EJ looked great. But I do notice that in this photo her fleur looks comically enormous.
We were excited to see some of our favorite people immediately upon entering. Here were are with Zulu Scott-Barnes.
Zulu was so nicknamed by his English boarding school classmates as he is from South Africa. Zulu occasionally identifies himself as an African American. Before marrying one of my best friends and "settling down" in Nashville, Zulu traveled the world as a professional polo player and later dealer in thoroughbreds.
I've attended the Hunt Ball several times before, but this year was far and away the most fun. Either the crowd is getting younger, is getting more of the younger, or I am just getting older and of the age of those who like the Hunt Ball, but aren't associated with a Hunt Club. At any rate, the company was lively and Pat Patrick's Band was as amazing as ever. Their genres for mood music for the various stages of the night were different than usual, unexpected, and spot on. The martini luge was more gimmicky than classy, but it was a welcome attraction. The BMCC also kept dining tables out of the main ballroom, which made for a much better dance space (mood, lighting, flow) as well as allowing more actual space for dancing. And adding a bar inside the main ballroom was genius.
Almost all of the dining tables were outside under a tent beyond the main patio, and the weather was perfect. The centerpieces were also a bright stroke of inspiration. I have seen art cakes around SF, but never in Nashville.
The centerpieces to each table were colorful race hats, and also our desserts. So much better than flowers which block the view of people at your table. And as is rarely the case, these cakes were even better tasting than looking.
A feast for the eyes and the tongue. And my company a feast for the ears (and also pretty).
Always a pleasure are Susannah (friends since we were four) and her husband Zulu (aka Alec Scott-Barnes).
And luckily for me my favorite cousin Biz was there with her husband David.
And if you look even moderately closely you may notice one of the family jewels. I do love Biz's taste and she has, or has access to, some wonderful accessories (other than me).
I told her how much I loved her in "Titanic."
Other fun and pretty people at the party:
And the always lovely Carolyn Thombs, whose husband is ever so patient with our affections and my monopolizing her company on the dance floor.
Of course, there was a jewelry designer there with pieces on display and for sale.
And as brilliant as they are, they are not as pretty or expensive as I am.
Speaking of brilliant, pretty, and expensive, my parents looked fabulous as well:
As I may have said before, I may get my penchant for themes from my Dad. Suitable for the Hunt Ball, Dad wore the Children's Hospital tie I painted for him a couple of summers ago,
and his new hound-handled cane.
Beyond the company, the delectable menu (the BMCC has a new chef who is superlative), and the music/dancing, one of the highlights of my night is when Alice Randall crossed a room to take my elbow and say, "Wilson Hardcastle, I love your blog."
Holy crap. I quickly tried to remember what I had posted recently, and apparently the blood drained from my face as I did so. This is just for fun. And for the dozen or so friends who follow the (my) weirdness that goes on in this City. (Okay, more than 12. I get around 60 to 80 hits a day now.) I know that potential employers and boyfriends read this, as well as my family on occasion, so I try to keep the action here above the belt. But still, I'm just sayin' here. And what I'm just saying isn't exactly meant for the 37205/parental set. Well, it is what it is. Wholesome and Folsom alike.
And, let me tell you, such a compliment coming from Alice Randall, award-winning author and songwriter, is high praise indeed.
Another moment which completely cracked me up was when EJ left the ballroom to join the few but desperate smokers on the back patio. Ever the lady, EJ does not want the smell or stain of cigarettes on her fingers. And so she keeps a single smoking glove in her purse with her smokes!
And my favorite caption of the night (not truly spoken, but imagine the southern drawl please):
And, saving the best for last, here are my best "overheards" scrawled on cocktail napkins and rediscovered in the morning:
"...saggy bosoms." (these words caught my ear and I started paying attention.)
"Who has saggy bosoms?"
"'Saggy bosoms.' Sounds like bad name for a band. Or an old bluegrass song."
"Isn't that a place near Bersheba?"
"No, that's Soggy Bottom."
"I just like to say 'saggy bosoms."
"I once dated a Sally Bosoms. Popular girl."
[Unremembered unintelligible name]
"What kind of name is that?"
"It sounds dark and uncircumcised."
and my all time personal favorite:
"Who was that?"
"That was [so and so]."
"Isn't he running for something?"
"Yeah, Judge. But he used to shit himself when he got drunk and I just can't see myself voting for him."
After the party was over, I weighed my options of (1) wisdom: go to bed, get some sleep, and rest up for the Big Day starting in the morning; or (2) wanton: go out to Tribe and be with my other people for a drink and then go to bed. At the bar I met Jake, who had ditched the shirt and tie parts of his tux, but recognized me from the Ball.
Photos on flickr.