Two weeks after my move to New York for Freshman year, my best friend from back home came to visit. This was a delightful break from the fourteen nights I spent in a constant flux of utter enthrallment to crying myself to sleep at night. With her in tow, there were no tears shed until the wee hours of the morning. She came with her mom and grandmother, whom we would go to civilized dinners with and even caught a performance of Mamma Mia!, which has irreparably diminished my desire to see musicals. As day turned to night, Shannon and I would leave her family for something far more exciting than Broadway…underage nightlife experimentation.
This weekend was the catalyst for an alcoholic bender that lasted roughly three months of my first semester. From that point forward my life seemed to be an endless blur of $8 pitchers at Josie’s, spilling homemade Cosmopolitans on the sage green carpet of Talia’s dorm room while pre-partying to “Raspberry Barret” by Prince, falling over in public, drinking sangria at Bowery Bar with made models, and waking up at 2 in the afternoon. Although I didn’t realize at the time, I was apparently the type that held back in high school and fell off the deep end when I left home. If only my mom had let me be a drunk in 10th grade, I would have never found myself in this situation. C’est la vie.
One glorious evening, Shannon and I got all gussied up for a night on the town. There is a photo hidden somewhere in my closet of the two of us right before we left my place. Shannon is wearing greenish blueish jeans purchased from Planet Blue with a black tank top, black boots I had never seen before, and her hair in a ponytail. I outdid her with acid wash Miss Sixty jeans with buttons up the sides that I had found at Century 21, a hot pink giraffe-print blouse, and white tennis shoes with red strips. What. The. Fuck. It was New York Fashion Week party time, and we ready to party.
The night started with a group led by an exceptionally effeminate pathological liar named Dane. I had yet to discover that this boy was utterly painful, but was currently under the magic spell of my first openly gay friend. We stood outside of Serafina for thirty minutes, waiting to get inside. It was the GQ Fashion Week Party. We knew no one inside. And I’m pretty sure no one would have wanted to know us at that point. Buzzed and badly dressed, we looked frighteningly Bridge and Tunnel even though both of us grew up 3000 miles away. But suddenly, for whatever bizarre reason, the clouds opened up and our angel appeared in the form of a friendly grease-ball in a button-up shirt who spotted Shannon and I in the crowd and pulled us through to the front, past the bouncer, and into the throngs of beauty and excess.
I was in love. The lights were blue over a crowd of people yelling over the music, dancing in corners, drinking at tables. We were immediately offered flutes of champagne. I walked past a supermodel with huge lips and cat eyes. Gorgeous. Shannon attempted to flirt with one of the Wayne’s brother’s who responded to her with a friendly questioning of “What are you? Seventeen?” Apparently he wasn’t ready to go to prison. Admirable. Toward the end of the evening, when we were good and hammered, two twins met us on the dance floor where we danced and spun and giggled. Shannon and I snuck away to the bathroom where we slurred that these boys looked exactly like Lenny Kravitz. We went back and danced some more until it was time to go home.
The boys walked us out front to where the cabs were, where they offered to take us both home “just to cuddle.” We managed to wrestle out of their grips and went on to walk back to 5th Ave and 10th Street, hollering “TWINS!!!” the whole way home, much to the dismay of a sleeping audience above us on University Place. And when we got back to the dorm we wrote “TWINS!!!” on all of the blackboards hung up on the doors. And when I stupidly met up with one of those guys again, I was assured that he looked nothing like Lenny Kravitz.
Why even a version of this would be appealing, I don’t know. Ahh, youth.