Best man for the job

Friday, January 25, 2008 | 1:00 p.m. CST; updated 3:27 p.m. CDT, Sunday, September 7, 2008

Rob Weir is the assistant general manager for Vox magazine, a fellow video game geek, a former teaching partner and a good friend.

He was also the man who told me I could kiss my bride.

We asked Rob to officiate our wedding because he was the best person for the job. And he definitely delivered.

Rob and I started at the Missouri School of Journalism in the summer of 2005. We became good friends, as did our respective steadies — his wife, Kate, and my then-girlfriend, Jenny.

I asked for Jenny’s hand the following December. As we began planning our wedding, we had a tough decision to make: Do we get married in our new home of Columbia, or do we pick a spot back in Colorado (Jenny’s home state) or Wyoming (my home state)?

We opted for Columbia, but that brought up a new problem: Who would actually marry us?

Had we gone with Colorado, we could have had Pastor Dale, a good friend to my in-laws who has married three of Jenny’s brothers and will do the honors for her sister this August.

If we had picked Wyoming, we could have gone with two pastors I am chummy with. The Rev. Ralph is the father of my good friend Eric and Pastor Bob is the father of one of my groomsmen, Ahrey.

Since we weren’t having a church wedding (we got married at the Missouri Theatre, a spot we love), we thought we’d find a judge to officiate. Then Rob brought up the idea of getting himself ordained on the Internet. I’m sure he was joking the first time he brought it up.

But the more Jenny and I thought about it, the more we liked the idea. He knew us as a couple better than anyone (Jenny and I were a relatively new item when we decided to move to Columbia), and it was important to us that the person with the power to marry us be someone who knows us.

And in that regard, Rob was a better choice than Dale, Ralph or Bob. While all three are fine men of the cloth, they each only know one of us.

So while Jenny and I fretted over the million other details that go into planning a wedding, Rob set out to find an online church that would ordain him to legally perform weddings in Missouri.

But he didn’t stop there. He helped us plan the ceremony, and he took care of a lot of the little things that meant a lot, like cue cards for the bride and groom.

When it was time for the rehearsal the day before the wedding, he kept my rowdy groomsmen in line, a small miracle for any man of the cloth. He even helped serve pizza at our rehearsal dinner at Shakespeare’s Pizza immediately after.

And when the big day came, he was the one in the back calming my nerves while the best man stressed over the toast he had yet to write. Afterward, when Jenny and I were on our honeymoon, he made sure our marriage license reached the courthouse.

Now that Jenny and I are about to become parents for the first time, I’m hoping Rob will be available to do the honors for our daughter someday.

And I hope she can find someone as good as Rob to marry.

Jake Sherlock is a news editor for the Missourian.

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