"the" Mrs. Astor

Sunday, September 30, 2007

A glass of scotch, two diabolical pleasure devices, and a glitter pillbox hat. No, they don't belong to Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish (she's under house arrest again) and if we checked the bag and pockets of Baroness Seitzinger even more outlandish items would undoubtedly surface (I still have the bottle of "French perfume" she produced entitled Man Scent--it has come in handy lately). These are just a few of the props our resident members of Queen Cabaret perform with; it always makes for good theater.

I just received my Sunday call from Pimpernel; he's in Amsterdam this weekend. "I need to talk with a happy person," he said waiting for a plane back to London. That was a nice compliment and even with all the stress this town generates, I probably am. It seems the fun-loving Dutch are becoming grouchy with immigrant problems, a difficult City Hall, and a population strung out on sex and drugs. Where oh where have I seen this before? He wasn't happy with his hotel, his dinner, or the service, not to mention the clammy weather. Still, he is paid in British pounds and can afford a different capital every weekend; with the Euro at 1.45 few of us could.

Tonight's movie at Scottie's bar in Twist is Rent, a bit of a twist itself in the type of movies he's been showing. I voted for Funny Face with Audrey Hepburn, but he couldn't find it in time; we all agree that silly is best for that crowd. Periodic bouts of severe rain storms have been with us all week, but you'd never tell by the number of people crowding The Palace yesterday to watch Geraldine perform Wonder Woman; it still amazes me how much alcohol that group consumes. "Well, if they modified their drinking like me..." said one wag. "If they modified their drinking like you, they'd be dead," said another. (Thank you Auntie Mame.)

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Leopoldo was introduced to the King and Queen of The Palace and--as expected--received the blessings needed to continue in Court. It was an extravagant evening as we polished off a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue Label. The Baroness Seitzinger waltzed by pondering, "Just how do I get an H.R.H. in front of my name?" I thought, "Practise, practise, practise." My carriage has contined to whisk me between Mr. Astor's mainland estate (complete with guard dogs now bought off with my cooking) and my beachfront "cottage".

We announced today that we are expecting a child. Audible ghasps were followed by good wishes and we explained that the Pembroke Welsh Corgie I bought three years ago to buffer the expected deaths of the two old dogs was now introduced to another purebred Corgie from England and it was now a matter of time. I get the first-born male and his name will be KiKiTo.

It was a gracious weekend by all accounts; my friends were in attendance and my lover was by my side. The dire weather predicted never materialized, leaving blue skies and gyrating boys on the map; we laughed as the boys stripped to warm, sea breezes. We all like naked boys.

Captians Jeremy and Marc assured that there were to be no problems or revolts; it has been a long time since I enjoyed such order. It was like the Old Days, only better. The Palace shined like a jewel on the neck of a rich beach with Wonder Woman dancing on the sea wall, Bentleys and Roll Royces slowing up to catch a glimpse of Geraldine's famed act. There has never been a doubt that we all live a charmed existance here, hurricanes excepted, and the love we share between each other makes every day glorious.

I drifted off this week, mostly in the arms of Mr. Astor who--in nearly three months--has seldom left my side. It was not as if nothing happened this week; we always seemed to be rushing off to an event. Violent rains came in the beginning of the week and sobered us up a bit although we all now believe we have dodged the bullet again. No one, of course, mentions the "H" word. We all know that it is possible, but simply ignore it, putting on more jewels and higher wigs in an effort to thwart nature.

Carlos did wonders in throwing a disco party for the locals on Wednesday night. Nothing soothes the nerves like disco music and disco dancing. My memory conjured up the great 1985 scare in New York of Hurricane Gloria; stories of Wall Street under water were washed out by the relentless airing of "Gloria", the disco song.
Queen Cabaret showed up, always ready to lend an artistic hand to an evening.

Dr. Brad dissapointed no one as he tooled around the room with two drinks in hand.

Even the most conservative bankers will put a little outfit together on a disco night and boogie down.

Dusty Springfield, meet Whitney Houston.

A night of close friends, colorful shirts, and disco music; who could want more?

