* 200 articles. Two years. Whelk. The best of Upsideclown. Might be reprinted.

The Wedding Band

26 November 2001
Dan is on his knees.

Now, weddings. Weddings are extremely curious things.

I think a lot of the curiosity comes down to whether your parents have thus far managed to stumble towards the grave without divorce. Even if their marriage is a black cake of misery leavened only by either or both of them paying $400 to eat an overweight prostitute's shit whenever they can afford it, if they're still together the children can still entertain the vague notion that marriages, fundamentally and intrinsically, work. They have a role to play in the world. Marriage is one of the things that makes what is worthwhile and good worthwhile and good.

So, even if they have not spoken for five years, and seem to remember their last words being angry ones, the principle still holds firm, at least if you see it from arm's length.

We children of broken homes, on the other hand....

Broken homes. Such a negative term. I prefer "roomy homes".

...are less convinced. It's not, I fain, the pain, the heartbreak, the divided loyalties or any of that old shit. It's more the feeling of utter stupidity.

So hang on. I just broke friends with somebody I had been passionately attached to for three months after an altercation over a Barbie doll. And, despite that fairly glaring hint about the permanence of things, I always believed you when you said that you and bignose over there were signed on a permanent contract.

And now it turns out you were joking. Well har de fucking har, cunt sandwich. Sic transit gloria wanking mundi. Take a Polaroid, bitchkebob - this is the face of someone who is not falling for this shit again.

Did that come across as bitter? Not the intention.

In, fact, I'm here to tell you about the bucking of the trend. Despite everything, I'm taking the step midway between love and a baby in a baby carriage. The boy is getting hitched.

Which causes certain complications. How to make the whole thing relevant, for a start. It's a condition of the age that these days people either marry very late and divorce early (the Guardian approach) or marry early and marry often (The Take a Break approach).

As a result of this, I have precious few precedents for how you go about it. Very few people I know have done the tying of the knot. So my sources are limited.

My parents, the archetypal Guardian couple - marry in Hayes, repent in Leicester, squirt me out six months after the ceremony and split up the moment I left home with an audible creaking of release.

The Take a Break option - a nightmare of home-made peach silk bridesmaids' dresses. She divorced, me living with doting mother. Drunken uncles trying to slip 14-year olds the tongue at shambolic receptions. At least one fistfight. Three weeks of wedded bliss, largely indistinguishable from the previous six weeks of living together except without my mother in the upstairs room.

Then start drinking. Become absurdly possessive of wife. Refuse to allow her to go to the pub ("or anywhere else" is redundant in this context). Criticise the shortness of her skirts and the lowness of her top. Spend much time drinking in aforementioned pub. Become physically abusive.

Wife, meanwhile, falls pregnant. Wife always falls pregnant. Pregnancy is a thing that one falls into. Hopes that presence of child will return me to being the man she fell in love with. Is, inevitably, disappointed. Loss of job provides more time for drinking and spousal abuse.

Wife takes job in winneting factory to help make ends meet. Over the winnets, she meets Steve. Steve treats her like a lady. They see each other, just as friends at first, but after a few evenings his lips touch hers and she doesn't pull away.

Alas, I suspect skulduggery, being as I am generally convinced, particularly in my cups, that wife is being unfaithful. Follow wife, see her dry-humping outside the Winneter's Arms on Rushy Street and either stab or run over Steve, depending on whether or not car has been repossessed.

Steve dies, I go to jail, wife rebuilds life with the help of John, whom she is shacked up and well on the way to marriage with while the flesh is still fresh in the box. I'm not convinced.

So, running rapidly out of ideas, I finally settled on a winner. Scott and Charlene.

How could I have been so blind? Scott and Charlene were one of the most romantic couplings of our time. Theirs was a love that spanned the ages. "Especially for You" still plays in over-25s nightclubs across Essex.

