April's Real Blog

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Marian's Magical Dress

So, Liz included Mike and Dee in her "I'm engaged" telling tour a lil while back, and here's what he has 2 say abt that:

Formerly little sis. Liz might write you about the next part of her story. But since it involves me, I thought I would write it up; so it’s not all about her. After she came to visit mom and then came to visit you in your bedroom to show you her ring and cast aspersions on your matrimonial plans, the next logical step would have been for her to have a conversation with dad. However, she decided to visit Deanna and me instead. This was on a completely different day from the day she visited mom and visited you and we had been forewarned she might come to see us to show off her ring eventually. Mom specifically told me to make a fuss over her ring, because no one had done that yet. Mom was quite right that this ring is pretty much the exact opposite of the type of ring that Anthony’s ex-wife Thérèse was sporting during their marriage. Nevertheless, I put on a game face and as I held my sister’s hand said, “Whooo! Nice ring, sis!” That’s sounds somewhat complimentary doesn’t it? Deanna didn’t think so. After Liz left she was all over me for being so sarcastic in my ring-complimenting.

Anyway, Deanna said that thanks to my lame complimenting, she had to distract Elizabeth before she would realize what I had done and started to get upset. If you remember back from late February, when my wife was crawling through the crawl space in our house and found Grandma Marian’s wedding dress, Deanna took it to the cleaners and had it placed in one of those boxes with the window on top. She pulled it out to show Liz and she said, “This is your Grandma Marian’s wedding dress. I found it in the crawl space and I had it cleaned.” Liz didn’t say anything like what I would have expected like, “Why didn’t you give this dress to mom?” or “What was this dress doing in the crawl space in the first place?” or “Cheeze, how could this dress possibly have lasted over 60 years?” Instead she reached out and touched the window on the box and patted it. She did this enough times, where Deanna had to say, “It’s a window covered in plastic, and that’s why your hand isn’t going through.”

Then Deanna handed the dress over to Liz, who took it out of the box. Deanna said, “Try it on!” Liz said, “Should I?” And you know, April, this habit of asking permission at every step of the way, Liz has picked up from Anthony Caine is pretty annoying. So, I said, “Sure!!” in order to convince her to do it and move things along.

With Deanna’s help, Elizabeth did try on the dress, right there in the kitchen. Deanna was bent down touching Liz’s leg through the bottom fluffy part of the dress, muttering things like, “With these fat legs and huge butt, it’s a good thing this part of the dress has plenty of room.” Liz was trying to find a pocket on the dress with her left hand and she said, “I don’t know about this, guys…it doesn’t feel quite right.” I asked, “Why?” and naturally Liz went to a thought bubble to answer the question instead of telling me. It was then I got really confused. Back last February, when Deanna found this dress, I could have sworn it had solid material for sleeves and not these gauzy sleeves Liz was wearing. And also, I don’t remember the dress being low cut in the front. I said to Deanna, “This doesn’t look like the same dress.” Deanna just hissed at me in that low voice she has which almost always means danger if I don’t do what she says. She hissed, “Shut your flapping gob, Michael Patterson. It’s Grandma Marian’s dress and I will hurt you if you dare to suggest to Liz it is not.”

Deanna’s visage of anger was too unpleasant for me to look at, so I looked at Liz and read her thought bubble. It said, “Gram….I feel like I should be asking for your permission!” And of course I thought, “Cheeze. It’s the asking permission thing again. Visits with Liz and Anthony are going to be really annoying if this keeps up.”

That’s about it for this part, April. There will be more tomorrow.

Michael Patterson
Funny thing--Dee snapped a pic of Liz in that dress and e-mailed it 2 me. That dress does NOT look like what Marian has on in Grandpa Jim's wedding pics. Plus, like Mike sez above, it doesn't look like how it did when Dee found it in the crawl space. Which makes me wonder how Mike "recognized" it from the wedding pix. Magical dress, eh, Dee?

Liz wrote me this:
April, I saw what Mike wrote about my visit there, and I want to add some things. First, he forgot to say how I was glowing because I'm so happy to be engaged. He's supposed to be a writer, and writers are supposed to say that kind of thing about their sister when she gets engaged! He should have mentioned that I looked beautiful in that dress, and it was like the dress had been made for me!

Also, Anthony has showed me that asking permission is just good manners. Mike should spend more time with Anthony so he can improve his manners!

I would add more, but I still have to finish grading those tests I was supposed to turn in four weeks ago, and my students' parents get pissy when I turn them in a month late.

