Monday, December 31, 2007

Should Old Aquaintence Be Forgot...bah da de bah da da da...

We all do it...blame in on the champagne but who honestly knows the words to our new year's mantra? As the country stumbles through the lyrics at midnight, and 9, 10 and 11 pm in California (we're cheaters- no shame), ever wonder why we keep singing it?

The Origins of Tradition Bring Sense to New Year's Festivities


Dec. 30, 2006 —

We toast. We kiss at midnight. We even stumble through the lyrics of a song we're not sure we know the words to. But why?

This year, as millions of Americans finalize New Year's celebration plans, the traditions of the holiday season are never far from thoughts and actions. The origin of why we do what we do sometimes reveals good reasons to hold onto the old while ushering in the new year.

The Midnight Kiss

Perhaps the most iconic image of a New Year's Eve celebration is the highly anticipated midnight kiss. And according to German and English folklore, there is reason to plan ahead for the smooch.

Legend emphasizes that the first person you come in contact with in the New Year -- be it a friendly face or an unfavorable acquaintance -- is indicative of the luck that awaits you in the coming year.

In more recent times, the midnight kiss has been thought of as a telling sign of the year to come in matters of the heart.

For those serious about scheduling their luck, online communities like Craigslist have been filling up with posts for those partygoers looking to book a kiss on the big night.

A recently single 25-year-old Manhattanite posted: "Looking for a romantic girl to kiss New Year's Eve in Times Square."

A Craigslister in Chicago waxes nostalgic, "Of all the holiday relationship joys, that is the one that I miss the most, as the countdown winds itself to 1."

A search term like "New Year's Eve kiss" can lead you to a countless number of others looking to find the same.

"I've never been kissed on New Year's Eve," says one user. "I'm crossing my fingers for this year."

What's That Song?

Often described as the world's most popular song no one knows the words to, "Auld Lang Syne" has become something of a soundtrack for midnight on New Year's Eve.

The title of the Scottish tune translates to "times gone by" and is about remembering friends from the past and not letting them be forgotten.

Despite its strong association with New Year's Eve, "Auld Lang Syne," written by Robert Burns in the 1700s, was never intended to be a holiday song. Guy Lombardo is credited with popularizing the song when his band used it as a segue between two radio programs during a live performance at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York in 1929. By mere coincidence, they played "Auld Lang Syne" just after the clock hit midnight, and a New Year's tradition was born.

Offering a Toast

Americans consumed over 20.6 million bottles of champagne over the course of the calendar year, with 40 percent purchased in the last six weeks. It's an indication that it would be unimaginable to toast 2007 with anything other than bubbly, as good food and drink have long been auspicious signs for welcoming the new year across the globe.

The Office of Champagne, USA, based in Washington, D.C., says they get hundreds of inquiries about champagne etiquette in the month of December.

"This is by far our busiest month of the year," said a spokesman for the organization. "We get a lot of people asking about how to serve champagne and what the best way is to store it."

A wine lover's Web site warns that when it's time for the toast, it's important to proceed with caution when popping the cork. On average, it leaves the bottle at a speed of 42 feet-per-second.

Ending the Night with a Bang

Fireworks and noisemakers at the moment of the New Year date back 2,000 years to China, where they believed the revelry would frighten away evil spirits.

Perhaps the best known (and least favorite) of all New Year's traditions is the New Year's resolution, which first started with the Babylonians. Though the tradition remains, the resolutions have changed over time. Four thousand years ago, Babylonians most likely pledged to return borrowed farm equipment once the new year dawned. In 2006, the majority of Americans resolved to lose weight.

There's one part of the ancient Babylonian tradition that has not changed over time -- habitually breaking the resolution before the year's end.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I like to sing....

Particularly about items of the obvious. Aly and I back in middle school invented a sing-a-long for our plane rides: (to the tune of a taco bell a taco bell) A fed ex plane a fed ex plane.

Well last weekend we had our annual obnoxious sweater party and I donned my red holiday skirt. Keep in mind this bad boy only comes out once a year. I am sure by now if you are reading this, you've heard me sing at and perform the accompanying dance so here we go - You wish you had a skirt like this Kacha Kacha! (response: you wish you had a sweater like this kacha kacha!)

Friday, December 14, 2007

Back By Popular Demand

OBNX Sweater Party Is HERE!

Take a break from those boring Holiday Parties and come have a beer! But first let me tell the tale of said festivus.

In the wee formative years of the social institution Pink Cashmere, a young leader emerged to initiate an event so perfect, so brilliant, many have described it as Legen……wait for it…..dary! That’s right Legendary!

