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Fearless Racked reporter Fawnia Soo Hoo is live on the scene of the Running of the Brides, Filene's Basement's annual ritual in which ladies put aside all dignity and duke it out for wedding gowns priced way, way below detail. She's already survived the mad rush into the store; now, it's time for the grab-and-barter portion of today's festivities.
8:10am: Damn, these girls work fast! They've been here five minutes, and already the racks are practically empty and bartering has begun.
8:12am: I'm standing in front of one team that must have like 50 dresses in a pile. Talk about hoarding!
8:15am: The stripping has started, and one girl is going sample-sale–style in her bra and biker shorts. News crews are FILMING HER. She doesn't seem to care.
8:17am: People are now foraging for full-length mirrors. I see a lot of teamwork—it's actually really sweet. Girls are here with their moms, sisters, and bridesmaids, and everyone's a team player. Lots of loud cheering going on.
8:20am: Elvis Duran is helping with the bartering process. "Who's got a 10? I need a 12!"
8:27am: I thought I'd seen it all at sample sales, but there are girls in bras and undies everywhere and these pervy news guys are loving it. They keep walking through the crowd and talking snaps. These women are all going to end up in the newspaper in their underwear!
8:30am: I want to see some bargaining, but all the girls are still fitting at this point. Let's see what's left on the racks. I'm spotting some rose dresses, lots of pouf and sequins.
8:31am: Wait, never mind, girls are using these racks for fitting, so these dresses are spoken for.
host Elvis Duran sidekick Greg T models a dress
Elvis Greg T is trying on a dress now. Is he size 12?
8:36am: Nope, he's still looking for the 10. But he can't even zip up the 12.
8:40am: This is amazing. I might cry. I just talked to a groom who's here helping his fiancée. The groom, his little brother, and the fiancée's step-dad are facilitating the dress-bartering process as well as guarding the pile they have.
8:41am: Apparently the little brother is a veteran of the Boston ROTB, so they have this puppy down. It's adorable. The brother's all "I have a 10, I need an 8. What size do you have?"
8:42am: And now the groom is inspecting a dress.
8:44am: Forget about that whole not-seeing-the-bride-in-the-dress-before-the-wedding superstition. I see another couple here. The guy just took a pic of his fiancée in her dress and carrying her barter sign. The groom is carrying her purse, too. He's a keeper.
8:48am: Awesome. The little brother is still angling for an 8. He just turned down another girl's offer.
8:52am: OK, that's the second pair of biker shorts I've seen today. It's so practical for this sort of thing. Maybe we should rethink jorjeggings?
8:55am: I'm at checkout, but no one is checking out just yet. Instead, people are using this area as a fitting room. One girl is sitting on her friend's pile of dresses. Presumably to guard it. Or because it's so fluffy and comfortable.
8:59am: One bridesmaid is now reporting back to her bride-to-be about a mermaid dress she spotted on another girl. The bride is trying to decide if she wants to go for it.
9:02am: Good lord.
Elvis Duran Greg T is still walking around in that dress. What is he doing? I heard him ask his wing man, "Should I just get this one?" What is he doing!?
9:04am: I can't believe I missed this. Apparently, a girl found "the" dress and spontaneously burst into tears. I'm at the checkout to see if she's made her way here yet, but still no one has checked out.
9:07am: The dresses are starting to return to the racks. Bridesmaids and family members are now frantically scouring for other people's rejects.
9:10am: A massive group cheer just erupted from the midst of the racks. Someone found her dress!
9:11am: Aww, she does look pretty in it. It's strapless ivory with a lace-up back. Oh wait, maybe that cheer was more her friends encouraging her to finish up—now she's trying on another one.
Even if it's not The Dress, she looks great, no?
9:15am: I was expecting some tussles, but this is actually a happy, bonding occasion. Girls are having fun with their friends and family (and maybe their future husbands), and everyone is helping everyone else. The girl ended up going with the ivory number, by the way. Her team breathed a huge sigh of relief.
9:20am: I'm doing a final scan of the crowd. People are offering congratulations for successful purchases. I think the groom-and-brother team have opened up a trading post back here. I spotted the step-dad grabbing a few dresses off the racks, too. It's going to be a long morning for these folks.
9:25am: Update from the groom: His bride hasn't found a dress yet. "She's very indecisive." Honey, hold onto this guy! And on that note, I'm outtie.