Friday, February 26, 2016

No Lies, No Works Of Art

Prevent tragic wardrobe errors. 

The woman who managed the Paris salon of a major couturier said her boss "never told a lie". All the details in his designs were functional. She also recommended wearing closed shoes in the city, even in summer.

Inez de la Fressange advised not to wear works of art. Reading that, I realized that a certain category of clothing works better hanging from the picture rail than from my shoulders. 


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More after the jump.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Knee Season

The weather's getting warmer, and it's none too soon to reload the first aid kit. Having expired leftovers is a sign of good fortune.


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More after the jump.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Tracking

Write the month, day, and year on every note that you make for yourself.


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More after the jump.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Read The Manual

A neighbor shared a cautionary tale about a mutual friend whose daughter recently married. The mother hails from a northeast state, and her family has traditions of formality. Her daughter married into a large clan, and the guest list topped out at two hundred fifty. There was an understanding, apparently, that the costs of the reception would be shared four ways,. Ultimately our friend was stuck with the whole bill and had to delay her retirement for two years.

I repeated the story to the in-house bureaucrat who declared the whole event to be "an offense against capital" because the entertainment was an excessive operational expense. It is not unhelpful to remind an engaged couple that a lavish wedding can cost the down payment on a house.

Long experience fulfilling calligraphy commissions for wedding graphics taught me to ask the mother of the bride to choose an etiquette book as a point of reference (or departure) for wording and procedure. It's not cool to admit reading an etiquette book-one is supposed to know everything ahead of time-but read one anyway. For heaven's sweet sake, choose a dignified guide that is available in print, even if you consult its on-line site. Digital and glossy magazine advice can stray far from prudent and sensible practice.

The bottom line is that theologically, the couple perform the marriage ceremony. A home wedding is my personal favorite, because the couple are relaxed and happy in familiar surroundings. Cake and punch are the basics for a reception. A carefully worded invitation hand written in black or blue-black ink on good quality white or cream paper posted with a consciously chosen stamp will satisfy the most demanding critic of social graphics. Printing, engraving, and post itself are merely convenient substitutes for a handwritten message delivered by gloved hand, which is why an invitation traditionally has an inner envelope with no address.

An etiquette book will detail which family is traditionally responsible for which expenses. In my limited personal experience, etiquette combines law and psychotherapy (see Miss Manners) in a discipline of prevention. It is counter-productive to sue one's new in-laws for costs incurred, so read the manual.
I'd consider establishing a familial lottery to offer a limited number of invitations to a group of n cousins.

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More after the jump.

Monday, February 22, 2016

You Know You're In Seattle When

People leave their small change by the cash register..and they sort it into piles.


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More after the jump.