Archive for the ‘Best Wedding Present Ever America?’ Category

After the “I Do,” the “Yes We Can.”

November 3, 2008

Someone once sniped at me in the comments section after I’d done a political post, telling me I should stick with writing about my wedding. It’s a fair point. The world should not know the cold terror of a day in which I do not opine about Bridal Betty tinker dye. But it’s advice that I have been unable to heed at times throughout the primary and general election.

* I’ve printed the Official Bridal Bird Voter Guide. And even an urgent, mid-day second edition.

* I’ve flirted shamelessly with Texas, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.

* I’ve done the math and liked the answer. Twice.

* I’ve pointed my Strawberry Shortcake bike with the rad pink streamers hanging off the handles northward and hoped for the best. Then several months later, pedaled it south for two months with similar hopes.

* I’ve looked out as 75,000 people stood hushed so they wouldn’t miss anything when a man offered them not fear or prejudice or failed plans or folly, but instead, hope and change in their most figurative and concrete forms.

It comes down to this then. The last day of this protracted campaign season is upon us and here I am blogging not about cake fillings or first dance selections, but politics. With respect to my disgruntled commenter, tomorrow is very much about my marriage. It’s about the world that my husband and I stare out at with a week under our belts and a lifetime ahead. It’s about the world we would bring children into.

It’s about finally knowing that there need not be audacity in hope.



Happy Birthday to the Future Mr. Bridal Bird

October 17, 2008

I was going to get you a puppy:


But then this one kept saying, “Unhand me, damnable woman! I already have an owner and her views are much more politically compatible with my own than your hippie dippie sensibilities.” Also, current dog seemed a little pissy about the whole idea.

Then I was going to get you Amy Adams:

But current redhead seemed a little pissy about the whole idea. 

Then I was going to get you this (a few weeks late)

But I remembered this was supposed to be about you, not me. Oopsie daisy.

So I settled on an iPod Chromatic:

and me:

In seven days you get me, in a $*,*** bow. On second thought, happy birthday to me!

Pumpkins Haven’t Made Me This Happy Since “Tonight, Tonight”

September 17, 2008

When I was a kid, I was never a huge fall fan. Even though my birthday is in late September, I found the change from summer too heavily tainted by its association with having to wear shoes again, and going to bed earlier, and heading back to school. (Specifically, heading back to math class.) It wasn’t until college that I came to appreciate fall because it brought Clemson football. And beer. And beer while watching Clemson football. Now I love it, because it means not only Clemson football and beer, but good hair, and excellent merch at the farmers market, and sweaters, and Halloween and Octoberfest parties, and oysters, and bonfires, and good movies offering respite from summer’s cinematic stupidity, and cuddling in closer on walks through the city, and the lighting turning to a softer glow with fluttering shadows from the leaves. There’s no more stunning season in D.C. than fall.

This year though, the promise of fall has meant much more, on account of the October 25 wedding and all. But with the pressing business and anxiety surrounding the campaign and the conventions this summer, our impending nuptials had remained in the abstract for me. It was always a day coming eventually, when fall rolls around. “We’ve still got a ways to go,” I’d say, or “Oh, it’s a good three months yet. Not until fall.” Until yesterday, when I pulled into a grocery store parking lot and saw pumpkins and chrysanthemums on display for the first time this year. “It’s fall,” I thought, standing there in front of them. Which means the wedding is happening, er, now. Specifically, 36 days, 23 hours, and 15 minutes from now as I write this. Knowing that it’s finally happening after 12 months of abstract anticipation? That feeling is Clemson football, beer, good hair, excellent merch at the farmers market, sweaters, Halloween and Octoberfest parties, oysters, bonfires, good movies, cuddling in closer on walks, and a softer glow with fluttering shadows from the leaves.

I’ll let the Pumpkins sing us out, with their fitting talk of the “resolute urgency of now.”

Things I Miss, In No Particular Order

September 16, 2008

It’s the start of my second month on the campaign/convention trail. Here’s what I’m bitching and moaning about missing to my deputy campaign director, Cat Who Lives in the House I’m Staying in and Comes In and Watches Me Work All Day.

“Look, this is the exact same way Carville came up with his ’92 strategy. And not to be snippy but we’re not going to get those poll numbers moving in the right direction if you don’t gets ta scratching the belly.”

