Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Rage inside the mansion

I'm going tonight to hear a punk rocker expound upon his views on atheism. Usually, I love it when people self-identify as punk rockers. It actually seems to fly in the face of punk to self-identify as a punk, at least after 1973 or so. But punk itself flies in the face of everything, does it not? So I give punk rockers the benefit of the doubt when they identify themselves as such. And whenever I see a mohawk or a tartan flannel, I view it totally without irony, as surely the wearer intended.

Sometimes, when I listen to "punk" music, it sounds more like New Jersey hardcore to me, but maybe it's just my untrained ear. I was always into sad music than angry music, and thus I rock out to people like Paula Frazer. When I met Paula Frazer once, we were having such a nice conversation, downstairs at the Knitting Factory, but then she mentioned that her guitarist was playing a gig upstairs from us. "Oh," I said, "the guy with the big head?" She frowned. "Yes, the guy with the big head." To frown at a mean statement is not punk rock in my book! But I still love you, Paula Frazer. Or Tarnation. Or whatever you are calling yourself today.

I decided to make a punk rock statement with my outfit to hear this lecture tonight. So I am wearing my "punk rock pants," a green, utilitarian number that wouldn't really be out of place on St. Mark's Place. But I paired it with pastels! To me, fruiting an outfit up makes it even more punk - as what is more punk rock than those rock 'n' roll gays, and their alley-dwelling, crotch-diving, lady-evading ways? But, again, I have an untrained ear. And perhaps I did take this outfit too far, with the purple shoes.

Punk rockers apply their principles, I find, unevenly in their own lives. For example, the rocker I am going to hear tonight certainly has a punk personality, but he insists on staying at the Taj. What do you call that? "Rage inside the mansion?" Whatever, I will be dressed for the occasion, in my own way, and, believe it or not, on the inside, I will be rocking out, just a little.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I had a dream last night in which someone was explaining to me that my basic problem in life is my issues with "control." I smiled evilly and with great rage and condescension at the speaker in the dream, but I simultaneously thought to myself, "Why, yes, actually. That is my problem. I should really be able to accept that spot-on critique." That's why when I am invited to a party like the one Alyse had for her birthday on Friday - a party in Brooklyn - Brooklyn! - a borough which everyone knows I find insufferable - on a roof - a roof! - so of course I spent the whole night afraid that I would fall off the roof and splatter on the concrete below - when I felt bloated - bloated! - and then was introduced to a young lady I was sure I'd met before, but only when she insisted that she didn't know me did I realize that she was an actress in my favorite television show - now, sadly, cancelled - famous people! - and when, every time the doorbell rang, a still-hotter fellow entered the party - hot fellows while I'm bloated! - it can seem like my antithesis.

But in reality, Alyse's party was the most fun I've had in a while. Everyone was so nice to me, and I was so nice to everyone! I didn't stalk the celebrity. I noticed a guest wandering near the corner of the roof by himself, checking his messages, and I went over and engaged him in friendly conversation. I partook of the communal pasta. I helped carry things back downstairs to Alyse's friend Josh's apartment. I didn't make any new enemies, which is huge for me. Why was I so relaxed, even with all the afore-mentioned goings-on?

Then Alyse posted this picture on my Facebook wall, and I remembered: it was a black party, but I chose to wear plaid. I think this shirt is by Vince. And at one point during the party, the very hot Cassandra (seated next to me) offered me her bedazzled armband. It was so sparkly, it appeared to have been made out of Liza Minnelli. I demurred, as that was her accessory. I had to be in control the whole time, at least of my appearance.

I have a friend named Hermann who would say to this post, "Girl, you just need to get f*cked." Oh, Hermann. He says that about everything I say, actually. And then sometimes, (much to my surprise), I find him putting his advice into action. Was that him in the dream? Does anyone wear Vince anymore? Why am I so often in Brooklyn? One night in the near future, I will dream the answers to these questions, and more.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Purple cape

I went to Emmett's party at his lovely boutique on Elizabeth Street. In the back of my mind, I remembered SVB's comment that Emmett had designed a purple cape that was really beautiful. A purple cape - can't you just imagine it? To own a cape is to own an escape route from one's own life. I wanted to find the cape in the store and drape myself with it, and then fly off into the horizon. So I excused myself from the party in the back garden and went into the main boutique, where I found a lady who worked in the store. I asked her where the cape was, and she replied, "Which one?"

