A Lakewood man rewrote his wedding vows with a reference to almond milk and the result has made him a viral sensation — with the help of “The Late Show” host Stephen Colbert.
Paul Glassman, 27, married Ashlynne Jessee, 23, on July 21 at the Orting Manor.
The night before, Colbert told his TV viewers about a restriction by the Trump administration on the use of the word “milk” to describe non-dairy beverages such as almond milk and soy milk.
“It’s the first time the Trump administration has cracked down on anything white,” Colbert quipped.
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In announcing the rule enforcement, the federal Food and Drug Administration commissioner, Scott Gottlieb, made the statement, “An almond doesn’t lactate.”
Colbert offered a free T-shirt to anyone who seamlessly worked the phrase into their wedding vows.
“Well, challenge accepted,” Glassman’s cousin and groomsman, Tom Glassman. “We figured no one would have the chance to do it before we did.”
It didn’t take the groomsmen long to talk the groom into it. He had already been considering it.
“I thought it was hilarious,” Paul Glassman said. “I thought, ‘A free T-shirt? Heck yeah. Why not?’ ”
Plus, he said, it would be an opportunity for the couple’s 15 minutes of fame.
As they stood before friends and family, Glassman read his vows.
“I vow to never make fun of you for being lactose intolerant,” he said. “Always remember that an almond can’t lactate.”
The groomsmen then made a fist pump in unison.
“It just so happens that my wife is lactose intolerant,” the groom said. “It was the perfect opportunity.”
Ashlynne had no idea the odd vow was coming or what it meant.
After the ceremoney was over, “She kind of looked at me and said, ‘What the hell was that all about?’,” Glassman said.
He explained the plan.
“She had a quick laugh and was OK with it,” he said.
Groomsman Zach Smith convinced Ashlynne’s father to record the vows. The video was quickly sent to “The Late Show.”
It aired Tuesday night. Glassman wasn’t watching TV at the time.
“My phone kept buzzing,” he recalled, perplexed. “I’m not that popular.”
After showing his viewers the clip, Colbert said he was proud of Glassman.
“I’m surprised your wife said, ‘I do,’ ” the host said. “This was your wedding and you dropped a reference to my show in there because I promised you a free T-shirt?” .
Colbert was so impressed — especially by the fist pump — that he said he was sending the couple and their six groomsmen a total of eight T-shirts.
“I hope you both wear them ‘til death do you part or until almonds develop nipples,” Colbert said.
Glassman works in employment services for adults who are developmentally disabled. Ashlynne is an office administrator for a water utility. The couple met through a Christian online-dating website.
As of Friday, the clip of “The Late Show” with the Glassmans’ wedding had been viewed more than 630,000 times.
Craig Sailor: 253-597-8541, @crsailor