"YOU WILL do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm," said Collette.
• It is difficult to equate the brilliant actress Jennifer Lawrence and her big movie hit "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" with the silly promotion the Letterman show gave her the other night where she behaved as if she were nuts. Maybe winning the Oscar and extreme success is all nerve wracking. Letterman doesn't help when celebs go astray--the sillier the better for him; he has nothing to lose.
A lot of TV these days looks like accidents about to happen. I guess that's the point.
• The excellent Manhattan Theatre Club is offering another play with a meaningless title that you can't remember when people ask what you've seen. "The Commons of Pensacola" is actress Amanda Peet's debut as playwright and it is slight and mercifully short.
But it boasts two popular names, good actress Blythe Danner and the dedicated star Sarah Jessica Parker and a neat cast. (I especially liked Nilaja Sun as the sensible maid.)
If you want disheveled glamour masquerading, then the glorious Ms. Danner and the super famous Sarah Jessica Parker are here looking mostly terrible. Ms. Parker deserves an A+ for acting in unattractive attire showing she is a real drama queen. Even the most failed actress wouldn't be seen in such dreck.
The play about a Madoff type comedown is so slight it becomes almost invisible as the actors struggle with the same dialogue over and over.
This "try" directed by Lynne Meadow is more of a curiosity than realized. But when you can get Blythe Danner and Sarah Jessica Parker onstage, I it doesn't matter. I love them both and they are real theatre pros.
The Times liked this play, even with its forgettable title. You always have to give the Manhattan Theatre Club a break for all the good it does in the theater.
• FRED ASTAIRE is best known for his magnificent, effortless dancing. But a lot of people don't realize he had a charming, evocative (if light) singing voice. In fact, his contributions to the musical film as a singer are invaluable, his voice unmistakable.
Fred introduced and/or popularized such classics as "Night and Day"..."Cheek to Cheek"..."Top Hat, White Tie and tails"...A Fine Romance"...:A Foggy Day"..."They Can't Take That Away from Me" and dozens of others.
Now Sony Mastersworks in conjunction with Turner Classic Movies will release a new 2--CD set; "Fred Astaire: The early Years at RKO." This is available now (Fred in Turner Classic Movies "Star of the Month" in December.) Log in on www.SonyMasterworks.com.
• I LOVE THAT such a big deal was made about Justin Bieber requiring guests at his recent raucous party in L.A. to sign $3 million "confidentially" agreements. Who doesn't do that, these days?
Tom Cruises wives allegedly are "asked" to sign up. It's really not a bad idea. It protects the celebrity, and it even protects guests and wives and others who toil for the celeb. The tattle-tale never comes out of it looking good, always the victim those infamous two words "disgruntled ex-employee" or "scorned wife."
• Everyone who knows me, knows that I am enamored by Veau d'Or , an old-fashioned French bistro between Lexington and Park on East 60th street. This café has been thriving in Manhattan since the 1930's and has been owned by only two families.
Now, it operates at the whim of the beautiful and charming last family's daughter, Cathy Treboux. It's almost like a private club, but if you behave yourself, Cathy will take you to her heart and feed you very well. And the Veau is a place where you can talk and hear yourself think.
This café had its heyday during the era of "the lates" - Vogue's Diana Vreeland...Jackie Onassis...Truman Capote before he blew himself up socially and others of literary, food, and social fame. Not long ago, the Veau won the James Beard award as the best French bistro in the U.S. and the father of Cathy (now gone to his reward) exclaimed on winning: "It's all bull-sheet!"
• YOUNG Robert Summerlin, M. Treboux grandchild, has lately been making waves in Paris.
If you happen to go to the Great Canadian Sports Pub on the Left Bank, you can ask for him. He is very attractive, speaks English and French and can discuss international sports until the cows come home. Customers love him and go there to keep up with soccer and everything else.
When Robert went traveling, his mother followed his adventures avidly via postcard. Suddenly, came a spate of them.
Robert had arrived in Paris virtually penniless and went to Shakespeare & Company's bookstore, famous for having launched James "Ulysses" Joyce, and others in the days when it was home to the likes of Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, F. Scott Fitzgerald and other starving literary geniuses.
• ROBERT had heard that this literary shrine , founded by "the character" George Whitman, and run by his daughter, Sylvia (she welcomed a baby only days ago) sometimes lets traveling young people stay there on mats during the night, keeping things neat and safe.
This situation appealed to Robert Summerlin and he promptly joined the ranks of literary caretakers and nabbed a job tending bar nearby.
Incidentally, when New York's restaurant critic, Steve Cuozzo recently wrote about the great and famous La Grenouille restaurant on 52nd Street, he defied convention. He said that while the rage is to go downtown to loud blasting new eateries that one can't get into, some of the best eating places are still on Manhattan's east side in midtown. He names La Grenouille as the best and sure enough, not too long ago USA Today named Veau d'Or. It came right after La Grenouille as tops in the French contests of the U.S.A.
So, when Robert Summerlin gets tired of Paris and sleeping on the floor of Shakespeare & Co., he will doubtless take his turn at Veau d'Or, letting his youthful mom go home and take a night off. Meanwhile, he is writing his travel memoirs and sending delightful postcards of Shakespeare & Co.
If food and drank and reading about food and then going out to eat are the new "theater" of New York, you should give the Veau (or golden calf) a try. That is if Cathy is feeling happy and doesn't lock the front door at 9:30 as she has been known to do - locking out celebrities whose names I promised her not to print as they are so famous or distinguished.
She prefers parties of four and people who act civilized and for customers not to question the wine list or try to bring their own. You can, however, when you are there, bid on the rare bottle of red, vintage 1923, given to me by the late Malcolm Forbes and his sons on one of my too many birthdays.
I hope to be there the night Cathy uncorks it to see if it is still "living" and drinkable.