"There's more than one?" I asked, incredulous. And she showed me to the cape section. But they weren't the capes I was expecting. Apparently, a "cape" can also refer to a women's jacket that's shorter in the front than in the back. I experienced a sinking sensation.

"Oh!" I said. "No, I'm looking for a cape."

"Oh, you mean like a Superman cape?!" she said, in one breath.


"We don't have those," she said, and then she excused herself. Humiliation, my old friend, descended then, and draped me in its familiar way. I have to say, I am really ready for a new look.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Empire Hotel

Alyse called me up and asked if I would go to her friend Daniella Kallmeyer's "look book" show at the Empire Hotel last night. Of course I would. I've been missing "Gossip Girl" so much this summer, and I wanted to see if Chuck Bass really hangs out at the Empire in real life. But what the fuck is a "look book?" While there were no "Gossip Girl" cast sightings, I did really enjoy the show. Daniella's models were standing on platforms, evenly spaced throughout the Crystal Room of the hotel, wearing her spring/summer looks. It was a little disconcerting that they were just standing there, and one of them kept staring openly at me. Perhaps she was supposed to represent the "look book?" But they were all dressed in really interesting, fun clothes. Alyse wants to wear the leather jacket pictured here for her birthday. She brought along her new love interest and his sister, who were both ebullient and young and made me feel crazy. After the show, they were really excited to see a rapper named Nicki Minaj come out of the hotel. I wish I listened to the radio so I could know who people are and be excited, too! I'm still rocking out to the first Neneh Cherry record. I finally made it home, exhausted, and noticed that my Tivo was recording the first new episode of "Gossip Girl" in months! My friends are back! I won't have to be alone anymore. I love you, Chuck and Serena and Blair and Little J and Dan and Nate! Perhaps my biggest question about your show - why don't you just trace those email blasts? - will be answered this season? Perhaps, perhaps not.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Fashion's night out

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!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Purple socks

I have perfected my gym attire over the years. Grungy blue shorts, New Balance grey sneakers for old people, and a white v-neck tee shirt, preferably stained with food, blood, and/or coffee. What do I think this get-up says about me at the gym? Hopefully: "I am crazy. Don't come over and talk to me. After all, look at me!! I'm covered in blood." Or: "I have very little invested in being fit. I go to the gym every day merely because I have OCD." Or: "I am not cruising you, sir."

Much to my surprise, then, a handsome fellow approached me yesterday, while I was smoking outside of the gym, preparing to go in. For some reason, I was even sloppier than usual. It seems that I had practically emptied a cup of coffee over myself. And I hadn't shaved my head in days, so I was looking my age.

We exchanged pleasantries, and then the fellow remarked that he was enjoying standing there, flirting with me. At this I giggled with surprise. Such bravery on his part, to admit that he was flirting! NEVER does anyone make a fool of themself for me; it's me who makes a fool of myself for other people, all the time. Immediately, I was drawn into what the (obviously insane) fellow was saying. And I told him that I was surprised he was flirting with me, since I was suspiciously covered with coffee. He replied that he wasn't looking at the coffee. ;)

Given that I only had a few moments before my cigarette went out, I quickly sussed out his general situation: not a junkie, employed, handy - a step up from my usual prospects! As we parted, I said something a little crazy, as is my custom, (it helps to weed out the humorless or the fussy). "You have beautiful eyes," I said. "I'd love to get lost in them some time."

And then I went to the gym, where I worked out extra hard. After all, I have to get fit if I can hope to take off my clothes in front of the new guy without crying. But I wondered after I left the gym, how did he know I was gay? After all, when I first saw him, I was hanging out outside the gym with my cousin Alyse. Didn't he think I was with her? I like to think that I am passing for straight at all times, (at least until I open my mouth and a handbag falls out, as they say). I wracked my brain during my workout and after, but I couldn't figure it out what gave me away. Was it my posture? The way I smoked a cigarette as if putting hot things in my mouth was a pretty common occurrence? Was it, as one of my songs goes, "the silver inside of my sweet, detached eyes?" Then, back at home, I looked down and realized what it was. Silly me, I had been wearing purple socks.