The Week Opinion Awards

The Week Magazine hosted its 3rd Annual Opinion Awards last night at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium.

And somehow, Arianna Huffington was unable to keep Ana Marie Cox awake.

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Some of the folks in attendance: Arianna Huffington, John Dickerson, Dan Froomkin, Sen. Ben Nelson, Margaret Carlson, Sen. Chris Dodds, Tony Blankley, Mike McCurry, Tom Toles, Tammy Haddad, Walter Isaacson, Nicholas Kristof and Nick Gillespie.

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The event was unique for DC: The number of attendees was small enough that you might actually be able to say hello to the majority of guests.

It was also unique in that guests served themselves: The enormously friendly wait staff came around to the tables and held out big plates of food. You grabbed the big fork and spoon and dished yourself. We’d like to see more of that, if only because it inevitably will result in some great au jus stains on people’s fancy clothes as they moved the angus beef from the big plate to their plate.

We dined on deconstructed insalata caprese with basil sorbet, angus beef, sugar snap peas and carrots, wasabi mashed potatoes, warm brownie pudding (all served with Domaine de la Quilla Muscadet 2004 and L’Enclos de Saint Jacques Bordeaux 2004). (Hey, some people like such details)

Some notable items from the evening:

  • You know you’ve dropped the ball when your speech in favor of a federal shield law puts most journalists to sleep. We’re talking about you, Sen. Dodd.

  • Doesn’t some sort of cosmic tilt occur when every Wonketter is under the same roof? Last night saw the new boys–David Lat and Alex Pareene–and ex-Wonketter Ana Marie Cox. I had to inquire to Alex: “Shouldn’t it be like the State of the Union address and one of you is required to be outside the building in case of an emergency?”

  • Oh right: The winners. Columnist of the year: Nicholas D. Kristof. Editorial cartoonist of the year: Mike Luckovich of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Creators Syndicate. Blogger of the year: Ed Morrissey.

  • The evening featured a panel discussion entitled “Covering the Presidency: Are White House Correspondents Real Journalists?” There were more than a few people in the crowd who privately mumbled, “No.”