Spotted on the streets of New York: The Skirt of the Summer

Good morning, Thursday. It's gloomy outside and I'm happy for indoor activities today.

So last night I was hanging with a few pals who are helping me redo my site and blog (exciting) while having a few laughs over Thai food. One of them mentioned a trend she's been seeing in Soho, and I couldn't believe it- because I was literally going to write this here post today about the very same. Patterns are everywhere. You just need to keep your eyes open.

And since I like to tell you what's trending on the streets of New York when it comes to style, allow me to present the silk leopard midi skirt in all of its girl power glory. Because it seems like every NY woman is wearing some version of this skirt- with sneakers, with kitten heels and with just about everything. Last week at The Wing I saw at least three women rocking it, and if you walk around Soho on a sunny afternoon you can literally lose count of how many versions of it you'll see.  It started last summer with this skirt from Realisation Par, an is now ubiquitous in New York style circles. Incidentally, my new friend started an Instagram account in real time last night to address this little trend .

I will admit it's a versatile little number. 

It nods to the 90s which I love (slip skirts so my jam) and works well with a tank top and kitten heels, or with a tucked in button down and ballet flats. It's great with a light sweater or sweatshirt and sneakers too. It's a great little piece you can either dress up or dress down.

Here's some versions of it I found online so you too can look like a New York type of chick-a-dee.

This one from Faiithfull is well priced and cute.

Love the a line silhouette of all of these, but the Ganni version of this trendy piece is particularly flattering and versatile on many body types.

Of course millennial fav Reformation is doing a version, theirs in georgette.  I prefer the silk personally to give it that real lingerie feel. 

This version in jersey looks comfy as f. I want it.

And this one from Icons is probably my fav- love the lace detailing for a bit of sex appeal. Fab. 

And of course, the original, here. The one that started it all. For all you purists out there. I recommend wearing it with a shirt, but that's just me.

So there you have it. Leopard midi skirt. One and done. Get to it.

Cause that's what's up this seen on the streets kind of Thursday in the 212. Yours, in I live here so you don't have to. XO

Remembering Biggie and New York in the 90s.

Good morning, Tuesday. It's way more my tempo outside with the cooler temps. I'm a fan. Too soon yesterday with all that heat and humidity. Too soon.

So today would be the Notorious B.I.G.'s 47th birthday. I guess I never realized he was one of mine when it came to demographics but I guess he was. I do know that when his album "Ready to Die" came out the year I moved here, I found myself unable to stop listening to it. It was so hard yet so catchy. I fell in love with Biggie as did everyone living in New York and everywhere at that time. And hip hop was a big part of my life back then. I can't think back to my early days in New York without it.

Back in the day, I had a weird pattern of dating guys in the record business. Not musicians or artists, mind you. More record exec types of the scrappy, short, Jewish varietal. That was my speed back then. I have no idea why. Beastie Boy tendencies I suppose. And truly, Jews and hip hop go together like peanut butter and matzoh. From Rick Rubin to Lyor Cohen to Steve Rifkind and back again. We're drawn to it like moths to a flame. I spent so much time hanging out at the offices of record labels- there was a time when it seemed that all of my friends and lovers were in the music business. Those pre-streaming days and such. Incidentally, Lyor Cohen was on our plane coming back from Vegas after we got married. I was wearing an Adidas bucket hat and immediately felt shy. I remember him calling Ja (Rule) on the plane phone before we had cell phones. It was epic.

So to back up, after moving to New York, I ended up very much in the world of 90s hip hop, which was just fine by me. Little clubs like the 205, BOB, Sapphire, Den of Thieves, Rebar, The Tunnel on Sunday nights, Nell's, the reggae/hip hop basement at Club USA. Sunday night showcases at Chaz and Wilson's uptown.  DJs like Stretch Armstrong made it all so much fun. Surely I'm missing some but you get it. If you were here, you no doubt remember the sweat fest of fun almost every night. You could go to a small club and dance your face off. It didn't matter what you were wearing, although looking cute was always on the menu.  And I could never, ever forget a young group called the Fugees, performing at Tramps, where all of us were basically dancing in our bras by the end of the night because it was so hot on all counts. The energy at that show was absolutely unforgettable, and absolutely in my top ten concert experiences of all time. Ooh la la la.

