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September 19, 2005

Fashion, Dimwittery, And Gay Penguins

Feeling a touch of the old anomie, the half-vast editorial staff ranged a bit farther than usual in search of distraction in the early morning hours. And how better to await rosy-finger'd Dawn than to combine the pompous vapidity of Hollywood with the pretentious silliness of Fashion Week? Wrapped in our trusty red bathrobe and armed with the usual steaming mug of java, we ventured onto the gossip pages of the NY Post to see what kind of egregious asshattery might be on offer.

But Oh! Inconsolable Loss! How could the Editorial Staff, half-vast though it might be, guess at the Mortal Blow that awaited?

DOESN'T sound like Gwyneth Paltrow is getting homesick living in London with "Coldplay" singer Chris Martin and their baby, Apple.

"I've always been drawn to Europe. America is such a young country, with an adolescent swagger about it. But I feel that I have a more European sensibility, a greater respect for the multicultural nature of the globe. And it's a strange time to be an American now," she told the Toronto Globe and Mail during a junket for "Proof." "I feel like we're really in trouble. I just had a baby and thought, 'I don't want to live there.' Bush's anti-environment, pro-war policies are a disaster."

Hopefully, her suicidal fans here will be able to bear her absence.

To lose such an Old Soul! Ah! to hear such Ancient Wisdom issu'd from such an angelic orifice! To think that from henceforth we shall be deprived of such rich delights... forced to subsist on such jejune and meager fare as we can glean from lesser lights of our intellectual age like Kirsten Dunst! It is not to be borne...

'Twill be like going from a virtual intellectual smorgasboord to a crockpot of little smokies, smothered in that detestable barbecue sauce!

Ah, what can ail thee, wretched wight,
Alone and palely loitering;
The sedge is wither'd from the lake,
And no birds sing...

cop.bmp Disconsolate, we resolv'd to sojourn there no more and wandered o'er to the pages of the Village Voice in search of cheerier fare...

Poor fashion week. Not enough that there's something inherently dopey about a week of back-to-back runway shows, so dreary and uninspired most of the time, so pathetic in their desire to wring some excitement from a pair of beige pants, but their timing of late has been spectacularly unfortunate: four years ago the World Trade towers collapsed the morning after a particularly lavish Marc Jacobs show; this time around the catwalk didoes are being played out in the shadow of Hurricane Katrina. Try as you will to ignore the contradictions—it's unsettling, to say the least, to analyze $2000 jackets with the memory of a near riot at the Astrodome, as FEMA was handing out $2000 debit cards, still fresh.

Oh well. Life stumbles on, as gawky and sad as a 14-year-old model in platform shoes on a runway, and those of us in the field of fashion try to make some sense out of the endless stream of outfits paraded before us.

And of course no fashion show would be complete without the Groping:

A CASTING agent for Fashion Week runway shows is being accused of groping the crotches of two male models and then turning them down for the b michael spring collection after they refused to "drop their pants" for him.

Greg Moore was hired freelance by b michael to cast Monday's show.

The models, Bernabe Rivera and Mark Cruz, say they are planning to sue Moore for sexual harassment and sexual discrimination. And Cruz says he has telephone messages from the fashion agent "coming on to him."

"That's strictly a lie!" Moore, reached by telephone in Washington, D.C., tells PAGE SIX's Steve Garbarino. "I didn't touch them! No agency has ever had problems with me touching anyone — girls or boys! I am strictly business!"

"He actually grabbed me," says Rivera, 23. "He kept telling me to show him the goods. He said if I wanted a career, I'd have to do stuff for him. He grabbed my privates. He said he wanted to see if it was big enough to be in the show.

"I wanted to hit him, but I went to jail for that once," says the Lower East Sider, who claims to have posed in magazine and MTV ads. "He felt the vibe and told me to leave, but then gave me $20 and asked me to cool off and reconsider in a few hours."

