LAST WEEK, Madonna slipped into Gotham’s Tracie Martyn salon for one of their fabulous facials. She needed a perk-up after giving interviews defending her adoption of a little boy. The paparazzi, following her, spooked some of the other customers. (A few celeb clients were abashed to find out that the lurking photographers had no interest in anybody except MadonnaLondon. I wish the public could have seen Madonna as she was last Monday at the Warner Records offices. She was interviewed, attended the company’s Halloween party, and read to children from her “English Roses” book. She was fine. But she is only truly relaxed away from professional obligations. She told some adorable tales of family life, making herself warm, charming, and yes — vulnera.) The Big M also picked up a slew of products, the better to present a fresh face to hubby Guy Ritchie, who sat this trip out in ble.
TODAY, AS Americans rush (I hope) to cast their votes, fashion icon Ralph Lauren will host a cocktail reception at his Madison Avenue flagship store to celebrate his wife Ricky’s new book. “Ricky Lauren: Cuisine, Lifestyle and Legend of the Double RL Ranch” is a beautiful compilation of photographs, many taken by Ricky herself, treasured recipes, stories and the history of the family’s famed ranch … Anthony Haden-Guest’s fabulous new “Disco Years” — photos the paparazzo took during the heyday of Studio 54 — is the ultimate snort-till-you-drop stumble down memory lane. Crammed with all the usual suspects — Liza, Halston, Andy, Mick, Bianca, Truman, Elizabeth Taylor, Grace Jones and scores of others — plus lots of half-naked beauties of the time and place. All the frenetic partying — dilated or pinpoint pupils, slack faces, over-excited dance floor writhing, the decadence we thought would never end. If you’re too young for that, you’ll still be blown away. If you were there, it’s the “Love Hangover” of nostalgia.
IN TWO DAYS of lunches at Michael’s, we spied Anjelica Huston with agent Boaty Boatwright, Judy Giuliani and David Dinkins, Barry Diller, Larry King with Mike Wallace, Twiggy, Fran Drescher, Donna Dixon and Dan Aykroyd together … There are at least three “important’ literary happenings on Wednesday — one for Gore Vidal at Stephen and Cynthia Rubin’s on West 67th St. Graydon Carter, Kurt Anderson and George Kalogerakis celebrate their Spy magazine book “The Funny Years.” It’s in the Puck Building where Spy generated… And Erica Jong and David Patrick Columbia have been planning their Wednesday pouring for the Library Cubs Program. It takes place at Erica’s apartment … I’ll be joining Sarah Jessica Parker, Martin Scorsese, Glenn Close and Roseanne Cash at WNYC Radio’s 2006 gala on Monday. Famed puzzler Will Shortz will be at Cipriani 42 to salute this institution and Ira “This is American Life” Glass is host. Call 212-786-6185 … Lloyd Grove, departed from gossip at the Daily News, has landed on his feet with Vanity Fair.
COMING SOON is a deluxe release of “White Christmas” on DVD. This limited edition includes all sorts of special features, including a CD of the Irving Berlin soundtrack, an interview and commentary by the late Rosemary Clooney and two theatrical trailers. Turner Classic Movies are the powers behind the lush restoration. This 1954 film, starring Clooney, Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Vera-Ellen has an inexplicable hold on fans — you can poke holes through the plot, but the Berlin tunes, the charm of the stars — it’s irresistible. (Watch for Clooney’s famous femme fatale number, “Love, You Didn’t do Right By Me,” with young, eventual Oscar-winner George Chakiris as one of her dancing boys.)
(Email Liz Smith at MES3838@aol.com)