Monthly Archives

December 2007



I can’t thank you enough for discovering my Philly Chit Chat blog this year. I can’t believe that over 30,000 people have stopped by to check it out. I try and keep it pictorial and not too overly personal with my feelings, but I will be making an exception with this last entry on 2007.
I’ve always been interested things, events and people. I like to photograph all three. I lived in NYC for 18 months on a work assignment. I discovered celebrity photography. My friends were tired of getting my emails with a dozen attachments, they suggested I start a blog, which turned out to be very popular as I posted an entry a day and told people what it was like to be a paparazzi (although I was really a fan shooting celebrities for most of the time I wrote it) . Then in October 2006 I broke a couple big stories on the blog, which were picked up by People, Us, MTV and MSNBC referencing my blog, and then was hired by a photo agency.
When I returned to Philly in Dec 06. It was depressing, no more nightly celebrity events or interesting people to shoot or I thought. My friend Phyllis took me to a party in Feb 07. I met the incomparable, social butterfly Thom Cardwell (center)who began taking me to events to photograph. I re-discovered Philadelphia and the people that make it interesting. I started Philly Chit Chat, a blog about Philly people, events and things (with a celebrity thrown in here or there; in 2008 more celebs will make there way in, I am seriously ending Confessions as an everyday blog, as I want to focus on Philly Chit Chat, although I will still be going to NYC to shoot events, just posting them in Philly, because heck I’m from Philly and that’s Philly enough for the blog – LOL)

OK here comes the fun part. I made a list at the begining of the year and I have to say I did everything I wanted except for one thing.

So let’s recap:

1) I shot my first professional gigs on a red carpet at a movie premiere in Philly & NYC (Rocky & Georgia Rules)

2) I was published in the Daily News (Angie Everhart & Vince Fumo March 07) and in the Phila Inquirer (First time: Barry Manilow and back-up singers Sept 07)

3) I broke a few Philly stories including the waxing of William Penn and the Zoning Notice regarding the PNB Bldg (and I have had to hold back more than a dozen things as people asked me not to write about it) 4) I shot both Philly Film Festivals and met some of the Philly Photographers
5) I photographed my favorite singers Bruce Springsteen & Bono (September) 6) I changed Photo Agencies and began getting published nationally and internationally with WENN (September)

7) I got a Press Pass in Philly (October)

8) I was published in People Magazine online [October] (This shot taken in NYC)And in the glossy US Magazine in November (This shot taken in Philly)

9) I met the most interesting people, attended some great parties and eventsMonica Malpass, Mary Patel, Thom Cardwell and FriendThe New Generation Media Giants – Matt Ray, HX magazine; James Duggan, QUEERtimes, and Steve McCann of PhillyGayCalendarBlog Convention – Joey Sweeney seminarI met two of my favorite Philadelphians – Sharon Pinkenson and DJ/QZine Robert Drake
10) I will be getting published in Where Magazine, a publication that I’ve handed out at the Visitor’s Office of City Hall when I have volunteered there.
11) I attended Mark Segal’s Holiday Party and saw some of Philly’s politicians sing the 12 Days of Christmas (I wasn’t allowed to take photos, so I didn’t). I had always read about this party in Stu Bykoskey’s column and really wanted to go someday
12) I lived through insulting the Clay Aiken fans who left over 60 messages in the comment section.
13) I kept my day job and didn’t get fired pursuing my paparazzi passion (in NYC & Philly), got very little sleep, and my heart still beats at only 50 bpm so I am not too stressed out yet.
***Thank you to Mike, My family, Katie & Simon for their couch in NYC, my friends in NYC, Margarita, Carmen, Luisa, Kenny, Doug, Vincent, Demis and Cara, and my Philly friends Phyllis, Thom, James, Mary Patel, MK, DG, Philebrity, Gilbert, Paul, John, Amtrak, Greyhound and to my readers; Thank you, thank you thank you and Happy New Year!!
P.S. I never got published in the Metro Newspaper. I tried, and I tried and I tried. They just rather pull their photos from the AP wire. Shows how local they want to be.


