They like the pleasant, upbeat sound of the hot pop group Culture Club, but they don't like the dreadlocks, dresses and face paint on lead singer Boy George. That's why a group of Detroit fans rallied round COZY-FM disc jockey Dick Purtan to form an odd kind of fan club. So far, some 2,500 music lovers have sent for an official Boy George Fan Club Kit. It includes: a mask to hold over your eyes so you need not look at George while listening to him, a totally blank button so no one will know you're a club member, a sheet of lyrics to the fan group's official song, If This Is Culture, Give Me a Club, and a photo of Clint Eastwood to keep in your wallet so no one suspects you of being a sissy. The Boy, who had trouble a few weeks ago trying to enter France dressed as a geisha girl, has also inspired a club motto: "He ain't heavy, he's my sister."
The Making of a Sweathog
Mikhail Baryshnikov ventured into Welcome Back, Kotter country for a Brooklyn Academy of Music performance with choreographer Twyla Tharp. In one informal number, Mikhail loosened his tie and stuck a wad of gum in his mouth while hoofing to the tune of Sinatra's That's Life. When fashion photographer Richard Avedon decided to shoot that bit at a rehearsal, Mikhail politely removed his gum and parked it on a ballet bar. But after the camera flashed, Misha pulled a move worthy of Kotter's crowd. He peeled his gum off the bar, stuck it back in his mouth and left chewing.
Speaking of Welcome Back, Kotter, John Sebastian, who wrote the show's theme, along with such '60s pop hits as Daydream, faced a few sweathogs himself when opening for Rodney Dangerfield at Radio City Music Hall. The onetime leader of the Lovin' Spoonful performed to an audience of more greasy, overweight males than that venerable hall has seen in a long time. "We want Rodney!" and "Get off the stage!" they yelled before, during and after Sebastian's numbers. Having headlined at Woodstock, John thought he could handle the crowd. "Rodney asked me to do this show," he scolded. "I've got my mother and an agent from ICM out there, and I ain't leaving till I'm done." Sad to say, the crowd won. When the set closed, John looked out at the audience with a somewhat forced grin and said, "I tell you, now I know how Rodney feels."
Princess Caroline wanted to see Star 80 so badly that even swarms of pesky paparazzi couldn't keep her away from an Upper East Side Manhattan cinema. They pushed and shoved and created a mob scene around her. When it came time for her prince in shining armor, new husband Stefano Casiraghi, to come to the rescue, he earned failing marks in chivalry. Fed up with the flashing bulbs, he ran ahead unobserved and ducked into the theater, leaving Caroline and a friend to go it alone. Mason Reese, that TV-commercial gremlin turned teenage rocker, followed close behind. For some reason, nobody noticed him.