Archive for November, 2007

Say Maybe to the Dress

November 30, 2007

I’m en route to Manhattan as I write this, bound for a date with two fabulous men who will see me in my unmentionables within minutes of me walking through the door. Bachelorette party? Impassioned dressing room tryst? Nope. I’ve got an appointment with the men of Birnbaum & Bullock, a bridal atelier whose gowns make me go all googly eyed. Think Badgley Mischka (and I’m on a Treo so I’ll leave it to Johanna to sort that spelling out in the comments) but at two-thirds of the price.

The beauty of going to B&B is that you’re the only bride in their lovely airy loft at that time, unlike other boutiques where you might be forced to (shudder) share your rarified air with another bride. This happened last weekend when I was confronted with the visible evidence that I just can’t wear a Grecian column wedding dress. That’s because I was on a podium next to a girl who could. There are only a few situations in which I am willing to be reminded of my inadequacies: church, reading my Portable Dorothy Parker, and eating my father’s caramel-pecan rolls. I do not enjoy having to add to that list: standing next to some wasp-waisted chippy from Austin.

Then tomorrow morning I have a rise-and-shine session with the women of the famed Kleinfeld’s. They are currently featured in a show called “Say Yes to the Dress” but I haven’t caught it yet. I’ve got 90 minutes and 11 dresses to try on–four contenders I’ve tried on at scattered shops in D.C. and seven new ones I haven’t found anywhere else–so it’s going to be a bit chaotic. But at the end of the weekend I hope to have found “the one.”

Regardless, it’s always a blast to stand around in my undies and have people assess my various flaws while tilting their heads to one side thoughtfully and saying things like “Well, the lack of eating from wedding stress will take that right off,” while gesturing to something that’s convexing where it should be concaving. Good times, good times.

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People Jacked Up on Beef Say the Darndest Things

November 28, 2007

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I’m back and as I’ll be running around like a chicken with my head cut off once I get to work today, I’ll offer you this amuse bouche on the Texas trip. Here are a few actual exchanges witnessed, or involving, me. At least one of them made me think that running for the nearest exit when it comes to marriage would be best for all involved.

Wife: “You make me want to blow my brains out on a daily basis.”
Husband: “I can make sure that it looks like that’s what happened.”

Fiancé’s mother to fiancé: “You know that one of your ancestors presided during part of the Salem witch trials.”
Fiancé: “Maybe that’s why I’m so judgmental.”
Me: (snort)
Fiancé: (turning attention to me) “I know I’d find you guilty.”
Me: “Huh?”
Fiancé: “Guilty of being hot. Heh heh heh.”
Me: (eyeroll)

Dude 1: “You didn’t know he got snipped after they had the baby?”
Dude 2:No.”
Dude 1: “Yeah. Why do you think she got him the iPhone?”

That’s all for now. I’ve got to go detox from Whataburger breakfast taquitos, fiancé’s mother’s cherry pie, and Big Red soda from City Market BBQ in Luling, Texas (pop. Delicious).

That’s Right, I’m Not From Texas. But Texas Wants Me Anyway.

November 19, 2007

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For the next week and a half, I’ll be in Texas. That means swapping my Connecticut Avenue jog for a route through the Hill Country, switching from the Post to the Austin-American Statesman, trading my daily Au Bon Pain soup and a bagle for whatever side they’re serving with the beef that day, trying on bridal gowns in Austin instead of D.C., and instead of turning to Face the Nation for competitive drama, I’m hitting the Texas A&M-Texas game in College Station.

A friend once told me that he hated living in Texas because in order to thrive there, “one must love Texas more than they love themselves.” The good thing about going for a week: it’s impossible not to love it.

 Happy Thanksgiving! (Save me some tofurkey.)

Pity the Poor Local TV Newscaster Who Had to Cover It

November 16, 2007

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We’ve spent a lot of time talking about the intersection of dogs and marriage this week and I see no reason to stop now. In an otherwise ordinary email, my friend Julie sent me evidence that the apocalypse is drawing near. (God love her, she’s the perkiest little harbinger of doom you’ll ever meet in your life.)

