Springtime in Washington isn't just about the cherry blossoms; it's also about the parties. Monday night found Wonkette at Viridian, for the launch party for THIS IS OUR WAR: Servicemen's Photographs of Life in Iraq.

jim%20nelson.jpgThe party was thrown by GQ, with editor-in-chief Jim Nelson hosting, and it was just as glamorous and trendy as one might have expected. The crowd was exceptionally young, attractive, and stylish (at least by D.C. standards). One attendee quipped: "There is more Prada in this room right now than in the entire rest of the District!" Another guest speculated that Beauitful People had been brought in from New York to prettify the proceedings.

After the jump, our report card on the festivities -- including an account of General Clark's hand brushing against our crotch. That definitely made the evening complete!


Venue rating: Very good. Viridian was the perfect place for a GQ party. It's a modern, loft-like, coolly elegant space, not far from Logan Circle. The pale walls were decorated with large photographic prints from "This Is Our War." (Yes, it was a bit discomfiting to be looking at pictures of U.S. soldiers playing cards in the desert sand while sipping wine and munching on rare tuna.)

Starpower rating: Good. The party was hosted by GQ editor Jim Nelson and General Wesley Clark, both of whom are slender, boyishly handsome men. General Clark was much smaller than we expected -- since, you know, he's a general and all. Terry McAuliffe was present, looking very well-preserved. Also attending were Jack Kemp and Rep. Michael Conaway (R-Texas). Pollster Cornell Belcher was styling in a dark, pin-striped suit, which he paired with Converse sneakers (John Varvatos, natch).

wesley%20clark.jpgOur brush with celebrity: General Clark's hand grazed our groin area! It was totally accidental, and totally our fault. We were crossing the room a little too quickly, perhaps chasing after a tray of miniature crab cakes, when an errant hand gesture from the General resulted in the groin-graze. It was entirely our fault, due to our sudden movement across a crowded room.

Even though were to blame, General Clark graciously apologized -- just like a military man to accept full responsibility. But really, General, no apologies necessary! It's not every day that we get quasi-frottage from a former presidential candidate.

Food rating: Good. It wasn't a dinner party, but the hors d'oeuvres -- and liquor -- flowed liberally. Professional bloggers get quite good at turning cocktail party appetizers into a full meal. We especially enjoyed the goat cheese puffs. Although we didn't try them, we also hear that the tiny deviled eggs (quail eggs) were very tasty. Good stuff!

Entertainment rating: N/A. The formal presentations at the party were limited. General Clark and Jim Nelson both delivered brief, heartfelt remarks, discussing the genesis of the book and praising the men and women serving in the armed forces in Iraq.

(But it was pretty entertaining watching Terry McAuliffe cheer lustily for himself -- to the snickering of other attendees -- when Gen. Clark mentioned him during his speech. And did we mention that General Clark's hand briefly touched our crotch?)

Swag rating: Very good. Each guest received a copy of This Is Our War, a well-made, nice-smelling hardcover full of photographs from the Iraq War (some beautiful and some disturbing, as one might expect). Retail value: $29.95 (but unlike the Tony Blankley book we got at the MRC Awards, we're not reselling this one).

(Just kidding, Tony, we're not hawking your book either! You were nice enough to write to us, so we love you. Great seeing you at last night's Opinion Awards!)

This Is Our War: A Soldiers' Portfolio: Servicemen's Photographs of Life in Iraq [Amazon]

This Is Our War: A Soldiers' Portfolio [GQ]

Reliable Source: GQ Goes Into War Mode With Photos from Iraq [WP]


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