To my MGoBrothers&Sisters,
Sorry for this post in advance but I have love on the mind and feel like shouting it from the proverbial rooftops.
I got married on Sunday to my college sweetheart at a destination wedding in Charleston. We did it there for some legitimate sentimental reasons, but mainly because--as my wife (!!!) put it during a fight while my brother-in-law-and-Michigan-PhD-grad-officiant was trying to write the ceremony--"it's fucking pretty there."
We met on the very first day of freshmen year when we were the first two people to move into the Honors College wing of Couzens. Our rooms were 4 doors apart. We had a shift for Move-in-Makers together the next morning. It was like 90 degrees outside, and we were done with 2 out of the 3 hours of our shift when I made the executive decision to quit. She followed behind me, stunned at my audacity but secretly grateful, as I pushed our big blue moving bin past rows of helpless, sweaty parents and students back into the cool confines of the dorm.
My best man was a fellow Couzens denizen and lived another 4 or 5 rooms down. I don't really remember how or when we became best friends, but it started over Michigan sports. I moved to Ann Arbor when I was 3 and am a life-minus-3 years-long Michigan fan. He is from Santa Monica, CA and has some reason for loving Michigan that he's told me a million times but is hard to understand so I can never remember it, but regardless, he is somehow an even bigger Michigan fan than me. We lived together all 4 years, from Couzens to West Quad to Greenwood. My wife is my other half, and my best man is my third.
My other groomsmen were: 3 Ann Arbor natives and Pioneer high school grads, one who is the smartest person I know and is now going to be my personal lawyer, one who played D3 college basketball and is devoting his life to teaching basketball to kids around the world yet still puts up with my totally baseless Michigan basketball opinions, and the other who, for simplicity's sake, is my literal older brother-from-another mother and whom I would do anything for and would do the same for me; the last groomsman was my fellow basement-dweller on Greenwood. He was our rock for every Michigan football tailgate because his parents' family owns the giant Michigan customized bus that parks in front of the stadium with the train horn, and they welcomed the Jarty House into their family with open arms. For their big groomsmen's gift, I got them an autographed bottle of Charles Woodson wine.
My dad is the embodiment of the American dream. He's from a tiny village in Malaysia and earned a scholarship to Berkeley--where he met my mother, who is certainly an honorary Wolverine--for his PhD in Statistics. He retired from Michigan last year after being a professor there for 23 years, and is (or at least was at some point) the longest serving chair in the college of LS&A at 12 years. He could have moved our family to other colleges to climb up the professional ladder to dean, chancellor, and president, but didn't want to make us leave Ann Arbor because it is the greatest city in the world. Instead, he stayed at UofM and was rewarded by finishing his career at Michigan as the President of the International Statistical Institute--essentially the most famous statistician you can be in the entire nerd kingdom. My mom and dad did finally move to Charlotte this year to be closer to my sister (also a Michigan graduate) and their two beautiful grand children--who are the best flower girls in the universe and undoubtedly future Wolverines.
My dad took me to my first Michigan football game in the Big House when I was 3 or 4 years old. He fondly reminds me from time-to-time that I sat on my head facing backwards for the entirety of the first half, so he asked if I wanted to get McDonald's (to which I enthusiastically said "yass daddi") and I cried afterwards when he said we couldn't go back. I've been a Michigan fan ever since.
I could write a novel about my wife, but for the sake of the blog, I will say that she is a Michigan fan, per se, but hates sports. Nevertheless, because she is my soul mate, she sits silently yet supportively on the computer, at the bar, in the stadium, or wherever while I watch every Michigan football and basketball game. We've been together for over 8 years and I hope to stay that way for over 80.
My wife's maid-of-honor is an MSU grad, and her speech brought my stoic father-in-law (a Detroit native who played for the Junior Red Wings and skated with Gordie Howe!!! And who, despite going to Wayne State--where he met my mother-in-law--I have crafted to be such a devoted Michigan fan that he has to watch close games on tape delay) to tears. She took a classy (surprise coming from an MSU grad, right?!) shot at UofM, which brought loud ass jeers from the wedding guests (2/3 Michigan fans, 1/4 Sparties, the rest confused). My best man followed up with the most perfect speech that has ever been delivered, further solidifying Michigan's dominance in every facet of life.
The last song of the night was Hail to the Victors, which was not planned, but was always going to happen.
I love you all,
Forever and Always, GO BLUEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!