The Meridian Ball

The Meridian Ball

“The Meridian Ball is one of the most prestigious annual events in Washington D.C. Now in its 48th year, the event brings together members of the public and private sectors to celebrate Meridian’s ongoing efforts to prepare leaders for a global future. The ball’s well-attended by publishing officials, cabinet secretaries, members of Congress, prominent media figures, foreign ambassadors and representatives from the international business and cultural communities.”

—Meridian.org

Now let’s break that down into simpler language. The Meridian Ball is a huge charity event. It’s expensive too. But when you combine charity with a chance to dress up, rub elbows with important people, enjoy a gorgeous venue with great food and music, it’s all worth it.

To quote a local beauty, former mover and shaker at the White House, “D.C. is no temptation city. People here are unattractive, rude and have no sense of fashion.”  I’d tend to agree. Compared to Paris, Tokyo, New York, Miami or L.A. Washington lacks the previously mentioned qualities. It is however the power capital of the world. Whether you accept that as a fact or not, is up to you.
Now back to the ball.

You see, in this power hub people do a lot of good things. There are a lot of charity events that benefit, as I’m writing this, your country, your community and your cause. Because the “unattractive, rude and unfashionable” locals and visitors put their time, energy, money and efforts into making sure the world is indeed a better place. Some do it openly, some discreetly, some don’t at all, but those cases are rare. Because not giving or helping out is what is actually considered unattractive in this town. But you’re not reading my blog because you’re into sermons, it’s because you’re into insider’s gossip. So here it comes.

Finally, once a year, a large number of Washington’s elite gets glamorous. Now the problem with this sentence is the brutal contradiction in terminology. You see, as previously stated, Washington and glamour don’t belong in the same sentence.

So once a year the city invites a wide array of very interesting people to make fools of themselves by trying to be who they actually are once their titles no longer matter.

Men, unfairly so, always manage to look decent. A tux will cover any visual flaws and later on when alcohol takes over, it covers embarrassing behavior and slurred speech.

With women it’s a different story. From the 21-year-old to the 91-year-old, there’s always a chance of extreme embarrassment. Apparently, Cinderella’s story was a lie.

If getting dressed up everyday isn’t your thing, for whatever reason, then chances are you’ll get yourself into trouble faced with the choice of picking out your dress, hair and makeup, which is carefully done by someone else. And the most challenging part of it all is learning to how to manage a refined, feminine walk in your six-inch heels.

While the word “ball” implies wearing a long dress, I guess it’d be safe for a paid escort to make the unthinkable faux pas by first, escorting a much wiser man, on top of displaying raw sexuality and wrinkled low-cuts. But the young and fresh beauties attending are usually well raised, well educated and hardworking ladies. It is always easy to tell the difference. The latter are dressed in awful 14th century French court gowns that are either too large or too small, with the waist around the ankles or something like that. You can’t help but wonder if they were raised by wolves or if a woman involved, too. Why would you ever wear something that doesn’t flatter a pig, let alone your young, beautiful figure? Why keep covering your visible bra, your tugging Spandex, or falling false lashes when you should just be enjoying yourself?

Maybe because you, just like everybody else, loves the chance to be someone else in this city for a change. Maybe it’s because you don’t care and nobody’s opinion matters, anyway. Maybe it’s just one chance to enjoy a sophisticated version of a carnival. Or you love being on stage, part of the Vanity Fair. You also might want to impress someone by having the ultimate luck of seeing a small photo of yourself in Washington Life magazine…even if you have to beg the photographer du jour to take that photo.

I don’t know. But I do know that if you enjoy cultures and languages, it’s the place to be in the pre-ball dinner and then you get to become who you want to be at the Halloween after-party for the rich and famous. Regardless, it’s the best annual event and supports a great cause.

To the Meridian Ball!

Ioana