Happy Birthday Curtis Sliwa!

Those of you old enough to remember the Guardian Angels, know my hero and sort of pal Curtis Sliwa, who is their founder. He was known for his ubiquitous red beret, his glamorous ex-wife Lisa and his grass roots movement to end violence in NYC, especially on the subways. He was nearly murdered by John Gotti, son of THE John Gotti – Gotti and his cohorts kidnapped him, threw him in a taxi and shot him.

Of late, he is known for the “Curtis and Kuby” show and his Guardian Angels has grown from 13 members to thousands in chapters all over the world.

Growing up in New York City during the heyday of crime, Son of Sam, the mob, riots, Bernie Goetz, looting during brownouts, I have only the greatest admiration for the man.

Happy Birthday, Curtis. You make the world a better place. Eat a pickle, man.

I love Glenn Sacks – and I want you all to read this lively discourse.

Glenn Sacks is a wonderfully prolific author, blogger and commentator on the rights of men and families. Some of his blog commenters like to attack me about statistics and such and that’s cool – the blogosphere is a weird neighborhood and the issues get lost. What matters is that I like Glenn’s work and some people find that mystifying.

That said, his recent entry – guest blogged by Pierce Harlan – about Arkansas wanting to do away with the statute of limitations on rape is a good one. Semantics aside (acquaintance rape versus, um, “real” or stranger rape with DNA), go to the comments section for the lively discourse between Pierce and Georgia Girl. Good stuff.

My own issue of course, is that without the lack of a SOL on rape in Virginia, we wouldn’t have gotten our guy. Clearly, he remembered it as he contacted me with the date and details. Gee, thanks. And I DID remember every detail possible about it, 22 years later, not that that matters unless you must testify, which I did. No DNA. It seems to me we call all agree on one thing: there should be sanctions for those who falsely accuse. That said, there are not millions of falsely accused “rapists” behind bars. I would posit that there are more rapists walking around free because, wait for it – VERY FEW MEN OR WOMEN WHO HAVE BEEN RAPED EVER REPORT IT because the system is just too damn hard on the (real) victims.


RIP, “Quint”

The shark world, Long Island and the movie world has lost a legend. Frank Mundus< Montauk's cantankerous favorite son and inspiration for the character of Quint in "Jaws" has died. I think he was right to be cranky with Peter Benchley, who never acknowledged that Mundus was his inspiration for everyone’s favorite character.

Oddly, he did not die of a shark attack – but isn’t that always the way? Mundus was 82. Click here to check out the Shark Man’s website. RIP.

Mixing media – I need to have a blog at my company, BUT…

Most of you know I am an event planner and we are adding a blog at our corporate website, ergo, no mixing of my work as an advocate/blogger and my “real” job. With that said, Marnie sent me the gosh darn funniest link to a blog called Cakewrecks yesterday. I am privileged to work with the country’s best cake designers on a daily basis and remain in awe of their ability to create gorgeous and tasty masterpieces (and I’m not talking about that guy on the Food Network – although his staff is fun to watch). I’m talking about the MASTERS, people; those who spin sugar into fantasy and leave us breathless and a little poorer.

Much like party planners, everyone thinks they can be a cake designer. Not so, on either count. Planning your own tacky wedding doesn’t qualify you for either and yet – oh, the mountains of resumes! “Hi! I am an investment banker, but since planning my wedding, I know my TRUE calling is that of event planning and I wondered if you had any…..” No. No. No.

That’s why I give big love to this blog about really bad and stupid cakes. You’ll remember my post way back when over a year ago about the awful cake picture someone sent me? I think I should send it in – they do indeed have a section for the truly tasteless.

Enjoy your Friday afternoon and laugh it up. You’ll never think of Cookie Puss the same way again. No, you’ll revere him.

She’s not his lover – but give him a record deal.

This is my first year watching “American Idol”…I was never one for reality television and never understood the whole thing, but AI is good, clean fun and Ava adores it (by the way, “Ava Adore”, a terrific Smashing Pumpkins song). I’ve discovered once you begin watching, you are, quite simply, hooked. It’s great when you’re on modified bedrest, too. Simon Cowell? He just tells the truth. I rather like him.

David Cook, the 25-year-old Missouran rocker who did that fantastic rock version of Lionel Richie’s “Hello” and sublime “Eleanor Rigby” cover, just brought it home with the most insane high-octane emo/rock arrangement of Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”. I don’t know how he did it or how he came up with the concept, but it was beautiful, daring and moving. Loved it. Someone call Clive Davis or L.A. Reid stat.

UPDATE: some friends have written to remind me that Chris Cornell does a very similar version of “Billie Jean” to the one Cook performed last night. Well, alrighty then. J’adore Chris Cornell – I should have known that.

Bravo to Julian Schnabel!

So, yes, there’s a WGA strike and no Golden Globes – however, the winner of Best Director was Julian Schnabel – shout out to Montauk! Everyone expected the Coen brothers to win for “No Country for Old Men”, but Julian won for his completely brilliant directorial turn in “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”.

If you are not familiar with this film, it’s in French and it’s burned me with the heat of a thousand suns with it’s power; based on the book by Jean-Dominique Bauby, who dictated the book, after a stroke, by blinking his eyes. It is beautiful, poetic, fantastic, moving, sad, triumphant! Max von Sydow plays Bauby and he is incredible.

Those of you who are not familiar with Julian – well, he’s an artist of great note, a champion of music, a fantastic film director (have you seen “Basquiat” with David Bowie (as Warhol), Jeffrey Wright (as Basquiat), Dennis Hopper, Claire Forlani, Courtney Love, Tatum O’Neal and Gary Oldman as Schnabel himself – those scenes filmed in Schnabel’s own loft)? Julian’s daughter Stella (who once dated Viggo Mortensen) plays herself in the film, which features amazing music by so many great artists and vintage surfing footage. “Basquiat” is one of my favorite movies and I am very lucky to own a tiny, tiny drawing by the artist. I mean, tiny.

Speaking of surfing, Mr. Schnabel is an accomplished surfer who lives much of the time in Montauk and surfs Ditch, as do I. He is married to the beautiful Olatz, a textile designer and actress. She is also in “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”.

So congratulations to the auteur, artiste, musician, directoire, Monsieur Schabel! He deserves it.

Congratulations to The Modern Estate

If you haven’t read my friend Linda’s year-old luxury shelter magazine about new construction and the “new” family home, you should. It’s fantastic, unique AND just won the Gold for Editorial Excellence at the Folio Awards (it’s like the Oscars of the magazine world). Unheard of for a new publication. Linda, Jenna and their staff at The Modern Estate are terrific. We adore them so much, we are in the same office building.

You can visit the site here! And while you’re at it, click on “Luxury Hostess Gifts”. We’re proud to be included in Linda’s dream. Get a subscription!