By Jena Ardell
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There were so many beauty editors on the Las Vegas junket to the Celine Dionperfume launch that if the plane crashed, trolls might have finally gotten some press. Yes, Celine of the loud voice is doing a fragrance (along with an album and three-year Vegas stint), so Coty brought us in to have her lavishly compete with the town's dancing waters, erupting volcano, and fake gondola rides for "Is the flash working?"-style attention.
Does the scent smell like icebergs, older men, or Chrysler commercials? No, try water lilies and a pinch of sandalwood. They previewed it at the Coliseumthe humble little kazillion-dollar forum Caesars Palace built for the singerwhere the Coty head emerged onstage to tell us, "Forget Rome. This is the real Coliseum!" as buffed hands applauded. They screened a promo ("Her music has crossed oceans, touched hearts, empowered lives"), then out came the Canuck herself, who's hard to revile, especially if you caught her touchingly trying to wrap her lungs around heavy metal on that VH1 Divas show. (Of course, by this point we'd gotten white-chocolate mini Coliseums in our rooms.)
"We all have a unique smell," the newer, slicker (if still determinedly upbeat) Celine said, adding that with her fragrance, she can "touch people's souls. People don't touch anymore. They're on the phone, the fax. They don't touch themselves." And I'm not even gonna touch that one.
"I never thought I'd use this nose for anything but breathing and singing for you," Celine declared, pointing to her super-successful schnozz. "But I used it to develop the smell of love, life, and passion. And I wanted it to be yellowthe color of sunshine!" She lip-synched a few songs from her upcoming show, and I swear she didn't thump her chest once. I'm telling youfor all her grandiosity of spirit, the woman is not the devil!
And though we were now sure we knew everything imaginable about Celine Dion Parfums (the bottle has five facetsher lucky number), the next day we cut short our blinding tour of the Liberace Museum to attend one more promo session. "I feel like I'm in the middle of the highway of my life," Celine informed us in a new outfit. "Now's the time to do a perfume, not when I'm old and ugly and bored. What kind of perfume is that gonna be?" I don't know, Eau de Ugly Bored Old Hag sounds good to me.
In New York, I used my schnozz to continue on the highway of life in search of offbeat celebs at upbeat parties. At actor Craig Chester's book bash at the Flamingo Room, Ben Curtisyou know, the Dell dudetold me in all earnestness that he's going to the Edinburgh Theater Festival to do an old Israel Horovitz play about a hate crime. I fully understood his passion, but wanted to yell, "Just hush up and tell me I'm gettin' a Dell!"
Over at Beige, Amanda Lepore was moaning that her trial against Twilo is lasting forever, "and I just want it to end already!" Conversely, über-dandy Patrick McDonald was at another table, moaning that the fashionista marriage of his good pal Lauren Ezersky is kaput after less than two months. It's no consolation that that's a lifetime by Lisa Marie Presleystandards.
By the way, now that the unmarriageable Leona Helmsleywas nailed for homophobia, I hope the victor, Charles Bell, spends his $11 million on some sumptuous new gowns, all cut "on the bias," womp-womp-womp.
Moving on, the bigoted gadfly named Taki seems to be suffering from his own gay panic attacks. Two years ago, the Post quoted him walking into a boîte and paranoically quipping, "I'm the only one here who isn't a fag." Well, the lady clearly doth mutter this nonstop because just last week the Post quoted the guy entering the same hole with "Darling, here I am, the only heterosexual in this joint." Darling, if I were Ms. Helmsley, here's where I'd bellow, "Shut up and relax, you dumb fruitcake!"
In a nicer part of the barnyard, Dame Edna EverageBarry Humphries's drag characteris supposed to be a pretentious cow, but sort of an endearing one. Well, as you may have heard, Edna caused a ruckus by satirically responding to an advice letter in Vanity Fairwith "Who speaks [Spanish] that you are really desperate to talk to? The help? Your leaf blower? Study French or German, where there are at least a few books worth reading." The result? A petition grande from Hispanic Americans asking for a formal apology from Vanity Fair!
SeñorMoby, whom we normally love, has bewildered people with his own comments. You'll remember that when someone called the recording artist's attack by alleged Eminemfans a "gay bashing," Moby clarified, "I take a certain strange, perverse pride in being one of the few heterosexual people in the world who've been gay-bashed." So he's heterosexual now? But as recently as '99, Moby had told the press he's neither straight nor gay: "I'm pretty much bisexual." Eminem, who didn't even realize Elton John was gay, must be getting reallyconfused.