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Originally published April 1, 2007 at 12:00 AM | Page modified April 2, 2007 at 3:57 PM

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Corrected version

The princess (her) and the peon (me)

"I really can't believe we were at that swanky party and met a princess. " That's my friend Nicole, who accompanied me to a casual soiree...

Seattle Times columnist

"I really can't believe we were at that swanky party and met a princess." That's my friend Nicole, who accompanied me to a casual soiree at the stunning Belltown home of Howard Weiner and Lance Kostrobala last Saturday. (At least the invitation said casual, but we checked with the cute doorman to make sure we weren't underdressed before proceeding to the 11th floor.)

Howard and Lance, longtime partners in business and in life, should know how to throw a party — they are founders of the event and interior design company Two Downtown. Yes, yes, the floral arrangements were spectacular, but who can look at flowers in the presence of such ridiculous views? The Space Needle on one end, the Olympics on the other and 100 feet of revelry in between. Our hosts said to please make ourselves at home; if only this were an actual invitation to move in. There's room!

Guests included world-renowned photographer Marsha Burns, Foster/White Gallery owner Phen Huang, Sur La Table's Renee Behnke, the ubiquitous JJ McKay and philanthropist Cynthia Stroum, who told of a Seattle Times editor with whom she formerly shared a name and, occasionally, mistaken-identity dry-cleaning.

At the dessert table we met Lada Schuiski — a bona-fide Russian princess who came to Seattle 19 years ago for four days and fell madly in love with the man who is now her husband, Larry Schuiski — who confided that she samples the sweets standing up, "so no one can count how many I had." Princess Lada had been a neurosurgeon in Russia and a model in Paris, making us wonder what we've been doing with our time. "I do enjoy life quite much," she declared. "Life is beautiful. It's as Americans say, if life gives you lemons, make lemonade." We left clutching giant yellow tulips as parting gifts, and feeling that life is beautiful, indeed. ...

IT'S NO SECRET at least, not after this — but few people know that KING-TV reporters Tim Robinson and Jane McCarthy are husband and wife. "She hides it. I don't," quips Tim. Apparently, the couple who works together and plays together, stays together: Tim and Jane start their day at 1:15 a.m., drive an hour from their Arlington home to work in Seattle, and are in bed by 6 p.m. "We're inseparable," says Tim. Is this the secret to a happy marriage? "On the plus side," says Jane, "it's easy to relate and relay things about your day in fewer words." ...

A RAUCOUS CROWD greeted the handsome — and very tan — Clinton Kelly at the downtown Seattle Macy's store last Saturday, where the "What Not To Wear" style guru chastised women for wearing tapered jeans with white sneakers: "It's very Seinfeld." Not that there's anything wrong with that. A particularly vocal fan in the front row got Clinton's attention with her loud hoots and catcalls. He pulled her onstage and gave her a big hug. As she stepped down, the excited woman blurted out, "I need a cigarette!" ...

COSTCO CO-FOUNDER Jim Sinegal knows how to get the most bang from a buck-fifty. He raised $17,000 for Puget Sound Affiliate's Susan G. Komen for the Cure — without opening his checkbook — by donating his time for a hot dog lunch. Value of the hot dog: $1.50....

SOME SCI-FI FANS got a sneak preview of last week's "Battlestar Galactica" finale at a special screening at EMP's Sky Church hosted by the Sci Fi Channel on March 22. Also in attendance: BSG stars Tahmoh Penikett (Lt. Karl "Helo" Agathon) and Aaron Douglas (Chief Petty Officer Galen Tyrol). "Funny enough, neither of the two guys had seen the final cut," said Sci Fi Channel's Cathy Garcia, "and both were a bit surprised by how things turned out."

Girl About Town appears every Sunday in Northwest Life. Pamela Sitt: 206-464-2376 or psitt@seattletimes.com

Information in this article, originally published April 1, 2007, was corrected April 2, 2007. A previous version of this story incorrectly named the beneficiary of $17,000 raised by a hot dog lunch as Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. The correct name is Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

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