What better than a weekend filled with parties, dinners, receptions and awards to take your mind off tax “cuts” for the middle class (which we love) and the rich (which we hate), WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s Doomsday f-bomb, North Korea and Iran’s nuclear arms, and a jobless rate that again rose alarmingly and – yes - unexpectedly?
It was just one big party, celebrating this year’s Kennedy Center honorees ( Merle Haggard, Bill Jones, Sir Pall, Jerry Herman and -surprise! - OPRAH!). First, a State Department (!?) dinner on Saturday hosted by Hillary:
Then a Big White reception Sunday with a special shout out to the award winners by Big Guy.
Sir Pall, drumming his way down the Big White hallway, in his second visit this year.
There’s no truth to the rumor that Sir Pall keeps winning all these awards because he’s the one who taught Big Guy how to play the drums while walking down the stairs.
Big Guy, deplaning before his Sir Pall drumming lessons:
…and after – much more presidential, no?
In his shout out to the winners, TOTUS pulled a little trick on Big Guy and made him stumble over the word "superfluous" while reading about the importance of the humanities. But don’t worry, BO recovered quickly:
"It’s hard to say. You try it when you’ve had 12 stitches," Obama said to laughs.
To paraphrase an old saying: “Hard to say, easy to do.”
After our Big White reception on Sunday, it was on to the main event at the Kennedy Center, where all the honorees were resplendent in their holiday finery.
Composer Jerry Herman, 79, who has not had any plastic surgery according to his publicist
Country singer Merle Haggard. Also has not had any.
Dancer/choreographer Bill Jones and partner Bjorn.
Bill is director and choreographer of the musical Fela! which you may recall was Lady M’s favorite Broadway show this year.
Jones, a victim for much of his life, was proud to be an America for the first time. He said he could:
"feel the love" and said he was thrilled to be receiving the award while Obama is president. Still, he said he's discouraged by the country's direction. "I am trembling a little bit, actually. The discourse is so poisonous."
Indeed, including his own:-
"We don't want to be marginalized anymore," he said. "Indifference is worse than dislike."
Sir Pall with his latest squeeze, and accompanied by Barbara Walters and her date, Sir Pall’s son, who seems to resemble an owl as much as his father.
And of course, the first among equals: the Oprah!
Who. in addition to her Kennedy Center honor, was the recipient of the bosom award placement and framing prize that went to Grace Bumbry at last year’s ceremony:
There were too many other stars and celebrities in attendance to even mention. So here are just a couple of note:
Oh, and also in the political division: Nancy Pelosi was in the house.
and in the box with the O’s:
And finally in the “Shut up and Sing” category:
And don’t worry, you can keep your fat cat tax rates because we know that you, unlike the other fat cats, really need them. In order to pay all those fines.
These award ceremonies seem to get better and better every year. I just love kicking off the season with all the sugar plum fairies. Winter Holiday just wouldn’t be the same without them.
Here’s a sneak peak at one of next year’s front runners for snaring the honor: