on surprises, giveaways & just pretending it never happened

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I've mentioned my friend Jenny, before -- she's the brilliant (if somewhat profane) mind behind the wildly popular blog The Bloggess.  She also recently finished writing her first book, Let's Pretend This Never Happened:  A Mostly True Memoir.  The book took her 10 years to write, and it appears to have been worth it:  even though it isn't released until this week, already O Magazine, Vanity Fair Magazine, Kirkus Book Review and so many others have given the book rave reviews.  I couldn't be prouder of her.

Jenny's husband, Victor, couldn't be prouder of her either, and so he decided to put together a small surprise party to celebrate.  When Jenny was under deadline, she was often in the habit of taking refuge at her favourite hotel in San Antonio, the historic Menger Hotel, where she wrote a substantial portion of her book.  This hotel (in addition to having the very cool reputation of being haunted), has a series of four particular rooms that share a balcony.  Victor reserved the four rooms, and arranged for a few of her closest friends and our spouses to be on the balcony this weekend, and throw her a surprise party. 

Needless to say, Marcus and I were in.

Laura, Maile, I and our husbands checked in early, and hid in our rooms until we heard from Victor.  When Maile received a text message that Victor and Jenny were entering the hotel, the six of us got to work.

First, we decorated the balcony:

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Then, stealing an idea from the amazing Holly Burns, Maile had put together some awesome masks.  So we practiced using them:

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Suddenly, we heard one of the doors being pushed open.  So we all got very quiet, and watched, and waited for the door to open fully.  And then:

"SURPRISE!!"

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I think she was surprised. And pleased.

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There were congratulations.  And, of course, hugs.

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Soon, Laura disappeared into her room, and came back out with a bottle.  And in her usual southern, authoritative manner, she announced:

"If it is pank, then we must drank."

Oh, sorry, you don't speak Texan? Allow me:  she was saying that if presented with a libation of a rose hue, one must imbibe.

And so, we did.

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Pink champagne, people.  Because we are klassy-with-a-capital-K.

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All-in-all, I would say the evening was a huge success.  We polished off our pink champagne (klassy!), and then headed out for a night of sushi and a movie.  There was an obscene amount of good food and laughter, and a great time was had by all.

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Anyway, if you aren't one of the thousands who have already pre-ordered her book, you really, really should.  Also, this week, Jenny begins her national tour.  If she's in your city, I strongly recommend you go -- she is a very, very funny woman.

And finally, because Jenny is awesome, she's allowing me to give away a personalized, signed copy of her book.  So if you're interested in receiving a personally signed copy, please leave a comment below, and I'll pick a commenter at random, to receive one made out just for you, or whoever you'd like. (But a warning:  if you're easily offended by profanity, I would strongly recommend you don't leave a comment -- her book is incredibly funny, and searingly smart, but to be completely frank, f-bombs abound.)

Good luck!

UPDATE:  Congratulations to Jen Hudson, who said, "My book is currently speeding its way here from Amazon...though I'd gladly give it away to win a signed copy! :)" -- Random.org tells me you won the personalized copy of Jenny's book!  Please email me at karen@chookooloonks.com with your snail-mail address so I can get it to you.

And thanks to all who commented!

Song:  Rhythm nation, by Janet Jackson. You have not lived until you've seen Victor's moves to this song