I don't go to Hollywood parties and I don't give them," Chevy Chase tells anyone who asks and even some who don't. Why then did 250 people receive invitations bearing his signature? Undeterred, the guests made their way to an attractive house in the Hollywood Hills. Their ambition: to be on hand at the very moment when Chevy could truthfully say, "I'm 37, and you're not!"

In fact, Chevy wasn't either (his birthday is Oct. 8). But never mind. The star of the current Oh Heavenly Dog is shooting a new film this week and won't be able to celebrate. Truth to tell, the whole affair was not exactly a birthday party. It seems that Chevy's pal, real estate up-and-comer Jana Jones, 28, was having trouble selling a house. Why not give a party and invite a star-studded selection of potential buyers—uh, friends? The owner of the house (3 bdrms + maid's, fam. rm., den, pool, sauna & electronic control sys.) put up $10,000 to lay in furniture and edibles (blini, caviar, sushi, fruit fondue), and Chevy lent his presence—briefly. Arriving a fashionable two hours late, the ersatz birthday boy was tastefully attired in a red polo shirt with white dinner jacket, tan trousers, white sneakers and a baseball cap. He just had time to cut the chocolate cake and check out the presents, including a five-gallon drum of popcorn from Meat Loaf and Mrs. (Leslie) Loaf, before the last of the guests drifted away. Still, the evening accomplished its purpose: Jana unloaded the house just before cocktails for $1.3 million. Would Chevy like to try Tupperware next?