Monday, September 24, 2007

Gray skies couldn't darken the happiness of having Jeremy back home. A river of alcohol turned into a flood carrying many of us to our demise. As the room filled up with the usual mix of people intent on having a good time, Mr. Astor and I led the quadrille and--feeling a little light-headed and giddy--I even performed a zesty folk dance to Shakira, prompting a gasp from Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish and an eye roll.
It was a vibrant afternoon in the tropics and the out-pouring of old friends, was combined with...
...the addition of new.

We had all waited six months for this day. Original Seventh members join Ray's Latino Brigade, prompting Captain Marc to ask, "You must feel very protected today." I did and didn't even wear my jewel-lined corset out in public.

Everyone commented on how Marc seemed even taller than usual as he joined Jeremy to hand power back over to the original protector of The Palace and it's countess and court.

Of course, Jeremy needed a little help in being able to look Marc in the eyes. And Marc wasn't even wearing his signature, teal pumps. A great time for all.

Friday, September 21, 2007

My beloved Captain of the Guard returns to his Palace post tomorrow, and I have scheduled the official Welcome Home party for Sunday, 4 PM. The guns of the Great Southern Fleet will be stationed off the coast to fire the salute, the machine gun nests on the roof of The Palace will be oiled up for the peasants, and I will wear my finest silk tea gown to welcome him. Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish will be one step behind me (trying to hide the flask) and the old Court will take off their hats.

Within minutes, Mr. Astor and I will dash off to his mainland estate for some peace and quiet in anticipation of a very hectic weekend. It may be the last for a while.

No one needs to tell anyone that the world is upside down; it is a giant cake of no substance except for the inevitable fact that it will fall flat when the oven door is slammed shut. O.J. Simpson arrived back "home" in South Miami last night; "home in South Miami" is the preferred address of most felons and social deviants; the laws of ownership are so befitting. Last night there was presented a show for all of us to watch: Channel 7--the locally gay-owned TV network--produced a number outside O.J.'s Kendall home with drag queens serving up tea and advice. None other than The Palace's Miss Tiffany Fantasia Phillips was filmed serving up her take on the national obsession. Theater loves Circus, and Circus will die for Theater; should they go on and on.

Call me old fashioned, but there's a war going on, an economy shot to hell, government officials lying to our face, and the Chinese even wondering if they should buy any more of us. But the only thing I can think of is Miss Tiffany giving her advice on O.J. That's not healthy, but what else is there to dwell upon?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish stopped by this afternoon; her absence has been carefully noticed by all and she brushed it off with some sort of nonsense about "taking a rest" and "getting a job", by which I would suppose she meant some charity position like the head of Pie Makers for Dafur. In reality--a state which seldom exists here--she came to inquire about Jeremy's return date and how to prepare for the official state visit of The Great Northern Court.

Jeremy's return date is this coming Saturday and when asked what we should prepare for him, I couldn't help but quip, "A squadron of 21-year-old Latino cadets to salute him." We had a good giggle over that, but I assured Mrs. S-F that we had already over-ordered KettleOne for Jeremy and Glenlivet for The Countess. The rest would all come naturally.

Suddenly, a tall, bronzed boy walked in wearing just sandals and a small--very small--swim suit. He had the distinct look and air of a Brooklyn, Italian boy with black curly hair and that prominent nose; I've seen him many times, and we exchange pleasantries, but I have no idea to his name. "Is the beach crowded," I asked (it serves not just as an opening to conversation, but gives me a barometer of what to expect later).

"It's OK," he replied, as I heard Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish's cup of tea rattling in its saucer. He waltzed out with the entire room following with their eyes; he had a well-fed--in all the right places--, but appealing body.

"I keep a pot of beans on the stove for boys like that," Mamie sighed, and we giggled again.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Geraldine cracks me up. A more sincere, caring, and talented person you could never meet; every day we laugh at the silly things that pass in front of us every day. Both of us can cut an outfit without using a pattern; it's one of those things like riding a bike that you never loose. She makes the most wondrous outfits every week and Mr. Astor and I went to the Cuban restaurant, Yuca, on Saturday night to watch her perform with Queen Cabaret to a straight audience. They didn't scream, but they stood and clapped.
Like all of us, Geraldine doesn't miss the opportunity to use her "position of power" for benefit.

