Saturday, November 17, 2018

FIRE USC COACH CLAY HELTON!


               FIRE CLAY HELTON---
          THIS ISN'T USC FOOTBALL




TOURNAMENT OF ROSES GRAND MARSHALL

TOURNAMENT OF ROSES


LET'S SEE....HERE ARE A FEW OF THE PAST HONOREES....



 CAROL BURNETT
SUPREME COURT JUSTICE SANDRA DAY O'CONNOR

REVEREND BILLY GRAHAM

WAR HERO AND PRESIDENT DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER





AND NOW FOR 2019.................




CHAKA KHAN

You supply the comment.





















ALEXANDRA DWEK'S FRIENDS WITH CAUSES--ONCE UPON A ROOM


onceuponaroom.org

Alexandra (far right) with the Once Upon a Room "angels"


I love Friends with Causes because it shines a spotlight on smaller charities, usually started by one or two people (almost always women). The other evening it was Once Upon a Room, an organization that decorates rooms for children primarily i the cancer centers at Childrens Hospitals. They are about to go national.

The very philanthropic and kind Kate Edelman Johnson and me



Once Upon a Room provides an invaluable service to children in the hospital while fighting serious, life threatening illnesses or acute trauma often resulting in permanent disabilities and months of medical treatment and extended outpatient care. Through different events and programs, we are able to bring joy to their hospital stay and beyond.
Patient and Family Events: Events are planned to allow patients and families to have a moment of fun leaving behind their diagnosis, struggle and fight. Once Upon a Room provides experiences for all to enjoy.
Room program: Based on the child’s likes and special needs, we customize a plan to decorate their hospital room with items they can take home with them as they continue their recovery. We create a very personal home-like environment from what was once a cold and stark space. It’s important to remember that while these children are in the hospital, for most, their fight is far from over. Everything the patient receives from Once Upon a Room is theirs to keep will go home with them.


On of my partners-in-crime for decades--Ames Cushing

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

CHILDERS' CARAZY CAFTAN CAPERS!!!!



FAMED PHOTOGRAPHER AND PRODUCER 
         MICHAEL CHILDERS PARTIES!!!!


TIS THE SEASON NOW IN PALM SPRINGS......... The first big party was given by Michael Childers at Steve Rose's gorgeous house. Caftans were the order of the night, and most of us complied. Everyone's favorite was John Monahan's, for reasons I can't disclose.

Everyone was so happy to see Michael looking well and happy, as he prepares for the big ONE NIGHT ONLY salute to Andrew Lloyd Webber on April 24th.

Come to the party...........



Yours truly, Lily Tomlin, Michael, and Jane Wagner



Barbara Fromm, Paul Clowers, Barbara Keller, David Lee


John Monahan

Steve Rose and Lorna Luft

Michael Johnston, Terri Ketover, Doug Donnenfeld, John Monahan

Debbie Green and Frank Goldstin

Tom Truhe, Bernie Fromm, Jerry Keller

Friday, September 7, 2018

BURT REYNOLDS---SEXY, WITTY, AND SAD



BURT REYNOLDS IS FINALLY AT PEACE




This is how I choose to remember him.

I met Burt the week that the COSMO centerfold came out. I was as dazzled as everyone when I saw that hairy hunk with the twinkle in his eye. I received a call from his press agent at the time asking me if I wanted to meet him. Are you kidding?

An interview over cocktails was set for the following day at the now-defunct Frascati's restaurant on the Sunset Strip. Frascati's was a darkly-lit Italian restaurant in a former house or beamed lodge where Sunset and San Vicente met. I had done many interviews there.

I walked in and couldn't find him. I kept searching, and then I spotted him in a semi-hidden nook seated at a table with two chairs. I remember, because I'd wanted a booth to be more comfortable.

He stood up as I approached.
"Hi there," he said, extending his hand and doing that cute thing with his mouth...you know...the smirk/twitch.

I was gone.

I remember he had on jeans and boots. I know there was some sort of shirt, because I couldn't see all the hair. Darn.

The interview lasted for about an hour, and then we went into deeper conversation. I was mesmerized because he was introspective, serious, and thoughtful. He never lost his sense of humor, but he ceased being the eye candy and became a complicated soul. Our conversation went on for four more hours. I walked away not only reeling from his magic, but so impressed by him as a human being.

For years we ran into each other. I even had lunch at his house. He was on a high ride and it seemed as if he was enjoying all of it.

And then it crashed. He had turned into an egotistical, unreliable, over-spending, disturbed person. As it began happening, many people tried to help him. He lost friends, he lost some of the best women in the world, and he eventually had to leave Hollywood.

I was angry at him for changing, but now I understand that demons, a sense of not deserving success, whatever you want to say, overtook him and he couldn't come back. It's a very sad story, but after I lost my anger toward him, my heart came back, full of bitter-sweet compassion.

