THE WEDDING: HOW IT CAME OFF ED It all started a little over a year ago. I was in the TV room watching my favorite show on The Discovery Channel. I don't know the exact name of it but it's that show where all those animals in Africa attack all those other animals and eat them for survival. Some people find it gross, but I find it relaxing. Maybe because it's a nice change of pace from where I work at the DMV. Anyway, I'm sitting there watching this hyena stalking this wildebeest when my wife Doris comes in, grabs the remote and hits the mute button just as the hyena was goin' for the wildebeest's throat. Which as you know is the good part. DORIS We have to talk. ED You couldn't wait till after dinner? DORIS It's about Mary Ellen. I think she's getting very serious about James. ED Which one is James? That's not the hairdresser, is it? DORIS No. That's either Marty or Manuel. There were two hairdressers. James is the sales rep from Microsoft. ED The little pudgy guy with the bald spot and the growth on his nose? DORIS No. That's Barry. The actor. ED He's an actor? With a nose like that, what can he play besides gnomes? DORIS James met us at the mall last week. ED What, the tall, skinny guy with the earring and the cell phone in his pants? DORIS That's the one. ED They're getting serious? DORIS That would be my estimation. Serious how? DORIS Serious like I think they've become intimate. ED Intimate how? DORIS Intimate like in the way married people become intimate. ED I'll kill him. DORIS I thought you should know. Relax. Watch your warthog. ED It's not a warthog, it's a hyena. And Mary Ellen is a baby! DORIS She's twenty-two years old. ED And they've been intimate? DORIS That would be my educated guess. ED And what educated you? What's your evidence? DORIS I was sorting her sock drawer. I found a package of condoms. ED Don't say condoms to me where I can hear it! DORIS You have to know, Ed. We have to be grownups about this. It is 1995, after all. It's not like it was in our day. In 1995, sex comes before love. Young people today believe that if they can get over the hurdle of sex, then true love is much more easily achieved. ED Since when do you have to hurdle to get sex? When you and I had sex the first time on our wedding night, there was no hurdling involved. Sure, the silk sheets were a little slippery. Sue me! Tell me you didn't enjoy it on the floor! I can't believe we're talking about sex and Mary Ellen in the same breath. DORIS Well, I'm glad we are. Because I think she's going to be coming to you very soon for a father-daughter talk and I think you should be prepared.