I expected more from the DJ, but the groomsmen were hot.

Are y’all ok? I tried to post a few times while I was gone, but I just couldn’t do it with any sort of regularity. Did you start going through withdrawal? I’m back. I’m here. Calm down. It’s ok.

Alrighty, so I’ve been in Texas for nearly a week, where my friend Carrie got married. Their story is CRAZY, y’all. Insane. And I’m trying to get her to write a little something about it for the dirtydish, but we’ll see. For now, I’ll just say that it started about seven years ago, and until January of this year, they’d only seen each other in person two or three times. He was engaged to another girl twice (same girl), and Carrie dated other guys as well, but everyone broke up within about a two-week period, and not five months later, Carrie and Garrett were engaged.

So I went to Texas on Tuesday of last week, because I had the whole week off anyway, and I didn’t have anything else to do but sit around and blog, so I figured I’d just go to Texas and see if I could make myself useful. I’m not sure how useful I was, but I had a good time. We tied about a thousand ribbons onto the cutest wedding programs I’ve ever seen. We drove all over the state running errands. And we laughed a LOT. So I’d say it was a successful week.

Here are a few highlights:

  • Carrie’s mom started getting nervous toward the end of the week, and with the nerves came a jumbling of words like I’ve never seen. At one point, she said that up until then, we’d been having a big “jabamba party,” but it was time to get serious. We said, “But we’re still in our jabambas.”
  • There was a lot of talk (and consequently hysterical laughter) about the concept of a “landing strip” (aka “jazz beard”). That’s all I’m going to say about that.
  • I was told at one point that I was going to choreograph a dance for the reception with one of the DJ’s – a man known as “Hammer.” We did not end up doing this, and frankly I was a little disappointed.
  • Dawn (maid of honor) and I found a little shop called My Spicy Treasures. I kept wanting to call it My Secret Treasures, but no…they were spicy. We didn’t go in, but we did contemplate it because they had mangerie, and while Carrie had plenty of lingerie for the honeymoon, I’m not sure Garrett had any at all.
  • Next to My Spicy Treasures was a donut shop called Donut Gourmet Donut. Every time I looked at the sign, I was compelled to sing it to the tune of “Sunday Bloody Sunday.”
  • I think this was the shortest reception on record. It was certainly the shortest one I’d ever been to. Granted, I was among the last of the guests to arrive before the wedding party themselves, but I’d just gotten my food and sat down when the DJ called for the bridesmaids and groomsmen to convene in the entrance hall so as to be announced. They came in and lined up, and then the bride and groom were announced. They came in, we clapped, they had their first dance, they cut the cake, there were about five songs, the best man gave a speech, and then we lined up and blew bubbles as the bride and groom left. That was it. There was no tossing of the bouquet, no pulling off of the garter, no father-daughter/mother-son dances, no electric slide (praise the Lord). The wedding was at 7:00, and we were back at the hotel by 10.

Now, I go back and forth between wanting a big, elaborate New Year’s Eve wedding and just wanting to elope. When I see all the time and work and money that goes into planning a big shindig, I just want to call everybody on a Wednesday and tell them I’m getting married on Saturday at such-and-such a place, and if they want to come, bring a covered dish. But when I go to a reception, I get excited about that part, and it makes me want to have it all – the DJ, the cake, the food, the dress, the dancing. Maybe I can elope and then just have a big party when we get back from the honeymoon. Maybe I can have a really small wedding at any point during the year, and then I can plan a New Year’s Eve formal as a completely separate party. Hmmm…maybe I still need a Matt…er, I mean man…first. Let’s just work on that for now.

wanted: a Matt to love and cherish

I have at least five weddings to attend between now and January, and there are two weddings I’d love to attend, but which are too far out of state to even consider. Three of the grooms are named Matthew, and at least two of those go by Matt. Plus, my roommate is dating a Matt. When I mentioned this to Dre (who’ll be marrying a Matt in about 3.5 weeks), I added that it appears as though Matts are the hot ticket, and perhaps I should try to find me one too. She responded by saying that all of the groomsmen in her wedding are called Matt. All of them. I thought she must be kidding, but she assures me that she is not. However, one is married, one is engaged, one is apparently not my type (according to her), and the last one is only thirteen. Blast!

