Monday, April 30, 2012

In Search of the Perfect Bridesmaid Speech

So one of my best and oldest friends is getting married in just under a month. Her sister and I are co-maids of honor so we are trying to plan a co-bridesmaids wedding speech. I have been a bridesmaid a few times now, but I have never given a speech.

Since I am not much of a writer (and certainly not a public speaker) this presents interesting conflicts. And as soon as a try to dredge up memories and stories, it seems that I don't have any. Of course, that's not at all true, I guess its a minor form of stage fright. Tackling that seems to be one of the hardest parts.

The best way I've found to help that is to try to do other things and occasionally something comes to me. And I have to jot it down right away or I will forget. I feel like a bad friend. I have also been doing massive online research. Luckily for me, there are some good guidelines and ideas out there. That makes me feel a little more calm about the ordeal. I just have to stay calm and organized. That will be half the battle. And practice, practice, practice!

I am hoping to find some quotes to use (shock, me, use quotes? No...). I was contemplating something from Louisa May Alcott. If anyone else has some brilliant suggestions, please let me know. Also, if anyone has some more example speeches, that would be amazing.

Another important piece: I have to figure out how to put a speech together for the two of us. I haven't gotten much back from her yet, but I'm sure I will.

Any advice and ideas are appreciated. I will keep you all updated on the wedding proceedings! I will attempt to be the best bridesmaid I can be!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cento from David Bowie

In honor of David Bowie and Iman's 20th wedding anniversary, here is a cento poem made from a selection of David Bowie songs. The title and all lines are from David Bowie songs (citations and links to videos below). I pieced it together myself. I'm not sure if it's good, actually; I am too familiar with the songs to not hear the tune as I read the lines, making the whole sound kind of funny. It's just silliness anyway. This is written from the perspective of Mr. Bowie (or how I imagine his perspective to be) to his beautiful wife, Iman. Enjoy!

The happy couple! :) I think they always look so happy together.

Soul Love

Life is so vague when it brings someone new
This time tomorrow I'll know what to do.
You walked into my life out of my dreams,
Nothing prepared me for your smile
Lighting the darkness of my soul.
Your soothing hand that turned me round
A love so real swept over me.
I moved up to take a place near you.

Please make sure we get tomorrow,
Just as long as I can walk
I'll walk beside you,
Stay by my side.
I pledge you, you'll never be blue
Please be mine, share my life
Stay with me, be my wife.
I could make you happy every day of your life.

It's love back to front and no sides.
I'll paint you mornings of gold.
I'll spin you Valentine evenings.
You and I will rise up all the way
All because of what you are: the prettiest star
Will you stay in our Lovers' Story?
If you stay you won't be sorry.
Life's still a dream, your love's amazing
Since I found you, my life's amazing

David Bowie Songs Used, Albums, Years, and Video links:
"Soul Love." The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. 1972.

"Stay." Station to Station. 1976.

"Word on a Wing." Station to Station. 1976 

"Thursday's Child." ...hours. 1999. 

"Never Let Me Down." Never Let Me Down. 1987. 

"The Prettiest Star." Aladdin Sane. 1973. 

"A Better Future." Heathen. 2002. 

"Amazing." Tin Machine. 1989. 

"Be My Wife." Low. 1977. 

"Shining Star (Makin' My Love)." Never Let Me Down. 1987. 

"Because You're Young." Scary Monsters and Super Creeps. 1980. 

"As the World Falls Down." Labyrinth. 1986. 

"Kooks." Hunky Dory. 1971.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Peeps® Follow Up

Inspired by my previous post, some of my friends decided to continue this. Here are some Peeps melting using lit birthday candles:

And then we put a Peep in vinegar to see if it dissolves. Here are a few pictures taken over about an hour. The question raised: "What is that doing in your stomach?" On the plus side, stomach acid is stronger than the acetic acid in vinegar. First the vinegar turned yellow but eventually the marshmallow started to break down and the frosting eyes fell off but did not appear to dissolve at all...

After sitting over night here are three Peeps. The one in vinegar is most broken down. One is in salt water. The last is in beer. Yay beer.

