Thumbing through an old Neiman Marcus Wishbook, I came across an old fantasy gift I wanted. It was a dinner with some of the most prolific scholars, writers, and thinkers of our time. Needless to say that gift didn’t materialize So, I started thinking about who I’d invite if I could host a dinner and invite anyone I wanted to.  First, I decided to narrow my list down to living people. Of course, all of the famous folk popped in my head like: Oprah, Diddy, Barack & Michelle, Jay Z & Beyonce, Will & Jayda, etc. But then, I thought…Why not make a list of people who are major but not as well known? So, I’ve decided to do more than one party. The first will be ten of my favorite people from a variety of places. They will come from all walks of life and different parts of the country. This will be a night to remember.
                The invitations go out and everyone is coming. This first dinner, I will keep simple. We will all meet in Atlanta at the Colonnade on Cheshirebridge where a good old southern feast has been prepared. The menu consists of: fried chicken, baked chicken, baked fish, collards, yams, macaroni & cheese, barbecued ribs, fried corn, peas, squash, corn bread, yeast rolls, tossed salad, peach cobbler with vanilla ice cream, sour cream pound cake, & banana pudding. It will be set up buffet-style so people are free to eat whatever they like. The drinks will flow from an expert bartender’s hand. The bar is fully-stocked with top-shelf liquors. We also have wine, punch, lemonade, sweet tea, and soft drinks.
                We fix our plates after downing several drinks then head to the table. Of course I have my own Algonquin Round Table going and we eat and talk about a myriad of subjects. The conversation flows and flows and we are all full and floating. I check to be certain the stenographer is on point. We then take one grand group photo in the dining room. It’s a marvelous night! Everyone returns to the Ritz-Carlton or the St. Regis afterwards happy, satisfied, and glad they came.
                I received several gifts and thank you notes that following week. I look forward to my next dinner and start planning. Get a load of my guest list:
Each person is worthy of the time it takes to read about them. Do it now!
Wylie J. Stokeshart

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