So I began to brainstorm. Where else can I find a Matt? Surely they must be just romping around everywhere for one Matt to have four groomsmen material Matts as friends. And it’s true. There were at least three that I can think of right off hand in my high school graduating class. One in particular captures my imagination .

I’m thinking that the stars are aligning, friends, and that it’s only a matter of time now until he is mine. Mwuuaahahahahahahaha!!

But seriously, what in the world made this such a popular name in the late 70’s-early 80’s (and apparently even through the mid-90’s)? Wikipedia says, “Since 1975, “Matthew” has remained in the top 100 list of most popular names chosen for new-born babies in the United States. “Matthew” has been in the top five for two decades, and in the top ten for three, it is currently fifth.” But why, Wikipedia? WHY?! What made parents in 1975 suddenly decide that they all wanted kids named Matthew? Was there a famous one (other than the Biblical one, I mean)?

If you were alive and cognizant in 1975, or if you are highly skilled in the art of internet research, and have some insight into this, please share it with us. We’re all about learning here at Onward Hoe!

Magnum struck again

I enjoyed yet another snow day last Thursday, and I meant to share this sooner, but I got distracted by that Matt Hagaman thing, so I’m just now getting to it.

Glorious news!!! It’s not that the Superstation took Magnum, P.I. off the air. They just moved him to a different time slot. He used to come on at 2, but now he comes on in the morning. So Thursday when I wasn’t at work, I had the privilege of watching him brilliantly solve yet another case. This time, with lemons.

Yeah, so Magnum was in California, “gathering information” from some hot chick, and when he got back to Hawaii, Rick, TC and Higgins had all gotten themselves into a bind, quite literally. They were tied up at the estate. With ropes. So Magnum called because Rick was supposed to pick him up at the airport, but all their hands were tied, so they couldn’t answer the phone. But Higgins called the lads, and they brought him the phone, so he filled Magnum in on the situation, and Magnum was like, “What can I do? I don’t have a car. I don’t even have a gun!” But there was a bowl of lemons, so he took those down to the docks (I guess he rented a car), where some Japanese girls in bikinis were being held hostage on a boat by two men.

Magnum started chucking lemons at one guy while the three Japanese girls in bikinis ganged up on the other, and would you believe it? Magnum, his lemons, and those three bikini-clad Japanese girls were triumphant over the bad guys.

By that point, the lads had managed to chew the ropes off the other three, and they all got there in time for the end of the show.

WHEW!

I swear I’m not a stalker

Allow me to share with you the beginning of an email I got today from my friend Julie, who lives in Scotland.

Beth!So, this week I was talking to my flatmate about high school (can’t even remember how we got on to this) and Matt Hagaman came up. So I thought, “I wonder what that boy’s up to.” And we googled him. Now, you could say that it’s slightly worrying that I was googling Matt Hagaman, but I think the really worrying thing is that about 90% of the results were your blog! I laughed so hard. Brittany (my flatmate) and I were absolutely in stitches reading your various musings on Matt, and the great disappointment of your life of never dating him, and the excitement of seeing him in New York. Oh, how I laughed! You totally made my Wednesday night.

But then I thought, “I haven’t heard from Beth in AGES!” So how are you? What’s going on? Apart from stalking Matt Hagaman at Homecoming, of course.

HAAHAHAHAHAH!! I just hope Matt Hagaman never googles himself. Matt, if you’ve googled yourself and found this, DO NOT BE ALARMED. I promise I’m neither stalking nor obsessed with you in any way.

Homecoming 2006

Ah Wilkesboro. It’s kind of a podunk little town, but it will always hold a special place in my heart because it’s where I’m from. If you have any doubts, get me talking about it, and the accent that inevitably comes out will be a dead give-away. My parents left Wilkesboro in 2000, so I haven’t been back much in the last 6 years. Maybe four or five times. But when Emily Furr and I heard that the hot new teacher at Wilkes Central High School was one Mr. Matt Hagaman, we were anxious to visit our alma mater. It really hasn’t been that long since I would have been mortified to speak of him in this manner, but I’m a journalist, folks. I have to report the facts. And Matt Hagaman is hot. Period.

