Probing Vuillard's

'Wonderful Mysteries'

Ah, Paree! The only thing missing was the Eiffel Tower at Thursday's black-tie dinner at the National Gallery. The party revolved around the work of Parisian painter Edouard Vuillard -- the most comprehensive exhibit ever (some 230 works) of his art.

"Vuillard is way more than decorative art," said NGA trustee Vicki Sant, who collects the painter's work. "It's very intimate and very contemplative. I've liked his work since Art History 101."

The full artistic output of Vuillard's prolific life (1868-1940) includes screens, photographs and ceramics, but his paintings are the center of the exhibition on display through April 20. "He's a genius with patterns, color and composition," said NGA Director Rusty Powell. "They're wonderful mysteries and, in a way, allow the viewer to solve them."

The night was tre{grv}s French, complete with French menu, Courvoisier and Cointreau. The guest list of 300 included new French Ambassador Jean-David Levitte and Jean-Claude Bellier, Vuillard's godson.

As usual, departing guests received a copy of the exhibition catalogue -- in this case, all seven pounds of it. "If you are able to carry it, you can take it home," joked Powell.

Their Big Greek Bestseller

Stephanie Glakas-Tenet looked at the 300 women assembled at St. George Greek Orthodox Church Saturday afternoon. "I think three-fourths of this room I'm related to," she said with a laugh.

It was all in the family (Greek style) at the 13th Philoptochos ladies tea -- an annual gathering of women from local Greek Orthodox churches. Tenet, wife of CIA Director George Tenet, grew up at the Bethesda church -- her parents, John and Cleo Glakas, helped found it in 1965. Tenet (with co-author Julie Sussman, far right, in bottom photo) returned to talk about the new book "Dare to Repair: A Do-It-Herself Guide to Fixing (Almost) Anything in the Home."

With husbands who travel frequently, the two women often found themselves at home with something broken. Tenet's first do-it-yourself job was repairing the mortar on her chimney. "I thought I could do it faster myself," she said. "It's held ever since."

Book sales are swell -- bestseller lists, tours and TV appearances. The ladies at Saturday's tea (including, from left, above, Kally Panagos, Maria Mathios and Lula Hios) bought almost 100 copies to support their Greek girlfriend.

"I have to admit I have Greek envy," the Irish Catholic Sussman told the crowd. Sussman's mother taught her that every time she visited a new church, she was entitled to three wishes -- and Sussman already had hers picked out: "Oprah, Oprah, Oprah."

Cosmopolitans, Letting

The Singles Mingle

Hormones still raging at 40? Try and stop them. More than 275 over-40 singles turned up Friday night at the National Press Club ballroom for cocktails, dancing, and . . . well, you know. "The purpose is not to meet someone to get engaged to," said host Charlie Richardson. "It's to dress up and have a wonderful time."

The evening was hosted by the Cosmopolitans, a nonprofit singles group that has raised $100,000 for local charities in the past seven years with these upscale dances. The women outnumbered the men, which made for much flirting but not much fooling around. "It's not a meat market," said Byron Coleman, above with Pat Worth. "Most people are here to have a good time."

With Beth Buchanan