David Patrick Columbia, beloved confidante to heiresses and socialites and proprietor of New York Social Diary, would like the media to get a few things straight about Casey Johnson. He also knows all about Casey's final days, the details of which he shared today on his website. It's compelling stuff:
Big news from David Patrick Columbia today: The society chronicler and proprietor of New York Social Diary reports that he's now using Facebook and Twitter! "Twitter. I couldn't think of what to write. I'm a person who is rarely without a thought or consideration in his head, no matter where I am, no matter where I go. Yet with that little dumb distraction of a cell phone screen before me, I couldn't think of a damned thing to Twitter. Or Tweet." So what did he come up with? "Having Skippy's creamy peanut butter on an English muffin." This is going to be big. So please follow him here and please do it now. [NYSD]
Topshop hosted a private dinner at Balthazar last night to celebrate the opening of its new store in Soho. Attendees included Karolina Kurkova and Georgina Chapman (left), Harvey Weinstein, Jay-Z, Jimmy Fallon and Nancy Juvonen, Zach Braff, Amy Sacco, Mark Ronson, Ann Dexter-Jones, Annabelle Dexter-Jones, Andrew Saffir, Theodora Richards, Steve Stoute, Cathy Horyn, Stefano Tonchi, Sally Singer, Amy Astley, Eva Amurri, Greg K., Leigh Lezark, Jessica Joffe, Michelle Trachtenberg, Taylor Momsen, Le Call, Jonathan Saunders, Sue Stemp, Steven Kolb, Christopher Kane, Brent Bolthouse, Emily Mortimer, Emma Roberts, Cecilia Dean, Meredith Melling Burke, Nikolai Fraiture, Santigold, Steve Aoki, Benny Shabtai, Michelle Monaghan, and Topshop's very own Sir Philip Green, along with his wife Tina and daughter Chloe. [PMc, Wireimage, Getty, Paper]
The Museum of the City of New York's Director’s Council held its annual Winter Ball last night. Among the 600 attendees at the Versace-sponsored event were Steve and Christine Schwarzman, Patricia Duff, Allison and Peter Rockefeller, Shoshanna Lonstein Gruss (left), Andrew Rosen, Wilbur and Hilary Geary Ross, Rachel and Ara Hovnanian, Nicole Miller and Kim Taipale, Woody Johnson and Suzanne Ircha, Meredith Melling Burke, Dennis Basso, Valesca Guerrand Hermès, Amanda Cutter Brooks, Helen Lee Schifter, Celerie Kemble, Cristina Cuomo, Sylvester and Gillian Miniter, Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos, Marjorie Gubelmann, Cynthia Lufkin and Dan Lufkin, Debbie Bancroft, Heather Mnuchin, Jennifer Creel, Zani Gugelmann, John Demsey, Jonathan and Somers White Farkas, Mark Gilbertson, Alexandra Lebenthal and Jay Diamond, Byrdie Bell, Allison Brokaw, Peter and Jamee Gregory, Geoffrey Bradfield, Antony Todd, Serena Boardman, Tatiana and Campion Platt, Maggie Betts, Johannes Huebl and Olivia Palermo, Bronson Van Wyck, Douglas Hannant, Karen Duffy, Jack Bryan, Brian Reyes, Yigal Azrouel, and Amy Fine Collins. [PMc, NYSD, MS, WWD, GoaG]
GQ held its second annual "Best New Menswear Designer in America" competition last night in conjunction witht he CFDA. Finalists like Andre "3000" Benjamin, David Mullen, Alex Carleton, Robert Geller, Sam Shipley, Jeff Halmos, and Yigal Azrouel were joined by guests like Tommy Hilfiger, Fern Mallis (left), Thom Browne, Jim Nelson, Kelly Cutrone, Phillip Lim, Derek Lam, Peter Som, Rory Tahari, Chase Crawford, Steven Kolb, Ally Hilfiger, Fonzworth Bentley, David Chu, Ryan Leslie, David Lauren, Katie Lee Joel, Glenn O'Brien, Steven Alan, Calvin Klein mens creative director Italo Zucchelli, GQ publisher Peter Hunsinger, and last year's winner, Daiki Suzuki. [PMc, NYO, FWD]
Olivia Palermo, the tonged-haired, copiously-kohl-rimmed 22-year-old whose turn on The City has showcased at least ten gradations of bitchface, has achieved the kind of fame that every aspiring social with narcissistic personality disorder dreams of: According to the Post, she's the most-searched name on New York Social Diary and the New York Observer's site (oh, and look where she is here), she's "rumored" (by whom? Her publicist?) to be the model for Gossip Girl's Blair Waldorf, and all the other attention-seeking party girls must be, like, sooo jealous of her.
