Privilege Blog

The Privilege[d] Housewarming Party

Ding-dong! Knock, knock!

Oh, hello! So nice to see you. Let me take your coat and throw it on one of the kids’ beds. Don’t worry. They’re on the other side of the country. They won’t mind.

Time for some housewarming presents. At this party, the presents are for you, my guests. We will be having a series of giveaways on Privilege. Six, to be precise. I believe in abundance. The first one will go up this afternoon, with the rest following one or two per day until we collapse, exhausted, on the sofa, and drink the last of the bottle of cognac, even though we know it will give us a hangover.

Parameters are as follows:

  • Enter as many giveaways as you like
  • Anyone who wins will win once and only once. Inclusiveness is one of my highest goals.
  • You will need to subscribe or let me know that you have been a regular reader.
  • The winners will not be wholly random. In this case, I believe the fairest approach is to make sure that presents are equally distributed amongst old and new Privilege readers. I may be swayed by creative comments and compelling stories.
  • All giveaways will ask you to tell us a story relevant to the prize at hand. We are nothing if not Homerian. Singing, across the centuries, for our suppers.
  • All prizes will be awarded on the same day, Wednesday, November 17th.

By the time we are finished with our Giveaway Housewarming, I shall with any luck have recovered from New York, from dinner and shopping with Reggie and Maxminimus, to say nothing of dinner with first milk and kidchamp. I should by then have more stories to tell. More questions to answer.

The questions I’m asking myself now include:

  • What do I need to know about buying and maintaining china? Will I get lead poisoning if I buy and use antique pieces?
  • If one loses all one’s money, is one still a member of the upper class?
  • Does anyone really want a High WASP makeover sourced from Walmart?
  • Would the High WASP Diet, and its resultant tendency towards the gaunt, be helpful?
  • Is my mirror from Grandmama, ostensibly Federalist, authentic? How do I find out without traipsing to some television-authorized circus?
  • Am I thankful enough? Is anyone?

Perhaps we will eventually have the answers. And in the interim. Presents. I love presents. Enjoy.

Astonishing picture via: Steve Oliver Imagery on Flickr

33 Responses

  1. Lisa, mainly I an envious of you having dinner with Reggie and Maxminmus!! Enjoy and come back with stories!! Of course I adore following you….

    Soodie Beasley is an appraiser of all things fine, here in Kansas City, and I could hook you up with her…

    Art by Karena

  2. And as you take my coat to throw on the kid’s bed, let me hand you this very nice bottle of Côte du Rhône as a housewarming gift . . . Congratulations on setting up your charming new abode, and may I wish you many happy years of hosting guests here, entertaining us and sharing your wisdom!

  3. Let me say, I love the new place!

    (and I have to say that here, rather than on a giveaway page, so that you know that I am sincere and not ingratiating!)

    Being southern, please accept a virtual pecan pie as a housewarming gift… :)

  4. The most comfortable and welcoming home virtually anywhere! Congratualtions on your new site. I’m still working on making it to Atlanta. It might not be for the whole confernece but would dinner do?
    Cashmere life is chaos at the moment.
    Warmest (Cashmere) Regards,

  5. “If one loses all one’s money, is one still a member of the upper class?” Sure, so long as there are still people who recognize/remember you. It’s all about inclusion, remember?

    I think the china is safe so long as you don’t let acidic substances sit in it. I think there are some test strips or such on the the market to help find out if you even needed to worry in the first place.

    My college roommate is as high wasp as you can get and I remember her going through the winter with random cardboard inside her loafer to keep slush out of the huge hole in the sole. She also ironed her wool pleated skirt and had to cut out a scorched iron shaped piece (when pleats closed) and patched it with a wholly different shade of wool. She was and is very frugal. Washes out paper towels and tin foil and hangs them to dry. Why wouldn’t she shop at Walmart?

  6. I want the diet please…not that I ever have been gaunt, au contraire…I wore fatty clothes as a teen. I am nudging up in size as menopause is becoming a distant memory and I am getting rollicking mad about the state of affiars.

    You have peaked my curiousity as to the giveaways…

  7. Awesome new layout! I really really like what you’ve done. You know I’m a follower and pop in as often as possible. xx’s

  8. That is some list of questions, Lisa! Wish I had some answers for you.:) Reading them just prompted some questions of my own.

    Regarding your mirror, locally there is an expert by the name of Joe Rosson who is able to give a rather dependable evaluation via photograph and some other info. There is a weekly article in the newspaper in which some of these items are discussed. He and Helene Fendleman host a weekly TV program called “Treasures in Your Attic.” I believe she is on staff of “Country Living” magazine. I probably misspelled her last name.

