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Upper Playground

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Silent H Not Deaf to New York's Pleas for Vietnamese

“I don’t miss anything about California except Mexican food and Vietnamese food,” says Vinh Nguyen, a onetime UCLA premed who fell into the hospitality business as a bar back at Santa Monica’s legendary Father’s Office. Since moving east three years ago, Nguyen has found New York’s Vietnamese options sorely lacking, especially when compared to the home cooking of his mother, an immigrant who left school at 9 to sell street food in Hue. The problem, as he sees it, is laundry-list menus that are too hit-or-miss, combined with “atmospheres” defined by single-white-napkin dispensers and dirty bathrooms.

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Celebrities Tabled at Betsey Johnson

Simmons Brothers
Once we saw the Reverend Al Sharpton at the Baby Phat show on Friday, we figured we'd hit our man-of-the-cloth quota. We thought many things in those balmy days, but never did we guess that Rev. Run of Run DMC would glide into our lives during today's Betsey Johnson show. Joan of Arcadia star Amber Tamblyn seemed just as surprised and thrilled, sidling up to Rev. Run for a photo — a request he granted by wrapping his most-holy arm around her. Then, looking especially, well, reverend, in solemn black garb and that kicky hat, he settled into his seat at the end of the runway next to his brother, Russell Simmons, to great applause and cheers from the photographers' pen. He proceeded to grin so enthusiastically at the models that one even giggled and did a few extra shimmies. Who can blame her?

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Paris and Kimora to Form Two-Woman Wrecking Crew

Could anyone be more excited for tonight's Heatherette show than Paris Hilton and Kimora Lee Simmons? Apparently not. We're hearing the pair has demanded that the W Lounge — the area behind the Bryant Park tents where everyone goes to decompress — be completely cleared out for an hour before showtime, in order to allow them the space and privacy they need to change into their outfits. Will they be partying together at Roseland later? If so, we recommend you run for cover — and take pictures. And send them to us. Update: Britney Spears is confirmed for Heatherette. If only Lindsay Lohan wasn't in rehab…

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Rolling and Reading

Rolling With Style gala. Cipriani, 110 E. 42nd St., nr. Vanderbilt Ave., 6:30 p.m. Fashion Week continues to suck the biggest names away from the gala circuit, but Carol Alt and Nick Cannon are expected. Nothing against Nick Cannon, but it's amusing that the most highly approved sample usage of his name in the Urban Dictionary is "One time Nick Cannon made a joke that was almost funny … just kidding, it was terrible." • Because She Can book party. At a private residence on Greene Street. (If you really want to try and crash it, head to Soho and follow the smell of catered appetizers.) Because She Can is the roman à clef by former ReganBooks employee Bridie Clark. Now that Judith Regan, Anna Wintour, and Harvey Weinstein have all gotten the thinly-veiled-fictional-tyrant treatment, it's clear there's only one notoriously psychotic boss left to be exposed: this guy. Or check out all our Agenda listings for tonight, selected by New York's culture editors.

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Video: Kate Schelter Is Working the Puritan Look

Kate Schelter is a fashion consultant who talked to New York's Amy Larocca about the fun of dressing for fashion shows. Though she says she looks like "a kaleidoscope sometimes," what Schelter really loves is Fashion Week energy: "You're just tossed into one big bowl and you create this big fashion salad." Watch the video.

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On Super Bowl Sunday, Spotted Pig Staff Partied Like It Was 1999

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Where does Spotted Pig owner Ken Friedman hold his holiday party? Not at the Spotted. When does he hold it? Not during the holiday season. And what does he serve? More food that you can imagine. This past Sunday — Super Bowl Sunday — Friedman threw a belated holiday party for his Pig staff at Del Posto, another eatery owned by part Pig owner Mario Batali. The feast was one of Dionysian excess — a roasted pig, mac 'n' cheese with black truffles, innumerable apps, cake "served by scantily clad babes." Rob and Robin have the complete menu — plus photos! — at Grub Street. Batali Helps Devise Insane Feast for Spotted Pig Staff [Grub Street]

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Charlize Theron, Double-Dipping Monster?

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Charlize Theron has been wearing the wrong accessories lately, and yesterday she was sued for it. The Oscar-winning actress swung a deal with Swiss watch designer Raymond Weil, promising only to wear Weil's watches at public events from October 2005 to December 31, 2006, according to a complaint filed in New York County Court today. In exchange, it says, Theron was to receive a "very substantial sum." But then she appeared in an online ad for Dior, pimping perfume and wearing, the suit alleges, "faux canary diamond jewelry." And wearing Montblanc jewelery on a billboard at a luxury-watch trade show in Geneva. And wearing a Christian Dior watch at a film festival in Austin. And — perhaps worst — in a "The watches your favorite celebrities are wearing" feature in an issue of the Tourneau Times, with the caption "Charlize Theron wears Dior." Weil's complaint doesn't quite call Theron a monster, but it does charge she committed fraud. They want their money back. —Nick Divito Read the complaint.

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