the brits have spoken! after a month of courtship, i've gotten their permission to have our wedding in oxford. no more nightmares about defaulting to an elks lodge in sacramento. i like to think i have little in common with the disturbed brides-to-be that i keep reading about (emotionally engaged, i'm looking at you), but i admit that i expect spectacular disasters at every turn. it would be too easy to actually pull off the sort of wedding i've been dreaming about since (cough) preschool.

so said brits gave us three weekends to consider. we pared those down to three sundays, given the limited availability of our ideal reception venue and the pleasant thought of having a rehearsal dinner on saturday night. i'm too cheap to pay an astrologer to tell me which sunday is the luckiest;* considering other kinds of significance, though, has been fascinating. themes are definitely emerging.

sunday 1
- pope clement xi, slash, monica lewinsky, haile selassie, and daniel radcliffe (harry potter) were born
- saint birgitta, ulysses s. grant, and montgomery clift died
- egypt and libya celebrate revolution day
- "gorgeous grandma" day

sunday 2
- "in god we trust" became the national motto
- jimmy hoffa disappeared
- emily bronte, arnold schwarzenegger, alton brown, and neville longbottom (harry potter) were born

sunday 3
- the first execution by electric chair was performed
- the atomic bomb was dropped on hiroshima
- prince released purple rain**
- tennyson, andy warhol, elliot smith, and ginger spice were born
- four popes (sixtus ii, hormisdas, callixtus iii, and paul vi) and rick james died

sunday 3 is certainly the flashiest, but it's awfully violent (and questionable for a few of our guests); bad day for popes. sunday 1 is better for popes, but we're not inviting any of them anyway. sunday 2 is the early frontrunner.

if any of the three are sending you vibes (or making your schedule hurt), speak now or forever hold your peace...

*i'm also afraid of learning that the day we end up leaning toward is cosmically horrible.

**hell yeah.


happy monday-after-turkey-(or-tofurky-if-you-swing-that-way)-day. in our neck of the woods, the holiday weekend left us feeling the need for another holiday weekend, and soon. this could be because we got around to watching twin peaks: fire walk with me last night; the cumulative effects of david lynch being david lynch and the lamentable quality of the dvd (which skipped and dropped two of every twenty minutes, almost always during a dream sequence and - worse - during the david bowie cameo) made me desperate for a nap.* no love for the pumpkin pie lady this year, though i thought i outdid myself with hand-cut cinnamon-and-dough leaves:

pumpkin pie, season 2

those pie-haters can sod off. more for us.

*synchronicity! as vincent canby put it in the new york times, "[fire walk's] 134 minutes induce a state of simulated brain death, an effect as easily attained in half the time by staring at the blinking lights on a Christmas tree."


on why i will never be mistaken for audrey hepburn, chapter 23: instead of ritualistically licking the window at tiffany's, i pause each night on the way home from work to stare at a giant red crushed velvet iguana.

holiday iguana

he lives in the window at duane reade on broadway, and i assume he's part of their yearly deluge of huge, cheap stuffed holiday gift animals, not unlike the chenille chicken i bought for paul a few years ago (though that was for easter and from safeway in san francisco). per joe, i am not allowed to purchase the iguana because our apartment is already full of crap (also because he, the iguana, is ugly). in spite of this, i have named him yul and written a song (to the tune of stephen malkmus's "jo jo's jacket") about how much i love him.

so much for avoiding complicated and boring.

mischa barton quote of the day:

From the Chateau Marmont ladies' room, The OC's Mischa "No Blood for Oil Heirs" Barton spoke of her newfound appreciation for Jacob. "He looks like, you know, that guy in Jarhead, and he could totally write my autobiography for me," monotoned the starlet.

"I've heard he has a girlfriend, but could she stick her arm up a gumball machine and score him free candy? Whatever, hold my hair back."

in a series of events too complicated and boring to relate, i acquired a nasty, nasty tube of jones soda's turkey & gravy lip balm. i thought of introducing said balm into the pot at our poker game on friday night, but i was 1) threatened with bodily harm and 2) had wicked beginner's luck and narrowly avoided winning it myself. then i realized i should send it to mischa barton.

mischa barton quote of the day:
The OC star Mischa Barton has hit out at critics who claim she is too young to write an autobiography, insisting her stories are fascinating.

The 19-year-old actress has already spent 10 years in the movie industry and promises her tales from the sets of blockbusters The Sixth Sense and Notting Hill will make brilliant reading.

