Variety birthday bash– for mugs only

Variety birthday bash-- for mugs only

On September 24th, Sardi’s will host a centennial party for Variety, thrown by the Silverman family, which owned the paper until it was sold in 1987 to Reed Business Information. It’s going to be a real old-school event– so old-school that almost nobody who works at Variety now– not even Peter Bart– will be invited, unless they were hired before 1987. That’s per the planning of Sydney Silverman, who is organizing the event. Reports the NYT:

About 180 guests, some of whom worked at Variety as far back as the 1930’s, are expected to attend. “It will be a reunion of ‘mugs,’ ” said Mr. Silverman’s son, Michael, referring to a slang reference from the publication’s earlier days.

Asked to define a mug, Syd Silverman said, “A mug was a rough-and-tumble guy who went to all the performances and saw everything and reported on everything going on in the business.”

Wow, sounds like times really have changed. I know several current Variety employees, and while I would characterize some of them as rough, few of them, if any, tumble. Variety will throw its official 100th-anniversary gala on December 2nd here in LA, but I have to say the Sardi’s event sounds like it’ll be a lot more colorful (and by ‘colorful’ I mean, attended by creepy old people).