A Busy Weekend Included Candles, Supper Club, Live Music, and a Graduation Party


It’s Monday morning, and I might need two cups of coffee. It was a busy weekend filled with socializing. And it began on Thursday, not Friday, as my friend Elizabeth invited me to dinner and candle making.

That’s right. Candle making.

We’ve been friends for 33 years, and we figured, why not? Let’s make some candles. We’ve done a hell of a lot of other things together, so why not add this to the list? (She says she’s now making a bucket list for us to do the next 33 years of our friendship…this will be interesting).

Candles Off Main in Annapolis offers workshops on candle making, and it’s replete with a little education on candles and their existence in today’s world. We got a short history lesson, along with some really cool facts about candles that may come in handy for a game of Jeopardy. Moreover, we made candles and the unlit one I brought home is smelling up my living room without even burning. It smells like black cherry.

On Friday night, it was my husband and my turn to host supper club. Our theme, thanks to our friend Jackie, was “Under the Tequila Sun” —Mexican night. Supper clubs are great and relatively easy. The folks that host at their house are responsible for the main course and drinks. Other club members bring appetizers, sides, and dessert. It works out to be fun for all, and we spend hours talking, eating, drinking, catching up, and having lots of laughs. I highly recommend creating one with your friends and neighbors if you don’t already do so. We get together every other month, and we take turns hosting.

On Saturday night, my husband and I went to see a band he loves called The Record Company. If you’re a blues and/or rock and roll fan, you would love this energetic band. They played at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C., and we went early for dinner at Matchbox and then headed to the show. My husband loves seeing live music, and the band was high energy, and the volume was so loud in there that my ears were still ringing on Sunday morning (and I have bad hearing to begin with!).

Finally, on Sunday, we were invited to our friends’ daughter’s graduation party in Virginia. The Murrays know how to throw a party, and we’re so happy for their daughter, Erin, who will attend the University of Dayton in the fall.

And so here we are, folks, on Monday morning. I have a lot to accomplish this week, including some reading and writing and (hopefully) some relaxation by the pool.

Bring on the fairies…


Stephanie Verni is Professor of Business Communication at Stevenson University and is the author of Inn Significant, Baseball Girl, and Beneath the Mimosa Tree. Along with her colleagues Leeanne Bell McManus and Chip Rouse, she is a co-author of Event Planning: Communicating Theory and Practice, published by Kendall-Hunt.



Back Among My People—The People of the 1980s


Last night, some friends and I went to see a band called The Reagan Years in Annapolis. By their name, you can probably guess that they specialize in covering 1980s music to an audience who thoroughly appreciated it. As a music lover—and one who lived through and sported big hair, wore black Madonna rubber bracelets up the arm and a see through mesh top with a black bra, and can name every MTV original v-jay—I was one of those people who relished every moment of the show.

It reminded me that I need to download some stuff I don’t have: Billy Idol, the Outfield, Morris Day and the Time (used to have “Jungle Love” on vinyl), Dead or Alive (“You Spin Me Right Round, Baby, Right Round”), Ah-ha (“Take on Me”–only one of the best videos ever on MTV), and a few more Journey tunes. From the moment the band played, they were high energy, which made us all high energy: we all sang along, reminisced about the songs, and even went so far as to dance. Yup. Just like we did in the clubs in the 80s and 90s.

Music was really good then.

But what’s funny about last night was that we weren’t sitting there thinking, “Gosh, music was good in the eighties,” as if it were a revelation. We KNEW music was good then. It was damn good.


And then, all the nostalgia came rushing back when the lead singer jogged our memories. It made me remember passing notes in class (folding up the paper really small and handing it off to someone–the hell with texting–this was the way it was done!), taking typing class (only the greatest course I ever took because I’m sitting here typing this without even thinking about my fingers…they just know where to go), wearing stonewashed Jordache jeans, teasing our hair and getting perms or sporting mullets, watching all the Brat Pack movies, and the list goes on and on.

In my everyday work week, I am around students who clearly did not exist in the 1980s. I speak their language now, but last night, I was surrounded by and among only my people: the people of the 80s. In those few hours of appreciating The Reagan Years, We Walked Like an Egyptian, Got Into the Groove, and Put Another Dime in the Jukebox, Baby.

To use the words of Jeff Spicoli, it was totally gnarly.