Thursday, February 07, 2008

My Big Apple Part 1

Monday 7:25

Caleb and Baby Girl take me to the airport. I kiss my daughter. I kiss her again and rub her head. I think I might cry. Yep, there's a tear. I check in and immediately bypass all the suckers in line for the NW security line and head for Delta. This is the best kept secret in Memphis. Don't tell anybody. I join the 4 other people in line at security. I send my things through, and one of my bags causes a ruckus. It's taken over to a metal slab where several employees pilfer through my breast pump and test it for explosives. I assure them that the only exploding to occur will be my breasts if I can't take that pump on board. Then, two men in suits and sunglasses appear at the word "exploding" and take me into a holding cell where I am waterboarded and coerced to sign a document that says I think its swell that they did away with hot meals in favor of $5 snack boxes. Ok, not really. But they do ask me if it hurts when I use it. I say no. They don't appear convinced.


When did Vanity Fair become Old Billionaire divorces Lady So and So for the nanny and is sued by the butler who was having a Fling with his secretly gay son Magazine?

Flawless. Plane touches down in NYC. I get my bag. I chat with a lady in the cab line who pushes her 10 month old in a stroller. Everybody coos at him and I wish Harlow was with me. I'm in the cab and see the manhattan skyline. I'm kinda psyched Harlow isn't with me.


My cab driver is losing his shit. He can't believe this place is a hotel. He has driven past this spot everyday for years and did not know this was a hotel. I think I have made his year. I lug my bag up the steep steps and press the buzzer to a red brownstone. Honestly, if it weren't for the sign, I wouldn't know it was a hotel either. Jenny, blonde, pale, in tan calf high boots, lets me in. The room isn't ready, but when I mention boobs exploding, she makes the room ready.

So let me back up. This place is unlike any hotel I have ever stayed. It was designed by Sean Macpherson, the guy responsible for the Chateau Marmont in LA and the Bowery Hotel just around the corner. But right now, it is as if I entered an Edith Wharton novel. I am the ingenue in turn of the century New York come to stay with my eccentric spinster aunt in her ramshackle digs downtown. Painted portaits line the walls. Smoked glass mirrors. Purple paint and crystal sconces. We're in #4. I pump, and then search for jenny. There is no reception desk. There is no Jenny. I wander around the house, up and down stairs, until a housekeeper takes pity on me and leads me to a small office where a guy gives me my keys. No reception desk. No other guests. I love it.


I am at the B Bar next door eating the most amazing butternut squash soup with pumpkin seeds and cinnamon. Killer nicoise salad. It's a Mexican-French-American fusion. This shouldn't work. But it really, really does.


My hair appointment is in ten minutes. I walk through Soho and take a lap around H&M with no luck. However, I score a $30 coat and some cheap, cute green patent leather heels at Zara. I take this as a good sign.


Where the hell is Dop Dop? Why is Houston St. pronounced HOW-ston instead of HYOO-ston?


When I get to the salon, if I ever find it, the plan is this: Mia Farrow it. Chop it off. Bleach blonde. Oooh, or cut some bangs and go dark. Either way, it's time to get radical.


Found it! Noelle does my hair. No, she paints my hair, like an artist. It's seriously pretty cool, having someone pay that kind of attention to your hair. Unfortunately, this kind of attention will take 3 hours. And because I am a complete wuss, I leave slightly blonder with a trim. Yawn. It does look pretty, though.


God I love this city. I love walking with everybody, feeling the energy. God I miss being able to walk everywhere. Wait, I lived in LA and Memphis. I never walked anywhere. I don't know what I'm talking about.




Dinner at Balthazar. I get roast chicken and some yummy wine. The hostess and I have on the exact same dress. Fortunately no one asks me to change their reservation. Paul, hairdresser to the stars, dines with us and bitches about Vincent Gallo being fickle. I nod and look sympathetic. He congratulates me on not chopping my hair off. Not that it wouldn't look fabulous, he says. But in Memphis, it would basically be a big blonde frizzfro.


We arrive at another restaurant to pick up Jen's friend Michelle, a manager of some very famous rock bands. Two of her very famous artists are dining with her. We all walk to a nearby bar where the artists, a married couple, show us pictures of their kid on their Iphone. I nod and try to be cool. They think Memphis is cool. I am suddenly cool by proxy. They discuss the lineup of what songs they will play at an upcoming fashion show. I secretly snap a pic of one of them with my Iphone. I am such a dork. Oh my god I can't drink this drink. It's way too spicy rum. Hey - the bartender is their bass player. Why is he tending bar? This rock star gig should pay more.


It is so awesome being with cool people because we don't have to wait in line. Did I mention it is 30 degrees and drizzling and my blowout is beginning to resemble something my cat threw up?


We have taken a time machine and landed in 1985. Everyone is in faded, high waisted jeans, white heels and day-glo. Of course, this is Chloe Sevigny's party. The Slits are playing, an all-girl punk band. 80,000 of Chloe's closest friends are here to help her celebrate the debut of her clothing line, and the one smoker is right behind me. Paul the hair stylist and I get smoked on for about 10 minutes while we try to look pitiful enough to get the bartender's attention. I get a vodka cranberry, well more like next to the bottle of cranberry. Oh my god I can't drink this drink either. It goes in the trash. Paul, some dude who works with The Cobrasnake who, of course, is one of Jen's artists, and a pixie named Lydia with green eye liner and Debra Winger hair traipse off to heiress Amanda Hearst's party. Jen and I go home to our aunt's house and fall into a deep, deep sleep. Until 6 AM when our alarm goes off.

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