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2 Women in Johnny Carson's Life Experience a Fashionable Near-Miss

November 13, 1987|ANN CONWAY

They didn't collide, but it was a close call for Joan Rivers and Johnny Carson's wife, Alexis. Both did some shopping recently at Amen Wardy's mirrored (a la Versailles) boutique in Newport Beach. While Rivers' purchases are always hush-hush--"She only deals with Amen," confides a salesgirl--Alexis Carson spent $3,300 on a copper-tone suit and a black cashmere sweater by Ungaro.

And speaking of Wardy, his named popped up in Women's Wear Daily while he was on a recent buying spree in Paris with Bob Hightower, his boutique manager. "Fabulous," the breezy tabloid quotes Wardy on his reaction to a collection by Valentino. "One of the best collections, if not the best, that I've seen on the runways in Europe this season. I loved the animal prints."

Now, if you know Wardy, you know that was a mouthful. Wardy isn't wordy. Although our local mogul of couture is always smiling, he is decidedly closemouthed (something his big-spending clients appreciate more than they can say).

UC Irvine Chancellor Jack Peltason says he has a bipartisan interest in next year's presidential election. He counts Illinois Sen. Paul Simon and former chief U.S. delegate to the United Nations, Jeane Kirkpatrick, among his personal friends.

"Paul was in the legislature when I was a dean at the University of Illinois," Peltason says. And Peltason has served with Kirkpatrick on the board of the Institute for American Universities.

Kirkpatrick says she isn't eager to run, but Peltason thinks she would make a fine candidate. "Jeane is one of the smartest people I know," he says, "and one of the best informed. She has a powerful, analytical mind, thinks deeply and is personally committed."

Peltason knows. His and Kirkpatrick's 20-year stint on behalf of the institute has taken them regularly to Aix-en-Provence on the French Riviera, site of the institute's board meetings. "The Kirkpatricks (Jeane is married to Evron Kirkpatrick, chairman of the institute board) have recently acquired a home in Les Beaux" Peltason says. "They're very gracious about opening it up to meetings for board members." Peltason visited there in July.

Developers George Argyros and William Lyon were co-hosts of Orange County Supervisor Harriett M. Wieder's fund-raising birthday bash Tuesday night at the Pacific Club in Newport Beach.

With a donation of $150 per person, 225 of Wieder's supporters gathered to salute her dedication to public life (before becoming a supervisor in 1978, she was on the Huntington Beach City Council).

Smiling broadly and hugging well-wishers, Wieder referred happily to her "natal day." A birthday cake and singing telegram were on the party agenda.

On the scene: former Supervisor Bruce Nestande (who helped organize the two-hour party), Willa Dean Lyon, Judie Argyros, David Stein, Glen and Dottie Stillwell, Sandra and Dr. Gerald Brodie, Mary Ann and Len Miller, county Republican Party Chairman Thomas Fuentes with Archbishop Tomas A. Clavel, episcopal vicar for the Hispanic community in the Diocese of Orange, Ygal Sonenshine, county Supervisor Roger Stanton and Mission Viejo Co. President James Gilleran.

The party invitation read: "We can't say which (birthday Wieder was celebrating) but maybe she will." She didn't.

It was enough to send one running to the wine cellar: "In our deepest sorrow we lay to rest our beloved . . . " began the invitation from Bernard Jacoupy, general manager of the Meridien hotel in Newport Beach.

What's this? An invitation to a hotel staffer's funeral? Not quite. Just a clever, albeit noir, way to mark the demise of the hotel's 1986 Beaujolais wine. Seems a smattering of politicos, corporate heads and social types have been invited to dine grandly on a four-course meal in Cafe Fleuri, then view the wine's symbolic burial (engineers have dug a four-foot hole to accommodate a coffin for 50 empty wine bottles) in the Bistrot Garden. A welcome celebration for the 1987 Beaujolais Villages Nouveau wine follows at midnight.

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