I also remember how inspired I was by Vibe magazine, the photos in particular. Photographers like Jonathan Mannion (his photo of Biggie above) were doing the best photos of all the heroes and heroines of the scene. In many ways, I think Vibe inspired me to work in photography as a producer. I can remember shooting a young Lauryn Hill at Industria and being completely intoxicated by her beauty and power and style.

And I'm lucky to be married to a man that also lives his hip hop. It's true he may skew slightly more west coast than east coast, but it works. We've been watching the four part Wu Tang thing on Showtime  and he's never mad when I swoon over Method Man, who remains the dreamiest. The footage from those early Wu days takes me back to to that time- it was all so gritty and grimy and raw.  Really, the Wu's 36 Chambers was more punk rock than punk rock itself. Nothing slick, nothing polished ,complete and total aggro amazingness. And even though Giuliani tried to ban dancing (it's true), he couldn't stop us, and I just feel so lucky I was here during the height of 90s hip hop, which, for my money, is my most favorite. And I love that my aunt loves hip hop as much as we do. She'll often wear an oversized Biggie tee shirt and for that, I love her the most. Nothing like Passover dinner and some hardcore hip hop. That's how we roll in my family.

As for where hip hop is now, it's ok. I don't hate it, but I certainly don't love it. And that's ok. Every generation has to have their music, and I'll let the kids have it. I may not be asking my Uber driver to turn up Hot 97 the way I used to back in the yellow cab days, but still. I can appreciate it. I love that New York was so instrumental in hip hop and always will be somehow. There is no more relevant backing track to this city in the last thirty years and change than hip hop. And that's the truth. Try driving on the FDR late at night some time blasting Mobb Deep's "Shook Ones" and you'll get it.

But today I was thinking about Biggie and how much his music meant and still means to me.  You could hear the emotion, the swagger, the pain. I may have to turn up to some Biggie today. In my apartment that happens to be not terribly far from where he grew up. And yes, Biggie's Brooklyn may be more Bugaboo than Bubble Goose now, but still. I love it. I love it all. Go spread love.

Cause that's what's up this hypnotizing Tuesday in  the BK. Yours, in juicy memories and hip hop forever. Happy bday, Biggie.  XO

Live through this: A personal take on how time is on my side

Good morning, Thursday. The sun is finally back and what a difference it makes. 

So I was just unwrapping the amazingly comprehensive NY Times piece on Generation X. It seems, yet again, we're having a moment. As so many of you know, being a member of the MTV generation is something I'm super passionate about. I have been lost and found a million times in this thing called life but my card carrying status as an Xer had never, ever left me, I'm eternally grateful for all of the references, music, and cynicism it has given me. G-d bless my Xness.

One of the pieces noted that it's 25 years since 1994, and it's worth checking in on what my generation is doing with themselves. What's particularly significant for me about that year is it's the year I moved to New York City. A year I can never, ever forget because it was one of the most pivotal of my life. 

I remember the end of my days in Philly, feeling so disassociated and disenchanted with the place I called home. And I wanted to reinvent what that meant. In general. I reached a point where all of my friends got out of Dodge, and I was the only one left- with a dead end job at a classical architecture firm and a crush on a coworker who wore sweater vests. I also remember eating a lot of plain baked potatoes for lunch.  Desperado.

I've always had a preloaded desire to live in New York, and with a lackluster life on the horizon, I wanted to make a move. So I got a job interview in the 212 and got on a train and got that job. And I moved on my birthday and never looked back. And just like that, life opened up. And the New York years happened and life happened and shit happened and here I am. Ready for what's next. My 30s were for falling in love and feeling loved and making up for all the funky fuckupedness of my 20s. Ten years later, I moved to Miami to take a job that would change the way I thought about work forever. And then very early into my 40s, it was time to come back to New York. And so I did.