Here’s the story. Out at a shopping mall (first clue that trouble is afoot: the mall calls itself a “lifestyle center”) in suburban Denver they’re marrying dogs. Perhaps you need only to know that the press release sent out about this event opened with the line: “Call it a display of Howly Muttrimony, sealed with a sniff.”

For the remaining five readers who have not run to vomit in their trash cans, allow me to elaborate. The “Bow Wow Vows” event united 178 dog couples, according to the press release. Features of the event included a “traditional wedding” (take that Christian Conservatives!), a red carpet, large canopy tent, flowers, musicians, table centerpieces that were patches of grass, and a multi-layered cake. Total cost for the event was somewhere north of $34,000.

For the remaining two readers not trying to break your office windows with chairs and light trashcan fires, allow me to elaborate further. Organizers set aside a special area before the wedding for “doggy speed dating, allowing ‘single’ dogs to find a mate before the wedding.” (Although the more I think about it, the nicer that part seems. I’m totally setting up speed dating before my wedding to allow unpaired guests to find their soulmates just in time for the big event.) As for the doggie speed dating, I imagine there was actually slightly less leg humping, rug peeing and bottom sniffing than a typical night out looking for a mate in Adams Morgan.

Atonement

November 13, 2007

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(Photo from the Associated Press. Story from alert reader Dena.)

This is a picture of P. Selvakumar marrying a dog in New Delhi on Sunday. It would be easy to chalk this up to P. Selvakumar clearly needing to go tweak his prescription, but the story is so much more compelling and rich than that. You see, when he was 18 (as in, old enough to know better), he stoned two dogs to death and hung them from a tree. Ever since, he believes he’s been cursed. An astrologer advised him that the only way to relieve himself of the burden of the two dead dogs was to marry another one. (The story doesn’t mention whether the dog community considered simply stoning Selvakumar as an option for ridding him of his burden.) So this past weekend, Selvakumar took Selvi the pooch as his bride.

This raises obvious questions:
1. Are they registered at Macy’s or PetCo?
2. Was P. Selvakumar’s mother relieved that at least the dog was Indian?
3. How many seconds left until Christian conservatives try to draw a parallel between this and gay marriage?
4. Did Selvi stagger around New Delhi on Saturday night drunk on papayatinis wearing a veil with little plastic penises attached to it yelling “Whoohooo I’m gettin’married! Di’jouwannakissmeeee?”
5. Will the New York Times announcement include the fact that Selvi’s parents belonged to the Maharaja and Maharani and that she was trained at Happy Hindi Puppy Academy, the Cornell of obedience schools?
6. Did half of their guests have to balance their favors on their noses and waaaaaiiittt before they could eat them?
7. What size tuxedo do you suppose Michael Vick wears?

Well, here’s to you Mr. and Mrs. Selvakumar. I’m sure you kids will have a long and happy life together. In fact, statistically speaking, you’ll probably last longer than Avril Lavigne and that dude from Sum 41.

A WTF? Photo Friday

November 9, 2007

1. Let’s see: they decided on their wedding day to go take a “wacky” picture at the stadium, doofy expression on his face coupled with an even doofier suit that appears to be navy blue, and a tiara on her. I can only assume that in their photo album this is captioned “Let’s go, Yankees!”

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2. The trouble with Tribbles is…Look, sugardumpling, I know you paid a lot of money for the flowers and you really want to get your money’s worth (or should I say, your future $45,000 Visa bill’s worth.) But maybe the flowers can just stay where they belong—on the center of the table. I mean, the cake’s pricey, too. You weren’t planning on cutting slices and staggering them down your arms for a photo, were you? Oh, you were. Awkward.

