Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

My Not-So-Big Fat Gay Wedding: Getting Hitched in Vegas without the Kitsch

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

My Not-So-Big Fat Gay Wedding: Getting Hitched in Vegas without the Kitsch

Article excerpt

MY PARTNER AND I ARE NOT what you'd call marriage tourists. When we decided to get hitched, it never occurred to us to ship off to Massachusetts or some other jurisdiction where same-sex nuptials or even civil unions are legal. We don't live there, we wouldn't get any new rights there, and we didn't view our ceremony as a political action.

No, as tacky as it will sound for the rest of our lives, we tied the knot in Vegas. It made sense; it's our home.

As with many who come here to wed, this was not my first trip to the altar. My maiden run took place in 1999 in Sedona, Ariz., to a man I fell in love with at 20 and ended up splitting with at 30. That was an over-the-top affair with nearly 100 people, a D J, and a fancy sit-down dinner. I followed through with it despite conflicted feelings, and I'd later come to view the event as a debacle that only heightened the humiliation and embarrassment of our breakup.

Then, two years after becoming single for the first time in my adult life, I met Miles while recruiting members for the Vegas chapter of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. This prospect, I also recruited for myself. Our courtship began in the shadow of the Las Vegas Strip at a happening little Spanish tapas restaurant called Firefly. Over bacon-wrapped dates and hot spinach salad an attraction took hold; within days we were using the term "boyfriend" to describe one another.

I was hesitant to have another wedding, but Miles and I were so much in love and I didn't have any of those doubts and fears of the first go-round. We had been together 18 months when I proposed to him on bended knee beside a roaring fire in a suite at a resort on Mount Hood, Ore. Evidently, he said yes.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

We briefly considered holding the wedding in one of the Vegas resort chapels--the elegant and recently renovated Mandalay Bay was our top choice. Then we discovered what a mill the Vegas wedding thing is. You get about 45 minutes to have the most important experience of your life before they usher you out so the next couple can have their life-changing event. It seemed impersonal, rushed, and expensive.

Instead, we rented one of the Sky Villas at Palms, a 6,000-square-foot suite on the 31st floor of the new Fantasy Tower with a vagina-shaped private pool hanging off the building. It turned out to be a brilliant idea. …

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