On Sunday I picked up Great Aunt Pen and Great Aunt June in my utilitarian wagon to a bring them to a bridal shower. The event was for the fiancee of a second cousin. As these things go now, literally hundreds of people were invited. It was hosted at the home of one of the bride-to-be sister's.
As we pulled into the driveway, the three car garage was open so the vehicles, all facing forward, were on display: a BMW sedan, a BMW SUV, and a Honda van. To my Greats delicious delight we were later told that these were, "his, hers, and for family fun!"
Before we got out of the car, Aunt June said, "Oh, oh. These people are probably those thirty-something-have-everythings."
Not being familiar with this term I asked what it meant. "You will see," Aunt June said knowingly. Meanwhile Aunt Pen was commenting unfavorably on the plastic fence that surrounded the back yard.
Once inside, I must admit that the hostess was in her thirties and that she did indeed have everything. Although the decor looked like a Pottery Barn consultant had visited there was absolutely every single amenity.
Despite my aunts, initial comments I found a few things to be strange or unathentic:
1. Everything looked new. There was nothing that had the patina of family or history. It was like being in a decorator show room.
2. Even though there were bookshelves in the family room, there were no books. Most of these shelves were piled with DVDs - many of them for kids.
3. Despite the availability of these DVDs and an abundance of toys in a playroom that we were shown, the children of the house kept interrupting the shower at the top of their lungs to announce that they were bored. Don't think that this is a good sign.
4. The hostess was walking around barefoot and kept telling us that her housekeeper did this and that and that she did not have to lift a finger.
5. We were served drinks in plastic glasses that had that had "Ian and Emily" on them with the family emblem they had desiged themselves.
The house plan was open - meaning that the kitchen and family room were joined together and that the latter opened out to a patio and pool that was perfectly landscaped. The patio had an outdoor fireplace with a chimney and a big, intimidating stainless steel grille that was the size of my car.
What the Greats found remarkable, and I must admit that I concur, was the number of bar sinks and flat screen TVs. Are these supposed to come in pairs? Because there was a set in the kitchen, then a few feet away in the family room, then out on the patio.
"Your bar sinks and TVs are so nice," Aunt Pen remarked to the hostess in that tone that if you know her, is not meant to be sincere.
On the way home the Greats speculated how many bar sinks and flat screen TVs there were upstairs - which we did not see.