No Need To Boast When You’re The Host With The Most

invtnNpcHoping to throw the party of the season? One that’s indubitably delicious, warms the soul and calls out to be repeated immediately? Then let us entertain you before you entertain them. Read on.

What does it take to become the host of as serious ass party: Imagination, organization, a sense of humor and a good recipe, according to our panel of experts worldwide. See how they set the tone for memorable parties on the pages ahead.


The fluent entertainers we spoke with favor one of two methods of invitation. The first and preferred way, unless a party is very formal, is to telephone the guest, then send a written reminder. This circumvents people’s tendency to not read their mail/forget to RSVP.

The second, more formal approach is the written invitation, delivered by post or hand. “I always send an invitation” says New York fashion designer

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It’s All About Color And Texture

corteurOld quilts and tasseled trim linen velvet and toile-we brought everything with the colors of our vintage print to Hyde Hall, a historic house in Cooperstown, New York. Rather than photograph in a completed chamber, we set up an old bed in a room yet to be restored. We were interested in possibility, not the finished details.

Our decision for the bed: a mix of muted prints– gently worn gently worn glazed chintz for the quilt, new toile on the pillows–brightened by a matelasse coverlet. One touch of white was enough, however, to create the perfect shade of cream for the pillowcase, we simply dipped a white one in coffee.

Were we to accessorize the room, there would be lots of ironstone and touches of nature like the oversize acorn, left. And for fabrics–delicious-to-touch linen velvet and a

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paaartyWHO AMONG US HASN’T SPENT A WEEKEND IN the country from which there was no escape? No escape from the host’s dog snarling outside your door when you are summoned to dinner. No escape from a child who has adopted you for an afternoon of video games. No escape from the tedium of a Halloween party or an Easter egg hunt at which you are the only adult. People with weekend houses need guests, but do would-be guests need people with weekend houses?

For the record, my wife, the editor Helen Jeannette, and I do not own a weekend house. Why? Helen told me early in our marriage that if I wanted a second house, I’d better get a second wife (to deal with the linens, the gardening, the staff, etc.). Another reason I don’t have a country house is that I did. It was an estate in Southampton I owned when we wed, but I found that I didn’t own the house–the house owned me. I precipitously put it on the market when an irate renter phoned me at

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Panic On The Streets Of Oslo

So let’s talk about the Russ. Who doesn’t love that?

potsooRuss groups compete to have their school’s–and later their county’s–finest bus or russ car. These are old, large vehicles– purchased by each group prior to Constitution Day–that will be customized and used exclusively to transport the russ in the most hectic days in May. The cars are meticulously decorated, both inside and out, before their owners christen them. Many russ cars are eventually equipped with enormous light-and-sound rigs that turn the ancient vehicles into mobile discotheques. Russ warm up for their evening activities, hold parties, and move between events in these buses. Indeed, to really take part in the celebration, it is crucial to belong to a russ-car crew. “If you don’t belong to a bus, you’re nothing,” declared one girl, crew captain of the bus Catmobile. “In the bus is where it happens.” The somewhat derogatory term “subway russ” underlines the importance youth place on being attached to a vehicle.

Nowadays the russ celebration characteristically appears as an egalitarian rite of passage for all eighteen-year-olds, but this has not always been the

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Wild Event Notes!

pfpJosie Natori and Doris Magsaysay Ho, trustees of the Asia Society, hosted a champagne reception and exhibition Feb. 22 at the Grey Art Gallery of New York University titled, “Sheer Realities: Power and Clothing in 19th Century Philippines.” Many of the displays featured fashion specialties of the Philippines — intricate and elaborate laces, beautiful embroideries, intricate beaded handbags, and gold and silver jewelry.

The guest of honor was the first lady of the Republic of the Philippines, Luisa P. Ejercito Estrada.

The reception was followed by a gala dinner at the Puck Building in what was described as “grand Philippine style.” The menu included grilled prawns, beef tenderloin in papaya seed sauce, black rice, sesame sauteed bell peppers and coconut cream flan caramel. “This event was expected to be spectacular, and it truly was,” said Natori, who also is chairman of Natori Co. More than 400 partygoers attended the dinner, and the Asia Society raised

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Need A Campaign Party? Take Our Advice…

Here’s some advice for your supporters who want to host an event in their home:

capgnpaty1. Have the volunteer hosts work with your scheduler and finance director to pick a date. Try to allow at least 30 days.

2. Ask your volunteer hosts to invite their colleagues from the workplace, friends, relatives and neighbors. Suggest to the volunteers to look at their Christmas card list. Have them invite lots more people than they think will actually attend. Not everyone will come, and some will be out-of-town. If they invite 200 people and 25 or 30 actually attend, that’s a success. Some people will send checks even if they don’t attend. Hand addressed invitations are preferable to labels.

