Those made famous and near-famous by spending 30 minutes talking about those already famous -- on a weekly public television show called, appropriately, "Metro Week in Review" -- showed up last night at a party to celebrate the first anniversary of that WETA show.
"And thank all our staff and our underwriters," said a smiling Andrea Roane, the host of the show, who midway through the party had to leave for work. She also produces the Monthly WETA show "Town Meeting," which was on last night.
"This is one of our major local programming efforts," said Ward Chamberlin, president of WETA, about "Metro Week in Review," which airs on Channel 26 at 9:30 p.m. on Fridays, and features four reporters from Washington area news media talking about the big metropolitan news of the week.
Some of these reporters are veterans of the show, and the degree to which that has helped their lives and careers was the subject of much bantering.
"Someone at work told me to never turn down a TV appearance, no matter how nervous you are," noted one reporter.
"My super told me one day, 'I saw you on TV -- I liked your speech,'" said Washington Star reporter Michael Isikoff who has been on the show several times. "Then he told my landlady and she told everyone in the building. Now, I'm famous."
That brought guffaws from his colleagues clustered around in the backyard patio behind the house of WETA board member Carter Cafritz and his wife, Lisa, the hosts of the party.
"I'm sort of a nut," said Carter Cafritz. "I love public programming.We have locked the television sets in the house so the kids won't get at them -- except for one channel," he quipped. "WETA. We insists that they watch WETA 15 to 20 minutes a day."
Others who take just as fervant an interest gathered for the party. One of those was Charles Horsky, Chairman of the board of the Meyer Foundation which helped fund "Metro Week in Review."
And some whose colleagues have been among the reviewed on "Metro Week in Review" showed up -- like Parris Glendening, chairman of the Prince George's County Council, and Polly Shackelton, D.C. City Council member.
Oliver Cromwell, from the staff of D.C. City Council chairman Arrington Dixon, was there minus Arrington Dixon. "He's chairing a meeting dealing with the budget," said Cromwell, smiling ruefully. The ever-present D.C. budget crisis was one topic that came up occasionally in Cromwell's conversations last night. "Well, the name tag says 'city Council'," said Cromwell, tugging at this tag and laughing. "So that's the first thing that people mention."