Celebrities & Serial Killers

Saturday evening, after a busy day running errands, we stopped at Papa Murphy’s to pick up pizza. I ordered, and the cashier asked for a name. Without missing a beat, I gave him a name.


My alter ego for the day.
My alter ego for the day.

First off, he didn’t ask for my name. Second, I love to mess around with people in the dining industry. In a good-natured way, of course. Many a time I have given a phony name in a restaurant when there’s been a wait. You should see the looks on people’s faces when the hostess announces “table for the Donner party” or “Spielberg, party of four.” Celebrities and serial killers are the best – watch heads swivel when they call “Bundy” or “DiCaprio” – as are ethnic names to which you clearly don’t belong, if you can handle a little political incorrectness. I’m particularly fond of Chang myself. It’s also fun to reserve a table under your real name while adding a fake title. “Doctor” and “Agent” work particularly well, especially if you throw in a little knowing wink. Oh, and once I whipped out my wallet, flashed a library card, and told them I was the county health inspector and there’d been a complaint.

Good times, good times.

Once, when I was living in California, I was eating dinner with a friend when a cockroach walked across the table. Literally. When we brought this up to the attention of the manager, all he did was acknowledged that there was an ongoing roach problem. Suffice it to say, we never ate there again. That’s got nothing to do with my story, but I just suddenly remembered it and had to share.

Saturday was a busy day. The highlight? Tara and I went ring shopping. I’d only ever done this once before in my life, and that was over twenty years ago, so I’m quite the novice when it comes to rings. Which is why, when we walked into Morgan Jewelers first and the sales lady asked us what we were looking for, all I could summon was a blank stare. Tara wasn’t much better. We just looked at each other and shrugged our shoulders. Finally, I managed to spit out “rings!” – but that wasn’t very helpful. So she chose one at random for Tara, and it was beautiful, but also very, very expensive. Thousands of dollars more than we had budgeted. I wanted to ask her where’s the clearance section? but thought that would be in poor taste. Everybody in there was dressed nicely, the men in suits, the women in fancy outfits. I wanted to concoct some story about us being unemployed or homeless but Tara would have none of that. Finally we conveyed to them what we were hoping to spend, and they showed us some rings in our price range, but then things got weird because The Bee Gees started playing in the store, “Night Fever,” and while that is a great song it is also closely associated with my first wedding because I did this dance routine to it during the reception (I kid you not) and so, just like that but through no fault of their own, Morgan lost our business. I couldn’t have bought rings there with that song playing; it was too weird a juxtaposition of past and present, and probably bad karma, to boot.

So we walked upstairs to Fred Meyer Jeweler’s and this time, when we walked in, we were forceful and confident, spelling out exactly what we wanted. I have a good association with Fred Meyer Jewelers, because they are the ones who cut my old wedding ring off back in 2006, freeing me from the shackles of a doomed union. There was a certain appropriateness in buying new rings there, almost like coming full circle (get it, circle? Rings? Round?). And we did, as a matter of fact, find rings we both liked. White gold, diamonds, in our price range. Here’s Tara’s engagement ring. Pretty nice, huh?

Tara's engagement ring.
Tara’s engagement ring.

Things are coming together nicely for the wedding. We found a great beach house that will sleep 16, so we just have to reserve it and we’ll be good to go. We’ll just have to find an officiant, figure out what we’re wearing (think: casual – I want flip-flops), come up with some invitations, order a wedding cake (we’re actually considering Voodoo Doughnut), and we’ll be good to go. Who says planning a wedding is hard? So far, this has been pretty simple! Then again, it’s easy when it’s a second wedding and it’s going to be small and you aren’t worried about taking things too seriously.

We’ll figure out where to stick the backup dancers as the date draws closer.

To compensate for a busy Saturday, we didn’t do jack on Sunday. Never even changed out of pajamas or took showers. And it was heavenly, even when we had unexpected visitors drop by (hi, mom and dad). We finished the Lord of the Rings trilogy and made brownies and just generally lounged.

Peace Out,

26 thoughts on “Celebrities & Serial Killers

  1. You need an officiant huh? I’m legit! I’ll totally perform the ceremony if it means you fly me from the frozen tundra I’m in right now to a beach!

    Congrats again you guys! Cheers to Rico and Tara!


  2. Mark and Tara…I LOVE the ring!!!!! Love the cut of the diamond (that’s my favorite shape) and also the stones around the band are really, really beautiful!

    You dun faaaaaaaaaaaabulous!!!!!

    And I’m also glad to hear that things are going well with the wedding plans.

    “We’ll figure out where to stick the backup dancers as the date draws closer.”



  3. We recently went to a popular burger joint known for being crowded. They actually give you a name when you order and food runners walk around calling out for Tommy Lee Jones, Brad Pitt, Elvis. That day, we were Sandra Bullock.
    Nice ring Rico!


    1. I want him to be there, of course – but it wouldn’t feel “real” to me. Probably because I grew up in the bedroom next to his. Brothers fight, they don’t marry each other, lol.


  4. Love the ring! So happy for both of you…….gives me hope for myself. 🙂 And I regularly have “Pajama Sunday” at my house, I love it. Although after being snowed in for 2 days with a blizzard, I was very happy to head outside and traipse through 4 foot snowbanks—after the blizzard, of course.


  5. Haha…Mr. Suave….(did I spell that right?) That really had me laughing…and I had to hold it in ‘cuz there are people sleeping and now my stomach hurts…thanks ALOT!!

    I couldn’t have agreed with you more about leaving Morgan Jewelers….that just had disaster written all over it…only it’s spelled BG’s!

    I do love the ring and I really, really can’t wait for the big date…it’s going to be awesome and I love that it’s going to be kinda quirky…it fits the two of you to a Q.


    1. Suave is correct! And now I’ve got that song stuck in my head. Gerardo – classic one-hit wonder! I wasn’t thinking of the song, though. The name just popped into my head…I have no idea why.

      Tara and I are setting out to redefine quirky!


  6. If I jump out of the donut cake and you pay me $1, I would officially be “hired help” and could attend the wedding…you know, since I don’t fit into the close family category……

    Oh, and I find it ironic that you give fake names and I give my real name and end up with a fake one….Whitney is most common, Wendry the most unusual. lmao


  7. Nice ring! Glad your wedding preps are going well! Things are so much easier with the internet these days where you can send out a “Save the Date” announcement, etc. We don’t go for made up names when we go to restaurants, we give them only a first name because of our difficult last name.


  8. Better late than never, right? Crazy week here in Kentucky!

    First, Tara’s ring is lovely–absolutely LOVELY! So happy to hear you ended up at the same place that removed your last ring. Pretty weird. Also, I had to laugh at you giving the names of serial killers and and celebrities at restaurants. Just glad you didn’t say you were homeless in the jewelry store. Good idea!

    Happy Valentines Day to both of you from both of us

    Kathy and Sara


  9. An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a
    friend who was doing a little research on this. And he actually bought
    me dinner because I stumbled upon it for him…
    lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank
    YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending time to discuss this issue here on your site.


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