To lens the backdrop a bit for you, here's what was going on that year in the world of pop culture. Madonna smoked a cigar on Letterman. NIrvana came out with "Unplugged". Oasis released "Definitely Maybe".  So many other things. Pulp Fiction and Uma's bob. OJ's glove. Playstation. Reality Bites. And of course, Hole's "Live Through This", an album I had on blast for the majority of the year, and had the baby tee with the logo to show my devotion to Courtney and co. Incredibly prolific times. But let's talk about right here and now.

Because with a new decade of life not too far off, I feel a new shift in the way I approach and process things. Sure there are way less f's given. But I tend to give f's to the stuff that matters. Like not working with jerks. Or energy vampires. Or people who are not my tribe. I also am focused on authenticity. And though that word is overwrought and overplayed, I'm feeling it. I'm feeling the need to live my truest life. And for me, that means being creative on my terms. Still figuring out that bit but bear with me...I've got a few minutes to figure out how to be the voice of my
generation. ;)

And 25 years since 1994 some things are still with me. I still love this big dumb city.  I'm still a redhead. I still love hip hop. I'm definitely more confident now, but in many ways, more vulnerable. The bottom line is- I'm still me. I may spend a bit more money on skincare and shoes but still here. It's interesting to think about the things you want to keep with you. Truly. I think it's a mistake to think about getting older as a time where you have to let everything go. Not always true. Because every phase of life gives you something for the next.  It's not about nostalgia at all, mind you. It's just having the roots and foundation so you can always keep moving and changing.  

Fascinating this moment. Treasuring it, savoring it, not afraid of it. 

Cause that's what's up this looking back to look forward kind of Thursday in the 212. Yours, in love and hope and sex and dreams. XO

PS- music nerds look at this list of releases from 1994. Insane.

Loving the boob tube: Celebrating women on television

Good morning, Tuesday. Happy hmm- second day of the work week? I dunno. I'm busy as shit this week. I got nothing in the way of salutations.

So this weekend I watched "Wine Country", Amy Poehler's much anticipated buddy flick where she and a cast of SNL alums go on a scripted trip for their pal's 50th birthday (bday gal is Rachel Dratch).

There's plenty of laughs and lots of questions. Like what is the point of Tina Fey's weird butch character? Is she there as some sort of log splitting spirit guide? I don't get it. She's never not funny. Except in this role.  Wh'appen?

And the premise itself is a bit on the thin side. A group of friends who waited tables at a Chicago pizza joint and still remained besties? Hmm. Maybe. But not probably.

But for those seeking some sort of truth about a 50th birthday party with some of the funniest women in the world should not turn away from this good but not great film. Maya Rudolph is always on point, and Paula Pelle is wonderful. There's some truly funny moments as expected from a great cast. And something I really loved about it all is that every woman featured looked their age in the best of ways. No skeletons. No overdone fillers. Just women being real. I love that. Thank goodness.

And here's what else. Though some complained about the lack of arc and resolution, I beg to differ. Because the truth is, when one approaches 50, it's not really about coming to big revelations or conclusions. You probably have a pretty good idea of who you are, and you most likely are not going to use a weekend in Napa to figure it all out. Know why? Cause you just want to get drunk and sing songs with your friends. As it should be. And that's just what they did. And it was lovely.

In other news, I just caught up on the game of the thrones. Oh my sweet Lord.  At one point, I had my cardigan over my head while I held my ears. The sights and sounds were simply too much for me- a repulsive amount of violence. Crazy dragon lady even had me feeling bad for Circe. The nonstop violence was too much to bear. I couldn't handle it. If given a choice, I think I'd rather be sipping pinot grig with Maya and company. Screw the Iron Throne. That's not my kind of leaning in. At all.

And lastly in other TV news, if you have not yet watched Shtisel on Netflix, it's a shanda, or scandal in Yiddish. How a show about Orthodox Jews in Jerusalem could be so bingeworthy is truly G-d's plan. And is it wrong I find the lead, Akiva, completely gorgeous, payes and all? I love the women on the show too- one who does what it takes to take care of her family after her husband bails, and another a beautiful widow whose lust for Akiva is forbidden. Great show- incidentally all in Hebrew and Yiddish with subtitles. 

