Saturday, January 09, 2016

Besides Meaning a Lot, Little Things Sometimes Lead to Big Things

"Being in a couple is hard. And committing, making sacrifices; it's hard. But if it's the right person, then it's easy. Looking at that girl and knowing she's all you really want out of life, that should be the easiest thing in the world. And if it's not like that, then she's not the one. I'm sorry."

Marshall (Jason Segel)

I'm not really sure why I liked the episode of How I Met Your Mother that premiered on this night in 2006, other than the fact that it introduced Ashley Williams to the cast — albeit temporarily.

Ted (Josh Radnor) neither met the Mother of the series title at the wedding nor was it the wedding of a major character in the series. Ted had been invited to the wedding of a friend, Claudia (Virginia Williams); on his RSVP card, he was asked whether he would be bringing a guest or attending alone. He said that he always checked that he was bringing a guest, even though he couldn't know months in advance whether he would be in a relationship, because he was an optimist.

But, apparently, he did not check that he was bringing a guest to Claudia's wedding. Thinking that he had, he invited Robin (Cobie Smulders), who bought a special red dress for the occasion.

When he ran into Claudia, though, he was told that he had not checked that he would be bringing a guest. There was no food for an additional guest. There was no place for an additional guest.

Claudia was beside herself. I suppose anyone who has spent months planning a wedding understands.

Ted had his own problems. He had to find a way to tell this to Robin — but he just couldn't bring himself to do it.

So he went around Claudia's back and asked her fiance if he could bring a date. "Sure," said the fiance, leading to a huge fight between the happy couple, and the wedding was called off.

Well, after a few drinks, the couple patched things up. The wedding was on again.

Claudia eventually relented and permitted Ted to bring Robin; thus, he had been spared having to tell her she couldn't come and went to pick her up.

But before they left the apartment, the phone rang. It was Robin's station. She was needed to anchor the news.

She looked at Ted. He told her to do it, then spent the wedding reception sitting next to Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) and extolling the virtues of the single life. Still, Ted couldn't help watching Marshall and Lily (Jason Segel, Alyson Hannigan) dancing together and admiring the ease with which they related.

He lamented having hoped that the wedding might have marked a turning point for him. On the surface, he put on a good act about liking the single life, but deep down Ted craved marriage and children.

That was when he looked across the room and spotted a girl (Ashley Williams — no relation, as far as I know, to Virginia Williams, the actress who played Claudia).

The audience would learn more about her in the next episode — and a few episodes to come.