Wow, I stepped away from the blogosphere for the week and I return today to see the aftermath of a war.  Peter Getty, who is famous for you know, being a Getty and little else, has a new job writing a blog for SFGate with Billy Getty.  The first blog post was an entry titled “What the Butler Didn’t See,” which includes wonderful vomit-inducing prose like this:

“By the way: there are slews of people richer than we are, just in this neighborhood. We’re more famous for being rich than we really are rich. But we have enough to belong to the leisure class, meaning we get to spend very little of our time doing anything we don’t feel like, and we have means to sample, if not to gorge on, pleasures that most people, sad to say, won’t likely ever share in — things like yacht trips and safaris, ludicrously expensive wine, and private jet travel. You can be richer than we are, but you can’t live a whole lot better without mere ostentation.”

SFist wrote about Peter’s post and now Peter is upset that his reflections of self aren’t more well received by the commenters on the site.  He is so upset that he responded to the SFist post and has been trolling the comments section of SFist posting defensive missives about anyone that dares criticize his views on being rich.

I am sure all of the members of high society remember fondly those days when publishing required a lot of paper, ink, and expensive printing presses that the poors could not afford.  Ah, those were the days when only the opinions of the rich really mattered.  I don’t know the Gettys and don’t know what could have inspired Peter (and Billy) to want to open themselves to criticism in this way.  But it sure is fun to watch.  I wonder how long Pedro’s blog campaign will continue.

Getty Home Interior

The week before the election, Mama and I had the opportunity to go to a political fundraiser at the Getty mansion in San Francisco’s Billionaire’s Row. It is the same place where Obama held a fundraiser earlier this year. Our friend, Owen O’Donnell was running for the District 5 seat in the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. He lost to the incumbent, Ross Mirkarimi, but not before having a fund raising event at the home of Gordon and Ann Getty.

It was a surreal experience to say the least. It is actually two lots side-by-side with one huge home on both lots. The place looked like a museum inside and decorated in crazy-rich-people décor, a lot like Hearst Castle. Mostly antiques. As you enter, there is a very long hallway with a large atrium on the left flanked by tall columns. The atrium accommodated almost 100 people within it, as our friend spoke to the crowd using the natural acoustics of the room. Yes, it is all indoors.

Beyond the atrium was a parlor setup with multiple chairs, like a living room. Unlike most living rooms, there were four separate seating areas where guests could partake in four separate discussions. The parlor was large enough to accommodate four groups of 8-10 people. Yes, a couple of the chairs in that room cost more than my condo. And that is not even taking into account the art on the walls, all originals. Crazy.

The three rooms in the house that I saw had priceless antiques, art that museum curators would kill for, hand-painted panels, and antique rugs. Keep in mind that this is the part of the main house that is used for entertaining, not where they live. So, in a sense, we got a good idea of how billionaires entertain, but not how billionaires live, since the living area was closed off to guests.

By the way, I didn’t take any photos during the event. I don’t know if it was allowed.  All I know is that nobody was taking them and I forgot my camera.  The photo above is from the Ann Getty House website. Ann Getty sells her furniture and interior design by photographing them in the entertainment area of her home. I do not know that I will ever get a chance to attend an event there, but it certainly felt like a once in a lifetime experience.

I want to congratulate Owen O’Donnell for running a good campaign and wish him the best of luck should he decide to run again in 2012.

According to Matier & Ross (see third story in the following link), the Gettys will be hosting a $2,300 per plate fundraiser for Barack Obama in their Pacific Heights mansion this weekend where 400 people are expected to attend.  This makes the event the “hottest ticket in town.”  Amazingly, the story claims that Mayor Gavin Newsom will not be attending because he supports Hillary Clinton.

What!?  The Mayor is basically biting the hand that fed him for years and helped make him a multi-millionaire and a political force.  It it wasn’t for the Gettys, Gavin would be successful, but he would not be nearly as wealthy as he is now, let alone be Mayor of The City.  I wonder what the Clintons did for Gavin that makes him feel he owes them his loyal support in Hillary’s campaign.  It must have been something pretty good.  Oh if only walls could talk.