31 March 2009

another purloined idea

I saw this today on a wedding featured here on Offbeat Bride, and I love it.
They made buttons for all of their guests at the reception. The wedding party & family members had buttons with their "title", and the rest of the guests got to choose what they wanted. Things like "Bouquet Dodger" (that would've been me) "Starving Actor" (we'll need a few of those) and "I'm a little drunk" (ditto) ... so hilarious. I know that button makers aren't too terribly expensive. If we have leftover funds for the reception, I totally want to do this.

Above image from the bride's Flickr stream.

30 March 2009

wildly inappropriate

One of the tasks I've yet to begin, but I expect I'll enjoy, is choosing music for our non-reception dance party. Our friend (& groomsman) Russ and his band are going to play live music for us, but in between sets we'll be all about the iPod.

I'm thinking about this today because I was listening to my iPod at my new gig this morning (filling merchandise orders from my company's website that came in over the weekend). I was in the middle of one of my regular class playlists, when it occurred to me that many of the songs I like are Wildly Inappropriate for Weddings:

"Wake Up Call" by Maroon 5
"Man of Constant Sorrow" remixed by Skeewiff
"Fastlove" by George Michael
"Grounds for Divorce" by Elbow
"Another Way to Die" by Jack White + Alicia Keys
"Missed Me" by Dresden Dolls
"Never Is a Promise" by Fiona Apple
"Not Ready To Make Nice" by The Dixie Chicks
"Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" by U2
"Psychotic Girl" by The Black Keys

... I could go on for quite a while here. I think I'm in the market for some "happy music."

***edit: I've decided to keep adding to this, as I think of more songs. It could become the Ultimate Wedding Playlist From Hell.

29 March 2009

the "IT" in L.A.

Mr. UB & I made a jaunt out to Malibu on Saturday, to check out a lead on a possible venue for our big non-reception party in L.A. Unfortunately, it was the 1st sunny Saturday of the year (please don't hate us if you live in colder climes -- it's really the only thing we have going for us) and it took twice as long as planned to get there. Fortunately, the lovely Ms. M. who manages the venue was as laid-back as can be.

It's waaay out in the far end of Malibu, which is a city that's 27 miles long and 10 feet wide. So it really does feel like a "destination" setting, without leaving the city. I forget sometimes that L.A. is hiding gems like this. See, we (especially me) live on the east side of town, where we specialize in making grungy look "hip". East Side Bride does this far better than I could ever hope to ... but at any rate, I sometimes forget how much prettiness lies to our immediate west.

So this is what greeted us upon arrival. A great big room, complete with dance floor, paper lanterns & drapey fabric stuff. We (especially me) are happy. (It turns out you have to arrange the decor-y stuff with a decor vendor lady. But her site gives us hope that she's not out of our price range. We're calling her first thing in the a.m.)
This is the alcove off the main room. Table spill-over & buffet stuff could go back here.

Mr. UB wisely thought to test out the dance floor before we signed anything. Also, I need to officially admit that, even in light of the evidence above, I am the goofy one in this relationship. The man has the patience of Job, really.
(I'm going to marry him. /giggle)

Outside, there's a great big patio. They do ceremonies here at sunset, and/or set up an outside bar. Oh, and the view doesn't suck:
The best part is that this place includes tables, chairs, the dance floor and clean-up in its rental fee. It's also zoned for live music until midnight. Oh, and if you rent it on a weeknight (Mon. - Thurs.) you get it for 50%. Which could be quite easy to pull off in mid-August.

No, I'm not telling you where it is until we book it, so no one snakes our date. Then I promise to sing its praises to the moon.

Also, in the course of composing this entry, I think I've decided that our 1st dance together needs to be to something by Ray LaMontagne. Which doesn't narrow it down, really, since I love everything by him. Please go to iTunes immediately if you don't know his stuff.

27 March 2009

the seagulls are taking over

Think I'm kidding? Check out this cheeky bastard:
What the hell? It's not a monument to you, jerk. But that's okay ... go ahead & perch up there. Make a spectacle of yourself.