And now U R all up 2 d8, 4 now.


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  • At 7:07 AM, Anonymous Ghost of Marian Richards said…

    I am a vengeful wraith! What have you living done to my wedding dress?!?

    Ghost of Marian Richards

  • At 5:53 PM, Anonymous jeremy jones said…

    april, innerestin’ lesson 2day in our contract marriage class b-in’ forced on all the couples @r.p. boire senior secondary school. “how 2 show every1 ur marriage iz just a contract by choosin’ the worst possible weddin’ dress.”

    they took us out 2 the trash mini-bins in the back of the skool & sed, “all right ladies. find ur wedding dress.” az the othah girlz were goin’ thru the trash & findin’ old weddin’ dresses, u sed, “jeremy there’s no way i am goin’ thru trash 2 get my weddin’ dress.” lucky 4u i spotted that mound of dirt in the back of the yard, & w/o 2 much effort pulled out a dress in a cardboard box, buried under the dirt.

    then the teach sed, “all right ladies. try on ur dresses & come up w/a reason y u consider it an honour 2 wear it.” ur dress wuz in bettah shape than sum of the othahs, but it wuz still kinda fallin’ apart. it looked more kinda like a skool marm dress frum the 1880s than a weddin’ dress, but u still looked bettah than most of the othah girls.

    the teach sed, “now. y is it an honour 2 wear this during ur weddin’?” u sed 2 the teach, “the reazn i am wearin’ this dress is 2 honour the fashion sense of the ladies in my fam.” eva abuya sed, “wut if u lived in a war zone & all ur clothez were gone an’ all u had left wuz this weddin’ dress. u’d consider urself lucky, wudn’t u?” rosario, luis guzmán’s gf sed she wud wear her weddin’ dress in honour of the mexican refugees.

    gerald’s new gf, tricky belden sed her weddin’ dress wuz actually an heirloom she found in a crawlspace at the manor house in sleepyside-on-the-hudson, new york, home of her best friend honey wheeler. the dress actually belonged 2 the dead mother of honey’s adopted brother, james winthrop frayne ii. her name wuz katje vanderheiden frayne & she wore the dress while she wuz a spy 4 the alliez durin’ ww ii. the teach sed, “excellent, tricky. how do u xxplain y ur dress, w/its sleeves looks like sumthin’ frum the 1970s & not frum wwii?” tricky sed, “i cud say that katje vanderheiden frayne wuz v.v. advanced wen it came 2 fashion, but i don’t hafta. most peeps r too st00pid 2 know the diff.” the teach sed, “quite right, tricky. count on the peeps 2c ur weddin’ 2b st00pid.” then u sed, “wut if they aren’t st00pid?” then the teach sed, “oh, april. this is mboro.” u hadda concede the point.

    neway, bruins vs. leafs 2nite @7. if the bruins win, they officially knock the leafs outa playoff contention. leafs bettah win 2nite.

  • At 6:12 PM, Anonymous michael patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. Deanna had to deal with being haunted by Grandma Marian’s ghost today. She was pretty upset with what had been done to her old wedding dress. Of course, as you have figured out by this point, someone told mom that the parents of the bride are supposed to pay for the wedding, so mom has been trying to find ways to cut corners, and one of the ways is this elaborate scheme with Deanna to fool Liz into accepting this dress as something Grandma Marian wore back in 1946. I think Liz was fooled, but not the ghost of Grandma Marian.

    She hung around the pharmacy all day telling Deanna’s customers that her prescriptions would make them very sick until they died. For some reason, this threat wasn’t very effective with Deanna’s customers. So the ghost of Grandma Marian gave up.

    Then she came to our house and started burping and unburping our Grubberware, which started the kids into a burping contest. I think she left when she saw we were having carrot coins for dinner, so she might go over to your house, where the food is better.

    Michael Patterson

  • At 6:24 PM, Blogger howard said…


    The ghost of your grandma Marian stopped by our house. It frightened my girls pretty badly when they saw her. But then I told them it was actually your grandmother and not your mother (the physical resemblance was hard to ignore), and they felt much better about it. We played a couple of hands of bridge with the girls (your grandmother cheats), and then let her know that your house was just 2 houses down from ours.

