After a Fashion

Jump on Stephen as he luges through the Swish Alps of the Social Olympics

Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey at the AFS premiere of <i>Surfer, Dude</i>
Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey at the AFS premiere of Surfer, Dude (Photo by Gary Miller)

WHATTA WEEK! From the glamour of a world premiere with Matthew McConaughey to a truly awe- inspiring charity event, I've taken the slalom route through the Swish Alps for the Social Olympics. Wednesday was the Austin Film Society's world premiere of Surfer, Dude at the Paramount. It had everything you expect to see: movie stars, limos, crowds of paparazzi, and a throng of film fans, followed by a swanky afterparty at the Belmont. Nice work, AFS!... Friday, friends and I attended a performance by remixer/DJ Francis Preve at Sky Lounge. Fortunately, Preve is so good at what he does that he was able to overcome the dreariness of that club. Sky Lounge, which had a certain chic a few years ago, is a wonderful space for a club, but that's where the accolades now stop. Slutty-looking women usually accompanied by their DFF (designated fat friend), oafish men circling the dance floor like sharks, security guards who walk across the tables, and the weakest cocktails on the planet all add up to a dismal and unpleasant nightclub experience. Fortunately, the music was faaabulous, and Preve has true homegrown talent that will inevitably take him far from us... Saturday, I was supposed to go to my high school friend's 50th birthday party (happy birthday, Brenda!) but wound up having to back out to attend the Sense Corp's Texas 4000 Tribute. Okay, I went to this event two years ago and wrote about how it reduced me to tears (yes, in public) to hear the stories of how this team of volunteers, mainly UT students, rode bikes from Austin to Anchorage, Alaska, to raise money for cancer research. It was truly a deeply moving experience. I missed the event last year and, as you know, have been diagnosed with cancer since then. So going to this event took on an entirely new facet for me this year. Sitting at the table of Sense Corp co-founder Brian Garsson, along with friends such as the dashing Heath Riddles, Eric and Maria Groten, and Kim and Kimberly Thomsen, it was just as inspiring as the first time, and I managed to keep myself together this time ... until Garsson came over, put his arm around me, and asked, "Will you be with us next year?" Then the tears started again. Mr. Fabulous & Casino Royale performed, and once again I became all weepy when he gave me a shout-out from the stage. I am so damn lucky to have some of the nicest friends on the planet – friends who make life worth living.

HOW DO YOU KNOW ... if it's a gay dinner party? You can tell by the place settings – fork for the tongue, spoon up the nose, knife in the back, and dish, dish, dish.

CHARITY IS ALWAYS ON THE AGENDA The always glorious Karen Landa is doing it again this week: The Beauty of Life brunch and shopping extravaganza, benefiting Hospice Austin, is this Friday, Sept. 12, at the Renaissance Hotel, 9:30am, featuring Carson Kressley of television's Queer Eye, a silent auction, and mimosas. Check the events link at www.hospiceaustin.org or call 342-4753... Sunday, Sept. 14, is the annual Glenn Eaddy Toy Drive at Oilcan Harry's. To celebrate his birthday, Eaddy is asking for donations of new, unwrapped toys for children affected by AIDS and HIV. Later at OCH, La Cage Goes Broadway salutes the Great White Way when the lovely ladies of La Cage perform production numbers from Broadway musicals. No cover!... Sunday, Sept. 21, brings us the Octo Tea Dance at the Long Center, 3-9pm, to benefit AIDS Services of Austin's Paul Kirby Emergency Assistance Fund. Featured are DJs Seth Cooper and Roland Belmares, a silent auction, and a, ummm, bachelor auction. Yes, it's true: Even I will be on the auction block, being auctioned off like a slave to the highest bidder, complete with dinner at Roaring Fork and preferred seating at some grand social event. The official afterparty gets under way at 9pm at OCH. Visit www.octopusclub.org for ticket information.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Austin style, Austin gossip, Austin fashion, Matthew McConaughey, Swish Alps, Social Olympics, Austin Film Society, Surfer, Dude, Paramount, Sky Lounge, Sense Corp's Texas 4000 Tribute, Brian Garsson, Karen Landa, Beauty of Life, Hospice Austin, Carson Kressley, Queer Eye, Glenn Eaddy Toy Drive, Oilcan Harry's

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