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3.
Bride: “Peekaboo! There’s my widdle groom! OMG! I am soooo glad we opted for the castle for our wedding instead of the glass bottom yacht. And wasn’t getting the guy from the dinner theater to dress up in his Camelot costume to announce us when we came into the Great Hall for dinner awesome?! We’re totally getting pregnant tonight!”
Groom: (internally) God I hope a piece of stone falls off the roof of this place and kills me. Please. Just do it. Look at her. She’s batshit insane. I should have asked that cool girl who came into the bank that day for her number. None of this would have happened. I wonder if there’s any Drano in ye olde janitor’s closet.

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4. I could write all sorts of snarky stuff about this photo. But I’m giving it the benefit of the doubt, crossing my fingers, squinching my eyes closed and biting my bottom lip in silent prayer that this is in fact the greatest wedding photo of all time. That it’s a shot of the best man eyebanging the bride who he actually banged before the wedding.

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Ridiculous D.C.-Related Wedding Development

November 8, 2007

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We are mulling moving our wedding back two weekends. Because as I sat in a meeting today listening to my boss say [more or less with some of my own added dramatic effect] “between January and November don’t plan on doing anything but eating, breathing, and sleeping the campaign, including taking leave,” I realized: “Huh. Guess she’d prefer I not leave for a week and a half the last week of October.”

But I really don’t mind. In fact, one of the main reasons I decided to leave newspapers was to be able to campaign for candidates I support. After the 2000 presidential election I vowed I would never again have my hands tied. So now I’m working in a place where I can actually take an active role in trying to get the next president elected and I’m going to try to balance that with the wedding. (This should in no way imply that I’m some high-powered political operative. I’m going to be knocking on doors, running from released hounds, and phone banking with the rest of the idealistic schlubs. I mean “young progressives.”)

Here are our options:
1. Move the wedding two weeks back.
Pros—Doesn’t interfere with election.
Cons—I’ll still have last-minute wedding stuff with which to deal. But I don’t see why I can’t cell phone canvas during a gown fitting, right? Another con: if the weather returns to normal next year it will likely be after the leaves change, and we’re trying to sync our weekend with that seasonal occurrence. (Although in light of the cancellation of fall, I’m not sure that matters anymore anyway.)

2. Keep the wedding on the same day and delay the honeymoon until after the election.
Pros—Same as Scenario 1.
Cons—We’d be the couple who delayed our honeymoon for a presidential election. Can we be that couple? I’m not sure yet. Because I think that would make us official D.C. fuckwits.

3. Keep everything the same.
Pros—No interruption in original plans.
Cons—I’m gone for a week and a half that will probably be the busiest of the campaign season and I really want to be a part of that.

In all likelihood, it’s probably going to end up being the second scenario. Please begin to wrap your mind around the idea that we’re fuckwits.

Hollywood Heads to the Altar

November 6, 2007

Nowhere is marriage more gloriously rendered than on film. Oh, I mean besides in real life. Whatever. Anyway, ever since my fiancé popped the question, I find it affecting my decision on what to pop into my DVD player. I’ve decided I will offer periodically my now-very-much-biased opinion on wedding movies, TV shows, and such. 

I thought I’d kick things off with a look at some of my favorite celluloid-based married couples.

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John and Jane Smith, Mr. & Mrs. Smith—I can’t think of a cooler looking married couple on film, living in a cooler house, wearing cooler clothes, wielding cooler cooking utinsels. Yeah, I know they were trying to kill each other, but I can get past that when they have the good sense to decorate their house with a Kentfield Cascade chandelier.

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Stuart and May Mackenzie, So I Married an Axe Murderer
Stuart: “Thirty years ago today, May and I were married. Some of you were there, some of you weren’t born, and some of you are now DEED! But, we both said “I do,” and we haven’t agreed on a single thing since.”
May: “That’s true!”
Stuart: “But I’m glad I married you, May, because hey, could’ve been worse.”

