Monday, September 27, 2004

Ms. Mothball 2004

Jef, being the always amazing and talented man that he is, was lured into being a co-chairperson for the Grant Park Conservatory (?) fundraiser known as "The Mothball." It is a big party that is thrown for the residents of Grant Park and their friends. This year's theme was Moulin Rouge.

One of the events that happens during "The Mothball" is the "Ms. Mothball" contest. Jef advised me that under normal circumstances, this is when the neighborhood Drag Queens are able to dust off their heels and wigs and share their fabulousness with their neighbors. However this year, there were not many who were signing up to be a contestant. This led to an urgent phone call between Jef and I about a week ago:

Jef: Umm, Joan...any chance you might want to sing that song you sang at your sister's wedding at the Mothball for the Ms. Mothball contest?

Joan: I thought that was basically a drag show?

Jef: Well, normally it is, but there is nothing etched in stone that it has to be. I'm really concerned that not many have signed up to participate. Would you please do me a favor and be a contestant?

Now, Jef rarely asks me for a favor. He's a very self sufficient kind of guy. So, if this is what he needs, then I need to step up to the plate. On top of that, I've gotten into the groove where if something scares me, I should do it.

Joan: (Good air in...) Umm...OK...I'll do it. (Bad air out...)

Over the course of the week, I realized I didn't want to sing what I sang at my sister's wedding, (Etta James' "At Last") however the CD that I got for the wedding had the music for other songs, too. One of which was "Proud Mary" by Tina Turner. That would be a lot more fun that a slow love song.

So, not having anything "Moulin Rouge-ish" to wear, I just wore a pair of slacks and a red buttoned up shirt with my sparkly earrings and sparkly "J" necklace. This also gave me permission to wear red lipstick, which I love.

I went by Jef and 2F's house to follow them to the party. Jef is just too dapper in his jodpurs, knee high boots, white shirt, red jacket with tails and a top hat. We got to the party and discovered that every costume shop within a 50 mile radius must be out of their "Moulin Rouge" costumes. There were Can-Can girls a-plenty and men dressed in tuxes and all sorts of other garb. It was a beautiful sight!

Jef had rounded up 4 women to be my back up dancers. All of them were dressed beautifully in their Can-Can outfits and were so much fun. Jef then tells me, "By the way, you have a stage name: You are Brie Frommage and the Baguettes!" I downed a couple of glasses of wine and then it was show time.

Jef, who was the MC, introduced me in his best French accent, and then handed me the mike. The music began playing, the women began dancing and I began singing. The crowd was loving it! They were singing, they were dancing, they were clapping - it was just a wonderful 3 minutes and then the song was over. I went and sat down to cool off and the other 2 contestants had their turn.

Jef then called the contestants back on stage and asked the audience to choose who they thought should win. It ended up being between "Sister Louisa" and I. Someone from the audience shouted, "Do a dance off!!" So "Sister Louisa" and I danced. I shook my moneymaker like nobody's business and thankfully the DJ faded the music down. Jef again asked the audience to choose who they thought should win. There were shouts, screams and clapping for both of us, but I ended up winning!!! I was crowned "Ms. Mothball 2004!" What made it even more interesting is that I am the first genetically female "Ms. Mothball" in Mothball history! Score one for the Sisters!

The rest of the evening I was worshipped and adored by all at the party. People came by and bowed to me, kissed my hand, congratulated me and just generally gave me a wonderful ego boost. It was really nice!

I have a beautiful crown, a scepter and a sash that was hand crafted by my friend Joanne. She is so talented, she could make something beautiful out of a piece of string and some lint. I also won some lovely Mary Kay products. I couldn't help but wonder if the winner had been one of the Drag Queens, would they have enjoyed the scented body wash, lotion and spray I got?

After the party was over, Jef and 2F walked me to my car. On the way I asked them, "Did I really do good, or was it just because everyone was drunk?" They both emphatically said that I did great. I guess I'll have to accept that because Jef has never lied to me!

So now, I place my "Ms. Mothball 2004" crown in the place of honor next to my Mother's "Bean Queen" crown. The legacy continues...



Monday, September 20, 2004

Is it just me...

...or is that Burger King commercial kinda creepy? You know, the one where the guy wakes up and this big plastic faced guy dressed as a king is offering him a crossainwich?

That would give me nightmares!



Monday, September 13, 2004


Today is Jef's birthday. He is a very dashing and handsome 37 years old today. Please send him your birthday tidings!

Jef takes great joy in pointing out that I am the older one of us since I celebrate my birthday on July 1. I like to point out that since I'm older, I must be wiser. ;-)

We have witnessed 17 of each other's birthdays. We became friends when we were 20 and have remained close ever since. That's not to say that we haven't had our tiffs, (what true friends can say they've never tiffed?) but I think it's safe to say that we've never gone very long at all without knowing what was going on in each others lives.

The length of my relationship with Jef was driven home by my 22 year old nephew, Eric, when we were together at my sister's wedding. He said, "I remember Jef being around when I was a little kid." It's true. It feels like Jef has been around forever, and I hope he continues to be around forever.

Even though I joke about being the wiser of the two of us, it's truly Jef that is the wise one. He has a wisdom that comes from truly listening to you and speaking from his heart and from his intuition. I can say that I have become wiser as I've moved along in my life, and a great deal of that can be attributed to my listening to Jef. If you ever get the opportunity to have an unhurried one on one conversation with Jef, you will learn a great deal about yourself. He is really good at bringing out the best in people.