    We had a long discussion about how wedding dresses in the 1940s had long sleeves and collars that went up to your necks, and dresses that went down to your ankles, and how if you wore anything other than that, you were considered to be a loose woman. As it turned out, your grandmother was most upset by this dress of Liz’s being passed off as hers, because it would make her seem like she was a tainted woman, when she most definitely was not. She also wanted to point out that she was 3 dress sizes thinner than Elizabeth, but I don’t think you will find that surprising.

    She left us a few minutes ago and I think she is headed your way.

    Howard Bunt

  • At 7:11 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    hey, i'm @ jeremy's now, but b4 i left grandma marian's ghost was @ our house looking 4 sumthing 2 eat. when i left i heard ghostly retching.


  • At 7:13 PM, Anonymous Ghost of Marian Richards said…

    I've forgotten what an incompetent cook my daughter is. I never thought I could feel so ill when I'm already dead.

    Well, I followed April and I think I'll go in and watch some hockey.

    Ghost of Marian Richards

  • At 8:20 PM, Anonymous jeremy jones said…

    april, i don't care if ur grandma is dead or not, she better stop cheerin' 4 the bruins.

  • At 2:40 AM, Anonymous jeremy jones said…

    april, 3 str8 yearz w/o a playoff appearance 4 the leafs. i hope ur grandma's ghost is happ.

  • At 3:07 AM, Anonymous michael patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. Continuing my story about my part in the day where Liz tried on Grandma Marian’s dress for the first time. We were in our kitchen, my wife Deanna, Liz and me. Liz had on the Grandma Marian dress and was extending the front part of the dress by holding it with each of her hands. She could have fit a lot of people under that dress. So, I picked this moment to say, “Whoa! Gram’s wedding dress fits you like a glove!” My wife Deanna shot me an evil look and she said, “It was meant to be, Liz!---You should wear it!” As you know, April, our sister is obsessed with that fate stuff, so Deanna was really pushing her buttons with the “meant to be” line.

    Liz went to look at the dress in the mirror and out of nowhere, this extra piece of material showed up on the back of the dress to make a big ruffle. I could have sworn it wasn’t there yesterday. While she was looking in the mirror, Deanna grabbed the neck of the dress to pull the material back, so Liz couldn’t see that Grandma Marian had a little more up front to fill out the dress than Liz does. While she was standing in front of the mirror, Liz said, “I wonder what Grandpa would think if I decided to wear it. I should ask him first.” Get this, April. Liz didn’t want to take the dress over to Grandpa Jim’s apartment and show him on a later date, after calling in advance to see if he was awake. She wanted to go right then and there, while she was still wearing the dress, and Deanna and I had to come with her. Deanna was dumbfounded, but not so dumbfounded that she forgot to call you to come over and take care of the kids. You weren’t there, but it’s the thought that counts, and the fact that the kids had not killed each other or burnt down the house when we got back.

    The whole way over to Grandpa Jim’s, Liz was saying, “He probably won’t remember what her dress looked like. …It was such a long time ago. Grandpa Jim’s memory is pretty bad anyway. Even if he does remember the dress, he can’t say anything about it because of that “faze yuh” thing he has. But what if he decides he doesn’t want me to wear it and he wants to snuggle with it like a blanket. That would be too gross. He already has those pictures of Grandma Marian, Iris put beside his bed. Darn her! He might have forgotten about Grandma Marian, if it weren’t for those pictures.”

    Then when we finally got there, Iris got Grandpa Jim ready, and Liz walked in the door with the dress on. I said to Deanna, “Look. There’s a picture of Grandpa Jim and Grandma Marian in her wedding dress on the mantle. Grandpa Jim’s not going to think this is Grandma Marian’s dress Liz is wearing. He is going to call your bluff.” Deanna just said, “Michael. You should not ever underestimate what a lecher your grandfather is. He will say whatever it takes to be able to grab a young girl.” Sure enough, Grandpa Jim reached out toward Liz and his arm got longer and longer as Liz said, “Or…perhaps it all feels like yesterday” which I suppose was her somewhat punny reference to the idea that Grandpa Jim was trying to feel her.

    More tomorrow, April. Will Grandpa Jim let Liz wear the dress? Will he figure out it’s not really Grandma Marian’s dress? Will he figure out that Liz is not Grandma Marian? Will he get confused about seeing Liz in a wedding dress and assume that she already got married without telling him? Or will Grandpa Jim have a series of vivid, emotion-packed, thought balloons remembering Grandma Marian wearing the same dress Liz was wearing? For the answers to these questions, check in tomorrow.

    Michael Patterson


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