And look who was waiting for me, over by the lake:
He's just staring at me, with his weirdo "I can only look directly at you by turning my head" bird vision. Is he sizing me up? Challenging me? Waiting for me to turn my back so he can go all Hitchcock on my ass?

Their influence is so pervasive, it's even affecting the art in the park:
This Putnam guy supposedly finished a sculpture up to two years after he died?! Who do you think is responsible for that? Yep ... the frickin' seagulls. They're terrible with dates. Go ahead -- ask one when William of Orange invaded England. He won't know.

You've been warned.

(Actually, these are just pics that I accidentally left out of yesterday's post. But you should still watch out for seagulls. They're evil.)

26 March 2009

whirlwind venue search breakdown

We saw a ton of places in S.F. on Tuesday, in our attempt to see if there's another venue we love that fits our budget. First stop: Golden Gate Park, which Mr. UB's sister & her husband were kind enough to live near. (Thanks, guys!) Candidate #1: The Shakespeare Garden:
Okay, that's pretty darn sweet. It even has an aisle. The sundial's a little inconveniently placed, but hopeful my Dad would be able to prevent my walking directly into it. (I'm a rare level of clumsy.) Here's the reverse view of the arbor:
(He's so cute.)
The rest of the space looks like this:
It's not very big, but neither is our wedding. And I have a deep affinity for all things Bard. Still, in the late summer/fall, those trees will no longer be blossoming. (I asked. They said no. The nerve.) So it's a "Strong Maybe," but there's lots left to see.

Candidate 2: The Chinese Pavillion:
It's in the middle of a big lake in the park, and it looks really pretty, nestled among all that greenery. Close-up, it's very colorful:

It even has a cute little bridge that we could make into a pseudo-aisle:
But there's a stone (read: immovable) table surrounded by stone stools dead-center in the middle of it. And it has a rail inside that would make seats very hard to arrange, even in the round. Plus, I think Mr. UB put it best: "It makes a very strong cultural statement, which is neither of our cultures." Fair enough. No-go.

There was actually another place next to the Pavillion that we both really liked, but it's way too much work:
Us & our officiant up there on the bridge?

Our guests on chairs down there? Vice-versa? I know, I know ... totally impractical. But maybe some other non-satin shoe wearing bride can make it work. Moving on.

Candidate #4: The Fuschia Garden:
I hope it's more spectacular when things are blooming, because at the moment it looks like a nice little corner, but that's it. We both want something a little more ... special for our wedding. I'm sure that lady on the bench was wondering why the hell I took her picture, though.

Not-really-a-Candidate: The Conservatory of Flowers:
It's not on our list because it's too expensive. But we walked right past it & I liked the building so I took a picture. Another reason why it's out of the question: it's basically a giant hothouse. My hair would frizz.

Lest we lose our minds, a brief time-out: Random stuff in the park that made me happy:
I don't know what kind of flowers these are, but the sun was illuminating them beautifully. I felt like I was pretending to be Peonies. And speaking of Scottish people:

A free-roaming bagpiper, fully kilted-out. I love the sound of the bagpipes, but when they're played badly it sounds like cats being walked on. This guy rocked.

A cellist on the run.

The architecture junkie in me loves the deYoung Museum. You can go to the viewing platform on the top floor for free. (Hooray, free!)

You can see the whole city from up there. This is the street His Sister lives on.

The Golden Gate, peeking over a hill.

Okay -- enough screwing around. We're on a freakin' mission here, people. Back to work!

Candidate #5: The Music Concourse:
His Mom suggested it, and it is pretty. But it's exposed to one of the busiest areas of the park (between 2 museums). Oh, and it's being earthquake retrofitted, too, just like our original venue. We're not doing that again.

Leaving GGP ... Candidate #6: Levi Strauss Park:
Another place suggested by His Mom. (And by the way, our people have been amazing at rallying to help us solve this.) It's a tiny little park down by the Embarcadero. And again, it's very pretty, but the only area where you could possibly have a ceremony is tiny:
(Stoopid people walking into my frame.)
It's also privately owned, which might complicate renting it. Oh, and the only parking around it is meters, which cost 10¢ for every 2.5 minutes!!! What. The. Fuck? Never mind.

