Wednesday, September 24

Up the Tater Tots! O.K., fine, we’ve been indulging just a wee bit of creative-class schadenfreude as Wall Street squirms and flails over there across the river, taking New York’s unsuspecting town car and strip club businesses with it and all but dashing our hopes of finding that hot, sensitive hedge-funder who plays guitar on the side (at this point he’s probably sold his guitar to buy frozen dinners). Hey, buddies! Welcome to poverty! Need some affordable restaurant recommendations? Which reminds us, did anyone else think those rosy-cheeked analysts just looked a little too well-rested walking out of Lehman with their boxes? Isn’t banking supposed to be, like, hard? (Or was all this just a public relations stunt? Were they waiters and waitresses hired in a last-minute ploy to seduce a buyer with their analysts’ pulchritude?) Luckily, we still have some rich people left, like Suzie and Bruce Kovner and Mercedes and Sid Bass, who tonight
carry on the quaint traditions of the vanishing upper classes by chairing—big breath—
Carnegie Hall’s 118th Gala Opening Night at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in Glamorous New York City, which launches a citywide Leonard Bernstein Festival. (Yup, this oughta fix what’s ailing us!) Yo-Yo Ma will perform, as will Christine Ebersole, recently of Grey Gardens. Later, a curious event involving tweedy types, who have taken to philosophizing about how this was just inevitable what with the excess around here: The Accompanied Literary Society (which we’re guessing has very little to do with literature) pairs with Diesel (makers of your favorite $200 jeans—doesn’t that just sum it up!) to host Flash Fiction, in which 10 short stories will be projected 10 stories tall, presumably on some sort of urban structure. Participating authors, most stumbling in straight from the Brooklyn Book Fair, include Jonathan Ames, A. M. Homes, Gary Shteyngart, Jay McInerney, Lewis Lapham, publicist-author Sloane Crosley and Jonathan Lethem—who’s sort of like the Leigh Lezark of the literary world.

[Carnegie Hall’s 118th Gala Opening Night, Carnegie Hall and the Waldorf Astoria, 7 p.m., 212-903-9679; Flash Fiction, Penthouse, 1 York Street, 8 p.m., invite only]

mbryan@observer.com

Wednesday, September 24