March 30, 2005

Master Baker

In the spirit of my interview with Cupcakes Take the Cake, here is a picture of some NRCs (No Reason Cupcakes) I made tonight. Having a friend over for dinner, although it's not a special occasion and figured cupcakes are always a crowd pleaser.


Posted by Doug at 05:39 PM | Comments (1)

March 28, 2005

There's One in Every Family

Here's a Reader's Digest version of some emails I received over the weekend from someone concerned about a difficult relative. I've already emailed this person with my advice, but I wanted to open the floor to your opinions before I posted my response online. (FYI, I asked the reader for permission to post the emails and have removed incriminating details out of a respect for confidentiality.)

Post your opinions and recommendations in the comments section below.

Dear Groom,

I am getting married on April 15th. My sister, who is paying for the reception, put a cap on the attendance level at 125. (The fire code allows for only 125 in the room that we have chosen for both the ceremony and reception.)

I have an aunt who has not returned her RSVP card and refused to do so when called by telephone. She demanded that she be put on the list without having to send in her card, but the restaurant doing the catering is making a list from all of the cards. Those who did send in their cards will be given precedence. She knew this as it was printed on the invite.

My sister stated that those who took the time to return the cards would definitely be on the list. I mailed out the invitations back in January 2005. Almost everyone returned their cards immediately. My aunt was called approximately one month ago as a reminder. She told the caller that she had mailed her card. Another aunt was at her home last week and saw it tossed aside on a corner of the table.

When I spoke to her on the telephone two days ago, she said, "Why can't you just put me on the list. Why should I have to send the card back when I am telling you that I am coming?" I informed her that I needed the card because individuals were being put on the list first-come-first-served. She said she was not going to waste time to put the card in the mail. She is also insistent on bringing others with her.

At my cousin’s wedding my aunt brought her children, grandchildren we don't really know and a few other friends of the family. At that wedding, seats could be added but this cannot occur at mine.

After commiserating with a cousin who got married a year ago and experienced a similar situation, we discussed writing a letter to her stating that she cannot attend. I am worried that if she shows up she will bring 10 – 12 people with her.

Thanks for your help.

(Name Withheld)

Posted by Doug at 04:56 PM | Comments (10)

March 25, 2005

8 Eastern, 7 Central

If you're near a television set that isn't tuned to a basketball game tonight, be sure to check out The Last Days of World War II, a weekly documentary series on The History Channel on which I had the good fortune to work. New episodes premiere each Friday at 8 PM and will air through the summer, to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the end of the war.

Posted by Doug at 04:15 PM | Comments (0)

March 24, 2005

The Waiting Game

With all of the subway disruptions in New York lately, some people are using the delays to catch up on reading or listen to their iPods. But why not use all the time you're spending underground to imagine worst-case scenarios? No, not worst-case scenarios involving Armageddon or World War III. Worst-case scenarios involving your wedding.

The New York Times asks people how they cope with long waits on subway platforms, and talks to one marriage-minded woman.

"I'm planning my wedding," said Whitney Burrell, 30, a medical student who lives on the Upper East Side. "I think about everything that could go wrong. Every permutation that could go wrong. The photographer doesn't show up. The hairstylist doesn't show up."

When she snaps out of it, Ms. Burrell said, it isn't so bad to be standing on a subway platform. Anyway, it's a way to pass the time.

Let's just hope that when the big day comes, Whitney doesn't take the subway to her wedding.

Posted by Doug at 10:09 AM | Comments (0)

March 22, 2005

You Can Be Certain the "Famous Women's Magazine" Isn't Playgirl

From an ad on Craigslist.

If you're a guy, age 25-40, who's ready to pop the question to your beloved, we're looking for you!

It's a monthly column in our famous women's magazine in which one guy proposes with a full-page photo and proposal.

Posted by Doug at 02:57 PM | Comments (0)

March 21, 2005

Icing on the Cupcake

I can't believe I forgot to mention and send props to All Cupcakes, All The Time. It's a cute site all about, you guessed it, cupcakes, a subject near and dear to my heart. They interviewed me for their regular "Cupcake Interview" feature. Scroll down on their site and check it out.

Posted by Doug at 03:55 PM | Comments (1)

March 16, 2005

Literary Las Vegas

L and I were in Las Vegas recently, taking a much needed vacation and using the occasion to celebrate my birthday and our six month anniversary. I spent a lot of time playing Blackjack. I sat down at a table at the Luxor and was asked by the dealer to present an ID. I was wearing shorts, a T shirt and a Red Sox hat, but I was still shocked that those would total up to shave more than ten years off my appearance. Regardless, I obliged. The dealer looked at my driver's license and then at me. She repeated this at least three times before summoning a pit boss. He took my license and held it up so he could view both it and my face at the same time.

"Wow, do you look young," he said. "You're an old man!"

