From top left: Asli Omar, Patrick Walker, Christopher Pak, Antoine Ware, Natasha Trethewey, Steven Grant Douglas, Diane Keaton, and Tilman Fertitta

When it comes to parties, we’re generally anti-potluck, but not this month—the guests have too much they can bring to the table. The Tontons’ Asli Omar can pass around copies of her group’s new record, Make Out King and Other Stories of Love. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Patrick Walker of Marshall, who lost a leg in Afghanistan in 2011, can give us some writing tips; after all, he won a dream wedding courtesy Operation Homefront thanks partly to an essay he penned. Christopher Pak—the Clear Lake resident who won a world martial arts title at the 2013 Kuk Sool World Tournament in South Korea—can be counted on to provide a heaping helping of inspiration. Of course, we want something more tangible, and edible, from Antoine Ware, chef at the new Heights General Store: gumbo for everyone. The nation’s poet laureate Natasha Trethewey, in town Feb. 8 for the Inprint Poets & Writers Ball, can bring signed copies of Native Guard, her Pulitzer Prize-winning collection, and Steven Grant Douglas, who plays Patrick Swayze’s character in Ghost the Musical (what?), starting Feb. 18, can croon a little “Unchained Melody.” Since she’ll be in town for the Brilliant Lectures Series (Feb. 6), Diane Keaton is welcome to bring a date to the party, as long as it’s the Oscar she won for Annie Hall, because, well, we’ve never held a real Oscar. (Again, what?) And what do we want from Tilman Fertitta? The same thing everyone else does: tickets to the San Luis Salute, his annual Galveston Mardi Gras bash. Our party may be perfect, but his is pure bacchanalia.

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