. That's my frustration David. I called and was told one thing, the Camp Rehoboth newsletter said MARRIAGE LICENSES could be picked up after JUNE 3RD. I called Camp Rehoboth and told them my encounter. They said that was the press release they got from the Justice of the Peace's office. So go figure. I'm confused and I think they are too.


Ur-spo said...

government bureaucracy is an equal opportunity experience; it is somewhat comforting. So much for alleged 'special services !