I often think that it would be best to leave this crazy-ass world I exist in and improve my gardening. I also know that, once you are sucked into the crazy-ass world, you can never easily climb out. Maybe with therapy or some other type of help... Yet, Mr. Astor tells me to "shush" and enjoy the show; I think that's what everyone has always told me (and photograph it along the way). It is The great Drag Quagmire.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish has been mysteriously absent for days now; I hope that anonymous note I had delivered to her handlers suggesting she had been studying "Bomb-Making For Beginners" at the library wasn't taken too seriously. She did send me to Hades this week, though. After accusing me of "picking" on her, she--with great ceremony, and with Mrs. Wilmerding (nee' Vanderbilt)--downed several cocktails and suggested that I don't announce my travel plans to the mainland so much. "Assassins, you know." "Oh," I replied, "I change my travel route every time." "There's only so many buses that go downtown," she snorted, tapped my shoulder, and left with, "NOW, we're even." Damn!

The original Mamie Stuyvesant-Fish was also a good friend of "the" Mrs. Astor, Caroline. Caroline was a strict and conservative matron while Mamie was the great trickster and did all she could to thumb her nose at the society Caroline ruled with her. This is her summer cottage in Newport, "Crossways"; like Mrs. Astor's cottage, "Beechwood", it is privately owned. Several books of the period mention that Mamie's Newport home was modest in comparison to the ones on Bellevue Avenue, a strange notion considering her banquets sat two hundred. During a severe recession in the early 1900's, Mrs. S-F threw a birthday party for her dog, invited other Newport canines, and bestowed a $10,000 diamond necklace on her pooch to the howls of the newspapers of the time. She didn't care; and, she never had to. She hated convention in a world strapped to it and continued with her gay, court jester, Henry Lehr, to tweak the noses of her stratified world. When The Grand Duke Boris was held up at the Goelet mansion, she annouced to her guests that none of than Tsar Nicholas II was arriving; two taps on the doors of the ballroom prompted all her guests to bow to the figure in the crown and robe. When they looked up it was Henry Lehr.

My Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish is sort of like that, and you can never tell what she is going to do or say, either. Eyes roll when she enters my ballroom, but so do the expectations of a bawdy story. So, I hope she manages to chew her way out of her wrist restraints again and join Mr. Astor and myself tonight.

I can't take another bumpy night, but we will all revel in the treachery of All About Eve tonight at Scottie's 10 PM movie party at Twist, upstairs in the comfort of the VIP room. "Remind me to tell you about the time I looked into the heart of an artichoke." --Margo Channing. I remember reading once that the infamous dress Davis wore as she ascended the staircase uttering the "Fasten your seatbelts. It's going to be a bumpy night." was actually made one size too big and she decided to wear it with the straps off the shoulders.

"That I should want you at all suddenly strikes me as the height of improbability." -- Addison DeWitt. After Clifton Webb, my childhood idol was George Sanders' Addison DeWitt.

"We're all busy little bees, full of stings, making honey day and night. Aren't we, honey?" --Margo Channing. A wondrous script of snips and stabs taught many a gay boy the joy of being viscous. We won't be screaming with laughter like last week, but I can hear the ooo's and ah's now.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

I was out last night with all my best friends. Thomas Barker has not been out for two weeks because of his new job with Equality Florida; together with his demands as The City's most-connected gossip columnist (he still says "entertainment columnist") he's been too busy to hobnob every day. I still do, though; it is the life blood of this island.
And, Leopoldo--Mr. Astor--told me he had been looking for someone for his three years here. He was glimmering in the set of antiqued pearl rosary I bought twenty years ago in San Juan, and I could only bask in the glow.

Scottie said yesterday, "I just don't know what we would do without our family. We are always there for each other." How true. I sincerely doubt whether anyone could successfully enter South Beach gay society without an introduction to "the family". We've spent ten years assembling a self-protective group I call the Gay Italian City State. In the Renaissance, the great city states of Italy formed an association which was very simple: An attack on one is an attack on all. I'd add: Acceptance by one is acceptance by all. It works.
In the end, you have yourself and--perhaps--the "other" to depend upon. But, waiting for you in a dark corner or a wet gutter is madness; madness is always there for you. You brush it aside sometimes and in others, embrace it like the love of your life. You worry about whether your taffeta gown is green or teal, if your Court sash is straight or slightly off, and if the eyes behind the fan belong to a boy or girl.

