For the next three days, I will be at the Emerald City Writers’ Conference—meeting people, attending workshops, pitching to editors, hearing speeches, and generally pretending like being an author is a thing of dignity and craft, never to be practiced while hungover, pantsless, and ungroomed.
Blog posts will be sparse until later next week—but I hope to be very entertaining on Twitter, so follow along with me and plenty of others at #ECWC11!
And if you’re in the neighborhood, stop by the Emerald City Book Fair in the Bellevue Westin on Saturday from 4:30 to 6:00—I’ll be there handing out business cards. Or, if the business cards don’t come through, I’ll be making paper airplanes and origami cranes with the initials O-W.
Today is Paul Simon’s 70th birthday—have you heard his super-good latest album? We should all write such great songs when we’re seven decades old. And since I am still mysteriously exhausted from a mysterious illness of mystery (read: probably just that cold that’s making the rounds), today’s post is simply my favorite music video of all time, which is a Paul Simon classic with delightful Chevy Chase appearance. Enjoy!
There is no happiness so potent as being out in Seattle on a sunny day. It’s a contagious, city-wide feeling, as though the sluggish, mossy blood in everyone’s veins gets replaced by champagne.
It’s lucky this past weekend was clement, as two of my close friends were getting married in an outdoor sculpture park. It was so beautiful, in fact, that I got off the bus early and walked an extra mile just to be out and about and ended up following this woman for five blocks:
We here at Olivia Waite have no fewer than three weddings this summer in which we are a bridesmaid. As you can imagine, there have already been dress fittings and shopping expeditions and much time spent in a tiny room with other mostly naked women trying on dresses in the wrong size and color and imagining how they might look in the right size and color.
Bridesmaid dresses: they are such a crapshoot.
One of these weddings is taking place in an outdoor sculpture park, and the bride is asking each bridesmaid to wear a dress of a different shade — which, honestly, takes a lot of the pressure off, since we can play to our own tastes and figures rather than tumbling into the unhappy medium of a dress that looks neither terrible nor spectacular on no one. I was looking for something structural, and a little artsy, but also flattering and rewearable.
And then — like sunlight through clouds — this dress:
The sample size was close enough and the color was divine against my hair and skin. I felt like a cupcake in the best possible way; I felt like just wearing that dress guaranteed having a marvelous time; I couldn’t wait to find accessories to match.
And then I started thinking: heels are going to sink right into the turf, and though I know the sculpture park has paths I want to be able to get into the spirit of things and wander. I want to be comfortable in the shoes I’ll be spending the day in. I want to be able to dance with my lovely husband without turning an ankle. So I began to look around for some lovely flats because nothing is cuter and more comfortable than ballet flats in the summer. And then — these:
These shoes are straight out of Wodehouse, so I began looking for similarly old-fashioned earrings. Ta-da!
The whole outfit is definitely a risk for me: it’s so stylish I am a little bit frightened. Am I the only person who sometimes tones down outfits to fit in more? The only person who tries on a dramatic garment and finds it fits beautifully and looks stellar, but puts it back because it draws too much attention? Who catches herself thinking that glamor and elegance and personal style are for prettier, thinner people?
Well, I’m done with all that. Sunshine yellow dress, here I come!