Each May, Rochester holds a Lilac Festival that runs over two weekends.
Some years, the weather is perfect, but the lilac trees have passed their peak. So, you know, everyone traipses around looking at slightly brown buds.
Other years, it’s freezing cold.
Still other years, it freakin’ rains the whole dang time.
Sometimes, it’s mad hot and everyone is sweaty and complaining.
What I’m getting at is that it’s a tough month to hold a festival.
This year, we caught more than our fair share of solidly beautiful days, so I made the mistake of signing up to run a 5K with my son. One of us took 41:00 minutes to come in 900th place, and then puked my way down there to get a few photos.
I love the Lilac Fest. The purple flowers on the trees speak to me.
No, I don’t hear voices.
But I hear a reassuring voice that reminds me summer is on the way.
I also hear another voice. It’s slightly louder. It says:
GIRL, PUT AWAY YOUR SLEEPING BAG COAT! IT’S SAFE NOW. PROBABLY. I MEAN IT MAY NOT BE, BUT THE LIKELIHOOD OF THE TEMPERATURE DROPPING BELOW FREEZING IS DECREASING DAILY. SO TAKE A LEAP OF FAITH AND MOVE THAT PUFFY BLACK COAT FROM THE HOOK IN THE HALL TO THE CLOSET. HIDE IT. DO IT!
And I do.
Because when you see things like this?
Well, how can you not have faith?
And speaking of faith, I know some of you are here because you have faith.
And now you just want to know.
Who won the dang Lilly Pulitzer bag?
I know. Not the smoothest segue way.
I have to show you something first.
A couple of people sent me photographs to boost their odds of winning the Lilly bag. Each photo earned folks five points in addition to any points they might have accrued for leaving me comments, tweet and Facebook shares.
And now I have to share them with you!
Aimee Broussard is kind of like the Martha Stewart of the South. Except she’s younger. And perkier. And wicked nice. I met Aimee at BlissDom, and I developed an instant crush on her. She crafts. She bakes. She makes and sells fabulous aprons. If you want to see a gorgeous blog, look HERE. Y’all, Aimee cyber-pummeled me with pictures of all her Lilly-wear. She sent me this photo of herself and some hot plantation owner in Louisiana.
As if THAT wasn’t enough, she tweeted my post and sent this picture of her current handbag.
With her comments, her tweets, her Facebook shares and her photo submissions, Aimee earned twenty-eleventy-two and 1/2 bazillion points. If the contest had not been left up to Random Generator, I think it is fair to say, she would have been the clear winner.
And yet, Random Number Generator was running this show.
Because I knew I could never have been impartial on this one.
Also, I was scared. I didn’t know how out of control this thing was going to get.
~• • •~
Sheri Burns is not a blogger, but she often leaves kind words on my Facebook Page. She told me to be on the lookout because she was sending me a picture of her current handbag. She warned me not to laugh. I assured her I wouldn’t.
What can I say?
~• • •~
Misty of Misty’s Laws just wrote a faboosh guest post for me as part of my #SoWrong series. (Check out “To Bra or Not to Bra” if you missed it.) Anyhoo, Misty submitted two photos of her purse. The second photo features a close-up of the “shreddedness” of her handbag, but I’m only posting the first one. You’ll have to believe me when I tell you there are puncture wounds in her purse.
Another entry came from Maria of brickhousechick. I recently pressured her into revealing her first name, which she did. She wrote a post about it HERE! Maria sent this pic:
And this paragraph:
Hello Renee: Reasons I would like to win the bag:
I don’t own one
I love everything pink (as you can see by my sweater and lipstick), and her stuff always has pink in it!
I need to replace the sad aluminum foil bag I have
I, too, have frizzy hair and iron it flat every day.
I am nice
I commented on your 1,101st Day in Blogosphere Blog
I commented on your Lilly Pulitzer Dress Post
I enclosed a photo of myself holding something Lilly (kinda)
I counted up all the entries as we went along, putting names on the appropriate number of lines in one Excel document. Then I let Random Number Generator do the work.
Sheri Burns was attached to #73. And how can we begrudge her, right? I mean she deserves a little Lilly, yes? So I’ve got your email already Sheri. I’ll email you to get your home address! Congratulations! And thank you to everyone who entered! I loved reading your words!
Last Thursday afternoon, my husband took Monkey to a fencing tournament in Arlington, Virginia. While they were at The Capitol Clash, I spent hours working on my book. I didn’t eat or watch television; I simply wrote. And it was fabulous.
