Friday, August 5, 2011

35 Years - The OFFICIAL Story, Just So You Know

August 5, 1976

I don't think I ever thought I would tell this story here, but I guess I will or somebody will remember it all wrong someday. Pastor told the story for years afterwards, over and over again to my chagrin, to his captive audience, the Church! He loved to tell them how he married Mike and I at 3:30 in the morning, without a license and only a borrowed ring. That wasn't completely true. Pastor loved to embellish stories. It was only 3:00 a.m. when he married us.

Lisa Wallen, Mike Logsdon mid 1970s
Mike and I had been dating long enough to know that we were in love I suppose. We talked about marriage for a while but then, over the summer, something happened and we broke up. (That part is just too long and dramatic to tell here!) Now, I'd been going to Mike's church for almost a year when we broke up so I figured I'd best tell Pastor I was going to find another church to go to. During a mid-week evening service I penned Pastor a note to be delivered by a trusted friend and I exited the church before the service was over. To this day, I don't know if Pastor ever saw that note, he never mentioned it.

It was just before 9 p.m. when I got home that night. "Home" was a little rented 1940s frame house on five beautiful acres in a rural neighborhood. My horses were fenced in on the back part of the property and the landlady also lived behind me in a trailer. I poured myself a glass of wine and sat down at the kitchen table. About 11 p.m. I heard a knock at my door and there stood Mike, grinning from ear to ear. He came in and sat down at the kitchen table wearing that silly smile and says "Will you marry me?". I just stared. I poured myself another glass of wine. I stared some more. Suspicion set in. "Now?", I asked. "Yes, now.", he said. My suspicion now took on sarcasm. "Sure, call Pastor.", I quipped. And he did. Except, he got Mrs. Pastor. She said "Pastor is out gigging frogs with his brother, they'll be out late." and Mike said, "Please tell him to call me no matter how late he gets in, it's important." Pastor and his brother were youngish men and I guess gigging frogs was a typical night sport up where they grew up in Washington State. I think they ate a lot of frog's legs in those parts.

At 1 a.m. Mike says, "If we don't hear from Pastor, can I stay over?". I hadn't cracked a smile or even been very nice since he'd gotten there and I wasn't about to start now. I was still leery of it all. "We'll just see what Pastor says.", I said in a very level tone. Mike is still grinning and looking sillier than ever.

At 2 a.m. Pastor calls. Mike asks, "Can you marry Lisa and I?". "Now?", says Pastor. "Now.", says Mike. Pastor says "Meet me at the church in half an hour!", and he hung up. He quickly called back..."Go wake up Susie and tell her I need her at the church!". Susie was his secretary and our friend. I'm still not cracking any smiles.

A few minutes later we arrived at Susie's apartment. Mike indicates I should go up since she'd be in bed. I pound on the door. Susie appears in her pajamas and robe, still three quarters asleep. "Susie, Mike and I are getting married and Pastor wants you at the church with us pronto." Susie didn't get it, because she's still asleep. She pats me on the back and leads me to a chair and asks me to tell her all about it. I repeated myself in a louder tone. Suddenly Susie snaps to and starts tripping all over her apartment blabbering "Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue!". She was quickly gathering stuff up and then she disappeared into her bedroom and less than 2 minutes later she came out fully clothed and ready to go. I don't remember what the old and the new items were but the borrowed item was a ring, a plain band that belonged to her. The blue item was a sterling silver cross necklace with blue turquoise stones.

When we got to the church Pastor was waiting in his khaki shorts, Hawaiian print shirt, and tousled hair. Mike and I were both in cut-off shorts and I remember I had on a tank top and flip-flops on my feet. Pastor looked sternly at Mike and said "It is legal in Florida for me to marry you without a license so long as you have that license back to me in three days...and Son, you WILL have that license back here in that time." Mike nodded in agreement. I'm still not smiling...well, maybe just a little twitch in one side of my mouth. Susie is crying. And Mike is still grinning from ear to ear as Pastor performs the short ceremony.

I was still suspicious next day until Mike called his mother and told her the news. I think I actually believed it then...mostly. But it wasn't really REAL until we got that license and took it back for Pastor to sign. 

Since that time Pastor has married my son and daughter-in-law and my daughter and son-in-law, and he said if he's still around, he'll marry their children off too someday. And I do believe he will.

Of course, there's a lot more to this story that I couldn't tell. Violent x-girlfriends, angry mother-in-law, and the "honeymoon" that took us from central Florida to Kentucky to pick up the guy who jumped bail that Mike had signed for and who threatened to kill us for trapping him in that mall parking lot surrounded by police....

And that was our first week of marriage. 35 years today and still having fun!

And now I must hurry and get ready, or I'll be late for our date!



  1. I want digital proof that Mike obtained said license. HERE, on the blog!

    LOL, JUST kidding, well, maybe not totally kidding!

    Cute story! Mine went something like this: Sunday, if we can rent an apt by Wednesday, we will get married on Friday. So, we did! Seriously, but, we had the license FIRST! LOL

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!! Have a fab date and many more years to celebrate the no license marriage, again and again and again. I expect by number 50 Mike will have that license signed, sealed and delivered!

  2. OK, Blogger is eating comments for lunch.

    What I tried to say, is that I wanted to see digital proof here on the blog that Mike really got that license.

    And that I hope you have a FAB day, Happy Anniversary, and that by number 50 Mike probably will have figured out how to get a real license and make it legal!

    There was more in my original comments, maybe I can remember what it all was sometime! LOL


  3. I liked both your comments Carol so I published them both...and blogger was just doing some weird stuff to me too! LOL! Truth be known our license has a later date than the real date of our marriage but we don't go by that cause we know when we got married, haha! Note to self: be sure to put that little tidbit in the genealogy program!

  4. Great story, Lisa--and your writing made it come alive as I read it. Happy anniversary!

  5. Lisa, copy this entire post and add to your data base! Cause you wrote a cute story and it deserves to be in both places! :-)

  6. Thanks pugbug! Good idea Carol, I believe I'll just do that! :-)

  7. I don't know what I love more - playing this out in my mind for the sheer amusement and joy of it, or the colorful example that "weddings" aren't marriages.

    Congratulations to you both. Have a grand time on that date!

  8. What a story! Its great to see that you made it through all of the crazy things that you did not list. Hope Pastor is around to marry off the grandkids as well.

  9. Riveting! Hope there's a Part II detailing the trip to Kentucky!

  10. I love your wedding story and you both are still an awesome couple and I do believe Mike is still grinning ear to ear! Irene

  11. Thanks for sharing Lisa! The "legal" aspects of marriage are just for property ownership laws, deciding who gets or owns what..otherwise, the ceremony to announce our commitment to each other, in front of others, and accepting the blessing of God is the most important part of it to me. And, for most of history, was all there was. The "legal" part came and evolved later....

  12. I love this post -- it sure beats the one I wrote on the marriage that didn't happen. 35 years is a real testament. Glad you posted it for you descendants.

  13. Great story, and great story-telling! Loved it. Happy Anniversary Lisa!!

  14. Awesome story, Lisa. So much better than today when the kids plan their weddings years in advance. Hope you had a brilliant anniversary.

  15. That's a fantastic story - will there be more posts on it?? lol Thanks for telling it!

  16. Happy Anniversary - this has to be the greatest wedding story I've ever heard!

  17. What a great story! Thank you for sharing it. May you and Mike have wonderful anniversary celebration.

  18. What a story! Happy Anniversary (even if I am a couple of days late).

  19. Fabulous story!!! Happy Anniversary!