The fact that the screening of A Passion for Giving, a documentary about philanthropy and volunteerism by Robin Baker Leacock, took place in the Pool Room Terrace at the Four Seasons gave some attendees pause.
“So many are going without,” said socialite and newest Real Housewives cast member, Sonja Morgan, about a recent lunch there. “And the fact that I’m eating truffles, shrimp, and oysters …” She trailed off.
We complimented her intricate green print Marc Jacobs dress to help her get over the embarrassment (“it’s a tunic,” she told us, “but I ripped the seams out of the side to make it into a dress”), and her shoes were by Miu Miu, she said, pronouncing the brand’s name with a wonderfully unnecessary diphthong.
Socialites Tracy Stern and Emma Snowdon-Jones had removed their 6-inch heels to compare toenail-polish colors.
“We don’t match!” they screamed, hastily stepping back into their respective Vuitton and Burberry shoes.
The Transom, seeking to minimize the embarrassment, inquired about their favorite charities.
“Charity Water is my biggest,” said Ms. Snowdon-Jones. “One dollar is worth one year of fresh water for one person wherever it’s needed most in the world.”
Arriving for two-cheeked kisses in his gray hound’s-tooth jacket (by Ralph Lauren) was Kipton Cronkite—and Ms. Snowdon-Jones was quick to remind the Transom that he runs KiptonART, a private venture whose goal is to support emerging artists.
“But Tracy Stern supports multiple charities as well, through the umbrella of her Salon Tea company,” continued Ms. Snowdon-Jones, locking eyes combatively with her blond cohort. “She even has a flavor called ChariTea. …”
“I drink her tea every day!” said Mr. Cronkite, “It’s that chocolate chai one.”
“That one’s called ‘the Lover,’” said Ms. Stern.
“What’s the one I love?” asked Ms. Snowdon-Jones.
“It’s called ‘society hostess,’” replied Ms. Stern.
“Really?! Now I’ll never drink it again,” came the playful retort.
“Actually, hers is called ‘the Bitch,’” said Ms. Stern, suddenly surprising herself.
Hostess and filmmaker Ms. Leacock was mortified while speaking with the Transom about her film, but only because of the pink Champagne she had just consumed.
“I’m usually very eloquent!” she insisted in near-hysterics, despite appearing poised and alert.
Grey Gardens filmmaker Albert Maysles introduced A Passion for Giving, which turned out to be a cheerful, 50-minute feature about volunteerism, with a cameo by Dan Aykroyd, to the crowd. “This is a really fresh, enlightening film,” he said. “You learn to engage, do great things for others—not all films have to have tension and conflict.”