Always, in the face of adversity, one age-old adage applies: Never give up. Whether out of persistence, luck, or sheer liquid courage, the fates can change. Do change. Will change.
Such being the case two nights ago.
On a questionably narrow street in Chinatown, Le Baron hosted the seasonal NYNY Party for Fashion Week. We knew someone from Crystal Castles was playing, and that the event was being sponsored by ABSOLUT™. Both seemed like enough valid reasons to (“fuck it”) and go.
Forget bottle service and V.I.P. lists. Local wanted to bring party coverage from the front lines. That is why I, along with fellow staff writer Paul Pastore, and redhead BAMF, Nanci ‘Nay’ Tischler, fell behind the velvet rope with you in mind.
We knew a few things before going in. A) Arrive early. B) We weren’t on the list, but C) Never act like you’re not on the list. The following is what we would come to learn along the route to a pathetic, but nonetheless productive, victory.
Angela: First rejection. Told to “Step aside.” Social status: Plebian.
Paul: “Your name isn’t on the list” “but we’re press (lol)” “Step aside.”
Paul: Standing at the curb scoping out potential people to latch onto. It feels like prostitution. Where have we left our dignity?
Angela: Awkwardly lingering outside the line. Multiple attempts to approach bystanders for cigarettes. Ulterior motive to piggyback designer posse crashes and burns.
Angela: Second rejection. “Forget about it.” Emotional state is wavering.
Paul: We saunter up to the black rope again like nothing happened. Rejected again. We strut, feigning fabulousness, back around the corner to plot.
Angela: Assume British alter ego, Audra Fox, upon arrival. When in doubt, drink it out. Searching for back entrance to Le Baron on Chinatown side street. Feeling in the zone. Disillusioned, but hopeful.
Paul: We are nightlife warriors. We’re pounding on the doors of the Chinatown Transfiguration Church—the entrance could be anywhere—we are not giving up. There’s a back door somewhere.
Angela: Found desolate K-Pop Karaoke bar. Got into kitchen upstairs. Informed by small, sweet Asian man, “No, no.” No back entrance confirmed by sole door ominously leading to freezer.
Paul: Angela is at the top of a flight of stairs that lead to the kitchen, talking with a fake British accent to this little man in thick-rimmed black glasses. This is bedlam.
Angela: Second K-Pop Karaoke bar.
Paul: This place is even emptier than the last one; it’s only the employees and us.
Angela: Have uninformed mayoral debate in presence of small, sweet Asian man. He laughs, quietly.
Paul: The quiet laughter is in sharp contrast to Angela and Nay screaming at each other, arguing over whether which will come first: a female or Jewish President. The bartender, a petite Asian woman, is holding head in her hands. Is she crying?
Angela: Females gain gender awareness. Pussy powered into submission. We know what we have to do: Leave Paul (temporarily) for any hope of securing our spot. Kudos and prayer Emoji go out to Paul.
Paul: Fully expecting them to get rejected a third time, I go across the street waiting for them to return to me defeated. I ask this older man for a cigarette. He says he is a photographer. Starts showing me his work on his phone, would I like to come to come to his studio? Bye. Then these other queens compliment my shoes and we start kiki-ing about people’s outfits.
Angela: Go straight up to the entrance for the third and, by far, most desperate attempt. Bouncer; “You don’t have to go all the way around the building to smoke, ladies.” Quickly ushers us straight in.
Paul: Look up from tweeting and Angela & Co. have 100% disappeared. They tell me they’re inside, I walk up to the bouncer and contemplate the arguing I would have to do to get in. Before even saying anything I decide to turn around and bow out gracefully. There’s cold pad thai and Netflix waiting for me in Bushwick.
11:59 – 12:01
Safety text to roommate reads: ZOMG WE GOT IN TOO PARTY OF LIFTIME. Attempt to save Paul curtailed by downstairs bouncer. Club hit max capacity for guys.
Assume role of “Party Correspondents.” Number of pouty faces per capita triples. Must bring DSLR or obtain press badge for future #professionalism. Hitting selves on back with proverbial stick. Correct mistakes with tequila.
Three models stand beside. So posh I should puke. With higher aspirations, perhaps I should start…
Gangly dude, along with quasi-Courtney Love’s younger cousin, sitting in the corner. Both maintaining perfect level of apathy. So haute.
Everyone reppin’ kissy face and/or look of utter despair. Urge to survey number of Xanax users peaks. We’ve made a slight amendment to our titles. Now, “Fiesta Correspondents.” Crowd more receptive to Vogue México.
Attempts to regroup with the Nay thwarted. Bathroom has strict no-two-vages policy. We see what we imagine to be coke remnants seen around the sink.
Mission to talk to the DJ hath commenced. Movement to play Cindy Lauper overturned. Biggie, however, is accepted and queued.
2:10 – 3:22
Consult working memory. Nay has a revelation: “We should crash weddings.” Stay tuned.
Night amounts to avocado binging at deli near home. Buy preventative Gatorade. Bedtime proclamations are that we live in the best city in the world.
It is Tuesday morning.
[Photo by Angela Almeida]