    I actually spend no time thinking about the authenticity of any of the antique pieces from my grandmother. I find I am able to simply enjoy them and remember occasions when the pieces were in another location – her home. We have had a few things refinished, of course a big “no-no” if one wants to preserve the originality of the piece.

    Is one’s self worth determined by his wealth? Does that disappear should his wealth disappear? Is it just wealth that creates “upper class,” or can one be an “upper class person” without being financially wealthy? How did one lose his wealth? Was it by bad investments, squandering, or giving to those less fortunate?

    As you can see, I could just go on and on…..

  9. Lisa, Yours is my favorite site for thoughtful dialogue. I don’t enter contests, but please be assured that I am interested in your progress through life. Valentine

  10. Hmm, as I haven’t seen gaunt since my early 20s I’m more than a little excited to know how I might get there again…I hope you’re having fun in New York Lisa! Can’t wait to hear about the giveaways. Love that photo too.


  11. Love, love, LOVE the redesign – the colors, fonts and motifs are all perfect! I do not, however, see the side bar on the right until I click on the comments, then it magically appears. This may be more a function of the antiquated version of Internet Explorer we currently use at the office. I will check from home later where I use Safari via a Mac.

  12. I have been a reader for quite some time – a year and a half to be precise and your new design finally gave me the bravery to comment. It is beautiful. Congratulations. That is all I have to say for now.

  13. Love the new look of your blog. Can’t wait to hear more about your trip and the giveaways. Hmm, are you still part of the upper class if you lose all of your money…some could argue yes, especially if it was old money, because of one’s pedigree. Then again, others would say it’s only about the money, and only if you have a great deal of it, are you part of the upper class. Something to ponder. :)

  14. The diet sounds great.
    For the mirror, do you know any antique dealers that you trust that can look at it for you?

  15. The new re-design looks marvelous! It’s a great reflection of the contents of the blog. Good job!

    I’d love the answer to this one!
    If one loses all one’s money, is one still a member of the upper class?
    That would be my dilemma!

  16. It’s not a bad idea to tweak one’s diet towards gaunt in the weeks before Thanksgiving and Christmas.

    Hand washing your silver is not an aerobic activity and it is hard to pass up eggnog.

  17. I love that you are so generous and giving away presents. Please forgive me if I don’t participate. You know my limited space and lack of delivery address makes acquisitions troublesome. I will, however, enjoy watching others squeal and open bright packages. That is gift enough for me [channeling Grandmother here…]

  18. Wonderful you, you seem to be on the threshhold of something, partway here, partway there, falling back on family mythology, yet questioning as though willing to turn a corner on Lisa’s singular present and future. It is a lot of work to customize oneself given generations of rules and regulations befitting one’s “place.” They put the fear of God into us when they laid down those laws. I have two inspirations to share. It is written that Billy Baldwin applied for a job with the highest of the High, Sister Parish. For his job interview, Sister sent Billy to Kresge 5 and 10, told him to return with the 10 best things he could find in the store. Now that’s inspiring; in other words, yes, any sturdy High should be able to walk out of WalMart with a few classic outfits over her arm, I know I can and do. And for another high High, show me any more so than Big and Little Edie Beale. Complete individuals; in other words, Grandmother’s mirror has many more lives inside than “authentic,” so it’s your job to have some fun with that mirror. My mother, grandmother and great grandmother Highs all had a touch of bohemian, so I have a true appreciation for those who customize their mythology outside High confines. I sense you’ve got this same spirit.

  19. Oh Lord, I almost forgot you’re off to NYC. Something tells me you’re gonna get to see your babies [in addition to Max and Reg], but heck if you find yourself waiting for those two bloggers to get their monkstraps and buttondowns set just so, well take yourself to the Chelsea art district, walk into Barry Friedman Ltd, ask to see the work of Ian Ingram, my nephew. I TOLD you we Ingrams were boho through the gens. And YOU’RE NEXT, oh yeah you are.

  20. I LOVE LOVEeeee your new makeover–just beautiful!!!! And so you! Best present as of late, when a fellow blogger showed up at my house for an appointment to try on clothes and she had a bag of very strong boutique coffee in tow.

    xo Mary Jo

  21. I’m still alive and well, and to my knowledge no family members of mine have experienced lead poisoning, and we’ve been using a French china service, that’s been in the family for over 150 years.
    It doesn’t have a makers name on it, just a gold stamp that looks like an O.
    I should try to find out something about it I guess?

    I think you would have more concern about lead crystal decanters, and glasses, leaching lead, than china, in my opinion.

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