Fashion Week for the fierce, pt. II: Being Marke B.

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Fab intern Justin Juul picked up the Fashion Week/Fisher Spooner pieces for me this past weekend. Here's what he had to say.

The press people at Mystery Girl Productions invited Marke B. to the third annual SF Fashion Week sometime last month. Never one to turn his nose up at a free party, Marke enthusiastically accepted before realizing that the dates clashed with those he had previously set aside for his three-day long birthday bash. Thus, by way of simple calendar negligence, the job was handed down to me, Justin Juul, better known ‘round these parts as “The Almost Fabulous Intern” -- if Marke gets an alter ego, damnit, so do I. Join me as I spend a night in Marke’s shoes.

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Justin and fashionable stalker friend

Pre-Party
“What would Marke do?” I thought, as I began to get myself dolled up for the evening. “What was he saying last week about Tylenol Cold and Sinus medication? Did he say you should or shouldn’t mix it with tequila?” Since all I had was a half pint of Gentleman Jack, I figured it didn’t matter so I popped the pills, finished getting ready, then went outside to wait for my cab. While standing there, the details of Marke’s alcohol and cold medication story re-surfaced in my head. “Don’t do it, young intern,” Marke’s ghostly voice echoed, “you’ll pass out and turn blue on the dance floor like I did, wooohooo hooohoo (spooky/fabulous ghost sounds).” Fuck, I thought to myself. I spent the next half hour nursing my third Jack n’ Coke in the cab while trying to ignore Marke’s phantom presence. Despite the knowledge that I was probably going to suffocate by the end of the night, I felt I was off to a good start. Marke would have wanted it this way.

The Fashion Show
I’ll just come out and say it. I don’t know shit about fashion. That being said, I was quite impressed by the clothes, attitudes, and general ambience of SF Fashion Week. I got to the Design Center at 6:30pm sharp, smoked a cigarette, got my VIP press pass, and then headed through the doors into the hallowed halls of San Francisco’s new house of fashion. Despite, or perhaps because of my reckless alcohol/medicine intake, I immediately felt a wave of nervousness wash over me as I found myself sharing space with fashionistas, sharp dressed gentlemen, and hordes of aging divas.

Following the advice of a friend of mine, who frequently attends fashion shows in cowboy boots -- and is best friends with Janice Dickinson, btw -- I pressed my way through the glamorous crowd in search of the magical elevator that would take me up to the fourth floor where a world of free booze and fabulous fashion types patiently awaited my arrival.

Three cosmos, eight spring rolls, and five botched photo attempts later -- yes, I have seen every episode -- I decided it was time to check out the fashion show. After all, that was what I was getting paid for, right?

There I sat underneath the catwalk in the front row as wave after wave of frighteningly thin super models passed over-head. The first designer was Kelly B. Her models came out wearing what Kelly calls “unique and comfortable clothing for the conscious consumer.” The girls looked nothing short of fabulous draped in Kelly’s assortment of labor friendly dresses, skirts, shirts, pants, and bathing suits. Kelly’s entire line is made of organic cotton in the USA. Only in San Francisco, right?

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House of Kelly B

The second designer, Teresa Romero for Dichotomy, sent her girls out in what appeared to be wedding dresses -- very short wedding dresses. “The concept behind Dichotomy” Teresa says, “is a contradiction of elements within a single piece. Dichotomy is designed for the sophisticated woman who has an edge.” Mini-skirt style wedding dresses? Yes, now it all makes sense.

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House of Dichotomy

Next up was Katherine Noyes who “creates sophisticated tops and dresses using the finest silks and expert sewers in San Francisco.” Noyes designs were elegant, eclectic, raw, and uhhhh, beautiful. She based her designs on old-fashioned glamour.

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House of Noyes

After Noyes’ exhibition I realized it was time to get my ass to the after party where the real story was to take place. I washed a cold pill down with my drink and called the transportation hotline.

The Afterparty
The cab dropped me off on the corner of Fifth and Market where my flamboyant friend Jesse, AKA Big-Little, was waiting with his panties all in a bunch. “Where the fuck have you been?” he gasped as I stumbled into the night. He grabbed me by the arm and led me past the security guard onto the sweat-soaked yet surprisingly roomy dance floor of The Mezzanine. We immediately walked up to the bar, ordered two Jack n’ Cokes and then strolled outside to smoke and wait for Fisher Spooner to start.