I guess my point is let's hear it for the ladies of TV land, and showing ladies past a traditional prime. Though many complain of shite roles for women in Hollywood, maybe the smaller screen is the place to be. From midlife chick flicks to mad queens to women rebelling against very traditional roles, it's happening. (I caveat that GOTS does not treat women well on the show in many instances. In fact, it is often shockingly offensive- now that we have so many strong women onscreen let's get more in the writer's room, ok?

Anyway, I'm on assignment this week and not coming up for air much so writing this early in the am to keep it all keeping on. Cause that's what's up this boob tube of a Tuesday in the 212. Yours, in ladies first. XO

Maven recommends: A Mother's Day Product Round Up

Good morning, Friday. TGIF, babes.

This week was fairly magical. I can feel momentum happening around my work and I'm thrilled with that. I loved getting another piece on the Ageist, even though one reader commented that Keanu can't be all that wonderful if he promotes violence through his films (I officially have a hater). Besides that, I was grateful for some time this week to walk around this beautiful, vibrant city.  I'm feeling a lot of creative energy with the new season (even though Spring is feeling less than Spring like) and look forward to new projects in a way I haven't before. Why? Because I'm focused on taking on work that satisfies me creatively, and that gives me hope. I'm just finishing up a project for a shoe line and have a few more things in the works, but I'm also focused on reinventing this here blog so look for that in the weeks to come. 

In other news, it's been a while since I've shouted out a product. I'll break you off a few things I've been hearting on lately ,and without further ado, and just in time for Mother's Day to boot.

First up, this toner from Strivectin is just fabulous. As many of you know, I write for Strivectin from time to time and am a big fan of their products. This is their first toner and it doesn't disappoint. I'm generally not a toner person until the warmer months, as they tend to dry out my skin. But this one has a silky texture that feels lovely on the face. It's not that astringent feel you're used to, but it's a nice step before serum and feels like a great way to activate your other products. I know that's not what toner really does, but it's a great one. Plus it provides radiance and glow. Two of my favorite things. Gorgeous. Get this. If you're more of an oily type, this may not be your jam. But if you tend to be more combo and on the dry side, this toner is great.  Shake well for maximum results.

Second, I am OBSESSED with this green eye goodness from Chanel. You all know Chanel makeup is my jam and this green combo is completely fantastic. I've shied away from green as I've gotten older because it feels like "too much", but I couldn't pass up this combo. The eyeliner is gorgeous, the green mascara is magical, and this quad is so pretty, but warning- you need to tread lightly as it's super pigmented. I personally love just doing the eyeliner and mascara for every day use, and use the eyeshadow for when I want to feel a bit more glam. It's just stunning. They also do a new grey, blue, and mauve. The grey is probably next on my list. Grey is good on my greenish eyes.

Also have you smelled Diptyque's new Eau de Minthé? I happened to walk by the store the other day and couldn't resist a sniff.  It's so lovely and fresh. Composed of fern, mint, patchouli, and geranium with a hint of rose. I love it. In fairness, it skews more masculine so lovely for the men folk.  It's fresh and clean, like I imagine Trevor Noah would smell. That's how a man should smell, ps. Now you know. Good for chicks, too. I'd so wear this with a pretty dress to take the girly edge off.

Oh and no pre-Summer product round up is complete without a self tanner. This one from Tarte came to me by chance and I'm so glad it did. It's a fabulous, streak proof self tanner that dries in a flash and lasts for days. Excellent.

Just a few picks pour tu this Friday am. Hope you have a glorious Mother's Day weekend. Khan and I will be holding it down in NYC while David is out of town. Cause that's what's up this product shout out of a Friday in the 718, Yours, in bits and bobs. XO

Can a jumpsuit change your life?

Oh hello, Thursday.  How goes?

So I know I haven't written about clothes much of late because my focus has shifted to more content around reinvention and midlife and the like.  But I saw something the other day in Soho that made me remember why I love clothes, and why my point of view when it comes to style is kind of unique.

