After a Fashion

CHARITY ALFRESCO At the top of the social heap, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Gala turned out to be a big splashy affair in a beautiful setting. The food and liquor were from the Four Seasons (hello to my favorite waiter/bartender, Bryan, and his wife), and the fabulous Margaret Wright was at the piano (she always plays at Standish Meacham and Steven Salzman's fabulous Christmas parties). Event Chair Sistie Stollenwerck did a terrific job. She's a pure Texas dame with style to burn, and the event was very glam. I brought the completely adaptable Gail Chovan with me, and neither of us knew a soul there (except for Austin Monthly's Lance Morgan -- he's always got the best invites). Our tablemate was the charming Virginia Lee Heath (visiting from her spread, Rancho Sacsayhuaman near Raymondville) and her son, Richard Heath, with the lovely Rebecca Sanders. Other notable attendees included Lady Bird Johnson (whom I adore), her daughter Luci Baines Johnson, former Gov. Dolph Briscoe, and Cactus Pryor.

RED-RIBBON DINING I'd have to say that the most fun I've had at a charity event recently was at one of the Red Ribbon Dinners put on by AIDS Services of Austin. The dinner, part of a wonderful series of fundraisers that take place at various restaurants (call ASA at 458-AIDS for further info), was at Mirabelle (8127 Mesa, 346-7900). Mirabelle is fabulous. The food was divine, and the accompanying wines were expertly selected for us. The service was excellent, and I got to hang out with all the pissy rich queens I so admire. So it was a chance to have fun and do good. I sat to the right of my NBF (Newest Best Friend), Rita Garza, and on her left sat my NBF (Next Best Friend) Steven Aichlmayr. Other glitterati in attendance included the dashing Reymundo Ocanas, Lew Aldridge, Gary Cooper, Jose Buitron, Bill Pitts, Dr. George Thorpe, Jim Lommori, and Carla Cox, among so many others.

AN AMAZING HOLLIDAY The other most fun I've had at a recent charity event was the Jennifer Holliday concert at the Paramount and the VIP party at the Stephen F. Austin. The concert was fabulous; Holliday has a voice of astounding range and power. We'd be sitting on the edge of our seats watching her perform, belting out something like "Come Rain or Come Shine," and we'd think she'd just about reached her limit ... and then that jaw would drop open like a trap door, and she'd emit the most unearthly notes ever heard. Dazzling. It was a benefit for Zach Scott, and they did themselves proud with this show ... and the turnout, which was incredibly glamorous. The party afterward was quite the affair, many of my favorite people there: my favorite lobbyist Bettie Naylor; famed producer Charles Duggan; glamorous socialites Bob "Babe" Emerson and Stuart Sever; TKO's James Walker; Dave Steakley, Ann Ciccolella, Ted Smith, and Catherine Tabor of Zach Scott; and others too fabulous to mention.

DISCO NIGHTS From the heights of society at Lady Bird's event, to a different strata of society entirely at KLBJ's That 70s Prom at the Hyatt ... One would have to say that with 900 or so attendees, this was a fairly serious success (I can just smell an annual event ...). Dudley & Bob hosted a crowd that was very serious about their costumes. Bob himself was in a brown tux. Brown. Not a rich chocolate brown, not a soft fawn color, but a tux the color of cooked liver. Monsieur Dudley, on the other hand, sported a pumpkin-colored tux that was both daring and insouciant, and both tuxes were reminders of why black is the only color to wear for special occasions. With Dysfunkshun Junction tearing up the stage, Dudley & Bob were under siege by their adoring fans, but escaped unscathed. Good time had by all.

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