April 14, 2024 The Best Source of News, Culture, Lifestyle for Culver City, Mar Vista, Del Rey, Palms and West Los Angeles

Around Town

The Book Party of the Season

“John McCain is the Trojan horse of the Right. I’m Greek and I find Trojan horses troubling,†said Arianna Huffington, speaking about her new book Right is Wrong, in the exquisite gardens of Lynda and Stewart Resnick. “I first met Lynda when I was having dinner at Joan Didion’s house and I was writing my biography of Maria Callas. We became such good friends that she’s the godmother to my daughter, Isabella.â€

Arianna was introduced by her hostess, the smashing-in-blue taffeta-clad Lynda Resnick, who said, “Arianna’s book should be required reading!†Arianna was being congratulated by the immediate western world of power brokers, philanthropists and concerned citizens. People were so busy talking politics that they barely had time to enjoy the puff pastry with caramelized onions or sun-dried tomato tarts. What was being consumed at a high rate was PomWonderful, the fast-selling pomegranate juice product owned by the Resnicks as part of their empire which includes FIJI Water, Teleflora and, until 2006, the Franklin Mint. Lynda and Stewart are incredibly generous and caring citizens, whose donations make Los Angeles and the world a better place.

I asked guests what they thought the biggest problem facing Los Angeles was today…

Sharon Davis
, former first lady of California who was looking particularly blonde and beautiful: “It’s the infrastructure and the schools. We have a lack of funding. Voters are being sold a bill of goods that they are going to have to pay for things with no hard cuts in programs and services. It’s all connected.â€

Bill Maher,
host of HBO’s Real Time: It’s the paparazzi. First they were just at Spago. Now they even go to Norm’s.â€
Stewart Resnick, our host, and chair of Roll International: “Los Angeles has the same problems as America. We focus on the short term, when we should be focusing on the long-term. No one sacrifices for the long-term. Our infrastructure is decrepit.â€

Army Archerd
, Daily Variety legend: “Living on the Wilshire corridor. It’s always disrupted by construction.â€

Laurie David
, environmental activist: “The air pollution in China is L.A.’s biggest problem. It all ends up in L.A. They build one power plant a week over there.â€

Edie Baskin
, celebrated photographer: “The environment, education and crime. I can’t name just one.â€

Cynthia Sikes
, actress and activist: “Education. It is the root of all our problems.â€

Irena Medavoy
, activist, California Finance Chair for Obama: “We don’t have enough police. The traffic is also a bad situation, but we really, really need more police on the street.â€

Vicki Iovine
, author: “The environment.â€

Wendy Goldberg
, founder of TEAM Safety: “Earthquakes. We will have one measuring between seven and eight within the next 30 years. There will be 1,600 fires along the San Andreas fault alone. TEAM Safety must be ready.â€

Of course the true “highlight†of the night was the discussion of the new Louis Vuitton “hooker shoe†that occurred between Irena Medavoy (the wearer) and Cynthia Sikes (the admirer). “Take a look at that heel. You see the notch? That’s so they don’t trip over curbs.†I think she was joking, but if you want that heel it’s called “After Dark.â€

Mr. Chow Still Rocks
Then it was off to Mr. Chow for more celebration. That restaurant never seems to be affected by any economic ups and downs. It is always jammed, and a party every night. Those “American Idol Winners†Ruben Studdard and Fantastia Barino and their groups were out in force, along with Westsiders Danielle Allman Del, nutritionist to the stars Carrie Wiatt, Alexandra Dwek, Donna Antebi, and Joyce Adar. Many of them are off to the south of France for the summer.

The Secret Sex Toy Party
Yes, you read it right. There is a store called Kiki de Montparnasse on Melrose. Think of it as the “Chanel of the dark side.†Angelina Jolie bought them out a few months ago and now look what state she’s in! Going to Kiki’s is like entering a modern silken boudoir with models to guide you into their gorgeous lingerie as well as give you information on their toys. One “toy,†a black leather sloping bench with stirrups and reins attached is $13,000. Kiki gives weekly “dinner parties†in their courtyard, catered, with live music and a show. They are also open until the wee hours, and if you’re a regular customer and you call at 1a.m. (let’s say) because your man or woman wants to try on anything, they stay open for you and even supply the music and candles. I’m NOT kidding.

Editor’s Note: We are thrilled to welcome Sue Cameron, formerly a columnist with 213 and the Hollywood Reporter, to the Westside Today team. She will be writing a column monthly, covering people, places and things of interest. Send any question or comment to suearoundtown@sbcglobal.net

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