The wi-fi in the big Spirit Awards tent was twitchy — worked, didn’t work, sorta worked — so I threw up my hands after 40 minutes or so of futzing around. And then it was party time at Shutters for two, two and a half hours, and then a 90-minute horizontal…forget it. I blew it, slacked off, dropped the ball and, from a filing perspective, basically shined my Hollywood Elsewhere responsibilities.

The Lives of Others director-writer Florian von Henckel Donnersmarck fielding questions in the rear press tent at the Spirit Awards — Saturday, 2.24.07, 3:25 pm

But a 20-gun salute to Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck and The Lives of Others for having won the Spirit Award for Best Foreign Film. The odds, of course, have been telling us for several weeks that the great Pan’s Labyrinth will take the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar tonight, but I’m sticking with The Lives of Others on my ballot, even if it means losing money. Because Others has, for me, a better, more satisfying ending.