It was one single evening above the rest, where those with classic puffy paint sweaters could mingle along side snowflake skiing pullovers, Ralph Lauren knits, along side 3-D Christmas tributes.

Well that party master has exported his talents this year to teach English in France leaving the ladies of Chez Copacabana to pick up the slack (typical Jon Tollefson right?)

So what is this grand gala you may be asking about that has Jen gushing (you all know it doesn’t take much). It’s the annual Obnoxious Sweater party!

Lets clarify, this is NOT your average holiday party oh no, nor is it an…..Ugly Sweater Party, those are so cliché! And it is NOT one of those insider parties where everyone-knows-everyone-else type deals and you feel like the schmuck making small talk at the punch bowl full of Santa’s Sangria!

This is the legendary come one-come-all from all walks of life and a social network, even the most seasoned bureaucrat couldn’t keep straight. It’s the cool kids clubs of the chez copa network.

Time to cut the crap: The stats-
We have basic supplies, but in never hurts to bring your favorite brew or vintage.
Call time – 8pm Saturday 12/15
Chez Copa
(2000 S. Eads #1227, Arlington VA 22202)

Parking – anywhere and theirs plenty, just avoid the actual building’s lot, they are nasty little elves who tow.

Metro – Crystal City on the blue and orange line. Take the only escalators available to the surface and walk to 18th street (on your left hand side.) Hang a right and walk in the direction of the Sheraton (under the bridge). Then hang a left and walk to 20th. We are the huge building Crystal House II on your right hand side. Just buzz in and come upstairs.

Don’t worry if you need to crash at copa, we have plenty of space!

Cell Phone #s
Jen 202 431 9063
Linds 516.459.3089
Katie 202.431.9749

Monday, December 10, 2007

Your Copa Holiday Report

As of last night, the shomosh slid across the menorah, lighting 6 candles, we sung ourselves halfway around the advent wreath, the tree continues to glow from the copa windows at night (longer when we throw our carbon footprint over the balcony) and the girls huddled around Auntie Jo's kitchen last Saturday to crank out over 15 different recipes.

You wish you were there but you can enjoy the fruits of their labor ... just need to find one of the cookie bags!

Next week.....obnoxious sweater party!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Keeping Things In Perspective

Today is the anniversary of Pearl Harbor and there are things to be said, unfortunately my soap box is in the shop so I am going to borrow from others who said it better. At 23 and with an opinion on everything, I would like to think I fully understand what it means to sacrifice and defend. Many of the soldiers at Pearl Harbor then and in the middle east now are practicing what they preach. There is no message more powerful than that of action and no political party or posture that can negate it. Regardless of the premise that lead us to war in Iraq, men and women are both civilian and armed services are making a difference away from home, as did our Hawaiian Heroes.

It is the VETERAN , not the preacher,who has given us freedom of religion.
It is the VETERAN , not the reporter,who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the VETERAN , not the poet,who has given us freedom of speech.
It is the VETERAN , not the campus organizer,who has given us freedom to assemble.
It is the VETERAN , not the lawyer,who has given us the right to a fair trial.
It is the VETERAN , not the politician,Who has given us the right to vote.
It is the VETERAN ,who salutes the Flag and who serves under the Flag.

As we make our lists, check them twice, and dash between festivities take a second to appreciate what they sacrifice so we can celebrate.

This is from my boss here at Innovatech and it was articulated beautifully. This hits particularly close to home as our step brother Jeff is also serving. We are lucky enough to have him home this year, but not all families are as fortunate. Thank you Jeff and your colleagues for the sacrifices you have made and the work that you do.

As you know Matt has had a big brother, Howard 'Chip" for some time now. Today, Pearl Harbor Day, is their 9 year anniversary!! What a difference Chip has made in Matt's life. He is a wonderful, kind and generous man who has helped Matt develop and grow over the years. Regardless of where Chip was living he always stayed in touch. Today Chip is in town and he and Matt are going out to celebrate at Old Ebbit Grill which is which is where they had their first official 'date'! That is the happy part, the sad part is, Chip is here to celebrate Christmas, Matt's 18th birthday and Matt's graduation also, as he is being deployed to Iraq, for the third time, for 14 months. This is going to be a very emotional day for us both as we celebrate, but also have to say goodbye. I am writing this just as a reminder during this holiday season as we celebrate with friends and family, that not everyone gets to be home for the holidays, and regardless of your feelings on the war, just take a moment to keep all of our Military personnel in your thoughts and prayers for a safe return! I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!