Cruz, who is 26 and lives in Brooklyn, backs Rivera's statement. "He grabbed my crotch, and I pushed him away." Cruz claims that Moore told him that if he exposed himself, he'd get the job. "He said it's either his way or the highway. He said, 'This is how the industry is. If you can't handle it, get out of the kitchen.' "

bird.jpg Not wanting to be outdone in the silliness department, rock star Gwen Stefani is just furious at being upstaged by Naomi Campbell's Hurricane Katrina 'do. I mean, don't you just hate it when that happens? There's nothing worse than having some little minx steal your limelight while you're trying to save the downtrodden:

NAOMI Campbell will never be invited to another Gwen Stefani show! The queen of cool is said to be furious at the catwalk royal for one-upping her first L.A.M.B. show tonight at 8 at Roseland — which was supposed to close Fashion Week. One insider said: "Gwen wanted the biggest blowout show of Fashion Week, and arranged her show outside the tents to ensure that she would get the very last slot of the week. But then Naomi put together the Fashion for Relief charity show for Hurricane Katrina victims." [Editor's Note: that bitch!] Naomi's 9 p.m. show will have Iman, Cindy Crawford and Linda Evangelista catwalking in clothes by Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Vera Wang and Zac Posen. Lindsay Lohan, Nicole Richie, Sean Combs, Jay-Z, Rob Thomas and Molly Simms are also involved. "Almost everyone is participating but L.A.M.B., and Gwen is said to be very, very angry."

Me-ouch! Retract those claws, girlfriend! What is it about fashion shows? Even the usually gush-y NY Times was distinctly bitchy:

Now New York can treat last week like just another headache that finally - mercifully - went away. Some will remember it as worse than the World Economic Forum or the Republican National Convention last year. Some will insist it was not that bad. But there was an undeniable edginess as the leaders crisscrossed the city and the models crisscrossed the runways.

"With what happened in New Orleans and Mississippi, I think it brings back a little of 9/11," said Fern Berman, who owns a public relations firm in Manhattan, "There's a sadness for the people there and a tenseness here. You have all the world leaders here, almost four years to the day after 9/11, and on top of it, you have the feelings we've all been feeling for the people whose lives have been devastated. The cabdrivers were tenser, and talking about New Orleans."

Not all the time, of course. They were also tense about the street-level havoc wreaked by the world leaders.

"If they didn't go home soon, everybody would have a mental breakdown," said Jerry Tierstein, a town car driver. "They took the town over. The city made made special lanes for them on 57th and 42nd. Really ridiculous. It took the rest of us hours to get across town. I'm glad the week is over. Get them out of here."

veg.bmp But lest you think we wasted our entire morning reading Tawdry Gossip rags and passing on the DimWitticisms of various vacuous celebs, we assure you that we did return with a few hard-hitting journalistic data points. Like this bit of News You Can Use.

I'll bet you never thought about the ethical dilemmas posed by the juxtaposition of Veganism and Sado-Masochism? Well this is America - some enterprising soul has it all worked out. Cruelty-free S&M gear for the Sensitive New Age sado-masochist on the go.

You have to love it: "Oooh... Hurt Me, Baby... but do try to show some sensitivity, will you?":

Vegan s/m fetishists can enjoy chastising naughty humans with playthings from VeganErotica.com, a Utah-based company that offers all the pleasure and none of the guilt. All items are made of an Italian import called Lorica (a water-and stain-repellent synthetic leather that's as comfy as it is tear-resistant).

For doms aching to fetter submissives, strap on the snazzy-looking, custom-made, double-layered NECK-TO-WRIST CUFFS ($45), which line the spine and fasten your slave's arms firmly behind his or her back. Whip them into thorough slavedom with the 27-inch FLOGGER OF SEVENTEEN (as in the number of tails it has, $30). And for women who enjoy keeping their men in, um, check, the eight-buckled MALE HARNESS ($75) encircles his goodies with a two- to-three-inch ring.

Now, if only there was an eco-friendly dungeon.

MB593s.jpg And in gay penguin news (a subject the half-vast editorial staff has sadly neglected of late), tragedy has struck our star-crossed lovers:

While investigating the sexual politics of penguins and the hit movie "March of the Penguins," I discovered a startling penguin-related psychosexual development.

Even though the mainstream media have ignored this news, I am compelled to report it here, to you, today:

Roy and Silo, the two famous gay penguins at New York's Central Park Zoo, are no longer a pair. Silo has gone straight.

They broke up after six years together. Once, they were provided a donated egg. They sat on it and hatched it and this was celebrated as some kind of penguin lifestyle choice in the New York Times on Feb. 7, 2004, under the headline "The Love that Dare Not Squeak Its Name."

But that's so over.

These days, Silo has a girlfriend. And Roy? Well, lately he has been observed hanging around a few sexually immature penguins, but he has no real prospects. It seems Roy is a troubled penguin.

"Silo found a young female. Her name is Scrappy," Rob Gramzay, the zoo's senior penguin keeper, told me in a phone interview on Tuesday. "They had an egg. It didn't work out and they might try again."

