I’m just about on my way to a cocktail party so I thought I’d blog about how much I dislike it when people show up to parties empty-handed. You don’t go to a kid’s birthday party without a present, right? Well, this is the adult version…don’t show up to a dinner or cocktail party without a bottle of wine or a platter of veggies from Costco. I think it’s rude.
I agree that the person who is hosting should always have enough for their guests to eat and drink, but I just think it’s common courtesy to show a little gratitude for being invited. Another analogy: You don’t go to a wedding without getting a present. In fact, even if you do not attend, you still have to get a present!
Now I had a ‘little’ shindig earlier this month. The shindig turned out to be a bigger party than my place could accommodate so I had to do some guest elimination. I already blogged about that. But given that it was a cheese party and I knew a lot of people would come, I specifically told people to bring wine or cheese. I spelled it out. Still, there are several people who showed up empty-handed. The nerve! I also don’t think it’s very cool to bring one bottle of wine and three guests.
I’ll admit I’ve shown up empty-handed before. If I have, it’s because I didn’t have enough time to get something and getting something would have prohibited me from going at all. In that case, I go straight to the host and apologize for being such a bad guest. The only other reason is to get back at people who’ve come to my place empty-handed.
I know what you’re thinking. You should give because you want to give. “For it is in giving that we receive.” But to me, this really is about common courtesy!
I don’t play favorites even with my closest friends when it comes to stuff like this. I went straight up to one of my friends during my party and asked, “So…no cheese, no wine?”
To which he replied, “I love you too.”
I bought a fur coat. Shucks, it’s not really a fur coat. More like a coat with a detachable fur collar.
In NYC a couple a weeks ago, I popped into the Juicy store on 70th and Madison on my way to the Frick Collection. I didn’t expect to find anything. I was just browsing and thought I’d take a look since my friend Lizzie gets a discount. I happen to like their Couture line. The whole line seems so classy and fashionable. And with fashion comes a price. I remember seeing a Couture dress that I liked in the SF Juicy store and grieved when I saw the pricetag. Way out of my financial league.
Similarly, at the store on the Upper West Side, I went straight to the Couture section. I found the most beautiful, black and white striped coat—extra small, extra pricey. I took the hanger off the rack and ran my hand against the silk lining. That’s when a sales assistant called out, “Everything in that section is at least half off.” I wish she hadn’t said that because otherwise I probably would have never contemplated purchasing it.
I put it on in front of the mirror and declared, “I have to have it.”
Lizzie’s discount doesn’t apply to sale items so that didn’t alleviate the financial burden. And the rest of my time in NYC, I couldn’t sleep. Should I keep it, should I return it. The debate raged on in my head…all day, all night. I have never in my life spent so much money on a single material purchase. Not a couch, not a laptop. Not my pair of black suede Gucci boots that I bought after Christmas a few years back. They were half off and still, several hundred dollars (I won’t admit to how many hundreds of dollars. I’m not using the term ‘several’ literally).
One evening while getting ready, I told my friend, “Shaheen, I’ve decided to return my coat. So I want you to see me wear it just once.”
She had already heard my stories about the purchase and agreed that it was way too expensive. I unzipped the coat out of its plastic protector and put it on. At first glance her response was “keep it.”
So here I am, still debating whether or not to keep a coat that is less than a mortgage payment but more than a laptop. I’ll think, “I can buy two laptops with this money. I can buy a laptop, an iPod, and an iPhone.”
Then seconds later, I’ll defend the purchase. “I bring my lunch to work every day. I eat Lean Cuisines for lunch and dinner. I drive a shit car. What’s the point of hoarding money if I can’t buy a little luxury every now and then!”
I had made the point to a friend that I don’t go to Starbucks everyday like most people so I could make these types of purchases. And he said, “Honey, that’s like three years worth of Starbucks!”
All in all, I am leaning towards keeping it. I am still well within the 60 day return period. I could very well change my mind in a week or two. I must say I have been more money conscious since the purchase. Example: “I’ll pass on dinner, but I’ll meet up with you guys for drinks afterwards!” Ahhh, the price to pay for fashion.
As the Iowa caucus approaches, I decided to spend some time today researching the presidential candidates and how they stand on the core issues. I’ve never been one to keep up on politics. It never appealed to me. And all of the bashing makes me want to do the skedaddle. But considering this election will probably turn out to be one of the most exciting of my lifetime, I figured I’d better start doing my homework.
I’ve mentioned before that I’m a registered Republican mainly because I’m fiscally conservative, but on social issues, I’m pretty liberal. A couple months ago, I took this online quiz that paired me up with Giuliani. My pairing score with Giuliani was pretty low which goes to show how scattered I am when it comes to how I think politically. For starters, I am PRO-CHOICE. I don’t give a hootenanny what the Catholic church thinks. The fact that these high and mighty MEN are going to decide what a woman does to her own body makes me want to throw up. If you’re going to force a teenager into unwanted pregnancy, then you try taking care of a baby on minimum wage and no family support! Totally ridiculous.
On immigration, I read today that Giuliani thinks we should build a technological fence to keep out illegal immigrants. OMIGOD! He lost my vote right there. What an idiot. I’ll be honest, I still have more research to do but this country is what it is today because of immigrants. Lots of whom were/are here illegally!!! Immigrants are our parents, our colleagues, our bosses. They farm our land, they nurture our children. WTF, people. WTF?!?!
On a final note before bedtime, I am a big Hillary fan. Always have been, always will. She will most likely get my vote. She has the most experience, being born and bred and wed for this job. And two presidents for the price of one. You can’t beat that! But seriously, when saxaphone-playing Billy was in the Oval Office who do you really think was running the show? Come on, people. While Bill was getting his job blown (you know what I’m talking about), Hillary was getting the job done. Enough said. I’m not going to play the first woman president card. Hands down, she is the most experienced and most qualified.
This is the last religious post for the year. I love this prayer, probably my favorite. We pray it every week during Mass and this morning I remembered that I wanted to post it on my blog. Appropriate that it’s the prayer of the Saint that San Francisco is named after.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace;
where there is hatred, let me slow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Most people know that aside from being questioned, I rarely make it known that I’m a devout Catholic. But since today IS Christmas and this is a special church holiday, I thought I’d share this morning’s St. Agnes Christmas homily–the theme of which was vulnerability and making ourselves vulnerable to try new things, face challenges, love with all our heart, the way that God made himself vulnerable through Jesus.
There are three stages in life.
1. You believe in Santa Claus.
2. You don’t believe in Santa Claus.
3. You are Santa Claus.
Which is synonymous with religion.
1. You believe in Jesus.
2. You doubt / don’t believe in Jesus.
3. You are Jesus.
I’m going to try to bring even more peace into my life. It was only after I got some help earlier this year that I genuinely felt at peace with myself.
Merry Christmas to you. I hope you are enjoying the holiday.