Abner and Roberts, joined by black lab/border collie mix Riley and Pitbull/lab mix Roxie Photo Credit: Ryan Scherb
Like any first-time groom, MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts has the jitters.
“Hell, yeah, I’m nervous,” says Roberts. “I need to visualize this evening going off without a hitch. Right now, it’s all on paper – check writing, food decisions. When it gets down to the nitty-gritty, on the day of, I’ll be really nervous.”
Roberts and Patrick Abner, of Merck Pharmaceuticals’ HIV/AIDS division, will tie the knot Sept. 29 before some 150 guests at an undisclosed Manhattan hotel on Park Avenue. The couple, both 39, have been together 12 years.
Roberts is the first cable anchor to legally marry someone of the same sex.
His colleague, Rachel Maddow, and Anderson Cooper and Don Lemon of CNN are all coupled, but technically single.
The Roberts-Abner wedding will not be a lavish affair — Business attire, buffet, lots of dancing. “We want it to be more like a Park Avenue cocktail party,” Roberts says. “We didn’t want to overdo it. We want it to be all the fun and none of the fuss. It suits our personalities.”
Another reason: “I’m cheap,” Roberts admits. “My dad always liked the term ‘cost effective.’ Neither one of us comes with a dowry. We have a number, and we’re sticking to it. We had to draw the line somewhere. Like a lot of American couples, money’s tight. We didn’t want to start out with a serious debt.”
Numerous surprises are planned, Roberts says, including a heavyweight officiate for the “simple” ceremony. The grooms’ siblings, along with Roberts’ best friend, will stand up for them.