What are you doing this weekend? If your response is anything other than "going on an extended trip outside the Commonwealth," and especially if your plan is "umm... lodges?" then I have an excellent answer to that question. This Saturday, from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m., the Cultural Advisors Alternatives program is hosting a Winter Masquerade Ball in the International Center Commons. As is the case with all CA Alternatives, this event is sure to thrill and amaze students from across the spectrum. Just in case you need any added incentive to attend a party that involves masks, balloons and a DJ, I hope this list of reasons it will be the best will cinch the deal.
First, it is an excuse to wear fancy outfits. The appeal of this needs hardly to be stated, but sometimes we forget the pure joy of putting on that rarely worn tuxedo or sparkly dress we have tucked away in the back of our closet. It's that time of the semester when the threat of final projects, exams and excessively long papers is fully looming. Nothing breaks up the end of one stressful week and the beginning of another like looking your most fabulous for at least a couple of hours. If you don't have a fancy outfit, or wish you had one with even more masquerade-appropriate flair, you can just gather some buddies and head to one of the million thrift stores in the Richmond area. This is also the best possible opportunity to reuse your dress or suit from prom, Ring Dance or any hypothetical fancy parties that may be happening Friday night.
Second, it's an opportunity to wear a mask. Not a scary Halloween mask (although those would be admissible too, I suppose), but an awesome, blinged-out, Mardi Gras kind of mask. As any reasonable person knows, any activity involving masks is automatically exactly 500 percent more mysterious and romantic than a non-masked activity. This holds true for everything, from sports events to walking to class. I could explain the statistics behind this fact of life to you, but it might take up too much space. Just rest assured that, as your Opinions Assistant, I could never lie to you about something so important. If you don't already own a mask and don't feel like buying one yourself, the event will include a mask-decorating station at which you can find and personalize one to your heart's content.
My third point is related to the prior two, as it relates directly to both your outfit and mask: The highly qualified staff of the Masquerade Ball will be awarding costume prizes! The categories in which one can win are the following: Best Overall Costume, Best Mask, Best Coordinated Costumes and Best Attendance by a Club/Organization. To win for Best Attendance, just let a CA or Friend of CAs know when you arrive that your group will be showing up in force, and they'll get a sign-in sheet just for you. I'm not at liberty to disclose at this time what the prizes will be, but don't you think it's worth finding out?
The number-four benefit of attending the ball is snacks, which anyone who has been out on a Saturday night knows cannot be overstated. You want cute little hors d'oeuvres on toothpicks? We've got them. You want sparkling punch in plastic stemware? No problem! You can even stop by for refreshments on your way through to other events, and we won't even make sarcastic comments about it. I swear.
Last but not at all least, there will be dancing. Not only is dancing really fun, but it is one of the best stress relievers known to humankind, coming in a close third behind Netflix marathons and any food with melted cheese. Dancing also makes this a great event to actually ask out the person you posted a "crush" about last Thursday. For every single one of the aforementioned points, the Masquerade Ball is guaranteed to sweep a love interest off their feet without even being anonymous!
Start planning your prize-winning costume. I'll see you Saturday.