* The way my fiance smiles at me every morning when he wakes up.
* The way my dog smiles at me every morning when I wake up.
* Doing the Times crossword with my fiance. Over the phone isn’t nearly as much fun, although he did keep me from going nuts trying to remember who George Washington’s portraitist was last night.
* Taxis.
* Meze, Cafe du Parc, and the Dupont Farmers Market.
* Saturday afternoon movies at E Street.
* Waking up in my own bed.
* Having someone there when I wake up in it in the middle of the night with nightmares.
* Getting dressed up for work. Actually, going to an office in general. God help me, I miss going to an office.
* Cooking in my kitchen.
* Reading the print copy of the Post.
* Jogging over the Taft Bridge.
* Vegetables that aren’t fried and then served with a side of butter and bacon.
* Not caring about polling numbers.
* Not having to have a PoliSci 101 conversation with everyone and their brother who finds out I’m here working for a campaign.
* Not having to care when someone tells me that they’re not voting for Obama.
* People who at least attempt to veil their racism.
* Bookstores outnumbering tanning salons.
* Watching my fiance tie his tie in the morning.
* 9:30 Club, Bourbon, my balcony for having a drink.
* My girls.
* Being goofy with my guy.
* Passing the spot where we’ll have our wedding reception every day.
* Kissing, kissing, kissing.
* Sighing with happiness.

That’s all for now. I’ll be wallowing in self-pity for the rest of the night. And scratching the cat’s belly.

UPDATE: In case you’re wondering what my smiling pooch looks like…

Things I Would Blog About If I Had Time

September 15, 2008

* D.C. declined to give us a marriage license because we had our blood tests 35 days ago and they expire after 30 days. This is awesome because I specifically explained to them 36 days ago that I would be traveling and asked if this was a problem. I was told no, not at all. It clearly brought great pleasure to the Jabba the Hutt bureaucrat who informed us it would in fact be quite a problem.

* The marriage license office is next to the domestic violence center in the courthouse. I find this odd.

* I learned last week that I am having a very merry un-bachelorette party thrown for me in D.C. in a few weeks. How perfect is it? Well here’s the text on the invite: “Please join us for a champagne-kissed, not-to-be-missed, plastic peter-free to-do for our favorite bride-to-be!” My girls, they know me well.

* I am about to becoming an aunt again, as my sister/matron of honor has just gone into labor!

BB Readers Know It’s Never Good When They See Marie…

September 8, 2008

* 27 straight work days of 12-16 hours

* 2 political conventions, 1 week of out-of-state campaigning, 1 phenomenal wedding

* 3,000 airline miles, give or take

* 2,000 emails, give or take

* 135 professional blog posts

* 10 professional blog videoposts

* 1 on-camera interview with another media outlet

* 4 “You’ve got to be %&# kidding me,” moments (2 euphoric, 2 upset)

* 3 brief cases of the sniffles (2 euphoric, 1 upset)

* 30 delicious Miller Lites, 3 evil vodka tonics

* $2,005.83 in reimbursable expenses

* 4 days off at home now

* 30 days of out-of-state campaigning to follow

Fair and Balanced Bridal Bird Convention Coverage

September 3, 2008

I am in Minneapolis/St. Paul.

There are a bunch of Republicans here. Not, however, “packing” the Xcel Center as Fox News has been claiming (unless one-fifth of the delegates are so white that they’ve been rendered invisible).

A Republican female senator (governor? I knew she was someone but couldn’t remember who) asked me how I cover a convention in 4 1/2 inch heels. “Very carefully,” I replied. House Minority Leader John Boehner said I have good hair. “I see, well, thank you,” I replied.

I have 48 more hours.

So Here We Are

August 28, 2008

It’s 2:30 in the morning and I can’t sleep. It’s like being a kid on Christmas Eve but knowing ahead of time that there’s a Barbie Dream House, a new bike, and a pony waiting underneath the tree. Each day this week I’ve been surprised anew at the opportunities I’ve had. A front-row seat to history, sitting in the rarified air of the convention hall as both Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden spoke. Meeting George McGovern. Earning a skybox seat for the final day of the convention. Sharing a cab and a chat with the editor of Newsweek. Seeing too many celebrities–both political and entertainment–to count. Hitting afterparties where the sauce flows freely (literally) with great friends.

We ended up at one such party the night before last completely serendipitously, as I’m learning these things go at conventions. A friend of a friend knows someone and suddenly it’s 12 midnight and you’re standing on the VIP level of Invesco Field ordering a drink surrounded by good-looking people and wondering how you got there. That’s exactly what happened the other night. When we stepped off the elevator at the club level, the party was in its final hour. The good-looking people were scattering, tipsy and happy and, as everyone has been all week, expectant. Our little band of revelers took our beers and pushed through the glass doors that led to the terrace box seats. We sat watching a few workers even at that hour continuing to prepare the venue for tonight’s speech. Taking in this scene of quiet but electric anticipation, I smiled to myself and I took a breath of the chilled night air and I savored the moment.

I’ve worked my ass off for the man who will take the stage tonight. I’ve knocked on hundreds of doors in a dying Pennsylvania rust belt town with my father–a town that he and my mother used to be proud of in their idyllic 1950s childhoods, but that now breaks their hearts. I’ve jangled countless phones in D.C., trying to convince folks on the other end–many of whom are splitting their pills in half to save money or eyeing the gas tank needle nervously or the streets outside even more nervously–that the man I was interrupting their dinner for would actually help them and make a difference in their lives. I’ve strategized and I’ve labored over my keyboard searching for just the right words that might convince people to see what I see. September and October will bring more of the same.

