Tag Archive | brunch

The Inaugural Edition

Inauguration 2013Inauguration 2009 felt like yesterday. That was a great period in my life: I got a new fancy car, a dream job and just returned from a trip to Italy. That job required me to work most of the Inauguration weekend planning an event, not much festivities. While everyone keeps saying it was last year, last time, the weather was downright frigid. For this and other reasons, I had no plans to go to the event though my aunt was in town with tickets. I did make it to a few choice events: we crashed attended a wonderful invite-only PBS brunch honoring Gwen Ifill’s new book on politics based on mere confidence and charm. We then went to the Inaugural concert on The Mall, which featured Stevie Wonder, Bono, Bruce Springsteen and an arctic chill.

Once, I stood as a member of “I wish I had a need to be glamorous” tribe. I was so pressed in college for opportunities to attend Black tie events; however, something happened deeper into my adulthood. I didn’t wanna. My friends signed up in 2001 to volunteer for the official Inaugural Ball for George W and asked if I wanted to join. No interest. There were a multitude of Inaugurations since. No interest. I had a fleeting thought to volunteer for the Hip Hop Inaugural Ball, but gladly decided not to spend a night in Spanx, heels and a full face of make-up while grooving to the unpleasant sounds of Lil Mama.

I missed out on what I know was wonderful: Lil SoSo Productions’ sponsored To Sir With Love event due to waiting to see if my out-of-towners wanted to do anything. They did not. Still mad at Maxwell for his Essence Festival shenanigans from 2009, the very popular Victory ball disappeared from consideration. Despite that I had a ridiculously busy weekend. In hindsight, maybe I should have gussied up and hit a big ball. I mean how many Black presidents will we get?

Friday, I had my usual routine: dance class, tacos and margaritas. I was greeted with awful DC traffic and worried for the ability to accomplish anything all weekend. However things turned out well, traffic wise. Saturday, I considered attending a brunch, really wish I had the gumption to crash, I mean attend, the Essence brunch at Acadiana. I wasn’t paying close enough attention. The weather was lovely for January and this made me think about global warming. I am not one of those people that think that 6o degrees in January is a good thing no matter how tired of the cold I become.  I don’t do day parties. They are weird and I don’t like them. Being in a club at 3p on a Saturday is a waste of shimmery sun. Once I peeled myself away from my couch, I got dressed and hit the The Inauguration Appreciation Affair, an art exhibit and party at National Harbor. Yay, no DC traffic!!

Steve Harvey sponsored the event and his adorable son displayed some of his artwork. The event was crowded and I really couldn’t navigate around to see all of the artwork.  My loss. I instead concentrated on completely unnecessary for my life goal chicken wings. I really wanted potato salad as I love potato salad, made it once and realized that it is a lot of work. I found the potato salad oddly sweet, much to my disappointment. I find art to be very subjective and my taste is very narrow. The pieces I saw didn’t wow me I’ll admit. When the featured artist unveiled his latest project, this woman exclaimed “Beautiful.” Amazingly, he only revealed about a quarter of the painting at that point, so apparently her taste in art is very broad. As long as something is painted, well – Success!!

Sunday was exhausting. I went to church and then an early dinner at a friend’s home. I was forced to watch football with no other entertainment available: Go Ravens!! My dress was a bit snug (this winter weight must leave). Unfortunately, I spent the event wanting to be in pants that don’t zip since I was sitting on a bar stool watching a sport I don’t like. Later, I became engrossed in an episode of House Hunters, which featured a DC couple. Bad! I finally dragged myself off the couch (recurring theme) to WonderFull. I found a parking spot pretty quickly and headed into another crowded event (recurring theme). DJ Spinna’s celebration of the genius of Stevie Wonder actually attracted Stevie Wonder last time. However, we got 9th Wonder (I recognized him because he was on an episode of Sunni Anderson’s cooking show that I hate but watch anyway, which is doing me no good) and someone mentioned Robert Glasper’s presence, but I don’t remember what he looks like in-person and in the dark. I successfully pushed slid next to the ledged railing and watched everyone dance rhythmically on the level below. Once the event cleared out, I finally ventured to Liv’s main floor and shimmied to my favorite singer. On another note, can Liv get its bathroom situation together? It’s always a wet mess, lacking toilet paper. I actually carry my own toilet paper everywhere, even in my going out bullet purse, but still. Then home by 3a. I recognize this isn’t a life for everyone.

