In spite of all our recent changes, the paper where I work remains a small town newspaper and one of the “old-fashioned” things we still do is print wedding stories that include a complete description of the bride’s gown, attendants’ gowns, flowers, church decorations, etc. It is my job to write these up. The raw copy is always good for a few laughs because I have decided that very few people know how to spell anymore and apparently everyone else’s spell-check is broken.
Last week I received a wedding that was neatly prepared and included all the pertinent information in an easily legible form without requiring a degree in deciphering handwriting. It was an editor’s dream. Be still my heart. I started typesetting and all was going smoothly until I hit a word I’d never seen before. Now trust me, I’ve done this for 21 years and I’ve seen practically everything a bride can throw at me. My favorite was the wedding where the attendants wore gowns of “bellowing tulle.” Bellowing? Perhaps “billowing” would have been more appropriate. But who knows? Maybe the dresses were loud.
But I digress.
The word of the day was “boka.” I was baffled. Wow, after 21 years of doing wedding write-ups, I had encountered something new. What in the world was a boka? What came immediately to mind was a “bota,” those wineskin things we used to fill with various combinations of alcohol and smuggle into college football games back in the day.
However, I know this bride and her family — not to mention the pastor of the church where they were married — and was pretty sure she did not carry a loaded wineskin down the aisle for a restorative snort during the ceremony.
Boka. Boka. Boka. What the . . .?
Finally, it hit me. A boka was a bouquet.
For the love of doG, people, don’t they teach spelling in school any more?