TWO LOVELY PARTIES I ATTENDED THIS WEEKEND, neither of which I am allowed to expound on to much

I was thrilled to attend both as they are always in the gossip/social pages. I wasn’t allowed to bring my camera to Saturday nights party, but I did bring it to Friday’s party but can only share the photos below…People know, if I have my camera, your event very well might show up in the newspaper, but most certainly will show up on my blog. I am certainly trying to fashion myself after the but as someone who attends all kinds of events, parties and affairs not just the social “registered” scene.Mary ChristmasHer house is lovely, her children sweet, house decorated to the nines, guests on political and social scene, Hostess mentioned in this month’s Philly Mag as a mover and shaker, I think, but who knows as I can’t get a copy yet to confirm

Saturday nights party had a few cross over people, but was a really who’s who of the social scene, politicians, gay movers and shakers and more of an all walks of life attendence. A relaxed atmosphere with lots of laughing and story telling.


I wrote a little about Helen and her husband earlier in the week, but I wasn’t allowed to tell you about this honor she was to receive. This is what I had to say about her: I first met Helen back when she championed the effort to keep the stadiums out of Chinatown, an issue my life partner was also concerned with. Another cause Helen near to her heart is education. Recently on Frontline she was quoted as saying, “Education is not a business. At some point, quality of education and the concept of profit will conflict and that quality of public education will suffer.”
Congratulations Helen!!



I had just left a party on Delancy Street and was making my way over to Walnut Street to catch a bus home, when I hear what sounded like a car crash on the other side of the park. It turned out that it was actually a car crash in the park! I arrive to the red headed alleged driver trying to figure out how to turn off her car alarm, and stuff the airbags back into the steering wheel

she then pleaded with the crowd, that had gathered, to help her turn her car around, because she had made the innocent mistake of taking the left on 18th Street much too soon. “I don’t drive in Philadelphia, she slurred. I’ve never been here, I was lost; could someone please help me turn my car around?” (I don’t know what she hit, but she had a flat tire, and the front end was damaged)

The police arrive and the first thing he asks is “Have you been drinking?”, she then slurred that she might have had one drink and she swayed back and forth. “I was going around the block, they’re were all this one way streets, and as soon as I could go left I did, I need to get to Vine Street” I’m not from Philadelphia, this is why I don’t drive downtown, it’s confusing, could you just help me turn my car around and I will go home, she pleaded.
“What are you doing, why are you handcuffing me, are you arresting me, why are you arresting me?”, “I just made a wrong turn, just help me push my car around”
NOTE TO READER: At this point Houdini has escapes from her handcuffs, this happened twice to the crowds delights and cheers. She was so clueless she didn’t realize how serious it was that she kept slipping out of the handcuffs.This time the officer really made them tight. They dumped her stuff out from her purse, and asked her why she had a knife. She I don’t drive in the City, but I know there are a lot of murders going on and I needed to protect myself. “OH why are these so tight, they hurt”, the cop tells her “look if you can get out of these I will give you $100 bucks, and you’ll need that money”; She just kept repeating “Are you arresting me, why are you arresting me?”Then the officer takes her over to the car and says, look drinking and driving is dangerous. You could have killed someone when you drove through the park. Look at what you did, here is your car more than a block away from where you drove in, and you have been drinking. She still didn’t get it as she was taken to the paddy wagon still asking “Why are you arresting me, I didn’t do anything wrong, I just made the wrong turn, this is why I never come downtown!”I asked the tow truck driver if he was impounding the car. “No we only impound the car if it was a “Live Stop” and her license, insurance or registration was invalid. Her’s were fine.” What will happen is he will find drop the car off on the first available spot on the street, and when she’s release she can make the arrangements to remove it. If she gets too many tickets, we will boot it and then impound it.
She just bought the car on 12/19/07



