Place Hacking NYC: Clubbing With Tyga at Fashion Week

NYU Local writer Howard is smooth-talking and slick-walking, in our new series Place Hacking we send him to weird, wonderful, and sometimes not entirely public places in New York. Check back for more of his adventures as he bends rules, meets people, and explores NYC through the eyes of a kid from Evansville, IN
New York City is a huge place. By population, it’s more than seventy times bigger than where I’m from. By places to go and gems to find? It’s orders of magnitude higher. In less than two weeks of exploring, I’ve gone places and done things I would’ve never imagined doing before.
On top of this, I’m in New York during Fashion Week, a playground of people to meet and events to take in. Of course, most of this kind of stuff isn’t readily accessible to the public. But that’s what place hacking is all about — finding your way up and in!
My belief is that for most things in life, the best way to start is to go hard. Crashing a NYFW kickoff party at a famous club where Jay-Z has a reserved table on a night with Tyga performing? I’d call that pretty hard.
The day started off fairly normally — it was a Thursday with classes, after all. Then, just as I was I was finishing my lunch and deciding whether I would sleep or do Algebra homework (I’m a good student, I swear), I got a message from my editor about doing some coverage from NYFW.
The shortened (and dramatized) version of the conversation went something like this:
Editor: You wanted to cover NYFW right? We got a heads up about some parties!
Me: Yeah!
Editor: Do you want to see Tyga perform tonight?
Me: Hell yeah!
Editor: So you’d be good to cover an event this evening?
Me: Fuck yeah!
Editor: Ok go to Up & Down at 11PM, we’ll RSVP you.
Me: *explodes*
At this point, the obvious thing to do was sit in the back of my math lecture, throw headphones on, and catch up with as much of Tyga’s discography as I could in 75 minutes. Classes flashed by, only partially aided by the fact in my excitement I forgot I had French until 20 minutes after that class started. Again, I’m a good student, I swear.
After that I was off to dinner with my brother, Thomson. Did I mention that my brother was flown out from Palo Alto to NYC for work for a week?
Anyway, the end of dinner was when things started getting interesting. I got a much less happy text from another editor -
“The RSVP list was full. So you can go and try but I don’t know”
So do I play it safe, call it a night, and sleep to enjoy NYC again the next day?
Why the hell would I do that?
The plan is changed. Since RSVP-ing is no longer a factor, I invite my brother. Now, I plan to grab my cameras from my dorm, show up at the door, say the person in charge of media called us in from NYU Local, and see what happens. We get going, planning to meet up at my dorm in about 30 minutes and grab supplies.
So I own two cameras that make me look more like I’m actually supposed to be covering an event, and both of them are blocked off from me. Can anything else go wrong?
Luckily the answer is no, as things started turning around. We got to Up & Down thirty minutes before opening time. A bartender opened the door and we followed in. Note that this is a club that the likes of Rihanna, Snoop Dogg, and Selena Gomez have been to — it’s no joke. After being bounced between the “Up” and the “Down” areas a couple times, each time being asked why we were there (We’re from NYU Local, Tommy Saleh asked us here), we got told to wait near the prep area, where we overheard them talking about table reservations -
“Table 32 is for Johnson… Make sure to get table 33 covered, that’s Jay-Z’s…”
Things are looking up overall, if they check the full RSVP list we still might get kicked out, but as the time for public opening draws nearer, it looks like we’re in. As the bar opens, me and my brother share a drink to FUCK YEAH WE MADE IT! We had a Long Island Iced Tea and Moscow Mule, respectively (actually, we both had apple juice, never drink kids, you’ll go to hell).
As the night continued, we took advantage of the open bar (apple juice, calm down), and Tyga came on around 1:30. He played a solid set, but I couldn’t tell tell you what that set contained, other than a lot of moshing. After getting hype as hell to Tyga, me and my brother parted ways — I only get to see him once or twice a year tops, but I’d say I made it worth it.
In retrospect, considering my brother has 4 years of college on me, I probably shouldn’t have tried to go harder than him (on the apple juice). All things considered though, I held myself pretty well for my first night of clubbing in New York.
So in summary? I got into a club that was going up on a Thursday with Tyga and Jay-Z during NYFW by having the stones to claim an RSVP that never actually went through. There are a lot of things you can get away with if you stay aware of what’s going on around you and have the guts to take a shot.

Photos via Facebook and the author