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The Opening Of Lincoln As Part Of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, New York
September 9, 2010

Leading up to last night's event I lathered myself up into a stomach-curdled, head-exploding, cesspool of anxiety.  Why? Because I don't usually do fashion events -- 90% because that's not really the theme of this column (although really, it's pretty flex these days), 10% because the fashion crowd intimidates me (I have no style and I can't walk in stilettos).   This year I thought "Cripes! I could be dead tomorrow and I've never taken advantage of these Fashion Week-themed invitations, what if I regret it wherever it is I land in the afterlife?"  Yes, I have these conversations in my head.  So of course, with my tummy full of faux-pas-fearing anxiety, I almost got right back into the subway when I heard the music pumping east on 65th Street toward  me from the opening of Lincoln, "New York's Most Fashionable Eatery."

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I walked up the stairs toward Lincoln Center and the music and my eyes landed on a fancy outdoor space fenced in by huge blocks of ice.  My fishnets got the ole up-and-down once-over followed by stink eye, and I almost turned around and went home.  I happen to love fishnets and they also happen to be Spanx, which keep my junk tucked safely in the trunk, so there.  I sucked it up and looked around.  I was impressed by how decked-out Lincoln Center was just for this restaurant opening!

*AIRHORN OF IGNORANCE* DOY!  I hadn't picked up that Fashion Week had moved from Bryant Park to Lincoln Center yet.  People, Fashion Week isn't in my realm of attention to detail like pizza sales, food porn mags, and Photojojo projects, OK?

The ear candy dealer, DJ Cassidy, was phenomenal.  He transported me to my high school soundtrack with PM Dawn, Suzanne Vega's "Tom's Diner," Prince And The New Power Generation's "Watch Them Fall," and a mixture of Michael Jackson, Wham!, and more.  If only he had a little "Tap The Bottle" by Young Black Teenagers...

Let's talk about shoes, please.  If every woman in that party had been barefoot, they would have each measured 4 feet tall. The heels, the stilettos, were an ankle-twister's nightmare.  My busted-up Steve Maddens cringed.

I quickly grabbed a glass of bubbling liquid courage and made my way around the cocktails.  I spotted Patrick McMullan immediately, with his rubberband-loved camera dangling at his side.  His hair... well, someone told McMullan that brunettes have more fun, and he listened.  His usual "I've been everywhere, boy" wisps of grey were replaced by a head of auburn.  If we're keeping track, I happen to like greyish McMullan better, but I'm a natural sort of girl.  McMullan was chatting with Leslie Stevenson and Lili Root.

Ken Downing, Fashion Director at Neiman Marcus, was a tall dapper drink of water, never alone in the crowd, while Stephen Gaghan, writer and director (and guy behind one of my all-time favorite movies, "Traffic") kept to the periphery, bobbing his head to the music against the backdrop of the "South Pacific banner and the beautiful cool night sky.

I spotted CeCe Cord towering over, and having what appeared to be an intense conversation with Billy Norwich, who used to anonymously write "The Etceterist" for website wowOwow.  I also spotted Fern Mallis, formerly of IMG, currently of the reality TV circuit (she appeared on Isaac Mizrahi's show) with Scott Romley.

I also found Chris Carr, photography dude behind Eat The Cake NYC (whose website Google can't seem to accurately reveal to me instantly!) in his seafoam green shorts, snapping away, embarrassed when I shot him with another guest.  Chris likes to shoot anything and everything, with a keen eye for the gritty underbelly of NYC culture.   I also met photographer Cam Griffith, who was leaning on the DJ booth watching the night go by.  I also think Cam singlehandedly ate all of the desserts.  After the Lincoln opening, he was headed to "The Naomi Party."

Like the gracious guests they were, the Hearst team slipped effortlessly around the cocktail party.  They were: Cathie Black, Chairman, Hearst Magazines; David Carey, President Hearst Magazines; Michael Clinton, President, Marketing and Publishing Director, Hearst Magazines; Joanna Coles Editor In Chief US Marie Claire; Stephen Drucker, Editor In Chief Town&Country, David Granger, Editor In Chief, Esquire.

I spotted a woman jotting notes in a flippy pad and of course I had to ask her what she was up to.  She was and still is Molly Fischer, new to the New York Daily News gossip column "Gatecrasher"!  So watch yourselves, media types, there is a new fly on the wall!  I also met Zeke Turner from The New York Observer, who was scribbling in his flippy pad as well. 

Conley Turner was on the same champagne-soaked path as I was (no thanks to that generous waiter fellow-- bad news!) by the giggling I observed.  He yanked the Wall Street Journal Online's Multimedia Editor Elva Ramirez over for a photo.  I left them to their giggle fest and found the cutest men of the night: USA Today's Jerry Shriver in his Blue Dog tie (a gift from the artist himself) and the seersucker-jacketed Aaron Higgins.  Everyone should wear seersucker until the snow falls, if you ask me.   I then found Jerry's wife, Deb Shriver, Vice President and Chief Communications Officer for Hearst Corporation, having a lively conversation with Glenda Bailey, Editor In Chief of Harper's Bazaar who was swaddled in shiny deep forest green.

It should be noted that Amanda Hearst was also there, channeling the Vampire Queen of Louisiana, which is a good thing.

For a brief moment I spoke with an English gentleman, who was sipping a beverage that "they can't give away up there" (gestures towards the bar) with a purple leaf floating in it.  Brief because, when he asked if I was headed to Chanel after our current party, I answered "No, I'm headed to my couch."  This prompted Englishman to slap his drink on the table, ice jingling toward the lip, and quickly leave.

Tonight I'll be hitting a couple Fashion's Night Out parties - wish me luck!

Photos on Flickr!

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