Where’s the party is one of my favorite Madonna songs, and WHERE’s party was just what I did on Thursday, clever eh? You know how I feel about Laura Burkhardt, she is just the nicest, no nonesense, big hearted person you ever want to meet, and she invited me to Where’s office party, that’s beside the lovely event she invited me to a few weeks back that I didn’t even have time to write about. Anywho, It was an afternoon cocktail party, lots of booze, food and a dancing girl. Shockingly I brought my camera, ’cause I really want to be the Andy Warhol of Philadelphia, except without the bad wig, and there’s a good chance I won’t ever produce “Piss Art”. Anyway I fell down on the job, and instead of shooting, I spent a lot of time chatting, shooting and not collecting names; so forgive me, did Andy ever collect names, I think not, hopefully by this time next year, I will just know you. (Feel free to leave me a name and then I will get to know you, and then I can pass these suckers on to HX, QT, Philly Mag Social Scene, Social Philly and the likes… Thanks to Laura and Where Magazine, Triumph Brewing Co, & Profile PR for the invite!!OK these guys are the last people I want to see a week away from Nutrisystem morning noon and night, they are affiliated with Fusion Gym, which I never heard of, but love the name. This is what I read about it: Awarded Best Gym in Philadelphia Magazine’s Best of Philly 2007 fusion is a structured fitness studio for group and personal training that delivers the essential guidance, motivation, and support customers need to get and stay fit via a holistic approach that addresses HEART, MUSCLE and MIND Gavin McKay, owner, hmm, and Michelle Shannon From the CCD (I love that organization) Matt, Sheryl “Out There PR” Raskin (call me girl!), Meredith Trotter, hmm I suck, and PR Maven Paige Wolf (Please put me on your mailing lists, I want to cover your events. Thanks)
This is the gayest shot on so many levels…Matt, Will, Me and James (I seem tiny in this shot, I like it) OK hmm all around and Zelinda with the red hair, no more walking home girl!! Then it was off to the Cashman bash, where I would see a lot of these people over there, which would explain the convenience of the party times. 2 -5:30PM, and then 6 – 9PM, but it was still kicking when I left at 9:30PM

The Cashman Party was held at Positano Coast (Thanks to JD for giving my lazy ass a ride)
If you are a long time reader of Philly Chit Chat or my other blog well then you know who this is on the right – Sharon Pinkenson and you know why I love her so much. I still have not been able to really chat with her because she’s my Madonna of Philadelphia!! (I like the hat she’s styling, as my NYC paparazzi friend Margarita always says)
Cashman girls Dana Lombardo & Carrie Nork, and Brett (Publisher of Phlare Magazine) Festivities and a red sweater make the Yuletide bright

Lauren, Jeremiah of The Liquid Experience Massage (currently in NJ, but they travel and after you read about their massages, you will want to see them soon ) and JD Coleates of Triumph Brewery
Dana, Bob and TJ (who I enjoyed talking to; he told me the how he met Dana story, which is very unique and will be featured on my other blog shortly)Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow It sucks when I don’t get their names, especially since I believe at least two of them are single, update: Nick Corsano is in the center, and James Duggan (I thought the Faux Hawk was on its way out, but this guy was smoldering with his)
There she is, a radiant Laura Burkhardt (who surprisingly gets as embarrassed as a mention on my blog, as I get when people pay me compliments about being a fan of my blog) and Philly’s Tavern on Camac ‘s Dennis Fee
I tried to get them to juggle the apples, but Rich, James, the vivacious Susan, the new managing director of the Phila Film Society, Ed Urban and Steven Rosenfeld from the Printer’s Place, wouldn’t have any of that juggling nonsense. So maybe the apples represent something else. The forbidden fruit?

guests enjoying themselves
These two are definitely rockers and very stylish
The Cashman Associates celebrate another successful year of putting smiles the faces of their clients, friends, and guests
The DJ was awesome and the Cashman girls approve
THANKS TO Cashman for the invite I had an awesome time, met a lot of nice people, caught up with others, gave out all my business cards and even met some fans of Philly Chit Chat, which is always a little embarrassing, but I am grateful that you like my photos and put up with my diatribe.
The layout of the resturaunt was smooth, plus the decor and the private booths along this hallway were an oasis, ok I think they did that on purpose and it works. I still have two more parties, that’s right two more parties until Sunday. So I will be posting those events, and do a real time sappy Christmas blog entry and then tie up loose ends for the year, tell you about the f**king awesome year I had, thank the people that made it happen, and what I hope to do next year.



