We were nervous for Piper Perabo at the Big Dance — she seems apt to shooting herself in the foot a bit, stylistically — ┬áso I think her black Oscar de la Renta was a good choice: It’s a clean, flattering cut, it has a tiny bit of oomph on the shoulder (the bow might be overly cutesy if there were anything else at all to the dress, but there isn’t, so it halfway works for me), and most of all it’s a safe pick that’s unlikely to land her on a worst-dressed list. That was probably its primary objective. It’s like sartorial training wheels. I’m not bowled over, but I do get to heave a sigh of relief — especially because she seemed so cute and charming in her interview with Ryan Seacrest, which is not at ALL how she usually comes off in stills.

Truly: I have issues with either a) the person in her life who told her she shouldn’t smile on the red carpet very often, if at all, and that when she does it should look like she’s ACTING!!; and/or b) the person who has not yet told her, “Honey, you have SUCH A PRETTY NATURAL SMILE. USE IT.” Take a tour through the slideshow to see the various faces she deployed and see if a grin isn’t the nicest one of all.

Well, great. Now I’m not just my mother, I’m my GRANDMOTHER. And while she was an awesome lady, she also had sixty-six years on me. Oh well. It happens to us all someday.

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