Saturday, December 09, 2006

Fancy Ball

There has been much knitting. My dad's sweater is now fully assembled. All that remains is to finish the collar, do the crochet edging on the bottom and the sleeves, and sew the zipper in (but I'll probably coerce my mom to do that anyway. The lace is around 70% done. And I managed to make a larger, simpler lace scarf out of cashmere, that remains to be grafted and blocked. These things will be blogged in due time. However.

I went to a fancy ball!
The boy's family has been going to this fancy ball at the Drake in Chicago for many a year. This year, he invited me (with two weeks notice). I panicked for a dress. I've
never even been to a real black tie event before. And this is at the Drake, and celebrities are rumored to attend (though I didn't see any). I couldn't really go to this thing in a random dress from the mall. (Or so I thought. Judging by the other dresses there, I probably could have, but still.)

I scoured the internet for a vintage dress, because I figured at least that would be cool. If someone asked me where it was from, I could casually say, "Oh, it's vintage," because then I would be smooth like that. Unfortunately, nothing in my size and price range appeared. I found every possible site, I sent out scores of emails (okay, maybe half a score), and still no luck. Finally, on etsy , I found a guy that made corsets to order. Since my dream dress was a red corset top and flowy skirt, I thought that sounded like a plan.

It was an insane plan, it turned out. It was difficult to take my own measurements, for one thing. There was a lot of stress about the shipping. First, he got my measurements. Then, he had to ship me the sample. Then, I had to ship it back so he could use it in the final measurements. All these were rushed. But the very rushed part was where he mailed it out on Thursday, and I was to get it Friday by noon. The ball was Friday evening. Not even night, it started at 6.

The packaged arrived before noon, but I was out. The packages are supposed to go to the office, but for some reason, it didn't. The slip said I'd be able to pick it up from the post office at 4:30. I screamed. Literally, I screamed. I think it scared the neighbors. I flew to the post office. There was a humongous line. I begged to ask to talk to the manager. I begged the manager to talk to the delivery person. She was still out delivering other packages, but at least I could hunt her down. I drove around a random neighborhood for a good half hour before I found her. Luckily, I got the package.

I picked the boy up, and gave his mom a lift as well. Turns out, I also happened to save their lives. They would have taken the train otherwise, and while we were driving a crazed gunman started taking hostages at the station they would have been at. I'm not just a pretty face after all.

I rushed to get ready, and we made it to the ball. His family was staying in the executive suite at the Drake, so we went there for cocktails first. He has a huge family, and they're all loud, charming, and completely insane. I felt right at home. His grandfather went around proud to be kissing all the pretty girls. He called me gorgeous, so I like him the best. He reminds me of my own grandfather a little.

The ballroom at the Drake was huge. There must have been 500 people there. There was a fantastic dinner, and his family even remembered to ask for a vegetarian meal for me. I'm not entirely sure what it was, but it was good, and I ate too much of it. Then there was a live band and dancing. Jim broke his ankle several weeks ago (Don't believe him when he says I hit him with a crowbar. I only tripped him and pushed him down.), so he had a cane all night. It was funny, but far more stylish than crutches, and people kept stealing it to dance with it.

We danced as much as we could, but the ankle slowed him down, and the corset and highly uncomfortable shoes slowed me down. But even his family kept pulling me out to dance too. It's a fun and crazy bunch. He says they liked me. But how could they resist? We were by far the best dressed couple there. Jim said we'll have to attend more gala events, and I heartily agree. I also intend to get my money's worth out of this corset.


Anonymous said...

Fabulous! You look fantastic!

Your story about getting there WITH the dress sounds like something out of a british farce.

(BTW - good blog title:) - I don't "get" sting theory, but then again, the whole thought of an infinite and expanding universe makes me want to curl up in fetal position.

madalyn said...

You look absolutely beautiful, Sarah! The corset was definitely worth it!