As my great mentor once advised, "Never fall down the steps of madness."

Friday, September 14, 2007

The telegram came late on Wednesday evening; as Leopoldo accepted it, I heard, "A cable from Transylchusetts, sir." "Oh," I sighed, "The Countess Bedelia..." I had been reposed on my divan glancing at petitions from the peasants, crumbling them, and tossing them into the fireplace, in between pressing into my personal album love notes from Mr. Astor along with the price tags of several gifts from him (amongst leaves from memorable Fall trips to New England).

"I have rented a little condo apartment at The Carlyle which is practically next door to The Palace on Ocean Drive for the week of Oct. 27th to Nov. 3rd." it read. "Just like her," I thought. "She's taking up residence just three palaces up from mine and bringing my sister, The Countess du Barry of Newport with her to shore up her legitimacy at assaulting my world." Mr. Astor, ever the sweetheart, noticed I needed a bromide with gin and danced off to get it. "Well," I mused, "Jeremy will be back by then, so the Palace Guard will once again be whipped into shape. (Captain Marc of The Poles was a loyal protector, but his appearance in green, taffeta gown on Hairspray night severely compromised his credibility.) There was no doubt that this was going to be a "production number"; to say the two of them are fussy is to say the Pope is religious.

Mr. Astor was quite excited to meet the leaders of The Northern Court; he had been in awe of the stories: du Barry's polo parties, the secret word to get into Mrs. Astor's "Beechwood", and--of course--Countess Bedelia's native dancing skills. I immediately called my broker and moved all funds in futures from oil to Glenlivit, canceled all vacations by courtiers, and took out an ad for a new food taster (the previous one passed away suddenly on Bedelia's last visit). Of course, there would be the need for banquets, gowns, and new dance steps and I was just about to faint again when Mr. Astor appeared with the drink and his soothing hands.

"Don't worry, dear," Mr. Astor assured me. "It will be a splendid Halloween, and we will all shine." He is ever the optimist. Still, The Countess has to be given credit for the amazing energy and attraction there to that she commands (not the least of which from celebrity gay men). Gay men flock to her, lesbians bow to her, and The Great Southern Court here takes its feathered hats off to her. Bring it on, Countess. She is bringing her entire court and That Pimpernel will be flying in from England.

"Mr. Astor, more gin!"

Thursday, September 13, 2007

I accepted an offer this week to be a member of the finance committee of Equality Florida, an organization battling constantly for the rights of everyone, gay or straight. Mr. Astor doesn't know it yet, but I accepted for him, too. How nice it will look on all the programs: "Mr. and Mrs. Astor of Palm Beach". Palm Beach? No, no; that's supposed to be South Beach. Oh, well; a little typo, that's all. So, we are teaming up with the unsinkable Thomas Barker to run the fund-raising here in Miami to fight the forces of evil throughout the state (and there is a whole lot of it). I figure we will all benefit if I can corral the social forces in our hands now rather than wring my hands in lament later.

On the political scene here, I was aghast to receive a fax from David Kelsey, the President of the Hotel and Restaurant Association, detailing efforts he has been fighting. If it were not so very real, it would be a comedy skit of some sort, but The Commission has actually taken under consideration the law to made DJ's and musicians (even those used in private homes) buy and "Occupational License" to work or perform. In addition, they considered limiting Lincoln Road businesses outside seats only in number to those they have inside; this is not just intrusive government, it is STUPID government (and you know my obsession with stupid people). You see, The City gets an exorbitant rent on the square footage of outdoor seating and, in a place like South Beach, no one wants to sit indoors except for the hottest of days; all the action is outside, people-watching, dog-watching, outfit-watching. David successfully sent these back to committee, but the lame-brain who brought these two issues up is an idiot, too, because the cut in City fees would be calamitous. Let's see...who is the commissioner who brought this up. A little birdie tells me it was none other that Simmy "The Slick" Cruz, Mattie Bower's well-funded-by-special-interests opponent for mayor. Simmy, didn't you take your pills that day? Who else are you going to ask to get a permit from: waiters, bartenders, perhaps the store workers on Lincoln Rd., too. Stupidity is a terrible thing to waste, Simon; why don't you join the Bush administration?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The stay over at Miami was delightful. There are many wonderful, new restaurants I am discovering and the stay at Leopoldo's was serene; it has been years since an evening of mine was spent watching TV, cooking for someone at their home (it's better for the both of us), and watching a vintage movie in bed. It was not without incident, however; bliss seldom is. At the ungodly hour of 6.50 AM I found myself leaving to make sure of a timely arrival back on the island. Like most residences, L's property was surrounded by a wall, thickets, iron gates and a particularly viscous German Shepard, named Tara (or Terror, as I called her). Tara was no problem as she "took" to me the evening before (once a dog person, you usually don't have problems there). However, L's key wouldn't unlock the formidable gate no matter how much he tried. Try, try, try; no result.

