Barry Diller turns 68 today. Christie Brinkley is turning 56 (not that she looks it). Former New York Post gossip columnist (and current wowowow.com contributor) Liz Smith is celebrating her 87th birthday. Colombia's most famous cultural export, Shakira, is turning 33 today. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas is 58. Broadway vet Elaine Stritch is turning 85. Food Network host Ina Garten is 62. Marissa Jaret Winokur (of Hairspray fame) turns 37. And Duane Chapman, who you probably know as "Dog the Bounty Hunter," turns 57 today.
Most magazine editors spend their days discussing story ideas with writers and editors, reviewing copy, and deciding what pieces will appear in upcoming issues. Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter? He does that, too, but the part-time restaurateur also carves out a chunk of time every day to tend to the "daily process of populating the dining room" at Monkey Bar, a "choreography" he performs in conjunction with an associate editor at the magazine. (So, yes, while Condé Nast is currently laying off staffers, it's also pays one to manage the seating chart for Carter's little side project.) So how does Carter go about performing this pleasureless ("I'm like the guy with the sandbags") and clearly unhealthy task, one that's especially challenging since so many people want a reservation, the restaurant has been reduced to only accepting table requests by email?
What do Barbara Walters, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Cosby, Anna Wintour, André Leon Talley, Katie Couric, Diane Sawyer, Naomi Campbell, Liam Neeson, Sheila Nevins, Liz Smith and Cindy Adams have in common? They all go to the same podiatric surgeon, Dr. Suzanne Levine, according to the Observer. But you probably guessed that, didn't you? Levine reports she's busy these days getting fashionista feet ready for spring with injections of Botox or Juvederm. (She also has "foot facial" that she offers for $225.) As for which one of her boldfaced patients is pictured above, you can click on the "More" for the answer, if you're interested.
The Savannah College of Art and Design held its Style Etoile Awards at the James Cohan Gallery on Monday night. The evening's honorees included Russell Simmons, Amanda Burden, Cornelia Guest, Robin Givhan, and William Ivey Long (left), and attendees at the event included Cynthia Rowley, Agnes Gund, Michael Fink, Yigal Azrouël, Mario Buatta, Bobby Zarem, music exec Michael Mauldin and his wife Judy, producer Tom Fontana, SCAD president Paula Wallace, Ann Slater, designer Lars Nilsson, and Russell's brother and girlfriend—Danny Simmons and Julie Henderson. [PMc, Wireimage, WWD, NYSD]
Valentino and Vogue co-hosted a cocktail party to benefit New Yorkers For Children at Valentino's Madison Avenue store last night. Guests included Fabiola Beracasa and Erin Fetherston (left), Fern Mallis, Tinsley Mortimer, Valesca Guerrand-Hermès, Maggie Betts, Paul Sevigny, Bebe Neuwirth, Jennifer Creel, Selita Ebanks, Alina Cho, Kate Schelter, Antony Todd, Tatiana Platt, Kevin Liles, Denise Wohl, Di Petroff, Felicia Taylor, Erica and Geraldo Rivera, Sylvester and Gillian Miniter, Dori Cooperman, Maggie Rizer, Allison Sarofim, Lydia Fenet, Vanessa von Bismarck, Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos, Susan Shin, Tracy Stern, Melissa Berkelhammer, Stephanie LaCava, and, yes, "Real Housewife" Alex McCord and her husband Simon van Kempen. [PMc, Wireimage, VF, SF]
Yesterday it was revealed that the Post had decided to part ways with longtime gossip Liz Smith. Her last column will appear in the paper tomorrow. But before she heads out the door, you can have a listen to the voicemail that greeted callers when the 86-year-old was running around town hunting down juicy bits of gossip (or, say, having long lunches with her pals). It's our farewell salute to an industry legend. Best of luck, Liz, and thanks for the memories. [Previous voicemails]
The Post is dropping gossip columnist Liz Smith. The reason? The economy, naturally. "Like so many other newspapers around the nation, we are buffeted by unprecedented economic gales," Col Allan, the Post's editor, explained in a letter to Smith earlier this month when he informed her that the paper had decided not to renew her $125,000-a-year contract. But if you're thinking the 86-year-old gossip is planning to retire her quill pen, think again! Smith says she'll continue turning out a column five days a week for syndication to other newspapers, she'll be penning a twice-a-week column for Daily Variety, and she's also signed on as a contributing editor of Parade magazine. Oh, and she'll be contributing to wowOwow, the website for elderly women that she co-founded last year, where, she says, she's looking forward to posting scoops "free from the constraints of newspaper deadlines." [NYT]
Peggy Siegal invited a media-heavy crowd to the Oak Room last night to watch the Super Bowl. Sports Illustrated editor Terry McDonell was in attendance (apparently, budget cuts prevented him from flying to Tampa in person); and some folks, such as former HarperCollins chief Jane Friedman, left, even donned 3-D glasses to fully appreciate the commercials. Others on hand for the festivities: Richard Johnson, Ron Perelman, Dan Abrams, Dave Zinczenko, Joanne Lipman, Charlie Rose, George Rush, Richard Meier, Cece Cord, Kate Betts, Gay Talese, Rocco DiSpirito, Chuck Scarborough, Francine LeFrak, Andrew and Nancy Jarecki, Ron Delsener, Ken Auletta, Larry Gagosian, Lewis Lapham, Steve Kroft, Lloyd Grove, Morgan Entrekin, Ann Dexter-Jones, Harry Smith, Liz Smith, Cynthia McFadden, and Felicia Taylor. [PMc, NYO, GoaG, Fox 411]