So after doing some research, we decided that there was no better time to go than Homecoming, and luckily we hadn’t missed it. We were psyched, to say the least. I had an appointment to get my do coiffed that Friday morning, so I had Jill cut me a mullet special for the occasion. Then I donned my new cowchick boots and was on my way. I called Emily on my way. Told her I’d be the one down front with the mullet and the boots, but realizing that neither of those two things would necessarily set me apart, we decided to meet at the Wal-Mart. Again, noting that I might blend in too much with the crowd, I just headed for her parents’ house.

(It’s really quite surreal to go to Wilkesboro now, because I haven’t lived there in so long that it feels like it should be unfamiliar, and yet I somehow know how to get everywhere. It’s like I’m visiting a former life.)

The Furrs invited me to go with them to Adam and Jennifer’s house for dinner. Their back yard is essentially in the J. Floyd Woodward Middle School parking lot, so after dinner, Emily and I did a drive-through and talked about how small and old it looked. We tried to remember the names of our teachers there, and I spent some time shuddering at the memories of embarassing things that had happened within those walls. Things that I’m not sure even happened in real life anymore, but maybe just happened inside my head. Memory is a funny thing that way.

Then we went to Wal-Mart, where we got revved at while walking through the parking lot. You know you look good when you get revved at. We purchased two pairs of gloves for $1.52 and headed to the game.

The Eagles were ultimately defeated, but we still felt victorious standing there on the track, which surrounds the football field, catching up with Matt Hagaman and listening to him tell us how great we looked. No, Matt. You look great. No, really, you do.

At game’s end, we were sad to look around and notice that we were the only ones singing the alma mater, but we sang it anyway, with all of our hearts because…

As the eagle soars above the rolling mountains,

We will lift our eyes and hearts as one to thee,

Wilkes Central High, beloved alma mater.

The green and golden eagle shall fly eternally!

7th Grade Fantasy Come True AND Bimbo Found in the Heights

Oh faithful friends and family, this weekend was spectacular. Matt Hagaman, whom you may remember from such blogs as May 23, 2004 (“HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”) and September 28, 2004 (“For your reading/slacking off at work enjoyment”), was in town to run the NYC Marathon. I thought I had to go to work on Saturday, but luckily not only did I not have to be there, once I got all the way down there and realized that I didn’t have to be there, I was only 1 block away from the Appalachian Loft, which was to house Mr. Matt Hagaman upon his arrival in the Big Apple. So I wandered up…got there about 2 minutes before he did, was sitting on a pipe outside when his taxi pulled up, smiled. Jessica Caveness came down and we took him up to the Javits center to get his number and chip and free goodie bag with t-shirt. Then we made it up to the top of the Empire State Building just in time for sunset. Oh yeah. If only I had been 13 years old and still in love with the boy. Cryin’ shame I wasn’t. But it was still a lot of fun. Then we had dinner and he went off to bed. I came home long enough to grab my 7th grade yearbook and headed back down to Columbia where Emily and I made the most amazing posters ever conceived.

On Sunday, we went to the early service at church and then headed over to watch the runners run by, running. After seeing a couple of Elvises, a Scooby Doo, and roughly all of Denmark run by, we were on the brink of losing hope. We started cheering for all the random people who had their names on their shirts, and all of a sudden, out of nowhere, Mr. Hagaman appeared. Emily spotted him first. We yelled. He heard. He came over and said hello into the camera and then ran on. We walked over to 5th Ave. and watched him come back down. And that was it. We saw him no more.

He did call last night to say what a good time he’d had with us and how good it was to see us and how thankful he was to see us cheering him on as he ran, but I think I may not see him again for another 6 years…or at least 3.5 when we have our 10 year reunion. Sigh. Double sigh.

AND I was walking to the subway down at 157th and Broadway when I saw it. In the window of a little grocery store was a Bimbo sign. And not only did they sell Bimbo products…they sold my FAVORITE Bimbo product….Pinguinos. I indulged. SOO good.

Wow.

For your reading/slacking off at work enjoyment

In response to the very kind request from Brooke that everyone blog this week so she’d look busy at work, here goes it. Brooke, PLEASE tell me how to put pictures on this bad boy! I have so many hilarious things to share with you all including, but not limited to:

-the giant Bayside spirit poster (if you can call it that…it’s really more of a tapestry-sized something)

-fun in Little Italy with Emily

-pictures from Europe for those of you who haven’t gotten the full 3 hour presentation.