Society chronicler David Patrick Columbia can't quite put his finger on it. Something is clearly different about Barack Obama. But what is it? He's just not sure! "I don't know if it's me, but he doesn't look like any other Presidents in memory. First of all he looks like a kid (although a mature one). That's probably because he's wiry. And he looks more like a college lecturer than a man who’s been wheeling and dealing among the wheelers and dealers of backroom politics." Yea, and he's also black. Try saying it aloud a few times. You'll get the hang of it eventually! [NYSD]
Did you know that a new MTV series, The City, debuted on Monday? Need to get up to speed on this exciting TV milestone and its significance for kids today? Thankfully, esteemed social chronicler David Patrick Columbia has popped his reality TV cherry and brought us a lengthy exegesis on Whitney Port and Olivia Palermo's tragic little show. "It's kinda like a soap opera looking for a plot," opines DPC sagely, "but don't let that worry you." Well, we'll try not to! What else? Oh yes, of course: Olivia, hitherto just another pretty face popping up on NYSD's party pictures, is "like an honest to god movie star," and "the biggest glamour-puss" onscreen. Gosh, this will almost—no, completely!—make up for the fact that according to everyone else, she revealed a unique talent for being unconvincing and repellent in the same moment. [NYSD]
David Patrick Columbia comes through in a big way today: The social chronicler managed to get his hands on a photo of Bernie Madoff watching TV in his living room last night! The pic was taken at 9pm—his evening curfew is 7pm—so Madoff didn't have any choice but to be home. But what was he watching? The only thing spookier than the sight of New York's most hated man parked in front of the TV putting pretzels in his mouth is the thought that he might have watching himself on television, too.
Adrian Grenier and Jessica Stam hosted Scott Harrison's third annual Charity: Water benefit last night at the Metropolitan Pavillion. Attendees at the event included Richie Rich, Olivia Palermo, Whitney Port, Byrdie Bell, Andrew Saffir and Daniel Benedict, Rocco DiSpirito, Jenna Elfman, Emma Snowdon-Jones, Jamison Ernest, Cee-Lo, and models Larissa Bond and Masha Rudenko. [PMc, Wireimage, GoaG]
It looks like David Patrick Columbia is in a bit of hot water. In his column this morning, the social diarist suggested that the real estate brokerage firms Corcoran and Edward Lee Cave were both shutting down. Did DPC just break the biggest story of his life? Maybe not: "It's all nonsense," Corcoran's Pam Liebman tells the Observer. "There's not an ounce of truth to it. Not an ounce of truth to it. And we're going to have our attorneys do something about it." As for Edward Lee Cave's eponymous firm, the real estate vet says there may be some changes to the "corporate structure," but he denies he's closing up shop. [NYO]
Silda Wall Spitzer's father-in-law will appear in court today and the prostitute who destroyed her husband's career will be all over TV this weekend now that her interview with Diane Sawyer will air tonight on 20/20. What has the wife of the former governor been up to recently, you ask? She hasn't exactly been in hiding. Yesterday, David Patrick Columbia hosted a luncheon at the 21 Club with Silda and a bunch of socialites to drum up support for Silda's non-profit group, Children For Children. And despite everything that's going on, she's doing just fine. "The Spitzer family is together and riding the waves we call life," reports Columbia. [NYSD]
David Patrick Columbia bumped into Upper East Side real estate queen Sharon Baum on Madison Avenue yesterday—her green, chauffeur-driven Rolls with a "SOLD 1" license plate makes her hard to miss—and asked the one-time girlfriend of Michael Bloomberg if the real estate market was as bad as some have suggested. Baum said one of the indicators is how business is faring at her nail salon. "Her manicurist told her that business was steady in the in the manicure department," but business is "way up" for pedicures as well as for "corns and bunions," since people are walking more to save their money." [NYSD]
