An Open Letter To The Little Black Dress

Jan 28, 2011 by

It was, as I recall, about 7:05 p.m.  A friend was behind me, cracking jokes in my ear.

Suddenly, very audible gasps and “oohs” came from the audience. My friend stopped in mid-joke and simply said, “Wow.” I remember how he enunciated that word, like seeing something for the first time that blows you away – in a good way.

The cause for all this?

The Little Black Dress walked in the room. Except this time, she was wearing pink. And she held her dad’s arm.

A lot of what transpired over the next several minutes remains a blur. I do, however, remember her saying “I do.” And that’s because I was waiting for that.

I remember this guy in front of us, wearing black robes, who said, “You may kiss your bride.”   I remember that because, well, I was waiting for that.

And so I kissed the Little Black Dress, the woman, not the actual dress, which was pink anyway. I mean the dress was pink, not The Dress. Never mind.

And The Dress looks at me and says “You can do better.”

So I kissed her again. And then for good measure, kissed her one more time. Today, we remember that as the Trinity kiss.

Seventeen years ago The Dress said “I do” and married me. Silly girl.

What a ride – times on the highest mountains; times in the deepest valleys.

Moving across the country to become publisher of a daily newspaper, then general manager of another one in the Midwest, followed by moving deeper South to run a national newspaper wire service.

Taking a buyout after 24 years with the only company I ever worked for, and not knowing what to do next.

Experiencing the joys of one, then another and finally a third son, known here to readers as the Sons of Thunder. Nearly losing the middle Son; burying the LBD’s mom; and then her dad.

At times The Dress and I thought life could not be better; other times we wondered if we could, or would, survive.

Yet even in the darkest times, we’d look at each other and say, “We will get through this.”

And we have. Even if every now and then I break something.

Over the years, I learned The Dress is really into those special days – Valentine’s (ugh, don’t get me started); her birthday month, and yes, I meant month; Christmas; Easter; President’s Day; your fill in the blank day; and yes, anniversaries.

She likes to go all out on those occasions, which translated means I’d better go all out. I try, but I am no match for The Dress. We are at the point in life where we buy our own gifts – from the other.

“Wow, great pair of shoes/perfume/flowers/jacket/skirt/etc., etc., etc., … when did you get that?”

“You got this/that for me for Christmas/Our Anniversary/Easter/President’s Day …”

You get the point.

I am not the most “gifting” person, or as The Dress will point out, I don’t “fawn” enough. True. She will also point out I don’t use enough adjectives and adverbs, at least in her opinion, when I write.

And that’s what I am, by profession and passion – a writer. I try to make every word count, and with brevity.

This is our 17th anniversary and my gift to you Little Black Dress is from the heart even if it’s just words.

I love you. I thank you for marrying me. I thank you for standing beside me through everything. I thank you for the Sons.

And as an extra gift, please use the enclosed coupon worth 200 adjectives and adverbs to use as you see fit.




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  1. Medium Black Dress

    Ahhhh. That is soooo romantic!!!

  2. Sharon Lane

    What would LBD say? Something like “You do what you can and let the rest fall off”. You TWO are amazing, ‘I Do’ appreciate the love you share with us. Happy Anniversary Month!

  3. Cynthia Hunt

    What a sweet and funny tribute to your bride! Thank you for sharing your gift!

  4. Thanks guys, er, gals
    cheers to all