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The School of Flaunt

Back when "Flying Was Fun" Alexandra Smythe and Cate Clarke were Flight Attendants with a Major International Carrier. Prior to Private Jets coming into vogue, Alexandra and Cate traveled in the First Class World, meeting and greeting the top celebrities, politicians who would become Presidents, nouveau riche, and yes the occasional Headline Grabbing Criminal in Handcuffs!

What the two ladies viewed and experienced became fodder for the School of Flaunt, so much money, such bad taste and oh those terrible manners. Something had to be done! Hence, The School of Flaunt Handbook was born. Read More

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4th of July, it has gotten out of hand!

Category: SOF Divas’ Diaries ®  |  Permalink

Published: Thursday, July 14, 2011

July 4th!

It has gotten out of hand!

The week before the 4th of July I had my usual house guests arrive. Now for them this is a vacation, "fun, fun, fun" but for me it is a "working" vacation. Working vacation you say?

They are here to dine out, go to the Pops for music and fireworks, drink lots of wine, enjoy my dinners outside while admiring the view and last of all help build our float. Build a float; I'll get into that later.

The good news is our house guests are long time friends, husband and wife, so I can act as if they are family. But that still doesn't negate my responsibilities of being the hostess, only that I have no qualms about parading around in my bath robe in the morning.

Yes, the larder is full, the scented soaps and bath wash are in their private bathroom. The sheets have been ironed; bathroom towels folded like they are staying at the Ritz, there are plenty of munchies and the wine cooler is full. Dinner reservations have been made; tickets for shows are in order and outings planned. Once a flight attendant always a flight attendant. People just expect you to be their organizer! Which leads me to the thought of, why did the passengers always act like they packed their brains in their suitcases before they boarded the plane? But then I digress, that was a past life.

Getting back to the visit. Costco is happy and so is my Amex card for we have float building and a party to pay for! What am I talking about, float building? Well, our private community has their own parade. Yes we do! And believe it or not it takes an hour for all of the 4th revelers to drive, walk or ride the parade route.

Yes, they are riding their horses that have been properly dressed for the day in red, white and blue. Others are driving their collector cars or their miniature horse carriages, while some are walking with flags, and last there are some of us who just have to have a float. Guess what division we are in?

This started as a simple idea. Remember Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland, "let's get a barn and put on a show." (My Grand Mother always adored them!) Well, this was "let's get a trailer and turn it into a float." No not a short one, we need at least 18 feet. We can pull it with Mr. Smythe's tractor and include some of our friends to ride!

So the first year we had a feeble attempt at decorating. Nice but average. The second year the guys determined that to really decorate properly they needed to construct a wooden facade around the outside of the entire trailer. Picture the wheels on the trailer as almost totally covered by this wood structure!

Now we are talking red, white and blue buntings for the corners, huge rolls of plastic to cover the wood and to make swags out of, plus bows and many small flags. Professional printed signage announcing that our float was a "Touch of Mardi Gras," was purchased to hang from the back. We had red, white and blue Mardi Gras beads, Moon Pies and candy that we were throwing to our hundreds of adoring neighbors and their children who were spectators.

Needless to say the second year we were a hit! But the guys were not finished yet. Now the following year they determine that we needed a roof on this to protect us from the sun. Of course this requires more building! They are happier than "pigs in slop." Where did I ever get that expression from? Beats me! Don't use that one, students of flaunt!

The roof was built with netting covering the top to block the sun and a frame surrounding the entire length and width of the roof came down approximately two feet. What does this require? More decorating. Meanwhile the local party store is loving me. Not to mention, Lowe's! Back for more wood, decorative flags, plastic wrapping, etc.

But of course we can't stop with just that! This year we had a huge hat built. You've all seen those silly red, white and blue monster hats that people wear. Well, this one was approximately 4 feet high by three feet wide, on its own stand and not only twirled around but rotated on an angle. This also required a generator to be purchased to power it!

Now how many thousands of dollars do we have in this float now? Let's put it this way, a few new pairs of Christian Louboutin shoes could be in my closet now! Oh well.

The good thing is that the guys built this so that it can be taken apart in sections and stored. Therefore we do not have to be recreating the wheel every year. But I'm not done yet with the story-

What fun would this all be without a party? So the night before the 4th of July we have a float decorating party. Please note that at this point in time 98% of the float is really completed and decorated by the 4 of us. So the invitees are there just to party and wish us and our other riders a good time the following morning.

How many do we invite to this party? A large number of the Flaunt Fab Forty with their husbands and families! A buffet dinner is served, outside, sit down, flowers on the tables and you know my SOF rules of no plastic dishes or glasses. All to be performed under my watchful eyes! Thank God for help and actually my house guests too! As I said they are really like family.

To tell you the truth, by the evening of the 4th, as we were dining out and watching fireworks from our table at the restaurant, to say that I was tired would be an understatement! Those vodka and tonics never tasted better!

You'll never guess what the conversation was that night at dinner? How are we were going to improve upon our masterpiece next year. Pretty soon it will resemble the Pope mobile, replete with air-conditioning.

Here's to July 4, 2011! Wonder what we will do for 2012?


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