Dining With the Swells

Posted on April 11, 2018


Life in the Boomer Lane, taking a short break from tracking POTUS’ latest antics involving declaring war on Russia and giving hush money to porn stars, took a friend out for a gala birthday celebration. She and another friend always commemorate their birthdays together, usually giving them three times a year to fine dine on pizza and/or nachos.

This time, in a direct contradiction of their usual routine, they opted to dine at a small, long-standing, tres chic, DC restaurant, in an area of the city filled with power brokers and those in the know.  Shortly after they arrived, a table of ten was seated. To say that LBL and her friends gawked would be an understatement. Had LBL had any ability to recognize faces (which she, alas, does not), was absolutely sure that some of the faces would have been owned by famous DC types.

The men were all tall, fit, and sported full heads of grey or white hair. The women were impeccably coiffed, slim and exquisitely dressed. They appeared to be in their seventies. They exuded  power and priveledge.  They also provided LBL and her friends fodder for their conversation, mostly about the superior genetic pool from which these people had sprung.

LBL, not content to simply muse about these people from afar,  decided that she would, at meal’s end, walk over to one of the people at random and declare “Oh my, how are you!?  I haven’t seen you since the event at the Italian Embassy!” The recipient of her attention would, of course, not question her. She would probably respond with “Yes, of course. Wonderful to see you again!” LBL would then sail out, leaving everyone at the table to wonder who she was.

LBL’s friend had a better suggestion. She said, instead of talking about the Italian Embassy, to simply say, “I don’t want you to think I was ignoring you. You were engaged and I didn’t want to intrude. It’s good to see you again.” She would then exit and they would then do a version of “Who was that masked man?”

At meal’s end, LBL gathered her coat, purse, and doggie bag (LBL is, no matter where she dines, as thrifty as possible). She stepped away from her table, eyes set on her target at the large table in front of her. Before she started to move forward, she heard her name said very clearly from behind her. To say that she was startled would be an understatement.  She couldn’t imagine knowing anyone who would be dining at this restaurant.

LBL turned around, finding herself face-to-face with a woman she didn’t recognize. Aside from the woman’s age (much younger than 70), she could have easily fit at the large table of presumably well known people.  The woman said her name, in an attempt to deal with LBL’s startled look.  The name didn’t help, but LBL realized that she had to act as though it did. Because she has had many decades of not knowing who people are, she has gotten pretty slick at this. And so, there ensued a conversation between LBL and the woman.  Luckily, the woman seemed quite enthusiastic to see LBL and didn’t ask any questions that LBL wouldn’t be able to answer.

After awhile, the woman said, “And here is my husband,” thankfully naming him.  LBL saw a tall, fit, older man with a full head of grey hair.  At that moment, when he was named, the one brain cell LBL has ever posessed devoted to remembering names and faces, suddenly fired. She immediately knew who the woman was. And, to show that the worship of celebrity knows no limits, the woman, herself a high profile mover and shaker in DC, leaned over to LBL and whispered, “Look at the woman across from you at that large table.  She’s a big deal at the Washington Post.”

LBL shook the husband’s hand, embraced the woman like a long-lost family member, promised to get together with her when their mutual friend was in town, and sailed out, past the table of the dining glitterati.  As she was passing them, the woman and her husband LBL was just speaking to headed to the large table and started talking with the group.

LBL exited the restaurant, head high and doggie bag in hand, certain that now, all of the high profile people at the large table were wondering who she was.