And finally ... because I made him go take a look ... Candidate The Winner: The Palace of Fine Arts:
I mean seriously, people. Look at that. And it costs the same as the other places we looked at -- $650 for three hours. It's available from May 15 until August 15. August 15th could happen.

I've obviously been thinking a lot about this whole location drama, and wondering if the urge to dig in my heels is perhaps the slightest bit 'Zilla-ish. Lucky for me, my friend Tolley called:

Her: I don't know if anyone's had this conversation with you, so if I'm over-stepping my bounds, let me know.

Me: Okay?

: I read about your date/location dilemma in your blog, and you're being very practical.

Me: I'm trying!

: I just wanted to point out that it seems like having your wedding at the Palace of Fine Arts has become your dream. Maybe it didn't exist before you acquired the ring, but it exists now.

Me: Kind of, yeah. I'd agree with that.

: Then will you please stop being so damn practical, and be a fucking bride for a moment? If you want that to happen and the date has to change, the people who love you will be there.

Me: Thank god you called ...

I have good friends.

This post has gotten very long, but I'm going to write more soon about this part. The "It's not the absolute cheapest way to make it happen, but it fits our budget and we love it" part. Consider yourselves warned.

gathering my thoughts

We're back, Mr. UB & I, from our lightning-fast jaunt to San Francisco, during which:
... a) we hung with his sister & her hubby (by virtue of the fact that they put us up.) They celebrate their 1st anniversary this Saturday, and how cute are they?!?:

... b) Mr. UB met my dad & my non-Cali-dwelling sister for the 1st time. (Because why not throw that in?) It went very well. My dad's a pretty laid-back kinda guy. Especially once you've asked him, as a total stranger, for his daughter's hand in marriage. Yes, I've mentioned that before. It still impresses the shit out of me.

...c) we visited 2 restaurants recommended by my Beer Babe as possible locales for a post-ceremony dinner. Verdict: we want a deal with Restaurant A to be managed by the Guy from Restaurant B. Can you set that up, Duchess? Lovely!

...d) we walked our tootsies off, searching for another ceremony location. Outcome:
** Golden Gate Park is pretty
** San Francisco is infinitely superior to Los Angeles
** I have terrible judgement regarding suitable walking shoes
** we need to see if that place in Malibu makes moving the whole thing to L.A. worthwhile
** I still like the POFA, and I'll blog soon about the advice that backs me up
** said blog shall include pictures, many of which are random.

I'm sure I meant to write about something else, but after driving back from SF & going straight to work, I've acheived the sort of tired that officially qualifies as a mental defect. I'll figure it out tomorrow.

20 March 2009

they told me stuff would go wrong

So this happened ... I got a phone call yesterday from the lovely lady who handles weddings for the S.F. Parks Dept. And it seems that the construction timetable for the POFA has changed. Which means that we no longer have our venue on our date.


The weird thing is that the place will be available from May 15th through August 15th. (I don't get it either -- apparently there's going to be another "phase" of retrofitting. Whatever that means.) So we seem to have two options before us: a) new date, or b) new location.

The main reason that I'm completely open to changing the date is that we'd only picked it thinking that we could get the Palace by then. And frankly, I wouldn't mind a bit if I suddenly knew there were going to be 10 fewer weeks of this planning insanity in my life.

In a little bit of serendipity, Mr. UB & I were already planning a quick trip to S.F. on Monday, because my little sis from Ohio is going to be in town. Oh, and he still needs to meet my dad. (Yes, he "cold-called" my dad to ask for his permission to marry me. The boy has balls of steel.) So we'll be able to visit the alternate park sites that are available in August, and figure out which option makes more sense.

Thank goodness no one's bought their plane tickets yet. Sheesh.

19 March 2009

the mystery of the box from China

What follows is my version of a Nancy Drew mystery, only dorkier:

It all started when I found a box from Target on my doorstep. "I didn't order anything from Target," I thought as I brought it inside. But since it was addressed to me, I felt okay about opening it.

Inside the box was a George Foreman grill. No card, no note, nothing at all to explain it's unexpected arrival. (I looked about 5 times, just to be sure.) Just a packing slip, with a billing address in Taipei. I don't know anybody in Taipei.