What to tell? What to tell? There’s so much, and yet so little. I guess the really exciting news of the weekend was the phone call to Matt Hagaman, who didn’t answer, but who, I found out later, was already asleep when we called…at 9:45….on Saturday night. This is what happens when you move back to Wilkesboro! Now, don’t get me wrong. I love Wilkesboro…wouldn’t have wanted to grow up anywhere else, but I’m SO glad I live in Washington Heights right now and not Moravian Falls. And I’m SO glad that I was out eating Thai food and Tasti-D-Lite with Emily and Jessica at 9:45 instead of being in the bed asleep.

So as you may have guessed, I left a message….3 times. It kept cutting me off before I was finished so I had to push the button to delete that message and re-record it. And by the time I actually left a message, it went roughly thus:

“Hey Matt this is Beth Parent I got your number from Carrie Church ’cause she said you were coming to New York and I live in New York so if you wanna call me here’s my number bye.”

Whew.

The reader will bear in mind that I have neither seen nor spoken to this boy since 1998…right after he got the giant tattoo of his initials on his arm. And HE CALLED ME BACK! Imagine the pee in my pants when, in the midst of a conversation with the lovely Megan Smith, the phone beeps and the caller ID indicates that Matt Hagaman is on the other line. So we talked for a good little while and he said that he’d LOVE to get together with me and the girls when he’s in town running the marathon in November. Plus he insisted MANY a time that it was “so good to talk to/hear from” me. This is like a 7th grade dream come true. Too bad I’m in my mid-20’s.

And speaking of people in their mid-20’s….HAPPY BIRTHDAY MR. MOTLEY!! YOU RULE!!!

A Funny Thing Happened–OR–Adventures in Vespa Land

Rome: Was not built in a day nor was it meant to be toured in one. If you go there, I highly recommend at least a 2 day stay. I wanted to see the Colosseum, the Parthenon, and the Sistine Chapel (above all others). Bart wanted to see the Spanish Steps. We saw lots of things we did not necessarily want to see, but that were cool anyway, but the absolute biggest disappointment of my life (and I mean this tops the ending of “Ed” and never dating Matt Hagaman) was that by the time we got to the Vatican City, the Sistine Chapel was closed!!!! It would be closed the next day as well so we had no hope of even getting up early to go see it before we left! I cried a little bit. I suppose this just means that I have to go back some day.

Note to future husband: For our honeymoon, bike tour of Rome-out. Sistine Chapel-in. Spanish Steps (or something akin to them)-in. Sunscreen-TOTALLY in.

I am completely fried. Just call me “Rocklobster” (but only if you say it in a really high voice like the B52s).

The Colosseum, however, is amazing. I cannot imagine the engineering GENIUS that went into building such a monstrosity pre-heavy machinery. It is unbelievable.

And to stand in Rome, to walk the streets, and to think, “Paul could have walked here…Timothy…Peter!” What?!?!?! Incredulous. History rocks…but only when you somehow experience it. Books schmooks. Old places are cool.

Last notes on Rome: Vespas are everywhere, as are Smart cars. Have you seen these?? I have not yet seen them in the States. They are roughly the length of a motorcycle and probably have the same size engine. What is so funny to me about them is that you are pretty much sitting in the very front and the very back of it at the same time. Remember in Police Academy 1 when Mahoney is teaching Hightower how to drive and he rips out the front seat so he can fit in the car?? Smart cars are kind of like that. My dad in one would just be hilarious (not to mention REALLY uncomfortable)…Peter too…it would be even better than last week in Ann’s car. Ok…on to Florence!!

HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Has anyone ever heard of this:

There was a study done at some factory (in upstate NY I think) where they were like, “Let’s put on some music and see if it increases productivity.” Lo and behold, it did. So they were like “ok, now turn it off and let’s watch the poor guys get all bored again and the productivity go back down.” But instead it went back up. So they get to thinking, “hmmmm….how ’bout if we paint the walls?” Productivity up again. And so on and so forth until they figured out that it was just the newness of it…just the change itself that was increasing productivity. What the change was didn’t matter.

Does anybody know what that’s called? They named it after the town where the factory was and it’s called “The ___________ Effect.” Anybody? Anybody??

Also, anybody have a picture of Matt Hagaman you can email to me by Wednesday??? I might have to call Mom on that one…unless any of my Wilkes peeps are regular subscribers.