She storms, "I was starring opposite Julia Roberts at the age of 12, that's already a big enough story."

(monstersandcritics.com, 11.13.05)

the wedding machine has begun eating money and crapping data; per the advice of umpteen online bridal guides, i purchased my Binder* ("[b]esides your future spouse...the closest thing to a best friend you'll have during your engagement period") and have been stuffing it with obscure british marriage law printouts and (more importantly) ripped-out magazine spreads. joe is hugely skeptical of the magazines' utility, which is understandable - if one drops a zero from the dress prices and broadens the palette a bit, one usually ends up with tacky promwear - but i've found occasional inspiration. at the very least, i'm learning from others' mistakes.

after an unconscionable hiatus, the mischa barton quote of the day:
Take Mischa Barton, who tells the U.K.'s Harpers & Queen that her former publicist encouraged her to sleep with Leonardo DiCaprio. The actress says that at a party, her flack Craig Schneider pointed out the Titanic actor and said, "For the sake of your career, go and sleep with that man." ...[T]he 19-year-old O.C. actress' reaction: "Isn't Leo, like, 30, or something?"

(metro, 11.11.05)

*unsurprisingly, most actual Wedding Binders are quite luxe and quite expensive; mine is large, plastic, and $8.99 at staples. i'm resisting the urge to cover it with stickers, as its secondary purpose is to trick vendors into thinking that i know my shit and shouldn't be overcharged for things like flowers and booze.

as wonkette notes, just about everyone has heard of scooter libby's bear porn novel (the apprentice) at this point. the new shocker is that it wasn't news years ago, since an aggressive initial ad campaign in the washington post and elsewhere made libby's rank in the bush administration one of the novel's selling points. even old news can be hot news, though: today alone, copies over at amazon have jumped from $42 (at about noon) to at least $69 (as of right now). i haven't seen pricing nonsense like that since the stanford bookstore spit on my old textbooks. speaking of amazon, its "surprise me!" feature (which links to a random page in books with the "search inside" tag) got me thinking. in the tradition of nanowrimo, then, i propose rebepocoda: Republican Bear Porn Collage Day. participation is far less taxing than writing a novel in a month would be: simply share a bit of your "surprise me!" experience with the apprentice. my text, as it happens, included an age-old question:
"Is there feeling?" a bucktoothed man asked. "At least on the first night, even after a bear?"

once one is out of college and/or one's early twenties, i'd argue that needing a (sexy!)* halloween costume is a red flag for self esteem issues; at the ripe old age of 27, i feel no need to tart it up for the 'ween (and hey, gross is fun). not so for my co-workers, so i hid out in my office with electrified hair and undead makeup (i was "the secretary of frankenstein") while they ran around prom-squealing and taking pictures. that's not work-bitterness you smell - i was a plain old halloween hater, as i came down with a horrid cold halfway through the day and wanted to be left alone (tough when you're 6'4" with hair and heels). pesky kids.

speaking of hating, i finally found and read my copy of chuck klosterman's killing yourself to live. with his sex, drugs, and cocoa puffs under my belt, i knew better than to expect klosterman to stick to rock or, well, any subject; that self-preparation was key to avoiding The Anger.** nominally an account of visits to musicians' death-sites (an expansion of a feature for spin), KYTL is actually a latter-day high fidelity - which would be fine, as most memoirs involving music are going to recall nick hornby's (or cameron crowe's) for some time. this becomes problematic when klosterman subjects us to a conversation with his co-worker, who notes that his current book is a bad idea and will be compared (unfavorably) to high fidelity (by, if memory serves, "idiot bloggers"). ooh, snap! this happens maybe a hundred pages after he goes all dave eggers to let us know that he knows he's going all dave eggers. oh, chuck. going meta triggered The Anger in a new and special way. there's also a bit of douglas coupland (circa girlfriend in a coma, novel of a thousand wink-wink smiths references) knocking about here*** - klosterman's attorney's cat is a "super furry animal" (groan) and "the kids are alright" (where's my knife?) in at least three situations. compound this with klosterman's painful, paragraph-length intros for throwaway one-liners, and - for the love of god, man, stick to rock crit.

*"i'm a (sexy!) zombie," "i'm a (sexy!) harriet miers," etc.

**both jake and i have been known to experience hulk-like rage while reading klosterman.

***i probably should have expected this as well, given coupland's "thank god for chuck" blurb on the book jacket.