Or: When is free wine a bad thing?
So last evening I smuggled (lied) my colleague Mrs. redzxber into a VIP / Media launch of an international, football extravaganza art launch at a glitzy shopping centre in Claremont and, as always, was glad to have a partner in crime along for lols.
It was a stunning event (read the real review here) and full of important media types, some interesting arty types (more later) and one elderly lady in a skirt that had been kept in mothballs until an hour before she got dressed. And us.
The free wine was good and the snacks were delectable (figs! And candied ginger!). There was also plenty of seafood. One helpful waiter offered me something from his tray of calamari and posh fish fingers. I said, no thank you I don’t like fish. He replied (with a straight face) I can bring you some sushi then if you prefer?
Anyhoo. Apart from loads of awesome art on display (actual canvases and a mega flat screen slide show) and some international artists on hand (also more on that later), entertainment was provided by:
- 3 gold embalmed figures (1 x young ‘Adonis’ and 2 x chicks with unflattering body suits that brought to mind the words camel and toe) who climbed on to raised platforms and posed in various strange frozen positions.
- 3 gorgeous girls in outlandish ball gowns wearing lots of jewelry and sporting fake plaits piled in unlikely hairdo’s atop their heads, who sat around looking beautiful, but like they’d rather be watching 7de Laan.
- SA’s answer to Van Gogh – an incredibly talented artist who painted ‘live’ while we gawped.
- Some funky music, sometimes. When the DJ remembered to play it…
- Dripping water from the ceiling (was raining hard out) – I was just delighted to discover that’s all it was; I had supposed some lout fresh out of Ster Kinekor was having his laughs spitting on the posh people from one of the escalators above.
We had our own laughs though, aided and abetted by the pre-function Peroni and the free wine…
One of the above mentioned arty types (though I suspect he was actually a sneaker in-ner like Mrs. redzxber) walked purposefully in our direction at some point in the evening and I made to move out of his way, assuming he was heading to an acquaintance behind me.
Our conversation as follows:
GHM (Me): Sorry (moves out of path of on-coming man. Oh wait I should have said, he was over 6 foot, had a fake tan that would make Donatella Versace look pale and interesting, and a bob of gold-ish oily-ish corkscrew curls. No, really)
Odd man: You’re sorried.
Mrs. redzxber: Wha…?
Man: Sorried. You know like when someone says Excuse Me you say You’re excused?
Mrs. redzxber: ??!
Man: I was just trying to make small talk… (Oh yes he also had an odd accent. Might have been like his tan. Fake)
GHM and Mrs. redzxber: Oh. *sipping wine, eyeing each other nervously*
(Here, one of us made a random comment about it being hot inside)
Man: That’s why I am drinking this chilled white wine. Red wine makes you all warm but white wine cools you down.
At this point he thrusts his glass almost against my lips, demanding
“Taste my wine!”, and, when I backed away he did the same to Mrs. redzxber.
I could feel mild hysteria heading from my stomach to my mouth so made a hasty comment about fetching my coat and we fled… saw him later joining in a variety of photographs with people who didn’t seem to know who he was.
The fact that the deliciously bashful Alejandro – one of the famous artists (who had both dimples and a yummy (genuine) accent) – spent his entire ‘address’ from the podium smiling at Mrs r and I helped.
We were weighing up our chances of getting a free signed print from him afterwards but had the idea to first find out from someone else what they were going for. Starting price was $1000. Yes, just for the print. Something about limited, signed editions yad yada. So we headed back to the wine table empty handed.
Thanks to Mrs. redzxber as always for making an evening out so very much more fun than it would have been on my own.