And so this is not all ended on a negative note, here is the door hanging I made in honor of spring! Most of the materials were bought at Michaels. And I love the sparkly eggs (which I got at Target). Once I had the materials, it was very easy to assemble.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Adventures with Peeps®

Or more appropriately titled: Peeps® Massacre. What better way to celebrate Easter than torturing Peeps? I'm pretty sure the only reason the company is still in business is because people want to play with the Peeps, not eat them. I spent Easter (after I got off work) with (essentially) my in-laws. I was asked not to mention full names... ^_~

So my friend and Isaac's sister, Liz, had all manner of brilliant ways to "torture" Peeps. And she and her cousin named them. So, to begin, this was Starbuck (because I work at Starbucks and had a hard day at work prior to Easter dinner) crushed multiple times by a garage door...
And this is Francis who was soaked in Jim Beam and Gasoline and lit on fire (and yes, he began to bubble before we got the fire started... The last picture is the goopy remains.

And here is Ethel  who was dipped into Francis' remains and started to bubble and dissolve...

And here is Bieber who Liz filled with frosting before putting in the microwave and the gory result, all of which produced laughs from the whole family.

I know what you are thinking: "Is that a fire cracker?" Why, yes! It is! Probably everybody's favorite:

Yes, this is how we spent a good portion of Easter. I suppose all of this seems morbid, but they were all very involved family activities and we all laughed a great deal. Other activities included an Easter egg hunt, ping pong tournaments, dinner, croquet, socializing, walks, and dominoes. I promise we didn't spend all of Easter doing things like this. In our defense, there are tons of websites and blog posts dedicated to this. Here is an amusing one I stumbled upon: Elevenish Ways to Kill a Peep.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Thoughts About Chivalry

Chivalry-noun, defined as "the sum of the ideal qualifications of a knight, including courtesy, generosity, valor, and dexterity in arms."

A couple of co-workers of mine were discussing chivalry with me a day or two ago. Both of them agreed that if a man and a woman came to Starbucks together, and both offered to pay, that it was inappropriate to take payment from the lady. They believed that a gentleman should always pay for his lady, hold doors open, the whole nine yards. I felt the need to agree and disagree with them. For one, I think the ideas of chivalry are rather convoluted in these modern times.

In terms of courtesy, I think manners are important no matter who you are and no matter your relation to the people around you. If a stranger holds a door for you, you should always say thank you, but you should do the same if it is a good friend or significant other, male or female. I have held doors open for men as well, and as long as they thank me, I don't find fault in them taking me up on the offer. However, some think, in this case, a gentleman should reach around to allow the lady to walk in first. For me, as long as there is a "thank you," I don't see anything wrong with the man walking through first. I think this all falls in general manners.

The part that my co-workers were insistent about involved couples. I think this stems from older ideals about wooing and caring for women. Men had to prove that they could care for and support a woman, so men would pay (of course, during these time periods, I think it is safe to assume that most men worked and few women did) and act in a way that was meant to "win over" their lady.

Being as independent as I am, and as iffy about money (I am so bad with money, it is difficult for me to have anyone involved with me, financially), I did not care for such treatment. I felt that even in the act of holding doors, attention was being drawn to me when I wanted none. As for payment, I never wanted to feel obligated to a man for anything, so I have always paid half or my date and I would take turns.

I will amend that in long-term relationships, the ideas of chivalry seem more acceptable to me. I don't even think about it now, when Isaac opens doors for me or walks on the street side of the sidewalk. He even pays for more than I do anymore. However, after nearly six years together, I think the nature of our relationship allows for such things. For the first several years, we alternated paying (and I still like to pay for things when I can). While he has always been good about "taking care of me," he has always done so in a way that was not intrusive, attention drawing, or unnatural. His genuine and natural attempts to act in a chivalrous manner made it easy to accept as a gift with no string attached. I have not always felt so about other men I have encountered. However, I like to do nice things for him, too, to show him that I love him, even if its something as simple as buying him dinner. It seems unfair to expect him to do everything for me and for me to do nothing for him.

"'For her sake, I have become a hero--I, sleepy Lir, my father's sport and shame--but I might just as well have remained the dull fool I was. My great deeds mean nothing to her.' 
"Molly took up her own knife and began to slice the peppers. 'Then perhaps the Lady Amalthea is not to be won by great deeds.'" -Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn.

While I think many people will disagree with my view, the way Isaac handled everything was perfect for me (I do so value my independence). I would love to hear what others have to say, especially the ladies; how do you like to be treated?