Sunday, June 2, 2013

Culture? I'm Soaking In It.

My own life at the moment, is entirely bound up with the pursuit of tying down the ephemeral with pastepot and glue.  I just finished making the poster for my youngest daughter.   At the same time I generate as much ephemera, or more, than I keep.  My oldest daughter is undergoing a strange ritual, from another time and place (as the menu at the flyover country diner said of bagels and blintzes when I drove across country in the 90's).  She is having her Arangetram this summer. On the one hand this is a "traditional" activity with a long--we're talking millenia long--history. On the other hand it has been as Americanized and as updated as a turkey tettrazini fajita wrapped in a croissant.

One apparently component part is the creation of "the invitation" or perhaps I should say THE INVITATION because its just that important. First we had an official photo shoot for all the girls going through this process together (there are about five pairs of two girls each so the families can share the cost and the stress).  The girls are got up like a bloomin' idol with eyes rimmed with kohl and hands colored red with magic marker (don't ask. Yes, its just magic marker). They wear an astounding combination of "real fake" or "fake real" temple jewelry. They are posed against a black background and the other mothers dart in with coos and cries to tweak the fans of their skirts, or pick distracting fluff off the background.

We've sent out 160 invitations and are on track to producing a minimum number of warm bodies. Our secret sharers, the other girl's family, will be sending out at least 200 invitations and perhaps we will partially fill the 300 seat venue which we have had to reserve for this occasion.  If there aren't enough people the dance school will send out an urgent plea--how often have I not been urged to go to an Arangetram and modestly declined, not wanting to intrude! Now I know that I should have shown up with a flatpack me to sit next to me just to bump up the headcount.

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