6:46 p.m.: Snap some shots of the press photographers. World Trade Center in the background. Pretty.
7:14 p.m.: Something you rarely see at an event anymore: ashtrays and matches.
7:17 p.m.: Windy and cold. Party relocating inside to the lobby so the catering staff is rushing to move the tables and bottles of liquor inside. “Windswept,” Sandra Bernhard says when I shoot her.
7:27 p.m.: Only the three diehard smokers are left outside: Graydon Carter, Fran Lebowitz and Jonathan Becker. Graydon’s got his collar up against the cold. Jonathan puts a flower in Fran’s Lapel. Cute. Puff, puff.
7:28 p.m.: “Hey Christy, ‘Where’s Ed? Let’s get you two….”
7:30 p.m.: “I was out of town for that last event you invited me to,” I apologize to Marjorie Gubelmann. “How was it?” She replies: “Kinda crazy, kinda dirty actually. I was stuck in my booth but there were lots of shirts off…”
7:31 p.m.: America Ferrera ascending the staircase and showing alotta cleavage. She’s wearing a low-cut, little black dress. And the cold added a little extra to the situation, if you know what I mean.
7:42 p.m.: “What’s the coldest temperature you’ve surfed in?” SunHee Grinnell asks. “Probably 20 degrees with snow and sleet.” I say. “That’s so macho” she says. When I spot Mike Myers, I tell her in my best British accent: “Does that make you hoooorny.”
7:57 p.m.: Lake Bell, pregnant, poses. “I guess congratulations are in order,” I say before retracting myself. “I think you’re not supposed to say anything unless you know for sure.” She laughs. “I was helping you by holding my stomach.”
7:59 p.m.: “Hey Anna can I get a shot?” She turns, poses, smiles and even takes a step over to a better background at my request. Seemed flattered that for once I actually asked her to pose.
8:27 p.m.: Returning from quick bathroom break, I see Gov. Andrew Cuomo chatting with Harvey Weinstein. Push my way through the crowd to catch the moment.
8:36 p.m.: Mayor Bill de Blasio and Robert De Niro are beaming posing with their beautiful wives. I can relate.
6:39 p.m.: Spring Street is closed down with barricades, as if the president is coming. Hundreds of spectators. This must have cost a few bucks.
6:41 p.m.: The archway is strewn with purple lilacs for arrivals.
6:49 p.m.: I spy shrimp as big as my fist!
7:04 p.m.: “I like to F#@K it up it a little bit,” says p.r. dynamo Nadine Johnson rearranging the candles. “It’s too neat.”
7:31 p.m.: First arrival Sophia Loren. Still looks as good as my childhood fantasies. She sees the flashes and puts her hand up gesturing, “No photos, no photos!” She’s kidding.
7:38 p.m.: Still rocking that bull nose ring, Rachel Chandler.
7:42 p.m.: Anya and Joan Smalls pose for a photo op. Snap, snap. They’re pros at this.
7:56 p.m.: Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters gets here. Best concert of my life: The Wall, Nassau Coliseum, 1980; 15 years old, 12th row, two hits of mescaline. Need I say more?
8:01 p.m.: Tory over here by the lilacs. She gives me a kiss and shines that gorgeous smile for my cam.
8:22 p.m.: Dennis Leary…Nice rug?
8:29 p.m.: Giggles, giggles, giggles. “Steve!…Can you?” Can I what Jen Brill? “He’s SO hot!” She’s asking me for a picture with some guy when another girl in the group blurts out, “Who?? The guy from “Homeland,” Rupert Friend?” “Yeah.” She’s blushing.
8:47 p.m.: A gloating Jamie McCarthy, a Getty photographer, tells me he got the shot of Sophia Loren and Robert De Niro together, THE shot. S–T. I go over and they are seated across the table from one another so I pop a shot of her with… Ron Howard.
10:03 p.m.: Time for a Facebook post. Pic of the giant steak I was just served: “One of the best parts of my job is getting to eat at places I’d never treat myself to.”
10:27 p.m.: After biding my time and waiting for the right moment, I see De Niro and Sophia getting up. This is it. I lift my camera as they embrace, kiss and say good night. I got it.