Remembering vaguely that I'd put something like that on our registry, which was indeed at Target, I logged on to check. Yep -- "Requested: 1" ... "Received: 1". Bingo! But their website doesn't show you who purchases the items you receive. I searched the box again ... nope, definitely nothing to identify its sender other than that packing slip. And I still didn't know anybody in Taipei.

I sent a text to Mr. UB, who graciously took time out of his raiding to discuss the matter.

Me: I think we just got our 1st wedding gift, but there's no card so WhoTF?

Him: Ha! What is it? Maybe we can guess.

Me: George Foreman grill.

Him: We registered for that?

Me: Apparently. There's a billing address in Taipei. WAIT - you know someone there!!

Him: No I don't.

Me: Your parents went to a wedding there. Showed us
all the pics at Xmas?

Him: Oh yeah. I don't think they'd send a gift, tho.

Me: "sender's name"

Him: OMG! That's totally her! Wow - how nice!

Me: Hooray!

So apparently we've received our first wedding gift, from the woman who was an exchange student in Mr. UB's house when he was in 6th grade. His Parents went to her wedding a few months back, and she got us a present when she heard the news. (Side note: I guess people have found our website, and its "working".)

So now we can grill stuff and have the fat drain away, all thanks to a formerly overweight heavyweight boxer.

My favorite part is that it's called "The Next Grilleration," with the font & everything. I feel like I should tell my friend Wil.

In other Mail News, the UPS guy brought me this today:

Chapter 2 of my Christmas present from Mr. UB: Cheese of the Month Club. I have the best fiance ever.

18 March 2009

my heart goes out

She was lovely because she was so understated, because she did the work & retreated to her privacy. She was in the "perfect" position to constantly be in the public eye, but chose another path.

I have a profound admiration for people who manage to find a stitch of sanity in the public eye.

I did not know her, but my heart goes out to her family, who lost her suddenly & much too soon.

We keep losing the people we need, dammit. Rest in Peace, Natasha Richardson. And prayers of comfort for your loved ones.

when awesome is a mixed blessing

I've been AWOL from blogging for a few days because I was doing my most-favoritest thing in the world instead: getting paid to act. Woo hoo! And it all happened because of that crazy day job of mine. Yes, I'm going to be pole dancing on TV. In an upcoming episode of "House." (Every time I say that, I have to do a happy dance around the room.)

It's not a huge role (I don't even talk) but I should end up with a nice bit of screen time because the doctors are talking about me. Without giving away any plot points (because I don't need Universal Television coming after my ass,) I play a stripper (on TV, Dad! I keep my clothes on!!) who gets recruited to come to a bachelor party for one of the characters. (Don't ask who -- see above threat of an expensive lawsuit.)

During the first rehearsal take for the strip club scene, I decided to throw a big fancy upside-down no-hands spinny pole trick (yes, I'm a show-off.) And the director told me to keep it ... so I got to do it about 30 more times, for continuity (6 different camera angles, 4-5 takes per angle.) I felt like I had polio the next day, but it was totally worth it.

In the second scene, at the bachelor party, they had me next to Peter Jacobson, who plays Dr. Taub, making him very uncomfortable. After the shot, the DP said, "We don't get many belly laughs on this show, but that was fucking funny." I'm praying like crazy that bit makes the final cut of the show.

So far, every single bit of this is beyond amazing. It was a very cool set (they aren't all like that) and I didn't even mind that the 6" heels for my costume chewed up my feet. What's the problem, then? This phone conversation that I had on my way to the set:

Me: I'm on my way to do 2 days on "House!"

Dad: I love that show! Are you one of the sick people?

Me: (long pause) ... no ... um ... you're gonna laugh (shit shit shit) ... I'm a stripper at a bachelor party?"

Dad: (cracking up -- thank dog)

It's not that I've done something that I'm ashamed of -- I would never have taken the role if I wasn't going to be proud of it. (Believe me, I've turned down a lot of similar roles, on much shadier productions.) But the discovery that everyone from my dad to my FIL-to-be to every single one of my cousins is going to see me in my underwear ... is a little embarrassing. I mean, my skirt was so short I was referring to it as my "butt ruffle." Ah, well.

