Saturday, August 29, 2009

'That' Married Couple, Wedding Rings, And Changing Your Maiden Name: A Nevin Barich Blog Experience

So I've been married for a week now and I've discovered the following three things:

1) Ramona and I are totally "that couple", that stereotypical couple that you see across the room being lovey dovey with each other. You know that couple you want to throw something at really hard (and preferably at their heads) because they're so lovey dovey that it makes you fully realize just how lonely you really are?

That's us. It's our heads you want to traumatize. :-)


Ramona: Hi husband!!

Me: Hi wife!!

Ramona: We're married!!

Me: I know!!

Ramona: You're my hubby!!

Nev: You're my wifey!!

Both: Tee hee hee!!

(palms flail away at each other)

Yep. We're like that.

2) Wearing a wedding ring actually isn't that bad. For someone who has never worn a ring in his life, I was admittedly a little concerned. But honestly, I hardly realize it's on.

And I like that it's shiny!! :-)

One thing, though:

How the hell do you get this thing off? The whole "twisty" thing don't work and I can't pull it off without soap and water. Is it naturally supposed to be welded onto your skin? Is that part of the deal?

And finally:

3) People who mistakenly say:

Hello Mr. and Mrs. Barich


Now before I go further, know this: Ramona has decided to keep her maiden name. And honestly, I'm totally cool with it. Women today shouldn't automatically be expected to change their last name upon marriage. And besides, my new wifey (tee hee hee!!) is becoming one of the premier sports columnists in the country and is known nationally by her maiden name.

Plus, she's letting our future kids have my last name. So why should I complain?

Nonetheless, I have to confess that it's kind of cool when I hear people call us "Mr. and Mrs. Barich". I get a big kick out of it, probably because I know it won't last very long. It makes me realize that I'm indeed married, and because Ramona remains in honeymoon mode, being called "Mrs. Barich" isn't pissing her off yet. Before it wears off, I aim to take advantage by having at least one person call her: "Mrs. B."

(Note: As I write this, I asked Ramona how she'd feel about being called "Mrs. B." She did not look pleased. Admittedly, hearing it reminds me of a 60-year-old librarian).

I know that eventually, people calling her Mrs. Barich will annoy her. And that's cool. Today during our helicopter tour in the Hawaiian island of Kauai, someone accidentally called me "Nevin Shelburne."

And to me, it was the stupidest thing I'd ever heard.

Men changing their maiden name.

Can you say:



And now for this week's:


Although Ramona and I are having an amazing honeymoon so far, we have avoided the overpriced spa at the hotel. The spa offers such deals as:

Sunscreen application with foot reflexology massage.

A 20-minute service. Price: $50

In other words, $50 to have someone rub your feet with suntan lotion.

In a "reflexology" fashion.


Friday, August 21, 2009

The Hours Before My Wedding: A Nevin Barich Blog Experience

Let me tell you something I discovered this evening about wedding rehearsals and wedding rehearsal dinners: When they're for you, they're absolutely exhausting. :-) As I write this, my New York relatives who flew in for the wedding -- all of whom are at least twice my age -- are downstairs in the lobby at our hotel, chatting it up like they're 12-year-old girls at a sleepover, while I am alone in my room planning to hit the hay after I post this blog.

There's something wrong there. :-)

If this blog is all over the place, forgive me. For those of you new to this blog, I write this a mere 16 hours away from getting married to my fiancee Ramona, and my head's a little hazy. She and I have been together for more than eight years and have been engaged for nearly a year, so although I technically haven't felt like a single man since Enron was all the rage, tonight (cue dramatic music) is technically my last night of freedom.

And I'm sitting on a couch. Falling asleep. Blogging.

But despite my lack of living it up, I'm happy. Truly happy. I'm getting married tomorrow, I can honestly say I'm not freaked out, Ramona seems totally happy that she's marrying me (either that or her "tears of joy" was actually caused by her stepping on a rusty nail at the restaurant), and all my friends and family are here ready to celebrate with me.

Pretty cool, huh? :-)

Not that tonight wasn't without its craziness. When you factor in parents, ring bearers, flower girls and Ramona's Grandma Eve, there are over 20 people in the actual wedding, and the rehearsal today consisted of all the women trying to talk over each other while me and the men...more or less stayed silent.

