Friday, February 29, 2008
At lunch today I wandered into Filene's to buy some running pants and I was greeted by a sea of wedding dresses. Apparently it was Filene's annual wedding dress sale, and the pickings were bizarre.
For starters, most of the dresses were inexpensive, about $250 or so. That's reason enough to run around the middle of the store in your knickers, as most women were doing. Right next to the men's department, I might add. The problem with the dresses at Filene's, though, is that some of them seemed a little dirty and tattered. Some were missing buttons and clasps. Others were strange colors, like blue.
I'm fascinated by the process of choosing a wedding dress. I've had friends who paid a pretty penny to have them custom made while others got them from Mom and Pop shops in Connecticut. Still others stumbled upon them at sample sales. One friend bought hers at age 24 for $70 in a thrift shop, but didn't get to use it until she was 28. It was gorgeous.
Oddly, no one ever seems to fit into their mothers' dresses from the 1970s. My mom bought her wedding dress, a cotton eyelet number, for $30 at A&S in Chicago in 1973.
Here are some of the dresses that were at Filene's:
It takes a certain kind of gal to get married in yellow. Not everyone looks good in it. The young woman who was buying this one was a blonde.
I love this bodice.
Pink is the new bride.
I really hope this is a bridesmaid's dress. Some things are faux pas, even in modern weddings.
I'm buying new sneakers at lunch today, which is always a good time, and an easy way to drop $100.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Dear Crate & Barrel,
I really wish you would stop sending me your catalogs. I don't like any of your products and the only reason I buy them is because my friends register for their weddings at your stores. Even in that event, I try not to order the stuff unless I absolutely have to.
I know you think your designs are modern and fresh, but they're really just simplistic and preciously retro. You use boring, muted colors and the quality of your goods is just one step above IKEA. Your glasses are cheap and break easily. No wonder it's only $3 a goblet.
I think it is a shame that there is an entire generation of people whose wedding registries are made up of your products. In 20 years they will all have identical platters and captains decanters, and there's nothing modern or fresh about being a cookie cutter.
In the meantime, I will be directing all my friends to the joys of Tiffany's and Baccarat.
Hugs and Kisses,
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
If you haven't seen these shots on Flickr or Facebook already, here is the story: This past weekend I was busy officiating a wedding, snow shoeing and basically being out and about. I didn't want to leave Peppe alone in a dark apartment for so long, so I sent him over to TR's apartment, which is high in the sky and drenched in sunlight. TR, an art guy, took these wonderful shots of Pep during his visit. Oddly, if Pep were any other color other than orange, I don't think these photos would work as well as they do.
Forget for a moment that these are photos of Peppe, who is awesome in his own right. Instead, try to appreciate these shots for their artistic qualities: the use of natural light, composition and color. TR nailed it each time.
These are a few of my favorites.
On the prowl
Plotting his escape
Monday, February 25, 2008
I left Peppe with a friend who is an art director this weekend while I was away and busy. He took many a shot of Pep in his sun-drenched apartment, the best of which I will post in the next day or so. Peppe has enough personality on his own, but TR really brought it out full throttle. I am in awe.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Today I went snow shoeing up in the Catskills. It is not for the faint of heart. I somehow got mixed up in a group of experienced outdoorsy people, but I held my own and was always in the front of the group. Seems that all those hours logged at the gym have built up my stamina.
The whole set can be seen here.
Adventure, in life, is very important, and I hope that after seeing these pictures you'll try to get more in your life. Too many New Yorkers spend their weekends cooped up in their homes doing nothing, or seeing bad movies or drinking too much in seedy Irish bars, and that is no fun at all. Clear your head. Go play outside.
Surprisingly, snow shoes do not look like giant tennis raquets.
Off we go!
International symbol for snow shoeing?
What a view!
One way to get down a hill
Next year's Christmas card?
Even in the great outdoors you have to wear earrings
Into the woods and through the trees...
How much farther?
