Saturday, October 6, 2007


Dear Aunt Sandy,

Why are you doing this, Sandy? Are you angry with me? Is it because I said Ingrid’s tablescape was more tasteful than yours? Is that why you had to prove to me that you, too, can make a sophisticated-and-elegant-scape, regardless of whether it fits the theme of your show? Don’t you know, as much as I may mock you and call you stupid and laugh at you every time you say “expresso,” that deep down I love you?

You didn’t have to take it this far. Just one week after I declared to the world that you never disappoint me, you have gone and disappointed me. Can you even begin to imagine, when I looked at the weekend line-up and saw that you were doing “Soul Food,” how excited I was? Have you any idea the sheer exuberance I felt at imagining the gems that would bedazzle your upcoming down-home-cooking-southern-style-scape? I awaited this day. I counted down to this day. And what did you give me? Oh, Sandy. Sandy, you gave me this:

What is this? I will tell you what this is, Sandy. This is a failure-scape. That’s right—you have failed us. What does this have to do with the South? How dare you refer to Grandma Dicey as if that, alone, will convince us that you are a southerner? I know you know that, in order to convince people that pre-packaged food is authentic food, you and your table must both dress the part. So where is your cotillion dress, Sandy of the Southern Belles? Do you really expect me to take you seriously in jeans? And what is that hanging from your window?

I really think a much more appropriate choice would have consisted of ruffles and frills from each of your parasols, collaged together to create the perfect window treatment. Instead, you have inexplicably settled on calla lilies. Calla lilies? Did the craft store not carry silk magnolias or cotton blossoms? Did you have a complete breakdown because never before had Jo-Ann Fabrics so cruelly turned its back to you, or were you simply overcome by the vapors? At the very least, take that peach rum punch away and give a girl a mint julep. Really, Sandy. Come back. We miss you.

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