Rest well, Burt. No more pain.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

NEW YORK, NEW YORK--MY SECOND HOME




           WHO DOESN'T LOVE NEW YORK? 
               NO ONE I KNOW!

HERE ARE TWO OF THE REASONS I WENT:

Lucie Arnaz was opening the new Birdland Theatre on her birthday......
Photo by Michael Childers


And, here's the view from my hotel room on Central Park South




When I got off the plane at JFK, I was stunned by the massive use of advertising by MISSION IMPOSSIBLE FALLOUT. They had multiple screens running clips all along the walls from the gate to baggage claim.





Right after landing, John Monahan and I ran to the theatre to see THE BAND'S VISIT.




THE BAND'S VISIT won ten Tony Awards. I think it deserved MANY of them, but not all, compared to some of the other musicals running. It is a peculiar, challenging piece, and the second I realized that was what it was going to be, I totally gave myself over to it and understood the deeper meaning of isolation, loneliness, pride, and communication through music. Katrina Lenk, who won the Best Actress Tony was really great.I loved the music, too.

After an experience like that, there's only one thing to do----go to Ray's Pizza!!! My God, do I love Ray's.





The next morning it was off to the Hamptons because Lucie was playing Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor before coming into NYC.  YES, I WAS A JITNEY VIRGIN! It's bearable, but I did learn about the upgraded ones.







First stop, Southampton. My charming hotel was there. It's the Southampton Village Motel, and it has been completely upgraded and looks like it's out of the pages of Joss & Main. You can walk anywhere from there.




The Blue Duck Bakery is divine for lunch and sweets

Main St. Southampton


The it was off to Sag Harbor to meet Lucie.

 Lucie wasn't in the lighthouse.
She wasn't on the beach.



Not at the harbor either

YES! SHE WAS REHEARSING AT BAY STREET



I took my dinner break at The American Hotel. I'd always wanted to go there. It's perfect Americana.




Perfect Crab Cake in the bar



The next morning, Lucie, her conductor, Ron Abel, and I drove back to NY. Talk about moist heat hitting you in the face.....



This is what Central Park looked like 30 minutes before Lucie's rehearsal at Birdland was supposed to start. It didn't get any better. Major Monsoon.

But that doesn't stop New York. Lucie's opening the Birdland Theatre was a BIG DEAL. The room is the pride and joy of Gianni Valenti and Jim Caruso (who is booking it). Friends even flew to NY from Palm Springs to celebrate Lucie's birthday and the opening.

Lucie was absolutely dynamite, debuting her new act, "I Got the Job," featuring songs she auditioned with and/or sang in her Broadway shows. She got three standing ovations.






The Happy Kids



Welcome  to the party.................


Jim Caruso, Ann Hampton Callaway, Lucie, Marilyn Maye, Mark Sendroff, Gianni Valenti

Now add Billy Stritch!

Jim Caruso cuts the cake, with Raissa Katona Bennett and David Friedman looking on


Shawn Moniger and David Friedman


Ann H, David Zippel, John Monahan

Billy and Marilyn

I love Billy. He knows it.

Garrett, Raissa David, Shawn

Ann et moi

Doug Denoff, Richard Jay Alexander, Mark Sendroff
John, me, Barbara and Bernie Fromm--all from Palm Springs




AND, THE NEXT DAY, WE STILL HAD ENERGY!

Along came The Met, with its incredible Catholic Fashion exhibit, plus St. Patrick's mass, Bergdorf windows, BOYS IN THE BAND, and HELLO, DOLLY with Bette Midler.


We love Soft Serve

View from the Met Roof
Bette in HELLO DOLLY was an extraordinary experience. From someone who first saw her at the Continental Baths, to her private debut album party at Studio One in the 70s, and every show she's done, it was incredible to see her in this crowning career performance. What joy.


BOYS IN THE BAND's direction, by Joe Mantello, was beyond brilliant. The play not only holds up, but is as moving as it was originally.
Gianni Versace-Met Catholic





AND, WHAT DO YOU DO AFTER ALL THAT? 
You go with John to meet David Zippel and his sister, Maureen, at Virgil'sBBQ!



OH, YES. ALONG THE WAY, THIS STUFF HAPPENED, TOO.



Dinner with Marlo Thomas and Kathie Berlin at Nello

Rockfeller Center had TVs showing the soccer finals

 Had seats, but when Katherine McPhee had to pull out because she received the sad news of her father's passing, I chose not to see the show.
Bergdorf salutes New Orleans


Very cool Versace
I never forget to light a candle at St. Patrick's






















And, then, I saw what was happening in front of Trump's home in New York. Streets are blocked; poor Gucci is getting no business; traffic is insane; part of 56th is closed.






END OF NEW YORK.

LEAVING FOR CHICAGO IN A FEW DAYS. KIM NOVAK IS APPEARING AT THE RAVINIA FESTIVAL WITH THE CHICAGO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA PLAYING THE SCORE FROM VERTIGO LIVE WHILE THE MOVIE SHOWS.