Last night we crashed the Heritage Foundation Media Christmas Party held at their posh Capitol Hill headquarters on Massachusetts Avenue because, well, why not? It’s Christmas, the season of giving, and what would giving be without someone there to take it? ‘Tis the season to party crash, after all, and it is the unofficial sport of Washington. Well, right after Hill staffers hooking up with interns.
First impression: Nice digs! The Heritage Foundation has some bucks, and they dropped some buck on the lobby of their 7th floor theater, where the party was held.
Second impression: This was a Christmas party, damn it! None of this PC “Happy Holidays” garbage here, it’s the Christmas season. Christmas tree glistening away in the reflection of the ceiling to floor windows overlooking Union Station, Christmas ties and freshly nogged eggs. OK, maybe not the egg part, but the rest was all Christmas.
Third impression: Top-shelf booze. This soiree was for media types, after all, and even conservative media types love them some alcohol. There was plenty to be had here, Bombay Sapphire, Absolute, etc. No bathtub gin/rail swill here, that stuff is for liberals and this was a 1% party.
Fourth impression: These people know how to eat. The buffet spread had crab cakes (delicious), chicken breast slices (delicious), tiny wieners baked in croissants (huh?). Yes, the tiny wieners were a bit out of place, but they weren’t all that bad, actually. And the dessert table? A diabetic coma waiting to happen, but what a way to go.
Fifth impression: Who goes to a conservative media party? Turns out a lot of people. The room was full of Heritage staff, Hill staff and media types from Human Events, The Washington Times, Roll Call, The Hill, Fox News, etc. Surprising was the age range. While there was a disproportionate share of curmudgeons there (looking at you, Cal Thomas, John Gizzi and Al Regnery), there were a lot of young people there too. Jason Mattera, the soon-to-NOT-BE-Editor-in-Chief of Human Events, Vince Coglianese from the Daily Caller, Conn Carroll from the Washington Examiner, and boybander extraordinaire, Slate’s own Dave Weigel. Also in the crowd, towering over it and the only thing in the room taller than the Christmas tree was Jim Pinkerton, the 6 foot 9 inch writer/contributor for Fox News.
Overall impression: A much better party than expected. Though, admittedly, the expectations were low. Probability of adding this party to the must-crash list for next year? High.