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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Yes, They're Real

One of the Informatician Extraordinaire's guilty little secrets is that she likes to get dressed up in historical costume and go to various reenactment balls. Yes, some of you are shaking your heads, but no matter! She is quite partial to the Virginia Reel and has been known to commit the heinous crime of reminding her escort that they have just announced the reel and that they must get out onto the dance floor posthaste! As you know, The Extraordinaire does nothing important to her by halves and so she is usually tricked out with a six-hoop-skirt, false braids, and a low cut ball bodice. She always attracts attention in this get-up but this time the attention got a little up close and personal.

This event took place at the re-enactor's ball in Jefferson where, during the Virginia Reel--in the middle of the set, mind you--a middle-aged woman and her friend approached The Extraordinaire saying, "Are they real?"

When this question is asked, the speaker usually references particular anatomical features. While The Extraordinaire is endowed amply enough, no one would suspect that her d├ęcolletage is "enhanced." This being an unusual and rather impertinent question to ask in the middle of a dance, all The Extraordinaire could reply was, "Pardon me?"
The woman clarified her statement, "Your shoulders, are they real? They're so white, like porcelain, we thought they were covered in some kind of fabric or gauze or something."
"Hmmm," thought The Extraordinaire.

The speaker turned to her friend and said, "They're real!" and the other woman reached over to The Extraordinaire and ran her finger over the porcelain shoulders and crooned "Oooh." Both these women had been among the party that had snuck the flasks in. Teenagers, you are not the only group that works hard to get around the laws of a dry Texas county...
"You are beautiful," said the interrogator then she turned and floated off with her friend hobbling after her.

The Extraordinaire has been waiting for the public to acknowledge what she has known all along, but really, why come over and state the obvious in the middle of a set of the Virginia Reel?!

Yet in the end, even The Extraordinaire's lovely shoulders could not stave off disaster: before the reel was completed, her beautiful hairpiece came off in her hand. (See "All is Vanity" in Miss Elodie's Diary) Exhibiting all the Presence and Verve for which she is famous, The Extraordinaire popped off the dance line, threw the braid at her seatmates, then dashed back and led the final set of the reel with her own short and now messy hair. The Extraordinaire takes her responsibility as the lady of the lead couple very seriously and was not about to shirk her duties to her partner or her admiring public. Her shoulders are real and squared in adversity even if the hair on her head during the reel isn't!

Friday, May 11, 2007

In the Cards

It's no secret that yours truly, the Informatician Extraordinaire, is a card player. No, not poker--that is a popular game right now and the Extraordinaire rarely jumps on the current bandwagon, but spades and other bidding games. She plays just about every day with her esteemed colleagues at work and her devotion to the game is such that she comes into work an extra half-hour early every morning so as to be able to ride the first park-n-ride bus and go home with her vanpool.

What is it about those 52 cards and four suits that are so appealing? Is it that the Extraordinaire triumphs so often or because she and her associates sometime laugh so loud as to cause serious harrumphing among her other co-workers. Why does the game sometime tie her stomach in knots? Perhaps she is trying to appease a picky partner (you know who you are!) or count cards so she doesn't embarrass herself too much? We'll never know. Meanwhile, if you hear a deck being shuffled in the 9th floor small conference room, you know where The Extraordinaire is playing...