It all happened so quickly. Mary got out of work and called me up, saying we should go to Fashion's Night Out. Although neither of us is that into fashion people any more, we went. I put on a simple Paul Smith henley from two seasons ago and some jeans and my Adidas, and took the train to Bleecker Street, where she was waiting for me on the corner, wearing pre-Betsey Johnson Betsey Johnson. We took the train up to 57th Street, and stopped to take pictures in front of a bubble machine. A nice fellow asked if he could take a picture of himself with me in front of the bubbles, so I put my arm around him and Mary took the picture. Awkward! That picture will probably end up with some terrible, unintended caption on some German porn site, shaming me forever. We were photographed again in Van Cleef and Arpels by an acquaintance, Jonathan, who looked so bored to be there, but who had a magic camera that flashed three times in quick succession (we felt the flashes as puffs of air on our faces) and made us feel glamorous.
Then, Mary produced a magical press badge that someone had given her. The badge allowed us to cut the line and get into Bergdorf Goodman, where - again, magic! - Victoria Beckham was scheduled to present her fall line. Victoria fucking Beckham. We practically knocked mannequins over rushing to the staging area for this event, and we squeezed ourselves into the crowd. Many people know that I love Victoria Beckham - I was one of the few people in America to actually see "Spice World," and the scene where she wakes up from a nightmare in which she sees a "giant head - but with no makeup" - made me squirt Diet Coke from my nostril. As we waited for Victoria to arrive and make her presentation, I had time to ponder several important questions. Why do fashion people still thrill me on some secret level? Are you still considered fashionable if you are wearing Paul Smith from two seasons ago? (No.) Is it jarring to the fantasy of the night to admit that, after this, I will be headed out to Queens to tend to my elderly father, who would roll his wheelchair over Victoria Beckham if she got in his way to the handicapped bathroom? After the Bergdorf excitement, we motored down Fifth Avenue, stopping in Bendel's to see if the makeup cuties were working (only one was). And then I got on the train to Queens, exhausted. It is hard work, as a non-fashion person, to make myself presentable for one night, removing my ever-present cloak of irony and replacing it with a woolen blouse. Whew!