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Jesse!!!

Standing next to an eight foot tall man dressed like a character from “The Clockwork Orange” will attract some attention, believe me. In no time at all we had a crowd around us asking question after question. “Do you make your own costumes?” they would ask. “Where do you get your inspiration?” Fuck, would Marke B. allow himself to be one-upped by a club kid from Oakland? NO…he wouldn’t. Lucky for me I had thought to bring my trademark “Fucking Awesome” sweat shirt. Now that’s fashion. I threw it on, bid Jesse and his admirers good evening, and made my way upstairs to the VIP room where I would be able to see Fisher Spooner without having to ask Jesse to put me on his shoulders.

I’m not sure if it was my really really cool sweatshirt or my boyish good looks, but as soon as I got upstairs I became the center of attention, or at least the center of one man’s attention. For whatever reason, a strange man named Christoff was very very happy to see me. He bought me a beer and took me around the room introducing me to all his friends. “This is Justin” he would say. “He’s such a good fucking writer, just look at him.” What was I to do? I drank the beer, basked in Christoff’s adoration, and waited for the show to start. (That's what I would do, baby! Did you get his purse? -- ed.)

Fisher Spooner came on at 11:00pm sharp. I kind of thought it was a joke at first. There on the stage I saw a six piece band whose lead singer was dressed like a -- don’t quote me on this -- Native American, or more appropriately and indigenous Californian. He was accompanied by two girls in similar attire who stood on either side and waved their arms around as he sang.

Wtf, man?

This was not the Fisher Spooner I had been hearing about for the past six years. Where were the 15 performance artists, the fireworks, etc? To be honest, it kind of seemed like they were lip-synching over a prerecorded track. $40.00 dollars for this? Give me my mother fucking money back, Casey. Oh wait, that’s right. I didn’t pay a dime. Ha!

The After-After Party
When Fisher Spooner finished I made my way back to the smoking section where I knew Jesse would be waiting. There he was, surrounded once again by about ten people. He greeted me with a scream. “Justin, Oh my god, where the fuck have you been?” and then called over to a few kids who were standing by a cab out in the street. “He’s here guys, let’s go.” Although my instincts told me I was drunk and should go to sleep, my desire to get more material for this blog and impress my editor with my partying skills drove me to press on.

The next eight hours are a paranoid blur and once I finish writing this I’m never going to think about them again.

Jesse’s new friends were on vacation from Vancouver. The two guys claimed to be helicopter engineers who had just come back from a mission to Nigeria. The two girls were journalists for a Canadian music and culture website. I still don’t know if they were telling the truth, but one thing’s for sure: they were fucking loaded.

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Canadians?

Jesse told the cab driver to take us to my house and against my better judgment I didn’t even try to protest.
The five of us spent the next seven hours in my shamefully small studio apartment where the Canadians and Jesse proceeded to decorate every available surface with some sort of white powder. After cleaning things up with their noses, they broke out a small bottle of GHB (does anyone still drink that shit?), took their clothes off, and started wrestling on my floor. The last thing I remember was seeing the two helicopter engineers holding Jesse by the feet and hands while trying to stuff him through my window.

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Ooops

My new friends pretty much ignored me the entire time, pausing only once or twice to comment on the shade of my skin. “What the fuck?” Jesse or one of the weird dudes would say. “Your face looks blue.”

Jesus Christ Marke, how do you do it? I am by no means a straight laced individual, but I gotta say SF Fashion week fucked me up proper. No wonder you roll into the office at 11:00am every Monday with hollow cheeks and smeared make-up, a dead Marlboro medium hanging from your ashen lips (don't worry, I won't tell anyone). If your weekends are anything like the one I just had -- and judging by your writing I’m guessing they are -- then I congratulate you on your stamina and salute your devotion.

SF Fashion Week was fun; I learned a lot about helicopter pilots, fancy clothing, and music, but the next time you want me to act as your ambassador, please know that it’s probably going to cost me my life. Don’t you love your intern?

-Justin Juul, The Almost Fabulous Intern

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