At Last: A Feel-Good Story To Sign Off 2017, Ring In 2018


As all media outlets, tweeters, vloggers, etc., are encapsulating end-of-2017 raw emotions and events, The New York Times published an inspiring true love story between two disparate individuals, a story that does a damn good job washing away a lot of the terrible cooties making us so weary.

Friends and family witnessed the nuptials inside New York City’s famed Strand Bookstore.

On December 1, 2012, Adam Kurtz, from Toronto and born into an Orthodox Jewish family, was live vlogging about waiting for a pizza delivery, and posted it to Tumblr. He was 24 at the time. Mitchell Kuga, age 25, liked the video. Mitchell, a Japanese Hawaiian man from Oahu, was someone Adam had admired from afar on social media. Once the pizza arrived, Adam messaged Mitchell, inviting him over to his Brooklyn residence to share some slices. Mitchell texted after a few minutes, and an “old-school pre-Tinder” but wonderfully new-fangled romance was born, blooming into marriage exactly five years later on December 1, 2017.

Guests tied red strings around one another’s wrists in acknowledgment of their role in supporting the union.

Adam and Mitchell’s wedding ceremony and celebration were held on the third floor of the Strand Bookstore in New York City. The event was down-to-earth—wine was served in plastic cups, towers of donuts stood in lieu of a traditional wedding cake, a drag queen lip-synced “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston, and revelers enjoyed a late-night delivery of pizza as a symbol of the married couple’s first meeting—yet exquisitely planned, as The Times described the party visuals as “a well-staged Instagram feed.” (Adam has a significant Instagram following intertwined with various publishing successes.) The wedding location (guests were surrounded by rare books), the Buddhist officiator, and the palpably supportive phalanx of family and friends made the event spiritually profound.

A quote from the wedding’s celebration toast by renowned poet Janea Kelly, Adam’s friend, sums it up best—without mentioning anything or anyone orange—when she thanked Adam and Mitchell for a reason to rejoice at the end of the year, since the mood of 2017 “felt like stepping on a Lego in the dark.”

The joyful news of this perfectly formed union is a desperately needed feel-good story, a view toward 2018 to help us continue feeling human, by linking rituals immemorial with unalienable Equality.

(All photos: Rebecca Smeyne for The New York Times)


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