I was waiting to meet a friend at the Gucci store in Soho (as one does) but had a few spare moments and ended up in Celine. I know the fact that Hedi Slimane took over from Phoebe Philo was super controversial to some, but I love him and always have. I know Pheeb's legacy is huge, but Hedi's doing some great things for Celine. I have always been a fan of his sexy androgyny. It's probably the type of clothing I feel best in, particularly when I'm feeling in peak shape (not at the moment mind you but soon...).

So when I saw this leather jumpsuit it changed up my game a bit.

I fell madly in love with it. And though out of my price range, my fantasies surrounding it began almost instantly. I was willing to cease all carbo loading to wear it. I was willing to work around the clock to get it. And most of all, I dreamt of a scenario where this jumpsuit with ankle restraints could somehow become my everyday uniform. If my everyday uniform required me to lead some kind of super cool gang, that is. 

Now I'm aware many of you are having a big wtf maven moment right now. But for me, this jumpsuit is the perfect uniform. Like- where would I NOT go wearing this? I'd wear it to work with flats or a sneaker (remember i've always worked in creative casual environments). I'd I'd wear it to lunch. To dinner. To parties with a high heeled, barely there sandal. To any number of hotel bars.  I love the fact it provides instant cool cred. And it's somehow lightweight enough to not be an oven. But fact- not going to look good on mere mortals. And that of course, is part of the fantasy. But back to reality- I probably won't end up owning this, but I'm pretty sure this jumpsuit would be what I'd buy after selling the rights to a screenplay or removing several ribs to fit into it. A girl can dream.

I just wanted to share how much I still love clothes. How much they still inspire and move me and make me want to steam all of my vegetables. If loving you is wrong...

Just a little silly love song for ya this Thursday, brought to you by Hedi Slimane. Oh and I wrote a piece about Keanu that got published here. Check it out, people. I'd absolutely wear this get up to hang with him. Cause that's what's up this jump up and down kind of Thursday in the 718. Yours, in fashion aspirations. XO

Going camping? My thoughts on the Met Ball

Good morning, Tuesday. Cloudy in the city and enjoying a bit of solitude today.

So I usually write about the Met Ball, and I guess I will today too. But it's not what you think. Because I'm neither delighted or impressed. As one fellow follower of fashion friend of mine said on his Instagram- doesn't this all just feel so ridiculous and indulgent under the lens of the times in which we live? The answer is a strong yes for me.

Thing is, the theme is probably lost on anyone under 45. I'm going to guess many millennials have no idea what "camp" truly means. Having grown up with a gay cousin who dressed in drag and having also grown up as a young child in the 70s, I think I have a pretty good idea. Also the Susan Sontag essay is probably lost on that whole crowd, and admittedly, most people.  I suppose you can't expect Bella Hadid to deconstruct cultural nuances. That does seem a bit much. And the funny thing is so many people thought that so many people really "got it" this year. I disagree. 

Kendall and Kylie- feathers does not a camp make. You too, Anna. You too.

Kim- why so wet? Why do you always like to look wet? I don't understand. Go home  and towel off.

Cardi B was a fan favorite. But you're just vulgar to me and that's the truth. Distasteful and campy are not necessarily a thing. A period dress? Is that what it was? A showstopper yes. But camp? I dunno.

Everyone in Gucci- safe. Easy. Camp. Best looks of the night though in my mind. Harry Styles got the memo. So did Jared Leto (they were my two favs ps). So did Saoirse Ronan. And that afterparty at the gym uptown was most likely the real party.

Celine Dion- You are camp meets white walker. Well done.

Hamish Bowles. Camp as f.

Gaga. Nice dress color but whatever with her.

Jordan Roth. Stellar.

Amber Valletta. Wax on wax off.  I can't stop staring at her crotch. And now you can't either. 

I think I'm done. Also- where in F was Madonna? She's the campiest of them all.