I will wear a traditional mullet. My beloved will starve herself and her pet pomeranian, then wear the poor dead beast on her head. We will embrace to the strains of "Suddenly" by "Angry" Anderson, and kiss to the anthemic swell.

And then we'll go to Adelaide. And you'll never hear from us again.


This is the fucking archive

Current clown:

18 December 2003. George writes: This List

Most recent ten:

15 December 2003. Jamie writes: Seven Songs
11 December 2003. Dan writes: Spinning Jenny
8 December 2003. Victor writes: Rock Opera
4 December 2003. Matt writes: The Mirrored Spheres of Patagonia
1 December 2003. George writes: Charm
27 November 2003. James writes: On Boxing
24 November 2003. Jamie writes: El Matador del Amor; Or, the Man who Killed Love
20 November 2003. Dan writes: Rights Management
17 November 2003. Victor writes: Walking on Yellow
13 November 2003. Matt writes: Disintermediation
(And alas we lost Neil, who last wrote Cockfosters)

Also by this clown:

11 December 2003. Dan writes: Spinning Jenny
20 November 2003. Dan writes: Rights Management
30 October 2003. Dan writes: My only goal
9 October 2003. Dan writes: The Knot
18 September 2003. Dan writes: The Engelbart Elephant
28 August 2003. Dan writes: The Amity Index
7 August 2003. Dan writes: This Sporting Life
17 July 2003. Dan writes: Touch
26 June 2003. Dan writes: Metadata
5 June 2003. Dan writes: Street Mate
15 May 2003. Dan writes: Usher's Well
24 April 2003. Dan writes: Medicamenta
3 April 2003. Dan writes: Weapons of Mass Construction
13 March 2003. Dan writes: David Sneddon, Bukake Secret Agent
20 February 2003. Dan writes: Mary Sue
30 January 2003. Dan writes: Bait and Switch
9 January 2003. Dan writes: What Never Happened
19 December 2002. Dan writes: Sermon on the Mount the Face
28 November 2002. Dan writes: Ballroom Blitz
7 November 2002. Dan writes: The Photographer
17 October 2002. Dan writes: Diaphragmatic
26 September 2002. Dan writes: A life in the day
5 September 2002. Dan writes: Different Class
15 August 2002. Dan writes: Story and sequel
25 July 2002. Dan writes: Fellatious
4 July 2002. Dan writes: Skin Mag
10 June 2002. Dan writes: The Ibizan book of the Dead
16 May 2002. Dan writes: The Sissons Situation
22 April 2002. Dan writes: UpsideClown and Out in Hollywood
28 March 2002. Dan writes: Nereus' Daughters
4 March 2002. Dan writes: Diomedes
7 February 2002. Dan writes: Text Only
14 January 2002. Dan writes: Civil Engineering
20 December 2001. Dan writes: Nativity
26 November 2001. Dan writes: The Wedding Band
1 November 2001. Dan writes: what dreans mecum?
8 October 2001. Dan writes: Stop me if you've heard this one before
13 September 2001. Dan writes: Mother of the Muses
20 August 2001. Dan writes: I say I say I say
26 July 2001. Dan writes: Bigger, Better, Brother
2 July 2001. Dan writes: Hecatomb
7 June 2001. Dan writes: Dispassionate Leave
14 May 2001. Dan writes: Small Town Boy
19 April 2001. Dan writes: Maintaining the Driving Line
26 March 2001. Dan writes: Cut and Paste
1 March 2001. Dan writes: Redemption
5 February 2001. Dan writes: Blyton the Face of the Earth
8 January 2001. Dan writes: Smoke Signals
18 December 2000. Dan writes: The Loa Depths
23 November 2000. Dan writes: The Limits of Melissa Joan Hart
30 October 2000. Dan writes: Shiftwork
5 October 2000. Dan writes: Dawson
11 September 2000. Dan writes: Testing Times
17 August 2000. Dan writes: Onanova
3 July 2000. Dan writes: Roboto il Diavolo

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