In May, when I was conferred the Versatile Blogger award from Susan at Coming East, as a condition of receiving the award, I was asked to share seven things about myself. The list generated some requests for stories about these odd factoids. I recently came across the list and realized I hadn’t delivered on my intention to do so.
The item that received the most requests (a total of two) was the statement that my husband and I accidentally crashed a private Hollywood party.
Recounting the story publicly could get me busted and banned if I ever return to Hollywood. I’ll take the chance.
To tell the story right would involve some seemingly trivial details so I’ll get those out of the way briefly. 1. I had bought a very cheap but funky looking handbag to take on the trip. 2. With a lengthy connection at the Salt Lake City airport, I followed a whim and bought a slinky black dress, for no particular occasion.
On our one free evening, I wore my hot new dress to dinner at Wolfgang Puck’s Spago restaurant in Beverly Hills. When Mr. Puck stopped at our table, I tried diplomatically to secure an invitation to the upcoming opening of his newest restaurant in Washington. He asked for my card and said he’d get us added to the invite list.
After dinner, my husband suggested we drive down Sunset Boulevard, as neither of us had ever seen it. We tooled down the Boulevard until we saw major doings. Paparazzi, spotlights, a large crowd gathered for what looked to be a press conference of some sort. We wedged our rented Ford Focus between a Maserati and Ferrari and stepped out to take a peek. Desperate Housewives star Felicity Huffman was making remarks to reporters in front of a night club. The line to get in extended to the end of the block, but somehow that didn’t quite register. My husband suggested we go in and I headed up the stairs to the entrance. Two doormen opened the doors and welcomed us in.
The bartender looked at us as if we were crazy when we tried to pay for our drinks, while shrimp was offered. When I turned around and saw Teri Hatcher, I realized we were at a private party. We put clues together and surmised that the soiree was being thrown by designer Badgley Mischka to celebrate the renewal of Hatcher’s spokesmodel contract.
Little Miss Pathologically Compliant here wanted to leave immediately because I knew we weren’t supposed to be there. As I wondered aloud how we had the doors opened to us in the first place, my husband credited my little black dress and naïve self confidence. I asked him to set down his drink and head for the door before we were discovered.
Too late. People wanted to talk. A woman approached me.
“I love your bag. Is it Prada or Isabella?”
Because I didn’t know Isabella (Fiore) from Isabelli Rossalini. I slipped my DSW special behind me and lied, “Prada.”
“Are you a designer or retailer?,” asked the boutique owner from Newport Beach. “Where are you from?”
I replied, “I’m a lobbyist from Washington, D.C.” Stupid answer, I know, but I had to make up for the lie I had just told. From here on, no more lying.
She asked, “Do you have a card?”
I replied, “Sorry, I just gave my last one to Wolfgang Puck.”
I excused myself, grabbed my husband and sprinted toward the exit.
A woman stopped us. Uh-oh. She said, “Don’t leave without your gifts,” and handed us each a gigantic bag filled with hundreds of dollars worth of Beverly Hills salon certificates, electronics, perfumes and costume jewelry.
We ran to our rental car and sped off, as I phoned our friend Nell, a Beverly Hills native whom we had seen the night before.
“You’ll never believe what we just did,” I squealed, and told her the whole story. We promised her she’d be getting the gift certificates, as we were leaving the next day.
A week later, Nell called me. A friend of hers had told her about being at the Badgley Mischka party.
Nell said, “A friend of mine was there. She said they had great gift bags.”
Her friend replied, “I wouldn’t know. They ran out before I could get one.”