Finally, Inauguration Day. I was feeling remarkably social and decided to head to Uptown Magazine’s Barack the Toast at Tru Orleans. I was running late because I spent too much time cleaning my kitchen and almost missed the president’s walk to the stage (recurring theme). I ate breakfast as I always do because I wake up hungry. I still wasn’t hungry once I arrived, so I just ordered unlimited mimosas, therefore, no food review. I thoroughly enjoyed the event mainly due to my company, not due to the event’s fabulousness. I loved discussing every aspect of the ceremony from Mrs. Robinson’s Marshall Fields coat to my beloved Sasha’s restlessness to Beyonce’s earpiece flip to the inclusion of so many Hispanics and Latinos. On another note, can you believe Myrlie Evers-Williams is almost 80? Viva le melanin!! There was also a drink tasting and I didn’t care for the chocolate flavored gin/whiskey/tequila/okay I don’t remember. Why are there so many liquor brands and do any of them last? A very hyper hostess begged us to sign up for something that I also don’t remember since I found it best to ignore her for my own sanity. Once viewing the website, I understand she is one of the founders of the Toast series. Well, bless her heart.

Finally, I was famished but meals had wrapped up. I decided to meet one of my friends for yet another brunch at Matchbox Capitol Hill. En route, I met a nice barefoot woman who was lost and tired. I gave her directions (good deed of the week) and drove through the throngs of people coming from the Mall. I noticed people smartly drove as Metro was probably full of annoying visitors who never remember to take their farecard with them.

I had a goodbye dinner with the out-of-towners on Tuesday at Carmine’s. A very nice restaurant (with sad Pomegranate Sparklers) that insists you keep your plate and silverware. Yea, no. And on the sixth day, I rested.

The Birthday Edition (Not Mine!)

This week has been full of win. First, I discovered that I won my hearing against The Man, which turned out to be a woman.  Second, my aunt sent me my Christmas gift early—A Keurig! I only drink about a cup of coffee a day and always thought it would be perfect for my lifestyle. However, it runs $100+ and never thought I could justify the expense. I honestly cannot remember the last time I wanted something rather pricey, $20 or more, and got it as a gift. As a single adult, expensive presents just isn’t something you get. I am quite pleased.

Work has been getting in the way of my social life. The long hours and open Petrie dish of ickiness, I mean open work environment, exhausted me and I didn’t make it to the Leela James concert on Friday or drinks with a friend on Saturday. Sunday quickly became by use or lose all hope for having an interesting weekend. Another problem with being single is when people ask, “How was your weekend?” If you are married or otherwise involved and you say “Well, I went to Home Depot and purchased a shovel”, people smile and nod. Conversely, if you say the same thing as a single person, people frown and ask if you’ve tried online dating.

First on Sunday, we went to brunch at Sax. This space has been about seven restaurants/concepts since I lived here, so I don’t have great expectations for its success. Sax is a burlesque lounge complete with waitresses in

Overview Picture of Sax Lounge, courtesy of the website

Overview Picture of Sax Lounge, courtesy of the website

corsets and shows every 30 minutes. I am one of the few people that actually found the Christina Aguilera + Cher vehicle, Burlesque, cute. So, I thought it would be a fun time. The first number was “Lady Marmalade,” which I felt was a little too close to the video from Moulin Rouge. Even the wigs were the same.  The best number was the second one that I saw, which was “Big Spender.” This looked exactly what I think burlesque is: flirtatious, sexy, fun, well-executed and great choreography. The last was so lackluster that actually don’t remember the song.

The place is dark. A little too dark for a winter brunch as the days get short and sunlight is at a premium. The food is excellent. I had a lobster hash, which was divine, sumptuous and perfectly seasoned. I add pepper to everything as a holdover to bland college cafeteria food and needed to add nothing. My friend had crab and gruyere fondue, which was so remarkably crabby. It was not just crab essence as I would expect. We also had unlimited pomegranate mimosas and free birthday cake shots, which were too large to be shots. The shots were given because while the food is excellent and the performances, average. The service is so slow and I complained. I am not a complainer, so that demonstrates how slow it was.

Poster from the Kiss N Grind event

Poster from the Kiss N Grind event

Finally, we rounded out the day at Kiss N Grind. The event was planned by a personal favorite, Lil SoSo Productions (the owner, Kat, looked gorgeous), and was amazing. I came to the event slightly tipsy, so the two free drink tickets (sponsored by Smirnoff) sat for a while. The Viktor Duplaix event is typically held in LA and is on its first tour. I thoroughly enjoyed the music, the drink menu (eventually) and the space (Ozio’s rooftop) worked well (sunlight!). While initially, I was concerned about that lack of people on the dance floor, the crowd loosened up and grinded away as promised. I did not spot any kissing though.

All in all, I think that one day trumped some entire weekends.