I know this seems really unlikely, but I will be attending a black-tie dinner at the White House on Monday night. Yes, the White House.
It all still seems a bit unreal, but here’s what we know so far. The President and Mrs. Bush are honoring Maria Shriver and the Special Olympics with a formal dinner. My wife Susan is on the guest list, at the suggestion of the Special Olympics, probably because of her series of op-ed pieces in the Washington Post, most recently A Golden Moment with Nat, published a few weeks ago. She has corresponded with Tim Shriver about these pieces in the past, so he probably put us on the list.
Susan was checking our home voicemail from the Cape on Monday, one of those “Oh, there won’t be anything there, but I might as well check” calls, when she heard the voicemail from a social director at the White House!
So she has bought a gown, and I am renting a tux, and we will be extending our vacation by a few days to fly to DC and report at the White House Monday night. We don’t know who will be there, other than the President, Mrs. Bush, and Maria. Maybe Arnold? Maybe Ted? There are many many unknowns.
We checked out some questions with the social director. Can Susan give Mrs. Bush a copy of her book? Yes, but you give it to the Secret Service, and they eventually give it to her. Can we bring a camera to the event? Yes, but you can’t take photos of the President or the entertainment, and you have to be discreet. Does Atkins count as a dietary restriction? No, dear, but you’ll love the food.
As anyone who has followed my politics on this blog must know, it is too bad I’m not more of a fan of the President. Of course I won’t do anything unseemly, but it would be an easier visit if I liked the guy. I’ve thought about sending a pro-Bush friend in my place!
And in the back of our minds is the sinister possibility that the entire thing is an elaborate hoax. It’s an outlandish theory, but in a way more plausible than actually being invited to the White House.
It’ll be an experience and a half. More to come...