Nobody needs to make a big thing out of this except myself and the SRO, but we’ve decided to tie the knot at a sunset beach ceremony this Friday. West of Trancas around 7 pm, actually. Ourselves and three or four friends. No band, no formal wear, no caterer, no crossed lances. Just the vows, the sand, the magic-hour light and the sound of the waves. Chris the “officiant guy” will conduct the ceremony and make it all come out right.

I haven’t been married in 25 years, but I’ve sampled enough iffy, mezzo-mezzo or inharmonious relationships to know what the right chemistry and a lucky connection feel like. Do I have a deep and abiding need to get married? No — I could be very happy just living in sin. But if I don’t pull the trigger before long the SRO will be obliged to return to Russia so why fiddle around? The family thinks it’s happening too quickly, but I know a good thing when it’s fallen into my lap. I’m holding five hearts, queen high. Plus we’re doing Italy after the Cannes Film Festival, and we might as well call it a honeymoon.

Plus she needs to dive into the job market and make it happen as best she can, and she really can’t do that without the necessary credentials. She’s executive material with an impressive job history. She’s my idea of whipsmart and well-organized. No, I don’t remember the plot of Peter Weir‘s Green Card, but I assure you I’m not Andie McDowell and the SRO is not Gerard Depardieu.

We’ve been shoulder-shrugging about the doubters. They might be right, but it sure doesn’t feel that way. I’m basically that Warren Zevon guy in “Lawyers, Guns and Money” — “I took a little risk.”

If it doesn’t work out, I’ll survive. I’ll always have the column, which I’ve been married to for 18 and 1/2 years now. But I suspect it will, at least for a few years. Or maybe longer. She’s beautiful and blonde and laughs easily. I trust her. When you meet someone who’s “great partner material”, you just know. (I had the same instinct about my first wife, Maggie.) Like me she loves to hike and ride bikes and travel, and she loves my cats. I’ve never been with a smarter, more loyal and super-focused lady in my life. And, like I said, if things go south I’ll always have my wordsmithing.

“I don’t see what’s so terrible about getting hitched,” I told a friend a few days ago. “I’ve been a solo act for a quarter-century — it feels like it’s time to try a team thing for a change.”