If you spend your days obssessing about socialites, how on earth can you be expected to find the time to understand the mess on Wall Street? You can't, which is why David Patrick Columbia's in such a confused state today: "Unfortunately the matters at hand are so complex and the solutions are so elusive as to seem impossible, that they are hard to grasp even when someone explains... A meltdown. Is that anything like a bad Tuna Melt?" Maybe the financier husband of a socialite could take David to lunch at Michael's to explain? [NYSD]
You think the people who have lost their jobs and watched their 401(k) accounts disappear have it rough? Tell that to Muffie Potter Aston and Debbie Bancroft. They're lucky to be alive! At the New Yorkers For Children Benefit last night, reports David Patrick Columbia, a passerby stumbled and "a glass of champagne suddenly flipped over and splashed all over Bancroft and Aston." And, DPC points out, they were wearing brand-new designer dresses, too. But just so you know, Columbia is very concerned about the crisis on Wall Street: "For those of us who have been intense students of the unfolding financials for several years now, it is something to behold." [NYSD]
Frank Bruni's takedown of Michael's last week is the gift that keeps on giving. Following up on his interview with the Observer yesterday, today David Patrick Columbia offers up a few more thoughts on the media hotspot on New York Social Diary, sharing a few details on his eating habits, because you know that's what you've been waiting for: "I am not a gourmand although I have a large and ongoing appetite. However, unless something is giving me attitude when I'm eating it, I tend to like what I am eating when ordered in a restaurant. Occasionally at one restaurant or another, I’ll have something that speaks to me, sings to me, but otherwise I am not persnickety. I rarely go to a restaurant for the food, but for the company." And there you have it. [NYSD]
Lots of people are coming to the defense of Michael's, the media hangout that was subjected to a bruising review by Frank Bruni in the Times last week. Caroline Bankoff of the Observer chatted with David Patrick Columbia who says he found the review "ridiculous" and thought Frank Bruni was being excessively "bitchy." Elderly gossip Liz Smith (pictured here with Michael's owner, Michael McCarty) observed that no one goes there for the food, but that she's fond of the place for the "greeting" she receives and the "physical situation," whatever that means.
If there's one thing that's entertaining, it's fights over who is and who isn't a real member of New York "society." (If you have to ask, you probably aren't.) Sycophantic social-scene chronicler David Patrick Columbia slammed the Real Housewives of NYC ladies as nouveau riche on his New York Social Diary: "As far as the Society angle goes, these girls are not Society. An expensive apartment, a limo and a house in the Hamptons does not society make." They lack the breeding that makes you a society girl: "These girls are all spawns of the subPrime world that is now imploding around us." He especially dislikes LuAnn, the lady married to a European count:
David Patrick Columbia is not much of a fan of Bravo's Real Housewives of New York, the show that will be returning for a second season in 2009 with a new cast member, Kelly Killoren Bensimon. First off, Columbia would like to make it abundantly clear that these women are not actually part of the city's society scene: "As far as the Society angle goes, these girls are not Society. An expensive apartment, a limo and a house in the Hamptons does not society make. Those accoutrement won't hurt if that's what you're looking for; but they also won't help. These girls are all spawns of the subPrime world that is now imploding around us," writes DPC on his site today. And he reserves a little extra bitchiness for LuAnn, the cast member who felt the need to mention that her husband is a count about every four minutes: "She may be sophisticated, married as long as she has been, but the patina of a European 'countess' is not there." Yes, you do sort of undermine the whole countess thing when you mention in the same sentence that you're a former "LPN," or licensed practical nurse.