Hawke hawks: You remember precocious young author Jonathan Safran Foer -he of the gorgeous brown curly locks , Princeton pedigree, secret media coaching, fawningreviews, babeauthorgirlfriend ( Nicole Krauss ) and ( cough ) rather brief skirmish with best-sellerdom? And you remember scruffy young actor Ethan Hawke -he of the gorgeous blond actress wife, squirming tots, Oscar nomination and inexplicable yearning for literary credibility? Tonight, these two gentlemen join forces and welcome a fitful band of groupies to Central Park, as Mr. Foer tries to pump up sales of his debut novel, Everything Is Illuminated (see also forthcoming plug on Martha Stewart’s new literary TV segment), and Mr. Hawke reads from his new one, Ash Wednesday . Special bonus dirty excerpt from the latter: “I smiled, and she did the strangest thing-she just lifted up her skirt and showed me her pussy.” Fun fact: Mr. Hawke’s wife, Uma Thurman, played Henry Miller’s wife, June , in the motion picture Henry and June -and Henry Miller also liked to write about the naked ladies!
[Rumsey Playfield, Central Park, 7 p.m., after-party at the Hudson Hotel, 356 West 58th Street, by invitation only, 554-6000.]
More proof of recession! In addition to the heightened garbage smells and the rather desperate ploy in the new season of Sex and the City of having the gals flash their boobs and conduct themselves like rapidly aging porn stars: Benefits are suddenly affordable again! Tonight, there’s a bash called “Meet Me in Manhattan” on the U.S.S. Intrepid (hel- lo , sailor !), with proceeds going to fight multiple sclerosis. Or you can try a simple “Summertime Party” for the Junior Committee of Partnership for Children. What each will cost you : just $65. Of course, there will be no famous people and a vague feeling that you’re at a cheesy singles event, but hey-things could be worse, right? Wait, this just in : a famous person! Our favorite model, Shalom Harlow, might show at the Partnership for Children thing. Phew .
[Ultimate Summertime Party, Pier 86, West 46th Street and 12th Avenue, 7 p.m., 463-7787; Day Light Studio, 450 West 31st Street, 8 p.m., 689-9500.]
Is this entire town stoned ? The evidence is building …. Last night there was a debate at Makor , the Y’s frisky Upper West Side sibling, called “Should Pot Be Legal?” … then there was that recent, truly odd New York Times Styles section piece about aging boomers concerned about their kids finding out about their pot use … then you’ve got Condé Nast editors toking up for softball games in Central Park … and now a play called Rapture -not to be confused with the recent Susan Minot novella about a blow job-opens tonight. “It’s six East Villagers sitting around their apartment getting high, waiting for their Ecstasy dealer to show up so that they can go to a rave,” said Rapture ‘s director, Nina Morrison . “They end up being trapped in the apartment because there’s a group of religious demonstrators outside and they’re blocking the streets. It sounds a little dark, but it’s a comedy.”
[HERE, 145 Sixth Avenue, 7 p.m., 647-0202.]
You scratch my Bacanovic, I’ll scratch yours! It’s certainly hot and busy in the ho-ho-Hamptons as Martha Stewart’s naughty banker and society walker, Peter Bacanovic, co-chairs Watermill Center’s summer benefit along with durable Bob Colacello , persistent Beth Rudin DeWoody and jolly Marjorie Gubelmann ; meanwhile, in East Hampton, Ms. Stewart herself is honored by hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons at his “Art for Life” benefit, which has a Jamaican “island” theme. “She’ll be there, as far as we know,” said a publicist. Maybe she’ll bring the jerk chicken … keep us posted! If scandal-wracked rich people don’t quite do it for you, how about nice, wholesome, apple-cheeked rich people? The Hamptons is packed with ‘em this weekend, like sausages stuffed into a Lycra casing! For instance, Food & Wine contributing editor Nina Griscom , who looks perfectly lovely and composed barreling down a river in an inner tube, is chairing one of those frenetic James Beard Foundation benefits honoring chef Daniel Boulud ; Donna Karan and InStyle are co-hosting their strenuous “Super Saturday” garage sale and carnival for ovarian-cancer research ( Nancy Atlas , whom some might remember from the Barbara Kopple documentary, will strum her guitar and perform). After the aforementioned “Art for Life” gig, Mr. Simmons is apparently going to hippety-hop over to Southampton for a basketball tournament benefiting “All for Kids,” which provides sporting opportunities for underprivileged youth. Generation Y’s plucky answer to Dustin Hoffman, overprivileged youth Jason Biggs , will be among those taking it to the hoop. “And Puffy will be there . Don’t say that, because he isn’t confirmed-but he’s always there,” said yet another publicist.