3. Decide who is responsible for sending out the invitations. If the volunteer hosts are sending out the invitations, make sure they keep track of all printing costs and postage receipts. Federal and

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Catalog Of Success!

catgsucsthey’ve never taken short cuts on product or customer service in order to turn a dollar. Consequently, they’ve built a loyal following of customers, which has kept them in the black. Their customers are so loyal, in fact, that when the business partners opted to mail a newspaper of product offers–rather than a glossy catalog–this past Christmas season, their customers were even more responsive than they had been to the costlier book.

Experimenting for quality

The McWilliamses decided midway through last summer to shelve their Christmas catalog for the upcoming season, even after doing a lot of planning. They say they were concerned that the company wouldn’t have enough time to thoroughly prepare a book that would yield the biggest bang for the buck. “Before we went through the expense of creating a color catalog,” Dick McWilliams says, “we wanted to make sure it would be efficiently and

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New York Parties Rule The Roost, Man

nyprtsWhen a party is going to be a hit, a big success, you know it the moment you walk in the door. When a party is going to be a super hit, a blockbuster, you know it before you walk in the door. There’s something in the air, almost tangible. As you step inside, you say to yourself I’m so happy to be here — and everybody else is saying the same thing. If you think this happens at every party — but of course you don’t. You know it doesn’t. Some are good, some aren’t, very, very few are great. Most New York parties are charity dos, fund-raisers in a ballroom. They are all for a good cause, of course, and more power to them. But most of them follow the same pattern; at many of them the speeches are too many and too long. You sit there wondering what time it is, and why the orchestra is playing loud enough to split your skull, precluding all conversation. A wonderful private party is hard to come by.

That’s why Carol and George McFadden’s stupendous private party, a dinner-dance for 120 guests at their magnificent townhouse the other night was one of the greatest, maybe the greatest of 2014. This is the one all parties given in the year 2015 will have to measure up to. Well, lots

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Wines And Thanksgiving: A Golden Team

watgConsider setting out an array of wines on your holiday table and letting your dinner guests discover some tasty matches.

Candied sweet potatoes. Wineinfused basting sauce. Zesty, slightly sour cranberries. Spicy stuffing. Help! Where does one find a wine that marries well with the cornucopia of flavors that punctuate traditional Thanksgiving feasts? It can be quite a challenge, certainly, one that some harried hosts may hesitate to take on. One option: Serve a variety of reds and whites, allowing friends and family to discover pleasing food and wine pairings for themselves.

For a classic start, try Champagne or a sparkling wine, both of which go well with a range of appetizers and rarely fail to liven up the atmosphere. The sheer abundance of elegant Champagnes and sparklers on the market will set your head spinning, though. Try the Gloria Ferrer Champagne Caves 1989 Royal Cuvee ($19), a creamy sparkler, rich with flavors of passion fruit and dried pineapple. This bubbly was named in honor of King Juan Carlos of Spain and his wife, Queen Sophia, to mark their 1987 visit to California (the first ever by a reigning Spanish monarch to the Americas). Another good bet for

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Chuck Norris Facts 2.0

cnfsFollowing recent discoveries about the skills and habits of Chuck Norris, we present to you Web 2.0 Facts about Chuck Norris.

  • Chuck Norris was refused an investment by a VC. Once.
  • Chuck Norris read the entire blogosphere. Including splogs.
  • Chuck Norris invented blogging in 1974 in order to keep track of people he roundhouse kicked to the face.
  • Flickr gave Chuck Norris a funny look. Now you know why it needs a massage.
  • Chuck Norris doesn’t search Google. He just stares at the screen until Google pops the website he needs.
  • Chuck Norris does not build to flip. He builds to roundhouse kick to the face.
  • Chuck Norris has more friends on MySpace than Tom.
  • Chuck Norris did not get acquired by Yahoo. He traveled back in time to 1849 and started Yahoo! himself. Now you know how the gold-rush started.
  • Flickr is the Chuck Norris of Web 2.0
  • Chuck Norris showers with AJAX but no water.
  • Chuck Norris is the real brains behind Ruby on Rails.
  • Chuck Norris does not use a web server. His beard serves HTTP.
  • The bubble burst because Chuck Norris roundhouse kicked it to the face.
  • Chuck Norris does not use tagging to remember websites. He roundhouse kicks them to the face then they remember him.
  • Chuck Norris doesn’t validate. All standards are required to conform to his content.
  • Chuck Norris has an open API. His right leg, coming straight at your face.
  • And last but not least: Web 2.0 is Chuck Norris.

Update: If you’ve been spending too much time on Slashdot, this is for you.

  • Step 1. Chuck Norris.Step 3. Profit.There is no step 2. (thx Cameron!)
  • Imagine a beowulf cluster of Chuck Norris!