I am still irritated at myself for missing that photo of Booker and Alycia Lane last Friday, especially when I wasn’t too timid to snap the Governor smooching Judge Rendell as they parted ways at the Marian Anderson Awards last month. Glad to know that someone did get the shot The Shot last week at Kildare’s, so it wouldn’t have been the “money shot” I thought it would have been, but it still would have been good to have it in stock. Good news for me today, the final goal I set out to achieve in my p/t “Photography/Paparazzi” career was accomplished today. Completely unplanned, as I had given up on reaching and just occurred through someone seeing a photo on this blog. Can’t go into details now, but will cover it in the Year End wrap up next week.Thanks for stopping by today, and everyday, I really appreciate it. – HughE



I am fortunate to have a standing invitation to Berger Montague’s Holiday Party. (I worked on a project from 1/02 -6/04 and then from 8/05 – 12/06 I worked with Diane from Berger on a project in NYC). Diane and I went to the party together and we had a terrific time.

One of the things I enjoy most about going to this annual event is seeing a lot of my old friends and catching up. The room at the Westin was really beautiful this year.Last year’s room; I think the Westin got a better decorator cause that pink rug had to go and the room looks so much better nowHere are two of my favorites Brett and Helen Gym Flaherty. Brett is an outstanding attorney, a great dad and an amazing athlete, but Helen is the savior of children every where. I first met Helen back when she championed the effort to keep the stadiums out of Chinatown, an issue my life partner was also concerned with. Another cause Helen near to her heart is education. Recently on Frontline she was quoted as saying, “Education is not a business. At some point, quality of education and the concept of profit will conflict and that quality of public education will suffer.” Brett and Helen are the proud parents of three children, and I am going to find a house for them in Fairmount so they can be my neighbors and I can see them more often. New mom Gemma and her mom, Anna
New grandparents, The Markerts.
Style sisters Sandy and SoniaSome of my closest friends that I still keep in touch with weekly or monthly. Diane, Sharon, Jeff, beautiful Maryanne, Todd and Celeste (missing Susan, Marcy, Sonia and Barry)April and her friendKevin, the invincible Sheila and April getting their groove onOne of the best litigation attorney’s (and a mighty good dancer to boot) Sherrie Savett and husband, radio host and former senator, Bob Rovner She’s bringing sexy back Thanks to John, Mark and Berger for throwing another great shindig


My Office’s Holiday Party was held at the Flyers Game Saturday Night against the Carolina Hurricanes Hockey Club, it was great, well except the Flyers Lost.Santa was there and fans donated a lot of Toys for the Tots

Mike and our friend Jeff plead their case to Santa in hopes that he won’t give them coal again this year.Bob Kelly was there, it was great catching up. He used to go hunting with my dad.
Jimmy Burt and the Flyers Alumni – Bob Kelly, Gary Dornhoeffer and the great Bernie Parent!!
Santa’s Helpers

Shortly after taking this shot, security informed me that I could no longer take photos since I was using a telephoto lens, something about copywrite and ebay?

My boss Joe, Bernie Parent (I went to school with his son Chuck and also got to tell him that I picked up “The Secret”, after he recently mentioned in an article that it changed his life), Gary Dornhoffer and Mrs Burt. Hat Trick!! I had no idea that fans threw their hats on the rink when someone gets a Hat Trick. It was amazing to see.
Rebecca won a chance to ride the Zamboni between periods

He shoots, he scores!!
Then it was sudden death, and we lost by some fluke It seem to land on his shoulder, and the fans started cheering with our win, but when he stood up the puck fell into the goal. It didn’t matter, it was a fun night all around. It’s always nice to see your co-workers with their families and to catch up. OK but that parking lot craziness has got to go, I can see why public transportation is the way to go.



I had just left an event and was on my way home driving up Walnut, which has now become the The Strip, The Drive, The Drag or whatever South Street was in the 80’s & 90’s where people would just drive along and see and be seen (I made a left on 17th to Spruce and cut over to 22nd because I had to rush home and send my pictures out, which took me til 4AM anyway. Maybe they will be in People or Us Magazine for Christmas, more on that event Monday) Anyway I caught this guy carrying his girl, I guess that had a lot of Happy Hour. (unfortunately I also caught my rear view mirror and it flashed back)
I can tell by my numbers that I have a lot of people and regulars checking out the site today, I don’t usually post on the weekend, even though that is when I have the most time, just Monday thru Friday. Today’s an exception. Have a great weekend!!