We're organising a special birthday dinner for one of our bestest friends tomorrow, and to add some spice to the proceedings, decided to host a murder mystery evening.
The theme of the evening is Death in Venice, but I can't give too much away. Mind you, that's not difficult as I know nothing about the identity of the murderer.
It might even be me.
Although hopefully not on account of the rather ambitious menu. Death by Botulism has an unfortunate ring to it, in addition to probably carrying a hefty jail sentence.
The evening is supposedly set in an opulent Venetian palazzo in 1946. An air of decadent opulence is proving a challenge to achieve in a modern house built a mere decade ago, but we're going to do our best.
Thankfully we already have gothic overtones in the dining room, so with the aid of a zillion candles and no electric lighting, we just might get away with it, so long as guests squint on their way to the loo.
In any event, candlelight is so flattering to women of a certain age.
Naturally, in keeping with the theme of the evening, everyone has to come in character, dressed to the nines.
The cast list comprises a powerful and ostentatious Hollywood producer, a fading German pre-War movie star, a beautiful but naieve Italian starlet, a flash Italian-American 'businessman' with probably connections to The Mob, in impossibly handsome Italian war hero, and a politically ambitious but morally suspect war widow.
That's me that is.
I have to squeeze myself into a floor-length beaded sheath dress (a serendipitous eBay find) to play the part of the glamourously wealthy but grief-stricken widow. I am concerned that the lasting impression may be more akin to that of a weeping burst sausage.
This is primarily due to the fact that the dress is rather unforgiving in the bulge department, so there's nothing else for it but to raid Tesco's later for some 'magic knickers'. I am reliably informed that these wonders of underpinning perform the function of non-surgical liposuction, and compress all the renegade bits of 'avoirdupois'*, thereby sculpting and skimming a bulge-free, sylph-like figure.
They're going to have their work cut out with me then.
I don't need magic knickers, so much as absolutely, amazingly, astoundingly, miraculous knickers!
* EDIT: I checked the spelling of avoirdupois, and just to be on the safe side, double checked the definition to ensure that I had the right word.
It appears that I was right, although I was hoping for a slightly more gentle and forgiving description.....
Main Entry: avoirdupois
Part of Speech: noun
Synonyms: bulk, fat, fatness, heftiness, hugeness, ponderosity, ponderousness, weight,
adipose, corpulent, fat, fleshy, gross, heavy, outsize, fat, paunchy, plump, porcine, fat, portly, pudgy, rotund, stout, fat