I recently hired a teenager to come in for the summer months and do dishes at the shop. While I'd like to take credit for this brilliant idea, it was Jenna who suggested it. It just so happens that she also provided the teenager...her little brother Sam.
One day at lunch, Sam took a Rubik's Cube out of his bag. I can't believe kids still have these things. I'll date myself here, but I remember going to the mall and buying one of these suckers the year they hit the market. I brought it home, mixed it up, got to the point where I could solve two sides, then smashed it apart, and rebuilt it (OCD, lack of spatial skills, and rash behavior are not a good combo). There it sat on my shelf until the next family garage sale (where I earned back 10% of my investment, because everyone else in Appleton, Wisconsin in 1980 had already learned that a toy that made you feel inadequate was not a fun toy).
Imagine my amazement when I watched this kid solve his in under 2 minutes!! Needless to say, I probably punctured his eardrums with my cries of disbelief and envy...and then insisted that he teach me.
What does this have to do with Marsha and Gary, and their 50th wedding anniversary? Trust me, we're getting there people.
It's been a couple of months. I've learned how to solve the Rubik's Cube. Yeah, I said it. I may have a copy of Victor Hugo's Les Miserables on my bedside table, but I also have a copy of Christopher Moore's "The Stupidest Angel" and right between the two is my Rubik's Cube. My best time so far is two minutes, fifteen seconds. But there's a difference between me and Sam. When I'm working on the Rubik's cube, it takes concentration, silence, and some pretty weird facial contortions. Sam, wait for it...makes it look Easy.
Aha! Enter Marsha and Gary.
They've been married for 50 years. They were having the party to prove it. And they made it look so incredibly easy!!
My first thought when planning our meeting was antique lace, soft pink and ivory, maybe some gold accents, but definitely not anything like I got. As a matter of fact, within the first five minutes I told them as much. They had a clean, modern style and sensibility. They were incorporating gold into the color scheme, but the floral would be a riot of fuschia, orange, and bright beautiful color! Their invitations, designed by our friends over at Amy Zaroff Events + Design, were laid out beautifully. The text being the main graphic design, not a doily, wedding bell, or dove in sight.
"What did you expect? We'd be wheeled in with oxygen masks on?" was, what I believe to be the exact wording of Gary's response to my shock.
The cake designed itself. We took the beautifully laid out date "motif" from the invitations, and decided to add other significant dates to the cake. I suggested the date they bought their first house, had their children, took meaningful vacations, but to Gary, this was a no-brainer. What he and Marsha had built was a marriage, and a family. We put the birth-dates of their children on the second tier, their grandchildren on the third, and top and bottom tiers would be their wedding date, and the date of their anniversary. Cake. Done.
They truly make it look easy.
One more thing for me to practice. Oh well, if I Sam can teach me that Damn Rubik's Cube, I'll rely on my experience with Gary and Marsha, and work on this. Maybe they could write me little instructions on the back of cake sketches the way Sam did. Or maybe, we'll just have to get together for dinner sometime. I'd love that.