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Retro on Steroids
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Not for the first time, but probably the best party of any of his weddings.

The bride is Alexis Zaphiris, a physician M.D., also a resident of San Francisco. The wedding took place in a Greek Orthodox Church, and the entire wedding party then cycled six miles to the reception, held at the Cliff House overlooking Ocean Beach.

The bride and groom and the parents of each rode in "pedicabs" from a local rental company. Gary wore top hat and tails, which is a little less extreme than his normal daily garb.

I drove two of my friends and our bikes to the Cliff House and then we rode to the Mission District for the wedding. That meant we wore our riding clothes in the church, which may have looked stupid, but when men in tuxedos took to bicycles, they looked even stupider. (When my "Retrobike.co.uk" jersey turned up in a flickr video of the event, the people at that website went bonkers.)

The ceremony in the church took approximately an hour longer than my own 3-minute civil wedding 25 years ago. Afterward bikes were supplied to those who needed them, including electric-assist bikes for any who wanted one. I rode my own, since it is a Gary Fisher and that seemed appropriate.

Although the ride was not far, it took about three hours, including a one-hour stop in Golden Gate Park for photos, burritos and champagne. We were admonished that it was not a race, and that the caravan of 100+ riders would stay behind the newlyweds. The route was hardly direct, and included a lap of the concourse at Golden Gate Park to the total bemusement of spectators.

The parade stretched along about two city blocks and took three or four minutes to pass at pedicab speeds. When we crossed major traffic arteries, outriders took up positions blocking the street while we passed, holding signs that read, "Gary and Alex, Just Married." Drivers did not seem perturbed by the delay, and many smiled and waved encouragement.

When we reached the shore, we found a vicious wind blowing sand at paint-removing velocity, which precluded photos of the couple strolling on the absolutely deserted beach.

Because I had left my vehicle there, I was able to change into more suitable attire for the dinner, and my wife, who did not care to take the bike ride, joined us. Our table was designated "Smoker's Knoll," an in-joke referring to a well known hilltop on a popular Marin County trail. Others seated with us included the Grateful Dead manager and the Gary Fisher product manager and his family. Guest favors were trouser-cuff bands with the couple's name and the date.

Ten hours into the event, it was still going on, but I was going home.

This weekend the wedding made the society pages of the San Francisco Chronicle
 

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More pie please
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