From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Brandy Alexandre)|
Subject: A Night of the Stars
Date: Sat, 08 Aug 98 02:30:56
Okay, it's 10:45 p.m. and I just walked through the door. I just came back from... I mean seriously... I attended Night of the Stars.
I called Russ Hampshire at VCA this afternoon to ask him not to speak to Luke Ford anymore. He said he always makes Luke correct his crap, but I explained that just by accepting his calls he lends some form of credibility--even if he only picks up the phone to call him an idiot.
I know the general feeling among online fans is that the industry simply wants to put its own spin on things, but after our conversation I don't think that's true. I don't rely on the industry for my bread and butter so I have no reason to spin one way or the other.
Anyway, after we took care of that business I asked him, "How can I find out about industry events, like Night of the Stars? I haven't been to anything for such a long time." Russ replied, "Night of the Stars is tonight." "Tonight!" Dang! Had I known about it earlier I could have bought something to wear. But then, as is usual for me, had I known about it earlier I would have planned and planned and never got there. Russ offered to let me in for free and I dashed home from work to get ready. Cocktails at 6:30 p.m.
I must have tried on every single remotely sexy thing I owned. Of course, I don't have ANYTHING that fits! I stripped and posed, stripped and posed, until finally I decided on a dress I had worn to other events, but it was spandex and would have to do. I also pulled out a pair of 5 inch heels that had been shelved long ago, slipped them on, and about fell on my nose. I had not had a heel higher than 3 inches on in six years. Six years!! Has it been that long?
I styled by short hair as best I could in the rush and tiptoed carefully out to my car and zoomed over to the Sheraton Universal Hotel.
As soon as I got out of the car I started thinking, "I think I made a big mistake." My feet were already killing me. I tried to walk with style and grace up to the reception and when I got there I said aloud, "I think I made a big mistake." I didn't recognize a single soul. No one would know who I was. But wait... I finally saw someone I recognized! I mean, how could you not? It was Chi Chi LaRue! What an honest to god pleasure it was to see her. She remembered me as if it was yesterday, and her friends treated me like gold.
As I sat an chatted I spotted Russ and scurried over to thank him for the invitation. Just when I inched my way back to my chair I saw someone else I knew in the same vicinity. Dang! I'd have to walk again. But this time it was worth it. It was Mike Horner. He knew me instantly as well and we kissed and hugged and traded phone numbers. What an absolute joy.
Then it all started to come together again. I found David Christopher (thankfully right next to the table), and we talked about the good old days when there were reorders on movies and such. I also ran into Henri Pachard, just as charming as ever, looking fit and fabulous.
It was time to enter the ballroom and here came the hard part. Surely, everyone I had encountered had an assigned table. I had to approach, with trepidation, the "open seating" in the back of the room. I was a tad fearful of sitting there, mostly because I had also run into that old fan Howard, who every star knows. What if he decided to sit with me? Maybe I should just be glad to be seen and go home now while the gettin' is good. But I was hungry.
I sat down at a table for 10 where a sweet looking old man was also seated. There was too much room for interference. I thought maybe I should hang back a bit with my eye on the seat until more people sat there, so I could more carefully choose my dinner companions. Ah, what the hell. I just sat down.
Within a short amount of time, Henri Pachard and his son joined me--one on either side. I breathed a sigh of relief and VERY much enjoyed their company and banter. Soon, J. Patrick Ford sat with us, then Mike Horner! We had the coolest table in the place. Freddy Lincoln came by and was disappointed that he, too, couldn't sit with us. Then Jane Waters strolled through, Al Goldstein was at the next table, and finally I chatted up Max Hardcore. He still lurks, you know, thinks the ramers are inbred.
It did my heart good to be remembered and remembered as fondly as it appeared I was tonight. I have not been forgotten. Most people offered without encouragement that I was the first on the net. Most said I looked great, Pachard added that my skin still looked and felt wonderful (he kept touching my bare shoulders). I was kissed and hugged and photographed. I had one fan/insider practically drop to his knees when he saw me, and he was able to recite verbatim our last conversation about 7 years ago.
Some said Luke Ford was there, but none could point him out. They all said that he was a moron, and each said that he had agreed to take the stars names off his website after their conversations. By my count that makes about 15 times he lied.
Dinner was delicious, the show intriguing, my feet still hurt, but it was worth it in the end. On the way out I thanked Russ Hampshire again and reminded him of something he said to me circa 1990: "Show class, not ass." It's stuck with me all these years and as I left I held my head high and strode with purpose. I said good evening to the hired helped, who were enchanted that I would speak to them
Come Monday I'll go to work and greet each person who asks how my weekend was with the same answer--"Ordinary. Nothing special." They just wouldn't understand.