Above the trees
Smiling, now that I had a sandwich
That last climb was no joke
Friday, February 22, 2008
During lunch I stopped into Whole Foods to get some munchies. The place was a zoo, but I noticed this tall, blondish guy. It turns out he plays Bobby in A Chorus Line, which I saw a few weeks ago. He has the best line in the whole show, "I would break into people's houses but I wouldn't steal anything. I would just rearrange their furniture."
Of course I had to get all Super Fan and I stopped him and told him that he was awesome. He was gracious. I wonder, though, if that ever gets old, people stopping you in the street and saying, "Hey! Are you in A Chorus Line?"
That would be the biggest compliment anyone could pay me, if I were a professional dancer.
It's going to be a busy few days here on Planet Pauline. Tonight I have to officiate a wedding down in Bay Ridge. Tomorrow morning I'm getting up at the crack of dawn and going snow shoeing up in the Catskills.
Since I'm going to be gone for a few days, I dropped Peppe off at a friend's apartment. Peps will be livin' it up on the 21st floor of sun-drenched a high rise, which makes me very happy. This morning, though, I felt like I was dropping off my kid at kindergarten. I miss him already.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
That said, I've always identified with the French language. With a name like Pauline Madoule Millard, it's kind of crime not to speak the language. I started learning French in an after school program in fifth grade and followed it straight through college. I even took the French AP exam and did quite well on it, thanks to a teacher named Nola who was a stickler for grammer.
Outside of school, and France, it can be hard to find other people who speak French. Luckily in New York there is the Alliance Francaise. I recently joined and spent this past evening at a mixer, sipping a sweet Beaujolais and babbling in French. It's easy to babble en fracais after a few glasses of wine.
What I learned: I am a lot better at French than I realized and that there are a lot of people who love to speak French, even if they don't have to. (English was allowed at the party, but no one used it.) In a few weeks there is a Bordeaux tasting, and you know I'll be there. Should I be concerned that good wine is my motivating factor to leave the house?
Monday, February 18, 2008
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Saturday, February 16, 2008
Friday, February 15, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
First, naturally, is Martina McBride's song, "Valentine." I couldn't find the real video on You Tube, so this homemade one will have to suffice. Seriously, who ever has time to make a video of someone else's song, complete with lyrics and ten different kinds of roses?
If early-90s cheese is more your flavor, then how about some Peabo Bryson with a side of Regina Bell? That's right, I'm serving up some "Whole New World," fresh from the Aladdin soundtrack.
Heartbroken this Valentine's Day? Don't worry, Poppa Peabo has a perfect song for those unlucky in love. (What can't this guy do?) I offer you, "Can You Stop The Rain." Now get yourself a tub of ice cream and fifth of vodka and throw yourself a pity party.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
For years there's the recipe for Engagement Chicken has been going around.
Basically, if you make the meal for the guy you're dating it's supposed to inspire him to marry you. The only large-scale meals I've ever made for a guy was metloaf (I make a mean loaf) which explains a lot of things.
Someone needs to make the meal and tell me how it goes.
There are plenty of myths as to why the heart is the symbol of Valentine's Day, but I really like this piece that talks about how in ancient Greece, women used to eat from the silphium plant as a form of birth control.
The plant is now extinct, but apparently it was almost 100% effective and allowed the Greeks to enjoy unfettered lovemaking.
From the piece:
"Unlike many other medicines of its time, silphium was not thought of as a mere folk remedy; Scholars and doctors of the day openly praised the plant's effectiveness as a contraceptive. Ancient Rome's foremost gynecologist– a physician named Soranus– wrote that women should drink the silphium juice with water once a month since "it not only prevents conception but also destroys anything existing." ...Rome's birth rate decreased considerably despite increasing life expectancy, plentiful food, and relatively few wars or epidemics, and some historians cite this as evidence of the herb's effectiveness."
Monday, February 11, 2008
I'm on a committee at The Junior League that runs an after-school program on Mondays in Harlem. Tonight the kids made Valentines and cookies. It reminded me of how sweet homemade Valentines are. You should make one for your boo this year.