Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Keeping Good Company

Before it drifts away under the glare of a busy workweek, I wanted to tell you about a cocktail gathering my wife and I hosted at our house Saturday, with some of the most interesting, fun people on the New York/New Jersey blogging scene.

My wife cooked like crazy – one of us has to love to do that – and the guests all brought ample quantities of beer, wine and booze. A fun time was had by all (until about 2:00 AM) and I wanted to give some quick observations about people who, for the most part, I was meeting in person for the first time.

Mox of Moxiegrrrl: Yes, boys, she's cute as a bug's ear in real life, nice as can be and nary a profane word out of her mouth... At least I think that was her. Her husband, Kid Bastard, is way too nice to wear that label but, hey, it's his call.

Bob Fertik of Very nice guy and just as urbane as I want to be when I grow up – but fun to hang with and swap opinions about the state of the union.

Jeff Tiedrich, My neighbor from a couple of miles away. A great listener, loves good whiskey and -- can you keep a secret? – he doesn't like the president very much.

Barbara O'Brien of Mahablog: An interesting combination of sarcasm, wit and warmth all rolled into one package – and another Westchester County neighbor.

Lindsay Beyerstein: Incredibly nice and, yes, she's as smart in person as she seems on Majikthise.

Julia of Sisyphus Shrugged: This gal is just a hoot, whip-smart and with a daughter so nice we wanted to keep her.

Culture Kitchen's Liza Sabater is so damn cool, you wouldn't even mind sharing a blog with her – and it's obvious why others do.

Scott Lemieux, of Lawyers, Guns and Money is an assistant professor at Hunter College and seems like about the most well-adjusted, non-condescending Ph.D. you would want to meet. He teaches constitutional law and I was so busy hosting I didn't even get to talk to him about Alito – damn! Next time.

My friends Paula Etzel, Chair of the Irvington Democratic Committee and Phil Chonigman, a political demographer who works at the Westchester County Board of Elections, fit in like the bloggers they could both be if they had time. We also welcomed Jessica Flagg, a progressive's Progressive and Michael Bouldin (New Democratic Majority) who were an excellent addition to the fun and conversation.

And, while we did get to meet the wonderful Jen, of The News Blog – we'll pick you up at the train station any time, Jen – Steve Gilliard himself couldn't make it due to his father being suddenly hospitalized. We'll catch you next time, Mr. G.

And, my buddy Liz, of BlondeSense, wasn't able to make it either – a disappointment to us all but, with as much fun as this was, there will be a next time.

It's a strange thing to open your home to a collection of people you have never met but, when you collaborate in the blogosphere, a kinship forms that makes that lack of familiarity almost transparent.

Assuming I remain in good standing, this is a club in which I'm proud to be a member.