Possums, we know full well that everyone is tired of forked-tongued decorator Christopher Ciccone, and we had determined to do no more posts about him, but over the weekend we were having a bitch through Rupert Everett's autobiography, Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins, and we came across an irresistible passage that may help to explain the fact and tragedy of Christopher Ciccone, or how he went from this:
("Oh my God," said Miss XaXa, "he looks like Debbie Gibson threw up all over him." "Well," we reminded her, "as Madonna's back-up dancer he necessarily had to be an electric youth.") to this:
As our story begins, Rupert Everett is attending Donatella Versace's New Year's Eve party in Miami:
"Dessert was being served. A cluster of divas, some of them stars, others not, sat around Donatella at a corner table in the courtyard. The party moved fast around us, the table was a rock, and waves of fruits de mer crashed against it, swelling our numbers from eight to twelve, and then to sixteen. Chairs peeled off in all directions in a swastika for intimate asides over cigarettes and crossed legs, but the undertow on this particular stretch of bitch was strong and soon, they had been swept back out to sea by the acid tongue of Madonna's brother Christopher Ciccone, the glum monosyllabic reply of Guy Ritchie, or the polite but firm dismissal of Gwyneth Paltrow. Madonna smiled graciously to all and sundry, secure in the knowledge that someone else would do the dirty work, and give any unwanted jellyfish 'the old heave-ho.'....
Gwyneth had been flirting with Guy Oseary, the child prodigy who ran Madonna's record company, but that liaison was another thin strand that Gwyneth cut with the brisk cheer of a dignitary opening a new wing of a hospital. 'I name this ship...Over.' It had snapped before the party even began. Actually, she was as thick as thieves with Christopher, and after midnight the two of them danced like whirling dervishes until they wound up slumped and feverish on Donatella's garden couch.
And this was the night that marked the beginning of the end for Christopher and Madonna. They had been inseparable through a trippy childhood in a huge family with a wicked stepmother, and she had taken him with her to the material world, where Christopher had provided a solid raft in the shark-infested waters. And for anyone who came into contact with Madonna, to know her at all you had to know him. The one was incomprehensible without the other. He was her dark side and she was his. People reeled in horror at the mention of his name, because he had a blunt aggressive manner, and he often looked as though he was laughing at you, particularly when he was drunk...But Guy [Ritchie] and Chris were from different planets, and in a way the one's success relied on the other not being there. Also Guy was not particularly comfortable with queens, and so, as the relationship between him and Madonna quickly deepened, it was a last call for a lot of the disco bunnies and club-mix queens that made up the fabric of Madonna's mantle. It was a surprise, because Madonna came out of the womb blowing a disco whistle, but a whole aspect of her life was about to be hit by the delete button."
There you have it: Christopher Ciccone too bitchy and gay for Madonna's husband.
As a bonus, here's Rupert's account of a master class in snubbery from that same party:
"...[S]hortly before midnight, Jennifer Lopez swept into the courtyard on the arm of Benny Medina, her new manager. Donatella got up and walked over to greet her while Gwyneth and Madonna gave two snorts of derision and noisily left the room. The men and Ingrid [Casares] were momentarily flummoxed but followed suit, leaving me and my hairdresser Jamie alone at the table. It could have been a moment from The Women....
Jennifer had given a rather startling interview a few weeks earlier, one of her best, as a matter of fact, where she had regally dished all and sundry, saying, among other things, that Madonna couldn't sing and that Gwyneth couldn't act. This broke an unwritten Hollywood law. Think it but never say it....
[E]veryone there at the party that night adored the drama. They were visibly shaking with the thrill of it, and so were the girls in question. They were like ducks during a rainstorm, preening, stretching their wings, shaking themselves and quacking. Jennifer sat with Benny, holding a beatific smile in place for longer than a porno star keeps an erection. Gwyneth and Madonna huddled around Donatella's garden couch like bullies from the upper sixth....Jamie and I locked ourselves into a bathroom with Donatella, a bodyguard at the door, and informed the rest of the world what was going on outside. We popped out briefly for midnight and then went back to the bunker like war journalists to phone in the latest explosion."