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Henry and Martha Hackett, The Paper—There is no more accurate depiction on film of what it’s like to be a journalist than The Paper. I will out-argue anyone on this point with one hand tied behind my back while trying to make a publishing deadline. I also have a sneaking suspicion that Henry and Martha’s relationship—he’s an intrepid, Diet Coke-swilling, 12-hour-workday Metro editor for the scrappy upstart paper in the city, she’s a former reporter turned “regular” writer harboring some major insecurity about her decision to leave newspapers (cough cough)—is the most accurate depiction of what our wedded life is going to be like.

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Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara, Gone With the Wind—Hey SnacksPlease, she kept her last name! And even when their relationship wasn’t going so hot (like when he was, um, sort of technically having his way with her against her will), she knew she had one thing that she could always count on: real estate. No, no, that’s not why they’re on the list. When I was growing up I read GWTW and watched the movie over and over. I thought Scarlett wasted her time on Ashley Wilkes. Rhett was clearly the real deal and he was the first one in Scarlett’s life who didn’t put up with her garbage (cough cough cough). And he’d run blockades to bring her new clothes from Paris. Just sayin’.

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George and Mary Bailey, It’s a Wonderful Life—They had no money, a kid named Zuzu and a decided lack of job security. But throughout their relationship, they reveled in the sweetest, goofiest moments. (“What is it you want, Mah-ray?…You, you want the moon? Just say the word and I’ll throw a lasso around it and pull it down.”) And they were, quite literally, each other’s reason for living. This Christmas’ viewing of It’s a Wonderful Life will hold even more meaning than usual.

Because, as on film, it is indeed a wonderful life.

Pompous Hearts Insufferable Monday

November 5, 2007

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(Photo from nytimes.com)

While I am tempted to launch directly into a verbal wedgie on the featured wedding (specifically, the groom) from yesterday’s Times, I must admit that I’m overcome with an uncharacteristic amount of generous restraint. Chalk it up to all that fresh mountain air this weekend, maybe. “Perhaps,” I said to myself, “this really isn’t this poor chap’s fault. Maybe he didn’t call these various things to the writers’ attentions. Rather, the writers might have sussed the following out, using their expert journalistic wiles:

* “Mr. Greene, a wealthy real estate developer who has homes in Malibu and Beverly Hills as well as a 145-foot yacht…”
* Who “in 2003 was tagged by Vanity Fair as a major player in the Los Angeles after-hours scene…”
* On their first meeting at a party in the Hamptons last year, “She touched his shoulder. He held her hand. Then he started talking about mortgages.”
* “He invited Ms. Chan to party on his yacht, which was docked in Sag Harbor…”
* “When he moved to Los Angeles after receiving an M.B.A. from Harvard, he already owned 18 buildings.”
* “The 275 guests…took to the revolving dance floor installed in the 24-car garage.”

Because that would certainly make him a target if he had decided to announce all of this to the reporters writing about his entry into holy matrimony. Because certainly it wouldn’t make sense to discuss the fact that your garage holds 24 cars in the context of pledging your troth. Nope, I’m feeling too good today to give Mr. Greene anything but the benefit of the doubt.

Oh, wait, I missed something here in the announcement. I’m sure it’s nothing, but let me just re-read this a second…”the boxer Mike Tyson, who served as best man.”

Mr. Greene? I’m afraid it’s time for your wedgie.

Runaway Bride

November 2, 2007

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I’m off for a weekend of chilling out at a cabin in the mountains of Virginia with three college chums. It will be highly unusual to spend time with these guys without copious amounts of cheap takeout, weed* and a looming newspaper deadline. So if someone could be a lambchop and find me a color scheme, a florist whose arrangements don’t make me gag and a gown while I’m gone that would be fantastic, thank you.

*For my fans in the various federal and state law enforcement agencies, this was never my weed. I was just holding it for them. And whatever, those Dinasour Jr. album reviews and impassioned “Chancellor Must Acknowledge Need for Subway On-Campus Expansion” editorials weren’t going to write themselves.