When Barack Obama takes the stage tonight I will look down from my perch and know that this is one of the defining moments of my life. I believe that my children will be born into a better world if he wins. I believe that the asterisks qualifying my pride for my country will finally begin to fade after eight years of multiplying and darkening. I believe that my parents will finally get to see some of the Dream that seemed impossible throughout their lives realized. I believe–rather, I know–that my father will watch the speech tonight and recall the way he felt one similar night in 1960. And when he thinks about his daughter standing in that exact place, watching in person as Barack Obama accepts the nomination for the presidency of the United States, feeling for the first time the way he felt that night in 1960, his eyes will water a bit.

I believe that history will be made, not only tonight, but on the night of Nov. 4. When it is, I will know that I have done everything possible to make it happen. And I will smile to myself and I will take a breath of the chilled night air and I will savor the moment.

Sweet. Merciful. Crap.

August 25, 2008

Where have I been? Well for the last hour I’ve been here:

(That would be the floor of the 2008 Democratic National Convention.)

Hanging out with guys like this:

(That would be Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean at left in photo.)

Watching guys like this sing:

(That would be even-hotter-and-more-talented-in-person singer John Legend.)

And contemplating taking this chick out so I could be the bologna in the funny sandwich:

(That would be the Daily Show crew.)

I have not taken a photo of myself yet, but I assure you that it would be me standing gape jawed, thinking no more eloquent a thought than, “Holy. Shitballs.” And as if that weren’t enough, when I was coming through the insanely tight security entrance area, where the guards were shaking people down every three feet, one of the police officers glanced down at my engagement ring and said, “Wow, that’s a rock!”

Oh Denver, I heart you.

Martha Sure as Heck Doesn’t Have This on Her Month-By-Month Wedding Planning Calendar

July 8, 2008

UPDATE: Apparently my readership encompasses a slightly wider range of personality than I’d previously realized. (Hey, we’re all about the Big Tent here at Bridal Bird.) I wasn’t aware just how far over on the scale I had to set the tab for “humorless, unintelligent, more-than-a-little-stalkerish.” Thanks to a comment received on 9/8/08, I’m now up to speed. So the following post has been modified to reflect that. Apologies to all my other readers, who are on the opposite side of the seesaw wondering when Porky’s going to stop weighing them down and go play in traffic.

My fiancé has a nickname for me: Busy Bee. Rare are the occasions when I can just sit quietly, doing nothing. Sunday mornings with the Times, vacations, and laying out are the exceptions. I like to have projects, a To Do list, something to occupy my time. My fiancé and my dog—who typically jockey to see which of them can do Teamster lazy the best in the evenings and weekend afternoons—regard me with bemusement and raised eyebrows as I carom around whipping up a stromboli for dinner, installing a new light fixture, and planting flower boxes on the balcony. I don’t mind. To the contrary, I thrive on it.

As such, you’d think that with having a wedding to plan I’d be all set. There are invites to stuff, cookies to bake, seating charts to arrange. My cup runneth over right through ’til Oct. 25, right? Yeahhhh, see the thing is…I’ve decided to relocate to North Carolina in August and September to campaign for Obama. My oddly circular life finds me returning to the South where I worked as a crime reporter in the early 2000s. Now it’s battleground territory and I’ll be there organizing rallies, recruiting volunteers, what have you. I’ll be back in D.C. the first week of October, three weeks before the wedding.

Most people’s reaction has been to instantly take umbrage on my behalf. “But that’s ridiculous! How can they make you do that?!” they’ll ask. Well, it is a little ridiculous, but they’re not making me do it. I asked for it. When I left newspapers three years ago it was for this exact reason. I wanted to be able campaign for the candidates I believe in. I find myself now at a job that affords me the luxury of being able to leave for two months to do just that. That it requires me to step away from wedding planning for two months just before the event isn’t exactly what I had in mind, but it’s also not an insurmountable obstacle. As it turns out, most of the things that had to be done for the wedding needed to get finalized before Aug. 1 and then the last minute stuff is just that—last minute. Most important, my fiancé was totally supportive as we mulled this decision. He knows how pivotal I believe this particular presidential race is to the nation’s future and he knows that I want to be able to wake up on Nov. 5 and say that I did everything I could to get the person I believe is the best candidate elected. [It bears mentioning that it wasn’t until well after we made this decision that he realized I would be gone for the first two months of Aggie football season, leaving him free to wallow in it 24-7 without fearing I’d come in and ask him to like, go to Bed Bath & Beyond or say, shower.]

And really, is it the worst thing in the world to step away from the whole wedding planning process for a little while? To clear one’s noodle? To just focus on the excitement of the impending marriage rather than taking an obsessive number of trips over to the reception site to make sure the flower beds out front look healthy?

Not that I’m doing that. (eyes darting shiftily from side to side)