I guess for me the theme is weird. And to me, men were the only ones who got it right, particularly the gay ones.  This look was amazing too but whatever who cares. I  know it seems like i do, but I just don't.  Camp seems a bit too much of an opaque construct for the masses. And that's my issue. Over intellectualizing fashion seems off right now, even though camp is hardly a heady pursuit. I just think the whole business of Met Ball is so blech at this point. Where's the real glamour and creativity and originality? Just seems like everyone's a designer puppet these days. Now with marabou feathers. You can fight me on this if you want. But that's how I feel. It's almost as big of a yawn as Meghan Markle's royal baby.  PS I will go to see this show of course. Because I know what camp is. And it ain't a selfie with Kylie Jenner, I know that.

Cause that's what's up this very uncampy Tuesday in the 718. Yours, in thank you, next. XO

Ageism- It's getting old.

Good morning, Monday. It's a beautiful bright day in the city yet somehow my old brownstone has the heat turned up to full blast. Needless to say, I'm looking forward to being outside. This is kind of BS.

Besides all of that, I read a post from a former boss/mentor that gave me pause this morning in between sweating. She's got a big  job overseas and was asked by a German journalist how it felt to have such a gig at her age. She's almost 60 and though Germans are notoriously blunt, I still find that shocking. Why should anyone have to justify their age when it comes to having a job that requires a tremendous amount of experience? 

If you look at our current presidential race, you'll see that 60 feels young. Joe Biden is almost 80. As is Trump. As is Bernie. Is it a ok for men to have arguably the most important job in the world at such advanced ages? I don't get it. 

There was also a fairly brill article about Madonna's new album on British Vogue today. In it, they noted that although Madonna has bulldozed her middle finger through society when it comes to sexuality, feminism, and style for years, her biggest battle is being fought now. And that's ageism. I admit it- I'm not feeling wonderful about Madonna of late and maybe that's my bad. If she is indeed someone who shocked the world with that amazing "Like a Virgin" performance at the MTV Awards way back in 1984 and gave us the SEX book, maybe she's here now to show us a thing or two about what it means to still feel very much in your zone when you are over 60. And to challenge how we feel about age in general.

These days, ageism is trending in a very big way. And I do think that although both sexes suffer from it, it's harder for women because of the obvious objectification of youth when you are female. One person who seems to continually dodge this bullet is J.Lo. Perhaps because at 49, it seems like she is reverse aging. Body is better than ever. Hair and skin are perfection. Dance skills still so fly. She's a miracle. Somehow, J. Lo's age is lauded vs. panned. Because she looks perfect. And that bar is ridiculous for the rest of us to achieve. And we shouldn't have to. 

Because when someone like Madonna shows some signs of age, it's somehow more disturbing. And maybe Madonna's campiness now feels a bit too cabaret/Dietrich/schticky for some. All I know is that for normal people like me and you, we are thank goodness not in the media being scrutinized in this way. But if you believe in the trickle down theory of life, then you too will know that Madonna is a mirror on how society views age and women in particular, and that just has to change.  Look how we are worshipping at the altar of Keanu these days. And he's 54. I'm aware his hard chill vibe and steeliness allow him a certain transcendent quality, but you get my point. 

As my generation reaches the 50-yard line, one thing is clear to me. Gen X is a generation that holds on to its youth the way it holds on to its cynicism. There's no doubt my crowd won't take aging sitting down- we'll fight it tooth and nail as we dig our Chucks into the ground. We're not going without a fight. And the notion of being doing and loving whatever age you're at? That's a revolution worth fighting for.  Look at this pic of the cast of "Reality Bites" from the other night, 25 years after the movie was made. Love.  Still cool as hell after all these years.

It's all so terribly subjective, this age thing. But what should change is the judgement. I myself admit I want youth in Washington, but mostly because the old white man thing is too scary to me. But there's a big difference between running the country than there is performing at an awards show. And we need to explore our damaged relationship with age and celebrate not just youth,  but maturity and evolution. So don't you forget about me or anyone else. And by the way, we won't let you.  Because ageism is old news, or at least it may be soon.  I'm still trying to find my way on my own journey, ps. And I'm a ok with that.

Cause that's what's up this older is a ok kind of Monday in the 718, Yours, in changing the game and blazing trails. XO

Vegas is the best. Here's why.

