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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019

From lounge to loo, the soiree that went places

Believe you me, Page 3 parties can be quite hilarious! At least, that's what happened to me at the first "real" Page 3 do I've attended in the 15-odd.

delhi Updated: Aug 05, 2008 17:35 IST
Vishnu Makhijani
Vishnu Makhijani

Believe you me, Page 3 parties can be quite hilarious!

At least, that's what happened to me at the first "real" Page 3 do I've attended in the 15-odd years since they've come into fashion. I'm probably not qualified to write about them, but then, first impressions ARE the last impressions.

The ambience Monday night at a spanking new lounge bar in a swish mall in south Delhi couldn't have been more perfect: candles and diyas greeted one as one entered a large hall, a rectangular bar as its centrepiece.

Overhead was a gleaming chandelier and scattered around the room where plush sofas and chairs in white imitation leather, the effect complete with a small dance floor in the corner.

The serving staff all wore black - black shirts, black trousers and black belts. Thus, when the guests for the evening began floating in a fashionable one hour behind schedule, one did a double take.

Nine out of 10 wore black, and that too largely tight jeans and tops. Some did wear skirts of varying lengths, but those too, were all black outfits.

After a while, as the room filled up and the decibel level rose many notches thanks to the alcohol that was available in plenty, it became difficult to distinguish the staff from the guests and there were at least two occasions when two rather uninitiated TV journos actually turned to one of the women guests and asked for a refill!

And, oh yes, please do forgive me! I forgot to tell you what the bash was all about!

It was to introduce a certain individual who, it was said, had been selected out of some 5,000, to become the first Indian trainer to supervise workouts at state-of-the-art gyms during the Beijing Olympic Games.

How did I discover this? Because I found this worthy being photographed in the loo, of all places, while the party warmed up and the celebrity guests took their time on making an appearance.

Why the loo, for heaven's sake?

"It's like this," one of the organisers of the evening explained sheepishly, "we don't want to shift the focus away from the designers and models we have invited (L) Subramaniam (the Beijing-bound trainer) will get his chance once the function starts," the worthy added.

Anyway, to get on with the story, at around 10.40 pm, a henna-haired MC, dressed in a one-piece outfit split to the thigh - in black, of course - came onto a little stage and called, not the trainer, but two worthies of a gym-equipment company that had organised the contest and the evening bash.

They waxed eloquent on how they had conducted the online contest, narrowed down the field from 5,000 to 60 and finally zeroed in on the eventual winner - all along egged on by the MC to "create noise", meaning applause.

That was when the winner came on stage - looking thoroughly out of his element and wondering just what the hell had hit him.

To be fair, Subramaniam rose to the occasion and mouthed the required words.

"I was extremely surprised at being selected. I got the news on my daughter's birthday so I owe this to her," he declared, with about a third of the listeners, egged on by the MC, putting their palms together.

The other two-thirds were engaged in the more serious business of chattering away around the bar.

"Are there any questions for Mr Subramaniam?" the MC asked and quickly added: "No, there are not. So folks, let's party" - and that's exactly what happened.

So, considering the jolly good time that everyone had, why am I in a cynical majority of one? Because the whole event was so hilarious that it's a wonder I didn't die laughing!

There's a lot more that could have been written about this party - but let's leave that for another day.