Written by Esther Levy-Chehebar
I know virtually nothing about Fashion Week, save for the fact that several Manhattan neighborhoods — most of which are on the west side — become densely populated by really, really well dressed women, who get photographed like they’re Kim Kardashian, (even though they’re not Kim Kardashian), purportedly because they carry their clothes better than the rest of us do. See, I could never pull off that Blk Dnm leather jacket as insouciantly as one particular million foot tall blonde model does.
In any case, though, I was gallivanting through Soho for the better part of an hour last Saturday, biding my time, fruitlessly hoping I might be stopped for a street style shot while practicing demure objection – Please, no photos – when hunger pains hit. My gallivant quickly morphed into a frantic sprint, hopping and halting to avoid ice, finding myself cast as a Charlie Chaplin impersonator lampooning slapstick by all who saw me.
I took my usual route, starting at Jacks Wife Freda on Lafayette to Gitane on Mott and finally to Butchers Daughter on Kenmare; I was met with 90-minute waits and cramped quarters, tables abuzz with disheveled glamour and perfectly imperfect bedhead. Sigh. As I stood outside with the tutelage of others too lazy to smear avocado on their own multi-grain bread, my memory was jogged by the painful recollection of my 17-year-old self, bare legs quivering under the disapproving gaze of an unrelenting Kiss & Fly bouncer.
I vowed for the tenth time this year never to wait in line again, and shimmied next door to the neglected cousin promising massaged kale. To my surprise, I was seated immediately and greeted with the happy hour promise of $2 wine; I was peeved to be reminded that I was beginning my night at 4:30 pm, but $2 wine is $2 wine, am I right?
I was $6 in once I found myself in the restroom, squatting and cussing at my inadequate calves, when I looked to my left and saw the most enviable pair of Loeffler Randall oxfords peeking out beneath the stall beside mine. Said shoes seemingly became uncomfortable under my gaze and they inverted inwards, a bit squeamishly.
It didn’t take long for me to realize that Randall’s suitor was going through something, and I myself was hard pressed to believe that the oxford owner could produce a stench as foul as her stall suggested. As Girl Code’s Jessimae Peluso rightly put it, bathroom doors should be floor to ceiling. Oxford girl and I were now engaged in a game of cat and mouse. She flushed but was presumably embarrassed to exit her stall, knowing that she could be identified by the gems on her feet. And I? I didn’t want to embarrass her — and that embarrassed me! You see?
Eventually my nose gave out, and I made a mad dash to the sink. Air dryers don’t accommodate an efficient bathroom experience, and so I lowered my head. I saw the monochromatic vixen step, right then left, right then left, tentatively, towards me. I lifted my head and then my eyes in order to fully capture the million foot tall Blk Dnm leather sporting blonde before me. She smiled, I smiled, but while my grin probably mimicked that of a gawky teenager’s, hers seemed to confidently say, “See? Models poop too.”