Good morning. I’m in BK but Vegas is still top of mind. Fun was very much had and it was nice to connect with a new bunch of women, all bonded together to celebrate our friend’s bday. I remember when I was a whole lot younger feeling weird about hanging with a group of women I didn’t know, but with age comes acceptance- of self and others. And this was just a wonderful group of women and I feel lucky to have met them. But back to Vegas. Because I just love it. And even though I hadn’t been back since my wedding day, it was super fun for all the right reasons. Cause if you don’t like Vegas, you don’t like fun. 

 And truly coming back here as an older person was just as fun as it was when I was younger. It’s truly multigenerational- you can go to clubs with all the kiddos or you can go see a show, drink, eat, shop with a huge range of ages. I think I may have to make Vegas more of a regular thing. 

 So here’s some things I love about Sin City. Oh, and incidentally- I don’t gamble. I like to say it’s the one vice I’ve never had. There’s so much going on in Vegas you can truly not set foot in a casino if you don’t feel like it, although you kind of have to.

 The service. First things first, your maven is a sucker for good service. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate someone taking the effort to check in with me during a meal, or during a stay at a hotel, or even when shopping. Restaurants answer the phone on the first ring. Reservations are seated on time. Shows go on like clockwork. The level of service is probably the best anywhere, and they make you feel like you just won a million dollars, even if you don’t gamble.

 The spectacle. The fact that a completely man-made planet was created in the middle of the desert is just astounding. For our last night, we sat at the spectacularly gorgeous sushi resto in the Wynn, Mizumi. The view was outrageous- floor to ceiling windows looking out on a Japanese forest, complete with the most beautiful waterfall. It’s all so over the top. And as someone who like a bit of maxi with her mini, I find it all so delightful. A forest in the middle of the desert while sipping on a whiskey cocktail. I can’t. Yes I can. And I will again.

 The manic panic of it all. So Vegas is a town for people with two faces. My two faces allow me to have a solid appreciation for both the high and the low. So I adore the old, decrepit part of the strip just as much as I love the flower bridge at the Wynn and the gorgeous designer shopping. I’m not sure if everyone finds both sides as equally delicious as I do, but I’m weird like that. One minute you can be in a rockabilly inspired vintage trailer, the next you can be sipping champagne in the Dior store. Incidentally, champagne in Vegas tastes bette for some reason. I'm not sure why.

 The debauchery. I think this may be the part that turns people off to Vegas- it’s truly the biggest party you can go to, and I love that. People are drunk. And now people are high too (thanks legal weed). Incidentally, the dispensaries are completely amazing and branded and I was super impressed. If you like to get rowdy/wasted/crunk/whateverlovewants you can have it. Yea the pool at the Wynn resembled a lake at Sodom and Gomorrah, but why not go with it? Life is short. I love there’s a place where people simply come to party their faces off. Also, if you are ever questioning whether something you packed is too low, too short, or too over the top, it isn't. The fact that you are even asking yourself that is something lost on the majority of women there, who are literally wearing the least amount of clothing I've ever seen. I lived in Miami so this was less of a shock for me. :)

 The entertainment. In addition to an entire city set up to serve tourists, the entertainment component is a huge part of Vegas.

 The shopping. If you’re a girl or a guy who likes to shop- Vegas is off the rails. Particularly if you like diamonds. Or Louis. Or Chloe. Or Stella. Or Jimmy. Or Gucci. Or Chanel .You get the picture. The stores are amazing, and the service is divine. The shops at the Wynn are stellar. and they have a new area that has Opening Ceremony and YSL. And hot tip for luxury fans- you know that bag you can’t find in NY? Try and get it in Vegas- their waitlists are often shorter than big markets like New York or LA.. And if you’re a vintage type, tons of great stuff in the arts district. Great bunch of shops selling everything a vintage lover would want. Not necessarily high end, but lots of fun pieces.

 The food. Oh man. You can’t have decadence without great food. And the food in Vegas is outrageously great. The best meal we had was at a place called EDO, in an unassuming strip mall in Chinatown. We arrived at midnight and had the most fabulous tasting menu. The resto is modern tapas/Barcelona inspired and omg holy deliciousness. And the price was incredibly reasonable, and of course- the service- mwah. Highly recommend if you go to Vegas and feel like getting off the strip. Phenomenal. It's not just about big mega restaurants with celebrity chefs- there's tons of great options for more adventurous types that want something unscripted.

