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Saturday, March 02, 2013

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres




"It was in the spring of 2008, shortly after their marriage, when the hedge-fund manager Buddy Fletcher and his wife, Ellen Pao, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, bought their first home in San Francisco. Situated on the 23rd floor of the exclusive St. Regis Residence, the $3.85 million, three-bedroom apartment seemed to float above the city, with its walls of windows—set above built-in benches of honed cream limestone—offering spectacular views of the Bay Bridge. At nearly 2,600 square feet, it had a vast chef’s kitchen, but also room-service dining, along with butler and concierge service—luxuries that attested to the couple’s wealth and their success. Alphonse 'Buddy' Fletcher was well-known on Wall Street. His hedge-fund company, Fletcher Asset Management—with a reported $500 million in assets—may not have been the biggest, but its results over the years were reported to be staggeringly impressive, at times as high as 350 percent. In 2009, when Fletcher was 44 years old, Forbes named him one of the country’s richest African Americans, estimating his net worth at $150 million. And he had been generous with his wealth. He donated millions of dollars to cultural institutions—including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, schools, libraries—and to civil-rights causes, including a headline-grabbing pledge of $50 million for fellowships whose recipients included Anita Hill and Elizabeth Alexander, the 2009 inaugural poet. At Harvard, his alma mater, a $4.5 million gift finances the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor, which is held by the prominent critic and scholar Henry Louis 'Skip' Gates Jr. Hers was perhaps a quieter success. At 38, Ellen Pao was a junior partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers—if no longer the leading venture-capital firm in the Silicon Valley, then certainly the most venerable. A former corporate attorney who had worked at several tech companies, including Microsoft, she did not attract headlines, as Fletcher had, but she nevertheless had a foothold in the higher circles of the business world. The daughter of Chinese immigrants, Pao’s résumé was as gold-plated as Fletcher’s. A Princeton graduate, she also had Harvard law and business degrees. Fletcher and Pao had married just six months before they bought the apartment. Their marriage, barely four months after they met, had surprised some friends, in large part because, for several years, Fletcher had been living with his longtime boyfriend, Hobart 'Bo' Fowlkes Jr. But whatever had brought them together, they resonated as a couple. With their wealth and success, theirs was a powerful American Dream narrative—a story of obstacles overcome, and brilliance, hard work, intense drive, and ambition rewarded. And then everything seemed to fall apart." (VanityFair)



"I was distressed to learn of some of your current problems and wanted to send you a word of encouragement. Since the time Bob Tyrrell introduced us a few years ago, I have been one of your admirers….That letter, dated January 23, 1985, was addressed to me and was signed by Richard Nixon. I had it framed and it hangs in my office. The only other letter hanging next to it is from Sir Denis Thatcher after he and the Lady visited me in Switzerland. Nixon and Thatcher were two vastly misunderstood leaders who will one day be rightly seen as giants among the midgets who preceded and followed them. Lady T. I do not know well. President Nixon and I grew close during the late 1970s and 80s. He was the best-read politician I ever met, which might not be saying much, but his grasp of history was as astounding as the loathing the Eastern liberal establishment had for him. 'The media is full of bums who wish to prove their liberal credentials by flogging a long-dead president who was by far the greatest leader America had since Washington and Jefferson.' The media’s hatred for Richard Nixon rivals that of Hollywood." (Taki)


"Last night in Paris, T magazine held a dinner to honor their covergirl and Paree resident Lee Radziwill at Caviar Kaspia. Deborah 'please don't call me Debbie' Needleman was joined by Mario Sorrenti, Jessica Stam, Eric Wilson, Suzy Menkes, Christian Louboutin, Kate Lanphear, Patrick Li, Karla Otto, and Bryan Ferry to toast the well-received launch of Needleman's T and the lady of the hour. What's not to love about this affectionate shot of Radziwill touching a glowing Giambattista Valli?" (Fashionweekdaily)

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

BO FOWLKES IS A REEL "PACKER" WHO LIKES TOO HAVE HIS FUDGE "'PAKKED'" BY STRONGMEN. ANYONE WHO WILL TREAT HIM LIKE THE LITTEL BITCH THAT HE IS IN A REELATIONSHIP.

Anonymous said...

Buddy, I've told you before, it's spelled "relationship". What they teach you at Harvard?!