At least I wasn't alone. I got to see Robert Sean Leonard, whom I've had a crush on ever since he broke my heart in "Dead Poet's Society," dance around the room in his underwear. Network TV ain't what it used to be.

(No air date yet. When I get one, there's a very good chance you'll hear about it.)

12 March 2009

paper pomander post-mortem

Mr. UB has weighed in, and in his (inimitable) words, "The second one looks like a box of Kleenex exploded."

So, as a general service to a) E. , who asked; b) anyone out there who's thinking of making these; and c) any of the parental units who're contributing to our budget who happen to see this ... the cost break-down per unit is:

styrofoam ball: $1.54 each (as pack of 12, from this eBay seller)
seam binding: $2.10 ($0.30/yd, bought here on Etsy)
craft paper: about $1.79 (at Michael's)
pearl head pins: about $1.25 (at Michael's & Moskatel's)
craft punch: $4 (at Michael's, with coupon)

Total = approx. $6.68 plus pro-rated cost of the craft punch (tbd at the end of all this nonsense; currently $0.66/ea.) = approx. $7.35 per pomander.

Which I maintain is still quite a bit more economical than the average "real" flower pomander. If you have evidence to the contrary, please comment & let me know!

11 March 2009

poufy things

Our ceremony site is pretty freakin' spectacular:
It's also a city park, which means lots of restrictions. Fortunately, the Pretty, the Rules, and Our Impoverished State all converge in one lovely reality: not a lot of ceremony decor. Don't need it, can't have it, couldn't afford it anyway.

We're basically going to have a few rows of chairs with an aisle runner in between them. I want to hang some pomanders from the chairs along the aisle to pretty things up. I've been looking into chair rental companies in San Francisco (how did people get anything done before the internet?) and I've decided on the first thing I Want But Am Officially Giving Up:
I always thought that I wanted -- had to have, even -- these chiavari chairs at the ceremony. They're classic, they're gorgeous ... and they don't come cheaper than $8/chair. Plus delivery. Since that's not going to happen on our budget, enter Team B:
Not quite as uptown, perhaps, but a lovely, respectable chair nonetheless. And they're white, which kinda fits with the whole "we're having a wedding" theme of our event. And at $2.25, they're much, much friendlier.

Now all I need is a way to get them to the site on our own. A $200 delivery charge on $65 worth of chairs seems a little ... ridiculous. But back to the poufy stuff:

I completed my test run on the two d.i.y. paper pomanders, and I think we have a pretty clear winner.

First, the paper punch & pearl-headed pins version, courtesy of Once Wed. (The grey bow is just what I had lying around the apartment. I'll get the green seam binding for the real ones.) Pretty, elegant, easy to make, not too-time intensive (about 2 hours) and we can cart 'em back to L.A. for the reception without too much trouble. Second ... sigh. Budget Savvy Bride's blog is where I got the idea, but hers looks ... less sucking-out-loud ... than mine does. I couldn't make the paper stop being too flat/too clumpy as I unfolded it. And I didn't hot-glue the wires in so I could re-use the styrofoam ball, but it's pretty precariously constructed in it's current state. It looks a little less "classic wedding", and a little (okay, a lot) more "my 5 year-old niece made this in kindergarten" than I was hoping for.

So far, we've got Chair B and Pomander A. And one more poofy thing, to boot:
My petticoat has officially acquired its green tulle layer. Also, my dress is no longer too short. Mad, mad love for R & L Tailors on Pico.

09 March 2009

i need this

I'm in love (again) ... with this:

Could you freakin' die? Made by {domestic construction}, for sale in their Etsy shop. For something I didn't know existed until 2-ish months ago, I'm not sure how I lived this long without Etsy. Just sayin'.

Also, I had this strange moment today, on the set of an acting gig:

Random Crew Guy: What's your stage name?

Me: I don't have one.

RCG: Oh?!?

Me: I'm not a stripper.

RCG: Huh.

More on this later, but I was fairly amused. A) I chose to be flattered, & B) I think that means I did good.

a public service annoucement

I found this in a link over on F*ck you, Penguin, and thought it was worth re-posting. Because it could happen ...