The clockwork. Another thing I love about Vegas is the precision aspect of it all. Everyone in Vegas is well aware they have a job to do- and they do it so well. From concierges to sommeliers to croupiers to all the amazing people that help put on all the shows around town, it’s an incredible exercise in collaboration. I just love that. It’s fascinating to watch this giant machine in action. 

Oh and I adored the Wynn. My friend Irma told me it’s for “old people with oxygen masks” but I didn’t see that at all. It’s such a beautiful hotel and the rooms are so lovely. Great location too right next to the Venetian. The landscaping of the grounds is just tremendous and I loved the service.

 As I was leaving Vegas on Monday am, the most Vegas thing happened.

 I was getting out of the elevator with my bell guy who was helping me with my bag at 6 am. Getting on the elevator was what appeared to be an aging Russian mobster, accompanied by his “lady”, who appeared to have been a bit of a rental. As we exited and they got in, my guy said “Good morning, sir”.

 To which the mobster replied with a coke sniff, “Good night”. And then his lady spanked him on the butt.


 Vegas is high/low and everything in between. And I can’t wait to go back. Cause that’s what’s up this so money kind of Wednesday in the 718. Yours, in rolling the dice. XO




On the 30th anniversary of "Say Anything", we can still all learn about love from Lloyd

Good morning, Tuesday. I'm back in NY after a weekend in Vegas and I'm easing into the week. More on Vegas tomorrow or the next day.

So today marks the (gulp) 30th anniversary of "Say Anything". OMG. How how how?

If you're not familiar, it's a movie that addresses that incredible summer between high school and college, when anything is possible.  Directed by Cameron Crowe and starring Ione Skye and John Cusack. It's a classic, beautiful love story- underachieving but whip smart boy gets valedictorian over achieving girl. Girl leaves to start college. AThe film is a perfect depiction of that excruciatingly, achingly beautiful first love. 

And speaking of love, who could forget one of Hollywood's most iconic one? The one where Cusack's character, Lloyd Dobbler, stands outside of Skye's window, holding up a boombox, in a trench coat, playing "In Your Eyes"? Movie gold. And just like that, every woman in America wanted their very own Lloyd Dobler. And though the movie feels dated from a style point of view, the sentiment still suits. John Cusack has always been the perfect guy, for many women who like the smart, funny, sensitive type. The underdog. The wallflower at the party who makes you laugh.  The scene could have been so cheesy, but through Cusack's brilliant portrayal, it was endearing and lovely. You could almost sense he didn't want to do it, and that's what made it so fantastic. He was fighting for that first love.

Incidentally, there is a scene in the movie that speaks so clearly to Generation X it hurts. When Diane's father asks Lloyd what is plans are for college and beyond, Lloyd says the following:

"I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that".

Those words. So indicative of a generation that was apathetic about capitalism and consumer culture in general. Coming out of the 80s it was easy to see why. We saw conspicuous consumption on steroids. We saw big hair, big shoulders, big cars. We saw that greed was good for some but mostly bad for others. And then l ended up in advertising. And I sold a lot of stuff, bought a lot of stuff, and processed a a lot of stuff. If only I had listened to Lloyd...

So that movie, made way back in 1989, was a seminal one for so many. John Cusack, at least for me, was everything I ever wanted in a guy. It's true I wrote about Keanu last week, but I have been team Cusack from way back in the day. I first fell for him in 'The Sure Thing". And then think about movies like "High Fidelity" and "Grosse Pointe Blank". But back to Lloyd. Because  in many ways, we were all looking for our own Lloyd Dobler. And at a time when men are feeling much in flux when it comes to their role as partners and lovers, take some notes from Lloyd. Love with wonder. And don't be afraid to be who you are.

Cause that's what's up this saying anything and meaning it kind of Tuesday in the 718. Yours, in Cusack forever. Oh, and Joe lies. XO