Behind-the-Scenes at a Polly Pepper-style Party
Pasadena, California--Attended the most festive Christmas dinner party ever last night. First of all, my hostess (who puts Polly Pepper to shame in hostess with the mostest category!) is one of those amazing and talented people who do everything extraordinarily well (she would modestly disagree).
Not only is she a brilliant actress (you know her, but I don’t want to brag about my nearest and dearest.), but she’s also one of the most intelligent among my coterie. She’s equally gifted as a sculptor. I have and treasure a few of her pieces. Add master chef and daring adventurer to her list of amazing attributes.
As a matter of fact, earlier this month she was in Antarctica! ANTARCTICA!!! Who the hell does that? I mean, I definitely want to, but she actually did it! Yeah, this is a woman whose world travels make me incredibly envious! Last year I sent her an email about one thing or another and her response was, “Hi Dear. I’m in Hanoi. Will get back to you when I return.” Ha! I really adore this woman and want to travel in her footsteps.
As for her culinary skills … OMG! She deserves about a dozen Michelin Stars.Everyone else at the table (8 of us) was greatly accomplished in their own right. Let’s see, there was another glamorous Broadway/film/TV actress/singer who currently has a popular national commercial running. She’s been in my life for decades and I wouldn’t want to be on this planet without her! She’s just one of those extraordinary and resilient souls who both intimidates me and garners wonder, reverence, and respect. I don’t think anyone has ever seen her wear the same outfit twice. Charisma and charm are words invented to describe her.Then there’s the oh-so-bright and talented dancer (she was especially popular when TV variety shows reigned on the networks—and she completes the New York Times crossword every day. I can only do Monday and Tuesday. After that, I’m a total vocabulary idiot!)
Her husband is a cool guy who used to bring you The Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade each year. Again, no names. Tee-hee. But they’re all swell people.Another fantastic couple … he’s a well-respected attorney-turned-songwriter/performer. Love, love, love, his wife, too. They have “perfect” and accomplished adult children and a bazillion grandchildren. They’re as attractive on the outside as they are on the inside. Not fair!I was especially happy that another dear friend, whose very darling wife died this year, was able to be with us. A very great loss and a big void in our lives. Of course, we don’t talk politics at dinner. Hell, no! We’re too civilized. Ha! Yikes! What a mess the country appears to be in. But a dinner with these particular people helps to ease the sadness and anger that we (most of us) all feel. Naturally, among gifted Hollywood/Broadway types, the subject of the year’s films came up. While all were praising, “A Star is Born,” I looked around for an escape. However, I cannot tell a lie, and when the question (it was more of a statement) of how much I must have loved the movie was posed, I shrugged and shook my head. Honestly, I was completely disappointed in that film! Yes, of course Lady Gaga was fantastic! Who doesn’t love her? And Bradley Cooper proved himself to be a talented director. But I was emotionally unmoved by the story. I did not shed a tear during the (spoiler alert) suicide scene. Nope. I’m heartless. Ha!
My problem: I revere the Judy Garland/James Mason version from 1954. Why remake a completely perfectmovie? My brilliant Barbra failed (and I’m a super huge fan of her) with her 1976 remake. And as far as I’m concerned this latest incarnation was unable to not only improve on the story but even to live up to the George Cukor-directed masterpiece. Sorry. Oh, I did like it when Bradley Cooper’s character Jackson Maine peed himself in the music awards scene. Ha! Surely, it will win a bunch of Oscars. And I’m probably completely wrong about the merits of the movie. I remember when I worked on “The Princess Diaries” at Disney years ago. After attending an early screening at the studio I said to someone, “This Anne Hathaway person? Meh! This’ll probably be her last film.” Otherwise, I’m neverw rong