In fact, one of my groomsmen Joe commented at one point:

Nev, I'm a little surprised at your lack of input.

For the record: At today's rehearsal I was asked one question, made a suggestion, and it was ignored.

Just following the wedding tradition of many men before me. :-)

But despite all of that, we got through the rehearsal, and quickly. People know when to line up, where to walk, what to do, what to wear, what to say, and me and my best man Kevin even threw in a fist bump for good measure.

Plus, the rehearsal isn't without its funny story. Midway through I got a text from my friend and former co-worker Frank:

What's up Nev? Got any plans today?

Uh, yeah bud. I'm getting married tomorrow. Other than that, not too much.

The rehearsal dinner was even louder and more crazy, which will happen when you have 60 people from both sides of the family who don't know each other yet like to talk. I found myself meeting people I'd never met before, seeing old friends, revisiting with family I hadn't seen in a long time, and at one point I even went over to a table and said:

I know I'm related to all of you, but I have no idea who you are.

It was an ice breaker. :-)

But it was fun, eventful, everyone got fed, and no blood was shed over the course of the evening (at least in the restaurant). More importantly, everyone was happy. My parents seemed thrilled, Ramona's parents were smiling, Ramona was glowing, friends and family were laughing together, and I had a plate of cheese enchiladas in front of me so I couldn't complain. :-)

So what's my point here? No point. It's just that it's hours from my wedding and I'm cool with not being a bachelor anymore. I'm ready to go. I'm ready to marry the love of my life, wear the ring, be called husband (that will take some getting used to) and live happily ever after.

I'm getting married.

And I'm feeling pretty good.


And now for this week's:


Again: I'm getting married in 16 hours.

Does that qualify? :-)

Saturday, August 15, 2009

All Right, I'll Do The Damn Project Runway Hater Blog Again: A Nevin Barich Blog Experience

OK, so here's the deal. Last week, I had made the announcement that I wasn't going to continue with my Project Runway hater blog this season (which starts Aug. 20) because I'm getting married on Aug. 22 and will essentially be away for the first three episodes of the season.

Plus: I truly did hate watching the show. :-)

But because so many of you have asked me to continue doing the blog -- and because I didn't feel like doing another wedding-related blog post this week even though the big day has overtaken my life (BTW: watching people come up with seating charts has to be like watching army generals come up with a battle plan for Afghan strongholds. I mean, there must be similarities) -- I have decided to use this week's space to announce that I will in fact by doing the Project Runway Hater blog -- -- again this season.

Happy now? :-)

For those of you who don't know, last year my fiancee Ramona (who was my girlfriend at the time) was pushing me to do one of those fan blogs on a show, thinking that I would be good at it. I, however, hesitated. See, I'm not into fan blogs. I've always found them boring. What's the point of writing on a show you love? You'll either a) write about how much you love the show (which is like watching an action movie without a bad guy) or b) you'll rip the show but not really rip the show because you love it so (and if that sounds like it makes no sense, that's because it makes no sense).

But then I got an idea.

"What if I wrote about a show I hated?" I asked Ramona.

I mean, why not? I had never seen a hater blog before, and wouldn't it be funny to read someone's views on a show they absolutely hated? Ripping the show apart. Showing a lack of understanding. Telling fans of the show that they're moronic imbeciles for liking this idiotic piece of television.

Now that I could get into!!

So I started thinking about kind of show would be perfect for such a blog. Enter Project Runway. I hate clothes, I had watched approximately 13 minutes of one episode and wanted to throw myself off a cliff during every second of those minutes, and Ramona loved the show so I knew that our arguments over her love and my disdain would make for great copy.

And so it began. :-)

And the funny thing was: The blog was successful. Each week, I did a running commentary of the crap that was on screen (and no, my hatred of the show never wavered) and people came to read!! By season's end, more than 13,600 hits were registered on and I even got a small write-up in the Houston Chronicle.

So bucking under public pressure, I will indeed do the blog again. But please note: For the first three weeks of the season, my posts will be late. I'll do my best to squeeze in the Episode 1 recap before the wedding, but recaps of Episodes 2 and 3 will have to wait until I come back from my honeymoon in early September.

So my hate will just have to wait.


And now for this week's:


A friend of mine said the following to me yesterday:

Enjoy your last weekend as a bachelor.




Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Turning 30 With The Most Wonderful Woman In The World By My Side: A Nevin Barich Blog Experience

Usually when I write birthday blogs, I typically write about getting older while coming up with some funny little twist. And this year was going to be no exception. I am mere hours away from Thursday, Aug. 6, where I will turn the big 3-0. My 20s will be gone, I'll be starting on the path to middle age, and I even had the "funny twist" all set up:

"If the 30-year-old me ever went head-to-head with the 20-year-old me, 30-year-old Nev would kick 20-year-old Nev's ass!!"

But here's the thing: I honestly have barely thought about turning 30. I really haven't. My birthday really did sneak up on me this year. I know people make a big deal about turning 30, but as my 30th comes near, I have something much more important on my agenda:

Getting married to the most wonderful and beautiful woman in the world. :-)

For those new to my blog, on Aug. 22 I am getting married to my longtime girlfriend Ramona Shelburne. Ramona and I have been together for more than eight years, and it's her that I want to talk about this week.

Being with Ramona has taught me many things over the years. She taught me never to settle in my life. She taught me not to fear venturing out of my comfort zone. She taught me that it's OK to fail, and if I do, people won't think less of me and/or run away from me.

All of these lessons were huge and have helped me immensely throughout our relationship, but there was one lesson in particular that Ramona taught me that I value above everything else:

Unconditional love.

Unconditional love. It's different from falling in love. Falling in love, in many ways, is easy. You find someone that matches your physical, emotional and mental qualities, and you realize that it's easy to open up your heart to that person and let him or her in. You're seeing the best in that person and it makes you feel amazing.

That's falling in love.

But unconditional love is different. Unconditional love is when you continue to love that person no matter what. Unconditional love is when you love a person even after seeing some of their bad qualities, their flaws. Unconditional love is when you love someone even after seeing them at their worst, their lowest points.

Unconditional love is the love that matters most.

Ramona was the first woman I met with unconditional love in her heart. And I confess: It took me a long time to realize just how important and rare that really was. It was a lesson she and I have had to learn (and will continue to learn) more than once in our relationship, a lesson I nearly failed once or twice. But seeing her give me unconditional love during my low points in our relationship taught me the importance of doing the same for her. It's like a friend of mine once told me: "It's not about the good qualities in the person. It's about their bad qualities. Loving the good is easy. But if you can love the bad along with it, then you've got something."

That "something" is unconditional love. Ramona has always had it, and during our relationship, she taught it to me. :-)

Case in point: As I write this, I am currently holed up in my bedroom with bronchitis. I feel terrible, have to be waited on hand and foot, and look like one of the zombies in the movie "28 Days Later." The other night, I had a horrible coughing fit, so bad that I was nearly in tears as I feared something was seriously wrong. But Ramona was right there, calming me down, taking me to the emergency room, making sure I took my medicines and got plenty of rest. Her care has been awesome, but what's been even more awesome is knowing that even in this bad state, she still loves me regardless. I'm currently in one of those "at my worst" moments and yet I'm OK, because I don't have to question whether Ramona's love for me is any less. And during her "worst" moments, she knows that she also doesn't have to question my love for her.

That's unconditional love. :-)

Unconditional love is not easy. It's a two-way street -- both people in the relationship need to have it. So for those of you in relationships right now who have this type of love, I say never take it for granted. For everyone else, I say that falling in love is amazing. But unconditional love is truly the greatest love of all.

The love of my life taught me that. :-)

So how do I feel about turning 30?

Bring it on!! Because I got the greatest woman in the world by my side.

I love you, Ramona!! Thanks for saying yes!!


Before I get to this week's Sign Of The Apocalypse, a lot of you have been asking whether I'm going to continue my Project Runway Hater's blog for this upcoming season. The answer, unfortunately, is no. Despite hating watching the show all season, I genuinely loved that people got a kick out of the blog, and getting that mention in the Houston Chronicle was awesome. However, the season doesn't start until Aug. 20 and my wedding is Aug. 22. Factoring in final wedding preparations and the honeymoon, I'm already missing the first three weeks of the show. So it's with a bit of sadness that I say no to the Project Runway Hater blog this season.

And now for this week's:


Remember that dare I talked about during last week's blog entry?

Here's the video.