My husband and I were married the first Sunday we could in California at our cabin home in Riverside CA. We first met when I was a graduate student at UC Irvine and Andrew was an undergraduate, studying comparative literature. He had taken time off, and we were the same age, and I was organizing the first Orange County LGBTQ film festival, and he was part of the LGBTQ group on campus, and friends with many of my Comp Lit friends, and we instantly hit it off. We met at initially at the Boom Boom Room, a seriously quaint gay bar in Laguna Beach where I had moved with my old college friend Tom Albrecht who was in grad school at UCI also for Comp Lit. His gay friend Rafi Simon and I joked about how we were living in the only gay section of Orange County—kind of a stretch, as this was a very conservative world, even for a beach town—and we never did anything "gay," so the first night we went to the local bar, the "Boom," I met Andrew. This place at the time had Archie Andrew cut outs on the wall, netting with fake starfish in it, and a tiny dance floor with an ancient queen dancing to disco with napkins, and in walks this gorgeous guy that kind of looked like Keanu Reeves but really had a look and charm all of his own, and it was, as they say, love at first site. He knew Rafi, and I couldn’t believe that we were instantly talking about everything, about art, life, music, romance. He left too soon, but I was invited to a party that karmically he was at too that same evening, and I’ll always remember sitting on the Laguna porch overlooking the ocean, and seeing the world in a new way as he and I talked into the night, more about art, life and culture. He loved the movie Impromptu, with the characters George Sands, Chopin, and Delacroix all hanging out at a collectors mansion, and mentioned he wanted to be George Sands laying under a Chopin’s piano, and I was all too obliged to be an artist in his constellation (he is an artist, too)! Fast-forward 23 years later we are still together and very much still in love!
When gay marriage, something we never thought we would see in our lifetime, became real in California, we jumped at the opportunity to get hitched—we knew that a window could be closing (and temporarily, it did!) so we arranged to be our cabin that weekend and become a married couple, finally. We originally thought we would have a mellow courthouse legal signing of the documents, but our parents begged us to make something more formal, which we gladly obliged. We invited just our immediate family, and my best friend Dan Knapp got the certification to marry us. We pledged to love each other through eternity, and I would like to think the ceiling bliss’s out into something like this—the abstract Iconscape that I had showed at Mary Boone seems to be swirling in agreement, as we bend to kiss one another with Dan smiling and our family taking pictures, this is from one of them. It was 120 degrees that day, and my family bought little Wal-Mart hand fans everyone was using—we made it as quick as possible and then quickly retreated to the air-conditioning of the only "fancy" restaurant nearby—an Italian place called Raviolis where we had a seven-course tasting menu that was delicious and lasted for hours in the cool AC air. It was something we will remember forever—also at the courthouse, when we signed the document, it meant so much to me—knowing the power of language, and the language of the law, to have our relationship recognized by the state (and now the country) was so moving to me I broke down in tears. But the "real" marriage of course was in front of friends and family, and I never felt a more loving world than that of this super warm wonderful summer afternoon.