"OK," Leopoldo said, "We will have to scale the wall." "Scale WHAT?!", I shrieked. He brought up a lawn chair and jumped over the wall like an Olympian. I threw over my Saks Fifth Avenue overnight bag, mounting the chair and crawled up the wall. Had I been wearing an appropriate outfit for that hour--linen, garden culottes--things might have gone better, but I was to meet a high Court official and I was in semi-Court dress. I was sixty percent over the wall with my train on one side and my pearls on the other. Leopoldo was tugging at my left, stockinged leg with one hand on--well--my rear side, and I was looking at the German Shepard, head cocked, staring at me thinking, no doubt, "I've never see them climb in this direction." There was every chance that my frail frame would collapse into my rescuers arms, or crush him. The only thing that came to mind was: "Don't tell me what the Berlin Wall was all about."

I made it over and into freedom to tell this story.

Fortunately for me, there were no photographers. The immortal words of The Countess de Lava from "The Women" rang: "La publicité!" Unfortunately for Princess Beatrice of York, the daughter of Fergie, photographers were there to catch her departure from a London club where she rang up a $10,000 bar tab and was not looking that well-groomed. Not bad for a country at war. And, just WHAT is that stuff on her left cheek? Gobbledygook, to be sure. The only saving image is the peaceful hand gesture; fingers meeting fingers, well almost.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Since meeting Leopoldo I have cast aside my long-standing aversion to traveling to the mainland and have been enjoying a weekly lunch with him there before our return to The Beach. Today I am about to leave again, but it marks a milestone; tonight I am doing the unthinkable and staying over night on the mainland with him. Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish and Mrs. Wilmerding (nee' Vanderbilt) gasped in unison when I told them as they stopped by after a ladies' breakfast today. "You'll never come back alive; we were wondering what that armored stagecoach was doing out front," exclaimed Mrs. S-F, although it was all in jest as her cohort in crime this morning, Mrs. W (nee'V) lives just a half mile away in the chic Bell Meade area of Biscayne Blvd.
Another evolution; tomorrow the revolution.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Mounting tensions, treachery, and plots at Court allowed me to remove myself from the fray, and I spent an extraordinary weekend with Mr. Astor. He was a little under the weather on Friday, but I demonstrated that even a women of my social magnitude could whip up a cozy dinner of BBQ'd steak, mashed potatoes, and cole slaw for a hearty late afternoon meal. He had brought me a wonderful present: a satchel from a chic store in Bal Harbour, and I treated him right. (The great thing about being in love with a man rather than a boy is that you don't have to teach them anything; they know it already.)

Apart from the hilarious Serial Mom movie party last night, we saw--earlier in the afternoon--one of the funniest movies I've ever seen: Death At A Funeral. Only the British can make a movie like that. It's been a long time since I've heard a huge audience scream with laughter, and Leopoldo and I continued to recount the scenes and laugh the rest of the day.
Like many people of delicate taste, we sort refuge in Ditmar's Austrian pleasure parlour, D-Bar. In addition to the the maracas, there were conga lines, a jazz trumpeter, and the usual array of drunken socialites.
After Serial Mom, we all gathered at Scottie's bar for the usual cocktails and chatter. Ebony Excell suddenly attached herself to Mr. Astor and I wondered if she knew we had been listening to Alberta Hunter's "You Can't Tell The Difference After Dark" earlier in the day. Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish never made good on her threat to show up at the movie; presumably her handlers had made good use of that blow dart I had imported from South Africa and put a halt to her charge out the door of her mansion at Fourth and Ocean. Connie Chung had also supplied them with a quilted and elegantly embroidered frock that turned into a straight jacket. Serves Mrs. S-F right for touching Mr. Astor's shoulder the other day and proclaiming that she was measuring for pagoda sleeves; everyone knows pagoda sleeves have never come back!

