Getting Tubed


Network executives have long bemoaned TV viewers' penchant for "zapping" channels with their remote clickers then "grazing" their way through the programming. Recently Buzz was seated at dinner next to a producer who said what really bothers him is when viewers start "surfing."

Asked to explain, he said this is when viewers simply hold down the remote control's channel button as the set races along through the stations. "As far as ratings go," he said, "it's a wipeout."

And truly a new level of ennui for couch potatoes.

Through the Grapevine

The prize for originality in the Party Favor category this week goes to Molly Chappellet, doyenne of Chappellet Vineyards in Napa and special event designer.

For Monday evening's party to celebrate her new book, "A Vineyard Garden," Chappellet converted a Mercedes-Benz showroom in Beverly Hills into a virtual redwood forest, and each guest received brown paper bags of, well--grape pumice. What, you ask, is grape pumice? It's the residue of seeds and skin left over when wine is made.

What does one do with grape pumice? It can be used as compost, of course, and it can sprout grape seeds so that one can start one's own vineyard. Unfortunately--or maybe not--the little brown bags of what looked like dirt came with no instructions.

A Very Special Evening

If Buzz did give prizes, there would be one for hyperbolic press releases, like the fax we received about the Halloween party at Asylum. For some reason, the planners felt that a transformation of the restaurant/lounge's front room into an 18th-Century French chateau ballroom would be fitting for the holiday. The back room became, more understandably, a "hellish dungeon/torture chamber." All of this done by armies of "art directors, prop masters, costume designers, stylists. . . . "

But the prize-winning paragraph contains the list of the evening's entertainments: "opera arias, flaming pentagrams, vampire killings, seances, duels, spirit rebirths, beasts, dominatrices, executions, avant garde music, dancing, wolfman transfigurations and an inquisition of Satan, all in a stormy environment of thunder, lightning and rain."

Surely one or two new experiences for even the most jaded clubbie.

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