What to do if you are attacked by an ostrich.

You're welcome.

05 March 2009

because who doesn't love a big box o' balls?

I got these in the mail yesterday.

Well, technically they arrived on Monday, but the box (understandably) didn't fit in my mailbox. And the line at the post office on Tuesday was out the door. So I retrieved them yesterday.

I got them on eBay, for the amazing price of $1.54/each -- including shipping. I'm very pleased about this, considering that the cheapest I found the same size (5") in stores was $3.99.

They're the main ingredient of my next craft project: pomanders. I've seen 2 styles that I like, so I'm going to make 1 of each & see which one "wins". First, the paper flower version:
Found on Once Wed here. I need something called seam binding, which can apparently be ordered on Etsy. But I think for the trial run I'll use plain ribbon/scrap fabric. No need to invest until I know it's a go.

Second is the tissue paper version:

Photo from the Budget-Savvy Bride here, with instructions on Vintage Glam Weddings here. I like the look of these better, but I'm also fairly certain that they're a lot more labor-intensive.

Which brings me to my next point: my wedding is over 7 months away, and yet I find myself in an almost permanent state of anxiety if I'm not doing something physically related to planning the f*cking thing. What the hell is that about? I'm normally pretty even-keeled (unless I'm in traffic, which doesn't count.) I don't get stage fright before performances (I freak out afterward, instead), and I'm good at completing big projects by continually chipping away at them one piece at a time. So What. The. F*ck! is this all about?

Also, the reception venue I've had my eye on for months finally gave me a price quote yesterday. More than five times the advertised rate. Fuckers. So I'm back to square one on that.

Hmmm ... maybe those last two things are related.

04 March 2009

things that inspire

Okay, I think I've calmed down a bit. (I was starting to feel like I was auditioning to guest-blog for East Side Bride's "f* this" category ...) So I'm changing gears today, if only to remind myself that I have more than one. I'm just (re)posting things I've seen lately that make me happy, introspective, or inspired.

NYC skyline, as photographed by Color Me Katie here.

Interior of Dresden apartment by Frederik March. (credit missing - please advise!)

Snapshot cloud collage by Nicolette Camille, via design*sponge here.

Child's bicycle at Guantanamo Bay Naval Station, by Christopher Sims, via Mother Jones magazine here.

And finally, this amazing video of a song I love:
Found on Black Eiffel, via Daily Motion here.

03 March 2009

allow me to elucidate

Okay, so perhaps I was a "bit" harsh in my condemnation of the No Swearing Week kid. Empirically, I have no quarrel with the guy wanting to clean up his own vocabulary. And if he manages to inspire other people around him to do the same, more power to him. I try (and mostly fail) not to swear in front of kids. Fortunately, I don't know many children, so it doesn't present a problem very often.

My issue is with the media coverage. I swear (pun intended) that if I hear one more bubble-headed news reader singing the kid's praises with a beatific smile on her face, I'll just scream. Probably with lots of extra profanities, just for good measure. It's not going to sweep the nation and force us all to clean our own mouths out with soap. It's not going to cure cancer, or fix the economy. It's not even going to last 2 seconds past the next time the News Saint who's spreading The Word stubs her toe good and hard.

Besides, as an autonomous adult with a sophisticated vocabulary, I refuse to give up the right to lob the occassional eff-bomb, just for effect.

Or an entire stream of them, when I'm stuck in rush-hour traffic as my manager informs me that someone thought I could magically intuit her wish for me to cover her class. I'm just sayin'.

02 March 2009

an open letter ...

... to that junior-high kid who's getting so much media attention for starting the No Swearing Week "movement":

F*ck you.

more of Why He's Awesome

Mr. UB & I were out being social last night. The girlfriend of one of his groomsmen was celebrating her birthday at a cool little bar in downtown L.A. The group of us were playing pool -- mostly very poorly. (It was a friendly game, and the table didn't even have an 8-ball.)

After one particularly spectacular missed shot by Mr. UB, he muttered something to one of his buddies. I waited a beat, then turned to the person closest to me.