Wasn't it General MacArthur who said, "Old showgirls never die, the just linger on."? Poor Andy; first the DUI and now this.

And, of course, there is Leopoldo--eight weeks later--by my side. I have to keep pinching myself about him. My tall, dark, handsome Latin lover has become my inseparable companion; a man who never went out much has fallen into the clutches of a social monster. He continues to shower lavish gifts upon me, offers me sane advice, and laughs at the same nonsense I laugh at. He is adored at Court by even the most evil and diabolical members; he has charmed the uncharmable and asked for my hand in marriage. Heady stuff for a cynical battle axe like me. I keep pinching, but I'm not asleep.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Serial Mom will be shown by Scottie Sunday night at 10 PM upstairs at Twist. Perhaps the last of the great John Waters' films, it reinforced the long-held idea I grew up with: You do not wear white shoes after Labor Day. (I know Leopoldo is planning to wear them, though, and I have threatened to bring a phone.) Serial Mom also brought a whole new meaning to the words, Pussy Willow and was surely one of the best put-downs of the middle class Waters so loves poking fun of. Every time I mentioned the movie this week it brought a smile to a face, a pussy face.

Friday, September 07, 2007

I walked down from my private apartments in The Palace to see Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish with her hand on Mr. Astor's shoulder. I paused and glared, and she put both hands on her hips positioning herself in a socially combative stage; it was what I might expect a great, white bull to look like when I entered the arena. "Tremors I can put up with," she snorted, "But, 'a lady of sizable social weight' is way too much". I assured the grand dame that it was all in good humor, and she agreed to a settlement of fourteen "lemonades" (it's amazing what white people settle for these days). We talked about how the social life will now just start again, when I somehow don't remember it ending; Leopoldo was always stroking my hand in her presence to avoid any distress. She talked of the great costumes to come this Halloween, and I had to remind her that her last one had her in the back of a pick-up truck on a bale of hay (which is so aristocratic; in the late eighteen century ladies of breeding dressed as chambermaids for fancy dress balls). Our costume ideas brought a gasp from the great lady, but that secret is not to be made public, yet.

Leaving, we saw a rather trashy white girl in black stilettos walking across Thirteenth Street at The Cardozo. She was carefully raising one foot, putting it down with balance, shifting her unfortunate weight, and doing the same with the other. I said--perhaps too loudly--"Oh, dear; I don't think she will make it." And, the woman of a black couple crossing against her shouted, "No, baby, she's just learning to walk."

It topped off our afternoon.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Society and elegance returned to South Beach after the Labour Day crowd was squirreled back to their woodlands. Chastised as I might have been by the original wayward countess herself, Bedelia, I allowed the barbarians to leave with their wallets emptied rather tham my looking for a weekend retreat in their rancid, mountain villages, as she does. But, who am I to judge...

Leading society figures like Mrs. Stuyvesant-Fish returned to the island. She had sort refuge in Los Angeles and reliable sources told me that the moment her jeweled slipper hit the tarmac a sizable tremor was registered throughout the city. She is a lady of sizable social weight. Even though the same sources reported that the city residents chased her with torches and pitchforks to the airport as she "departed with grace", she showed up back here at The Palace boldly announcing she was back to socially challenge me at every point. Her lady-in-waiting actually offered me a real apple from California; I gave it to my worse enemy.

