Just An Online Minute... Designing Stuff and Digging Wells with Wired and Cut&Paste NYC

Wired Magazine and Cut&Paste NYC party, Stoli Hotel
May 14, 2008

My mission on Wednesday was simple: cover two parties in one night while avoiding internal organ failure. The jury is still out. After celebrating the launch of PostAdvertising., my +1 and I hopped into a cab and trucked it over to 300 West St. The fact that the directions told me to take a right on Rt 9A -- which made me think I'd be swimming in the Hudson -- did not deter me.

Now, I've been to a "Stoli Hotel" party before. There were half naked go-go dancers in see-through elevators and in latex rolling around in twisty cloth dangling from the ceiling. But I also remember being concussed while trying to grab a cocktail weiner and a martini (the perfect dinner!). Which is why the ridiculous line didn't surprise me.

I approached the biggest bouncer ever to block my way and said, all crackly voiced and aggressively timid (yes, that IS possible) "I'm uh... I'm with the press." I almost laughed at myself by how pretentious and "this will get me in because I'm special" it sounded. "I can tell by the look on your face that you know what I'm going to say to that," the good-natured galoot smiled at me. To the back of the line we went.

The venue was an immense warehouse, the darkness splashed with red and white Stoli lighting. Beautiful bartenders and arty party-goers sauntered through the spa area (the party started at 9:00P M, but the spa stopped taking appointments at 8:00 PM -- makes total sense) and gazed up at the huge projection screens. Four graphic designers displayed their work live and in digital living color, bathing the audience in an alien glow. They cut, pasted, created duplicate layers, and tweaked transparency before the Stoli-O and soda addled eyes of the audience while DJ David Prince spun such tasty thumping beats I couldn't even hear the breath of that weirdo reaching over me.

It was pretty cool to watch the artists in action. On one screen it just looked like total nonsense, but suddenly they would reveal a new layer with the nonsense woven in and it was like an epiphany. I covet graphic design skills - and I'm pretty sure that advertising, marketing, and PR types should attend events that showcase new and undiscovered (as well as already established) design talent -- these are the people who make you look good.

A very patient waitress approached me with the most important part of the night. Only, she wasn't selling drinks, she had a tray full of black bracelets labeled "CHARITY." Buy one bracelet for five bucks and you can help dig a well in Africa. The young lady informed me that they were not selling many bracelets.

It's a FREE PARTY, people. Fork over your sweaty cash and get these kids some uncontaminated drinking water while you sip your FREE uncontaminated Stoli martini and gaze at beautiful art in a safe and secure and (as far as I could see with my non-x-ray eyes) relatively disease-free environment. I'm watching you.

Want Kelly to cover your party in this column? Send your swank invitations to
You can find the full set of photos on Flickr !

Next story loading loading..