Me: Ginina, did he just say, "If these pockets were dragons, I'd be killing this game!"?

Ginina: Yeah.

Me: (pause) I'm marrying that.

Ginina: (grinning) Yeah!

I know you're jealous.

01 March 2009

all about Mr. Un-bride

I found this over on Mason Jar Bride, who credited it to another blog with a broken link (please tell me who she is in the comments & I'll give credit!) and it made me giggle.

1. He's sitting in front of the TV, what is on the screen? In front of the TV? Halo 3 if he has friends over, Fallout if he's alone. Oh, and World of Warcraft if he's in front of his computer.

2. You're out to eat; what kind of dressing does he get on his salad? Salad? Um, he likes that citrus-y one that comes on the veggies next to Japanese food. And the celery next to hot wings -- does that count as salad?

3. What's one food he doesn't like? He's pretty opposed to eggplant. But then again he very much enjoyed the Sicilian caponata that I made last year for Valentine's Day.

4. You go out to eat and have a drink. What does he order? Depends where we are. If we're watching football, he'll get a beer. If we're out having drinks with friends, it's usually Rum & Coke. For his birthday last week, Fancy Pants drank champagne all night.

5. Where did he go to high school? Bishop O'Dowd. He was, proudly, the only Jew in Catholic school. Because his parents wisely decided against sending him to public school in Oakland.

6. What size shoe does he wear? Um ... I don't know this one. But I do know that all of his shoes live under his bed. With shoe trees.

7. If he was to collect anything, what would it be? Memorabilia from the video games he's worked on -- posters, action figures, etc. I'm very happy to continue to display these in our home together, but I'll probably trade the push-pins that currently afix them to the wall for some frames.

8. What is his favorite type of sandwich? Philly cheese steak, from the place on the corner near his apartment. And they are tres yummy.

9. What would he eat every day if he could? Well, as an adult living on his own, he pretty much does eat whatever he wants. At the moment, he's on his workout regime, so it's pretty healthy. At other times, it's involved a lot of pizza and Chinese delivery. Ah, bachelorhood.

10. What is his favorite cereal? Honey Bunches of Oats with Almonds. With almond milk. The boy likes his almonds.

11. What would he never wear? Jeans bought after 1995? No, wait -- I fixed that. Metrosexual gear.

12. What is his favorite sports team? College: UCLA Bruins. Pro: Oakland Raiders. Please don't send him hate mail.

13. What is something you do that he wishes you wouldn't do? Get upset occassionally? He tells me that he wants me to be happy all the time. Which I've told him is an absolutely reasonable thing to want.

14. What is his heritage? Dad's side is German Jewish. (You know, the ones who made it out.) Mom's side is kinda Anglo-waspy, from the Northeast. He has an uncle who hunts bears, and another one who's a lobster fisherman. So they're basically well-fed bad-asses.

15. You bake him a cake for his birthday; what kind of cake? I don't think he'd care, as long as it's cake and there's a lot of it. (Babe, if you have a preference that I don't know about, please tell me. Since this is something that could very well happen at some time in the future.)

16. Did he play sports in high school?
Swimming. He was really good at it. Got recruited to college for it, even. Unlike me -- I'm buoyant but slow.

17. What could he spend hours doing? See question #1. He's lost whole days to WOW. Not that he considers them lost.

18. What is one unique talent he has? Singing loudly & enthusiastically, without regard to pitch, tone or key. I wish I shared his lack of self-consciousness.

I wanted to do this because I think it's cute, and I love sharing how awesome he is.

Also, I think it's important to continually make a stand on Groom Importance. I'm freaked out by all of the brides out there who treat the man who's going to be their husband as a prop, and one who'd best remain silent or else, as she plans exactly what she wants on her Special Pretty Princess Center of Attention Day of All Days, after which the actual Being Married is sure to be a let-down, when the aforementioned Silent Prop Husband will finally have a purpose as the recipient of much scorn and derision, especially as she finally lets her crash-diet starved body have a meal, and then blames him for her weight-gain, the nuisance of thank you notes for all the wedding loot they recieved, etc. Because really, those women terrify me. And there seem to be a LOT of them.