"Thanks," I said, although this might have come out more like "Thanks?"

The pit boss handed me back my license and commented, "You sure have some good genes."

"Actually, I have a portrait of myself slowly aging in my attic," I said.

If crickets could have survived inside the casino, I'm sure I would have heard them chirping at that very moment.

Posted by Doug at 11:59 AM | Comments (5)

March 14, 2005

Mr. and Mrs. Mrandmrs?

L has not taken my name, nor are there any plans for that to happen anytime soon. However, if we were looking for a creative, fairminded and somewhat new-agey solution to the name game, we might follow the lead of the people profiled in yesterday's New York Times.

Via Veiled Conceit.

Posted by Doug at 11:44 AM | Comments (1)

Just Call Her Yogi

Like many households, we have a DVR, a Tivo-like service provided by our cable company that digitally records television programming. As is the experience of many people who use it, having a DVR has changed our TV-viewing experience. L and I were talking about it recently, after we were able to watch two episodes of Law & Order and a saved episode of The Daily Show in less than two hours, saving at least forty-five minutes for other activities such as watching live TV. (I tend to skip the interview portion of The Daily Show unless the guest is a politician or big thinker there to talk about current affairs. While I love movies, I have little interest in stars coming on to plug their movies.)

Me: Man, I love the DVR. I can watch Law & Order in 45 minutes. I think it takes me 15 minutes or less to watch The Daily Show.

L: Isn't it great?

Me: I'm going to watch an old 60 Minutes. I think we have one saved.

L: Oh, that should probably only take an hour.


Posted by Doug at 11:19 AM | Comments (1)

March 11, 2005

Par Two

Planning a wedding could be good for your golf game. From the Miami Herald:

PALM BEACH GARDENS - How often do you see this happen? Aaron Baddeley is preoccupied with wedding plans, and his golf game is improving.

The young Aussie continued his recent run of good play Thursday with a 4-under-par 68, finding himself tied for fourth after one round of the Honda Classic.

That followed a sixth-place finish in Tucson, which was preceded by placing seventh at the Nissan Open. Seven of his past eight rounds have been in the 60s.

Baddeley, 23, weds Richelle Robbins in 36 days. ''It's been easy,'' he said. ''When you're off the golf course, you're not thinking about [golf],'' Baddeley said. ``You're trying to get wedding stuff done. I'm talking to Richelle and that's what you do.

``When you're off the course you don't have to worry about it, going through premarital counseling and getting plans ready. It's been easy.''

Robbins stayed in Arizona this week, finalizing some of the details. Baddeley later acknowledged there's not all that much left for him to take care of.

''Richelle's got the list, ticking things off the list,'' he said. ``I went through the list, and there was like one thing I could do.''

Show up?

''Show up and organize transportation,'' he said. ``I can do that.''

Posted by Doug at 11:32 AM | Comments (1)

Cell Phone Break Down

In honor of our six month anniversary - which happened on that nether-day between February 28th and March 1st - I present this re-enactment of an conversation L and I had only a few months into our relationship. L was jokingly testing me and seeing if I had memorized her cell phone number yet. As the only number I've been able to remember since the advent of cell phones and PDAs seems to be my own, I was not quite prepared for this question.

L: Do you know my phone number?

Me: Sure I do.

L: So what is it?

Me: Uh, it's nine one seven, uh, eight five three, uh, something.

L: You don't know it, do you?

Me: I don't have to. It's stored in my cell phone under "L cell."

L: What if you lose your cell phone?

Me: Then I'd look in my Palm Pilot. It's stored in there.

L: And what if you lose your Palm Pilot?

Me: Easy. All the information is backed up on my computer at home.

L: Okay. What if there's a massive power failure resulting in a total breakdown of modern technology?

Me: Well, then I guess I wouldn't be able to call anyone, would I?


Posted by Doug at 11:26 AM | Comments (2)

March 02, 2005

And I Thought My Dad Took a Long Time in the Bathroom


An Iranian woman has cited her husband's chronic smelliness as the reason she wants a divorce.

Here's how Reuters, via phrased their lede on this story:

An Iranian woman has requested a divorce from her husband on the grounds that he has not washed for more than a year.

My head must have been in a strange place when I read this sentence, because I imagined that the husband routinely washed his face for months on end, but never for longer than 11 months. Suddenly, the story became much more interesting to me. I pictured the wife nagging her husband to actually spend more time in the bathroom. "Reza! Get back in the bathoom! Do not come out until you have washed for at least one year!"

Posted by Doug at 07:42 PM | Comments (1)

March 01, 2005

Let Them Eat Cake

My latest contribution to Stag & Groom magazine, an abridged account of our Midwest cake tasting excursion, is on British newsstands now. I received a couple of copies in the mail today, so if you can't make it to London to pick one up feel free to stop by our apartment anytime.

Posted by Doug at 08:15 PM | Comments (1)