That's not to say that he doesn't have a mischievous side. Sometimes he says things that are totally off the wall that catch you totally by surprise. A mutual friend of ours once said of Jef, our friend Susan, and myself, that when we get together, it's hard to keep up with our witty repartee. She would just sit back and catch what she could until our frenzy died down.

Jef and I were raised very differently, however I truly feel like he is my brother of a different mother. I am very honored to have him in my life and to have the opportunity to learn from him, grow with him and have fun with him.

I would like to challenge you: If you know Jef, please take a moment to share something about him that you treasure in the Comments section. I then will make sure that he reads what you wrote.

Happy Birthday, Jef. I love you very, very much.



Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Wedding Stories

I drove up to Asheboro to meet my sister at work on Thursday last week. It was a nice drive up and I made it in right at 5 hours. After having a late lunch and finishing out Marti's work day, we headed to the house.

The house is really beautiful. Rick had bought it about 5 years ago and it's in a really lovely neighborhood. I got a really nice room to myself with a TV that had cable! It was nicer than any hotel!

That evening Marti and I went to pick up Eric from the airport while Rick stayed at the house and waited for Marti's step mom, Tommie and her husband Richard to arrive. Tommie is a good Baptist lady so Marti, Eric and I made sure we got all of our cussin' done before we got to the house. We must have said the F-word about 87 times each! It was so cool because we fell into being our silly selves in no time at all. I laughed so hard I thought I might pass out!

The next morning, Marti, Tommie and Eric got up early to go to breakfast and Rick and Richard went golfing. I stayed in bed and slept until noon! I didn't mean to, but I hadn't been sleeping well for a while before the wedding. That evening we had the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner and it was a blast. The caterers had set up the tent and tables early and we took our plates outside to enjoy the gorgeous fall like weather we were having. Marti and Rick had made ham, mashed taters, corn, green beans, baked beans, and bread. It was yummy! I got to meet all my new family members and they are all wonderful.

Dion, a co-worker of Rick's, was officiating the service and he didn't know quite what to make of our silliness. We were just not taking things nearly as seriously as he was! He was a good sport about it though and we all knew what was expected. Afterwards, we sat on the porch and talked and got to know each other a bit.

The Wedding Day had a very low key start. We set up the chairs for the service in the backyard. We put the table cloths on. We put the center pieces on the tables. About 2:00 the family started to arrive.

My sister was absolutely breathtaking in her simple, but gorgeous dress. Rick looked handsome in khaki's and a nice yellow golf shirt. The guest sat down and the moment I was so glad was finally there had arrived. I could finally sing my song and quit worrying about it! The service started with me singing "At Last" by Etta James. After I sat down, "In My Life" by The Beatles came on and Eric escorted Marti down the aisle and gave her away. A few minutes into the service, Dion asked, "Who gives these people to each other?" and all of Marti and Rick's families stood at once and said "We do!" Marti read her vows and choked up a bit which started me crying. Rick read his vows and then sang "You Are So Beautiful" to Marti. We all cried more. It was really beautiful.

Afterwards, we took pictures, ate hamburgers and hot dogs, ate wedding cake and enjoyed each other's company. When all of the guest left, the family sat around on the patio and talked and commented on a what a perfect day it was.

Sunday was another lovely day. We ate a wonderful breakfast out on the patio and then Eric, Adam and I lazed around in the living room talking while Marti, Rick, Tommie and Richard went driving around.

Tommie and Richard were the first to leave to head to Raleigh to catch their flight. Then Adam left. Then it was time to take Eric to the airport. Marti, Rick and I came back to the house and had some more leftovers for dinner and then watched "Something's Gotta Give."

Monday I slept until almost 11 before Marti woke me up. We fiddle farted around the house and worked on some genealogy stuff before I packed up and left around 3. Finally the newlyweds had their house to themselves again. I wonder what they did.......? ;-)

It was a really nice weekend. I really think I'm going to like my Brother-in-law and his family. I look forward to getting to know them better. I'm just so happy to see Marti so happy. That's the most important part of all.



Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Going to the Chapel...

...and we're gonna get married.

OK...just to set the record straight, I'm not getting married, but my sister is!

I was scheduled to leave ATL today to drive up there to prepare for the wedding that will be on Saturday, but circumstances jumped up, slapped me in the face, and said, "NO!" Therefore, I am driving up there tomorrow morning.

Marti put me in charge of music and I was instantly transported back to my years in Jr. Hi and High School when I got to DJ all of the parties that we had and how much I LOVED doing that. I don't know why, but I get a little thrill when someone likes the music that I pick out.

With the assistance of the lovely and talented Jef, I made a Pre Wedding CD and 2 Post Wedding CD's and a "Greatest Hits" CD of the other CD's that I burned and we will give to all the guest. Lemme tell ya, burning 75 CD's is quite a feat, if I do say so myself! However it was still a lot of fun. It kind of took me back to the day when I took great pride in making a cool mix tape.

So, send "Happy Wedding" vibes to my future brother-in-law and my sister, aka The Captain and Tennille, on Saturday around 4:00. In addition, send me calm and comforting thoughts around that time because I will be singing for my sister's wedding. I may need to have a few adult beverages before that happens! In fact, I know I will! (Paging Mr. Cuervo, Mr. Jose Cuervo, Please!)



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