Last night Mr. Plant Lady came in from a monthly church board meeting and announced that he has been asked to help with a "Ladies Appreciation" banquet that our ladies missionary group is sponsoring this weekend. He is going to be one of several men who will seat the ladies as they arrive and then be a waiter for the evening. He jokingly asked them if he needed to wear his tuxedo. "You have a tuxedo?," another of the men asked. "Why sure, don't you?," he replied. Another man spoke up, "I have a t-shirt that looks like a tuxedo!" Our pastor said, "I'm going to wear what I have on tonight - shorts and a t-shirt!"
This reminded me of the story of how Mr. Plant Lady came to be the proud owner of a tuxedo. Let me share it with you!
Several years ago, we were asked to host a table as "celebrity waiters" at a fundraiser in our area that would benefit summer children's programs. He agreed that we would and then told me about it. The theme that year was "Tropical Vacations" or something like that. This happened in the "dead" of winter - February - and it was very difficult to find decorations locally without going to a party shop about 45 minutes away.
We ventured down to the beach where the shop was located. The "decorations" were so expensive for this cheap-skate Plant Lady that I decided to make my own! I bought a large bundle of raffia and made a table skirt. We stopped by a store that "sells sea shells,"- try saying that five times fast - and picked up a few to add to those I already had. Next on the list was sand - no problem - plenty of that available for free! I thought about the "souvenirs" (I won't mention the coconut bra!) we had brought back from our honeymoon on Maui - another story inspiration for a later post! We had taken a lot of "tropical" photos - double prints, in fact! I could use some of them to decorate our table.
Mr. Plant Lady wanted to stop by Wal-mart, so I went in and looked around while he went his separate way in the store. When we finally "found each other," he had purchased a white formal wear shirt that included a "black bow tie," all for about $12! Great! But we were supposed to be waiters on a tropical isle, not waiters in a fashionable New York restaurant! We needed shorts, flip-flops and an Hawaiian-print shirt!
Time had gotten away from us, so that would have to do. We were the only table that night that had a "tropical waitress" in a grass skirt, and a waiter in a white shirt and black tie! Needless to say, since then, I have never again agreed to be a "celebrity" waiter at the annual fundraiser.
A friend and I were out "loafing" one Saturday and decided to peruse thrift stores in the area. After having visited a couple, we went into the Salvation Army Thrift Store. She found several items of interest, but I had not. As I was going through a small box of items IT leaped out at me! A cummerbund! Just the perfect accessory to add to Mr. Plant Lady's "one-piece-at-a-time" tuxedo. I snapped up the treasure before I had to fight off other bandits and took it to the register! Fifty cents! What a deal for such a find! I couldn't believe my good fortune!
I brought it home and hung it proudly in the closet with his Wal-mart shirt and bow tie! Now, I'm scouring the area for the tuxedo pants and jacket! In the meantime, he just wears his black suit with his "tuxedo accessories" when the invitation says "formal attire!" To quote a line in a movie I once saw, "The difference between a woman and an animal is the ability to accessorize!"