But by Friday late afternoon, I got antsy and started thinking it would be kind of a good idea to get out of bed and move my body a little bit, maybe go dancing. For the record, the last time I went clubbing was when I lived in New Orleans back in the 1990’s, so you can imagine my surprise when I learned that there is, in fact, a joint less than five miles from my home where I could actually get down and get funky.
So I started asking (and by asking, I mean begging) friends to go dancing with me that night. After hours of foolishness spent on Facebook (and the phone), I realized that there was simply no one willing or able to go with me. My first rejection came when my bestie sighed and said that, while she loved me, she was going to have to let me down. This was followed by a handful of other friends who felt compelled to tell me everything they were doing with their children that night that prevented them from going dancing with me. As the hours passed, my beloved neighbor emailed to let me know she was already in her jammies while another buddy reminded me of her back injury. Finally, at 9pm my pal Lisa said if she hadn’t blown out her knee she would have totally gone with me.
“Really? I asked.
“No, not really,” she giggled, “That place is gross.”
Even my gay friends declined.
Dejected, I crawled back into bed and wrote prolifically until just after midnight, at which point I flipped off my light. As I lay there in bed, I thought to myself: Why didn’t I just go alone? What was there to be afraid of? I didn’t need an entourage. I wasn’t going out to get laid. I just wanted to shake my groove thing a little. Snuggling into my comforter, I decided that I would go the next night.
At 9:30pm Saturday night, I gussied myself up (and by “gussying myself up,” I mean I put on a pair of clean jeans and a black short-sleeve t-shirt) and headed over to Taylor’s Nightclub and Bistro – which, by the way, is a total misnomer. Taylor’s is no “bistro.” When I think “bistro,” I conjure up a small, informal restaurant that serves wine – usually found in France. Let’s be clear: Taylor’s is a dive. No one is serving bread or wine or olives at Taylor’s. Which, by the way, was fine. All I wanted to do was shake my groove thing.
A blustery Saturday night with about four inches of fresh, slippery snow on the roads, I was surprised to see that the place was, in fact, packed. One dance floor featured an eclectic (read: skanky) mix of women wearing really short dresses and really tall heels doing a lot of bumping and grinding. Sure, there were men on the prowl, but they were harmless enough. There was even a cluster of older moms, laughing and enjoying a night out together.
I made my way to dance floor number two where a disco ball turned and strobe lights flashed. It was much less crowded. The DJ played hits from the 70s and 80s on a warped turn-table. Much more my speed.
I warmed up to “White Lines” and “Cold Hearted Snake” when (gasp) Janet Jackson’s “Pleasure Principle” came on. Sidebar: You have to understand that in 1989, I memorized every single move in that video and I still remember most of the sequences, so I started going full force. It all came back to me. My God, I thought, I am even wearing the black shirt and jeans. (Note: there were no chairs or microphones to topple or throw, so I had to improvise during those parts, and while it was tempting, I did not tie my shirt into a front knot.)
Anyway, near the end of the song, Janet starts throwing her head around and striking these tight popping poses, so I dug deep into my old repertoire and tried to recreate my old moves.
Keep in mind that I had not had one single drink.
Not even a gingle ale.
But suddenly the room started to tip, and I started to topple. You know when you have put too many towels in your washing machine and it starts making that kachung-kachung-kachung sound and you know things are unbalanced, and then you have to go in the laundry room and move things around so that things run smoothly again? Well, it was like that.
Except I was alone in a bar, so when I grabbed the wall for support, I am sure I looked mad drunk.
And the sensation wouldn’t go away.
The DJ actually announced something like: “If you’ve been drinking, for everyone’s safety, please stay off the dance floor.”
I am pretty sure he was talking to me.
And then, I felt a vibration in my back pocket. Retrieving my phone, I saw that it was my husband, texting to say the airplane had landed. I had to get them at the airport, but I was in no condition to drive. I grabbed my coat, prayed the cold night air would make me feel better, and staggered out into the snow (and by staggered, I mean I zigzagged across the parking lot). If a police office saw me, he would definitely have demanded I take a Breathalyzer. It was embarrassing.
Once in my car, I waited for the weird swirling feeling to stop completely (which it did, thank goodness), and, as I drove to the airport to pick up my family, this twit had a sad epiphany: At forty-sumthin-sunthin years old, I can no longer channel my inner Janet Jackson.
From here on out, as Billy Idol once sang, I’ll be “Dancin’ With Myself.”
Probably in my own living room.
Anybody else miss being in their 20s, even once in a while?
(If you’ve never seen “The Pleasure Principle,” please enjoy Janet’s moves from 1989. Just imagine my face on her body.) 😉
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