Grace Jones is one tough lady -- she not only looks like she can take care of herself, she can. After signing to perform at the hot club Tracks for two nights, she surprised her audience Sunday by singing only three songs. Since the audience had paid $15 or $20 a head, someone pointed out, Jones was setting a dangerous precedent by charging almost $7 a song. Patrons were understandably annoyed. Martin Chernoff, the club's promotion director, said yesterday that Jones' performance was "insulting to Tracks customers."

Jones, who was expected to perform again last night, told Chernoff she was unable to commit to a five-song performance, but would try. Chernoff quoted Jones as explaining that "it depended on what the audience was like." On Sunday, he said, he tried to persuade the singer to do at least an encore, but she refused, saying, "If they want to see more, they can come back tomorrow." Out and About Political operative Frank Mankiewicz married his longtime friend Patricia O'Brien Saturday at the Howard County home of O'Brien's brother-in-law and sister, Martin and Mary Thaler. D.C. Court of Appeals Judge Abner Mikva performed the ceremony. O'Brien -- who until recently was Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis' campaign press secretary -- for a number of years was a national correspondent for Knight-Ridder Newspapers here. O'Brien is the author of two books, "The Woman Alone" and "Staying Together," and is working on a third. Mankiewicz, who is vice chairman of Hill & Knowlton Inc. public relations, is a former president of National Public Radio and was press secretary to Robert Kennedy. It is the second marriage for both ...

Washington lawyer/agent Ron Goldfarb says he has eight major publishers in New York bidding on political consultant Pat Caddell's proposed book (working title: "Losing America"), targeted for publication after the 1988 presidential election. Goldfarb also has sold Washington Post reporter Paul Taylor's as-yet-untitled book on the '88 campaign, to be published in 1989. Another book already underway, by Post columnist Haynes Johnson, will take a broad look at the 1980s; Goldfarb says it has been sold to W.W. Norton and is scheduled to be finished in early 1989. The book's tentative title is "Dashed Hopes" ...

The selection of Dennis Quaid to portray outlaw rock 'n' roll singer Jerry Lee Lewis in the biographical film "Great Balls of Fire" could make the hot star of "The Big Easy" even hotter. The screenplay is based on the book of the same name by Myra Lewis, the rock star's cousin, who became his 13-year-old bride in a romance that almost wrecked Lewis' career ...

It's only the first week of the year and already there is a candidate for most wretched excess of 1988. If sculptor Walter Pugni has his way, a 12-foot bronze statue of Madonna will be erected in the mountain village of Pacentro, Italy. Madonna's grandparents left Pacentro for America in 1919, and Pugni sees the statue as a tribute to Italian emigrants. A two-foot model, which the sculptor showed off at a Rome press conference, features Madonna in a daring bikini with suitcases -- representing emigration -- at her feet. Pugni says the statue of Madonna Louise Ciccone would be "a symbol for our children and represents a better world for them in the year 2000." There are five churches in the tiny village dedicated to the original Madonna, so there is some concern about the sexy statue ...