[Watermill Center benefit, Watermill Center, Watermill, N.Y., cocktails 6:30 p.m.,
dinner and live auction to follow, 253-7484; Art for Life benefit, Russell Simmons’ house in East Hampton, 6 p.m., 344-8420; James Beard Foundation benefit, Wolffer Estate, Sagg Road, Sagaponack, 5 p.m., 627-2308; Super Saturday, Nova’s Art Project, Watermill, noon, 800-873-9569; All for Kids, tournament begins at the athletic center, Southampton College, 239 Montauk Highway, Southampton, 9 a.m., party to follow, Arthur Pergament’s estate, after-party to follow, Rocco’s a la playa, 631-7777.]
Put on your hot pants and head to the boonies, a.k.a Astoria, Queens (a.k.a. where the children of the Manhattan limousine-liberal class like to rent cheap apartments for a time before scurrying back to Daddy-subsidized housing in Manhattan): The American Museum of the Moving Image is screening Mike Nichols’ quaintly naughty 1971 movie Carnal Knowledge as part of a “Sexual Revolution on Film” series. Afterward, your date takes you to this “really authentic” souvlaki place, gets you drunk on retsina , then tries to paw you in the bleary light of the N train home …. You fend him off and tell him he’s no Jack Nicholson ; heck, come to think of it, he’s no Art Garfunkel , either …. Why are you with him ? Oh right, you’re waiting for September before givin’ him the ole heave-ho!
[35th Avenue at 36th Street, Astoria, 2 p.m., 718-784-0077.]
Battlin’ book parties! In a fitting retort to Messrs. Foer and Hawke , above, suddenly best-selling novelist
Alice Sebold reads from her spooky triumph, The Lovely Bones , at the
Astor Place Barnes & Noble, then scoots uptown to Flute for
a party. Try not to crowd her, folks; Ms. Sebold told us she is “not a social person … I keep a really low profile . I live in Long Beach, which is south of Los Angeles, but I dress like all the women in San Francisco. I tried to go to this ‘salon’ for a while, but it devolved into writing aboutscreenplaysandtalking about screenplays and stuff like that, and that didn’t really float my boat.” And speaking of boats, bobbing on the Hudson over on the H.M.S. Bounty , author Richard Zacks celebrates his history of buccaneer Captain Kidd, The Pirate Hunter. Opening line: “In a cold jail cell in Boston in Massachusetts Bay Colony on November 16, 1699, a weather-beaten man with hard scarred features unbuttoned his trousers.” Avast, ye mateys!
[Alice Sebold reads, Barnes & Noble, Astor Place, 7:30 p.m., 420-1322, party to follow, Flute, 205 West 54th Street, by invitation only, 522-6909; Richard Zacks party, Pier 63, 23rd Street and the Hudson River,
6:30 p.m., by invitation only, 556-5686.]
Summer is A-Cumming in: Is this Alan Cumming guy a frisky, busy little sprite or what? He never leaves designer Cynthia Rowley’s side, there was his star run in Cabaret , he’s playing a roller-skates-wearing Pope in some Genet play on West 37th Street … and now he’s in Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams (put out by Dimension , the “lowbrow”-i.e., moneymaking-less emotionally traumatized division of Miramax ), which screens tonight at the opening of the International Latino Film Festival and also stars Antonio Banderas , Ricardo Montalban and Steve Buscemi (a secret Latino?). Meanwhile, a bit further uptown, young D.J. Josh K. (né Koplewicz), a Dalton grad , dons jeans, rare basketball sneakers and T-shirt and spins records for good-looking, affluent people in their 20’s and 30’s. He’s going to Brown, but is undecided about his major. “The academic experience at Brown is supposed to be more focused on developing a well-rounded person,” he told us. Sure it is, kid, sure it is! About tonight’s gig, he told us, “I use some music from before I was born, like Michael Jackson, Prince, New Edition-I do a lot of old-school rap, like 1980’s stuff.” Sudden realization: We’re old .
[ Spy Kids 2 screening, Clearview Cinemas, 59th Street between Second and Third avenues, 8 p.m., reception to follow, Tinker Auditorium, 22 East 60th Street, 726-2358; D.J. Josh K, Big Sur, 1406 Third Avenue, 8:30 p.m., 472-5009.]
Bored in Bridgehampton? Well, then, honey, we don’t know how else to put it: You’re spoiled ! If you’re sick of “French house” music , tonight a gaggle of chamber musicians, including a flutist, opens the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival with works by French people- Maurice Ravel and those crazy Boulanger sisters ( Lili was the sickly, consumptive genius who died in her 20’s, Nadia the sturdy nonagenarian who gave Aaron Copland his chops). Sort of like Hilary and Jackie , except with lots of brie.
[Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church, Bridgehampton, 8 p.m., 741-9403.]