Otherwise, life is coming back to The Beach, the weather is hot, but great, and no one--NO ONE--mentions the "H" word. It's just like there's no war or famine or government failure...the "H" work doesn't exist. In fact, Carlos and I are devoting out time to a serious project: A Come As You Are party (or what you think you are). In troubled times the human mind can not be allowed to be focused on anything not silly. That's dangerous for everyone.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

By Labor day (or as Mikevil likes to write, Labour Day) as hell had broken loose on The Beach. It was hot, it was packed, it had more nearly-naked boys than a high school locker room and there was nothing to do but throw the doors open to the rabble. All I can say is rabble can be fun under the right circumstances. Social luminaries, like Edison Farrow, came to celebrate the three year anniversary of Miss Tiffany Fantasia Phillip's work with The Palace.
Tiffany even called me up to thank me for hiring her two years ago to host the weekend. All I could do was to thank her; she has brought so much to the plate.

Since all the members of proper society had fled the town for the weekend, I had no choice but to open The Palace to the masses. At first, I remained as aloof as Queen Elizabeth at a factory opening, but soon found it rather fun and invigorating. I am not ashamed to say that I was actually shaking my bustle on the dance floor with many of these young scoundrels.

To my horror I had to let The Mob into the famous ballroom; there was no stopping them, fueled as they were by booze and visions of sex. Sometimes it is best to play along and survive.

The ravishingly handsome Captain Marc of The Poles is now all that stood between me and The Mob, but he struck up a close relationship with the Mata Hari of South Beach. I am suspect, now.

There no lack of enthusiasm on the part of the boys; the extra logs we threw in the fireplace made it hot enough for shirts to come off. I always keep some logs in my office.

I witnessed the night start to unravel like a piece of cheap fabric in a windstorm. Old, aristocratic figures were mixing with young ruffians, usually not an unwelcome occurrence with those of us in Court, but there was no doubt things were getting out of hand.

Dances certainly never taught to me in the three years I spent in ballroom dance classes in middle school started to take form, and I started to take note of the exits.

By midnight there was no doubt in mind that the crowd was turning dangerous.

In the end, I had to employ Tiffany for a late number to keep the riff-raff at bay while Mr. Astor and I slipped out the side door of Ditmar's bar disguised an Austrian parlor maid and butler. We made it to the waiting carriage, and I took the pearls out; we weren't arriving back at Le Petit Maison to be spied upon dressed a servants by the neighbors. They see enough already.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Leopoldo and I stepped out last night to celebrate seven weeks since meeting and spending nearly constant time with each other. Pesky photographers were everywhere; at The Palace I maintain some control over them, but we are fair game outside.

Seven weeks ago today I found myself arriving very late to The Palace and raced, skirt in hand, up the grand staircase to the new security guard, Ruben. "Is everything OK? Do you need anything?", I asked, accidentally brushing into a man sitting by him. I begged his pardon and he stood up, took my hand with his right, and put his left on top of mine and introduced himself; he was a friend of Ruben's who had not been to The Palace in five months. I wonder every day just how being late or taking a different turn can change your life forever.

I don't remember much other than looking into his piercing, brown eyes; later he would tell me he was staring at my blue-grey eyes. I suggested we go to the Hapsburg elegance of Ditmar's bar in back and we tried to make our way through the crowd. Over a half hour later, we arrived and Leopoldo said, "That was amazing". I asked, "What was?" He replied, "You listened to everyone who approached you and either gave them advice or complimented them. They all went away happy; few people can do that." I told him that, apart from that probably being my nature, it was sort of my job. Days later, he would tell me that what impressed him the most was that--despite everything going on--I never left his side. That was true; why would I? Weeks later, we are constantly by each other's side and every day I'm awakened by the same, soft, soothing voice of Leopoldo saying, "Good morning, baby." It is a dream come true.

As befits the changing times, it was Leopoldo who garnered all the attention as we made our way to the back. I was thinking of my favorite Lypsinka T-shirt of her image and the title, "Fame Can Be Poison".

I don't know what some people smoke these days to get by, but a salted pretzel is just a little too much. What happened to good, old-fashioned paint thinner? Geraldine was truly moved today when I showed her all the comments and emails in response to the Katy K Shirt story. We looked at each other in amazement about how a piece of work like that made the rounds and came back to the family.
Today, I recieved the following message from Le Comte La Mot: "Hope the rest of the weekend and week goes well for you and Leopold (I'm glad you found someone that takes care of you for a change)...." Indeed.