And Roy?

"Roy didn't really find anybody. He hung out with a few birds, half of them were female, half were male," Gramzay said. "He's not in a nesting situation. It's more for camaraderie."

The breakup of the same-sex couple is being mourned by more than gay rights groups: their ongoing relationship was also viewed as one of those rare things that people of both parties could agree on. Oddly enough, conservatives even made a movie about the gay couple's devotion to each other and their "Family Values":

The film "most passionately affirms traditional norms like monogamy, sacrifice and child rearing," film critic and conservative talk-radio host Michael Medved was quoted as saying, adding that conservative audiences yearn for such themes.

"This is the first movie they've enjoyed since `The Passion of the Christ.' This is `The Passion of the Penguins.'"

Conservatives aren't the only ones going to see the penguin movie. A liberal friend saw it the other day, after having been dragged there kicking and screaming by his wife and daughter, and decided he liked it.

"Liberals can find something in it too," he told me. "The male penguins take care of their children. They sit on the eggs for days and days. They don't complain that they're not allowed to drink a beer and watch the Bears game on TV. They just do their duty. It's quite humbling, actually."

And so another beautiful dream is shattered. What could have been!

Gay penguins - uniting a nation torn asunder by vicious partisan bickering. villagepenguins_1.jpg No word on the future of the Village Penguins tour.

Posted by Cassandra at September 19, 2005 06:04 AM

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All this on a Monday.

Well, as for Gwen Stafani, I am just crushed to think that she got upstaged. The cheek of Cindy, Lindsay and others. You would think that ego wouldn't have a place at a time like this. Makes you wonder what it is all about.

I feel so glad to know that vegans who wouldn't hurt a cow have no qualms about whaling the hell out of their partner. Yep, I can rest easy on that one.

And the Penguin Pouch? Won't go there. Not with a ten foot one swinging it's way through the web.

Posted by: Cricket at September 19, 2005 08:52 AM

Where else are you going to get quality journalism like this?

We're talking the Rough Draft of History, babe...

Posted by: Cassandra at September 19, 2005 09:16 AM

This post just shook me up all over. Really.

I'm just glad my break ups aren't as public as those poor penguins.

Posted by: JLo's Ass at September 19, 2005 09:48 AM

A mind is a terrible thing to boggle.
There is no marvel like that wrought by the bored.
Take me Jesus.

Posted by: spd rdr at September 19, 2005 09:56 AM

Look, I'm just trying to help middle America invest in the future. I hear Lorica futures are really big right now on Wall Street - if you hurry, I'm sure you can get in on the ground floor.

Posted by: Cassandra at September 19, 2005 10:08 AM

Arghhh! Gay penguins, me buccos?

Make 'em walk the plank, little strange birds.

Argghh. It's talk like a Pirate Day. Arghh.

And Vanna, me darling lass, buy that spd rdr some vowels. Argghh.

Posted by: David, Arghh! at September 19, 2005 11:36 AM

I've been a bad, bad boy, and I need to be spanked. Hard. What do I care if my mistress is vegan or not, so long as I get the punishment I so richly deserve?

Posted by: Sloan [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2005 11:39 AM

You *are* bad :) Shame on you...

Posted by: Cassandra at September 19, 2005 11:52 AM

From a medical point of view:

I usually don't show up at the Enema's (Plural?). But this year I was allowed the opportunity to be an alternate for another Doctor who presented an award for most fluid performance.I even got a write up in the Harvard Medical fashion report.

Harvard Medical Fashion Section:

The good Doctor was Tres chic in a stunning white hospital scrubs featuring a bias neckline and collar with bartacked ends. Garnering his reflective brow was a tie dyed Bouffant surgical cap with extra long cap ties for easy closure.All set off remarkably well, by his men's zipper-fly drawstring Cargo pants in a matching tie dye. Not to be bogged down by too many acessories a simple stethoscope hung from his neck. Dr. Stuhl obviously aware that his body type could handle just about any type of surgical evening wear is freshing attribute to any medical function- even this one.

Stealth Edit: Oh,I'm sorry with all that talk about Fashion, Dimwittery, And Gay Penguins - I thought you were talking about the Emmys. God I hate the "pompous vapidity" of Hollywood and the liberal pond sucking scum who idolize them. I did like the idea of "Gone with the Wind" though.Hollywood really needs an enema.

Posted by: Dr. Harden Stuhl at September 19, 2005 12:03 PM

Oh...the helk of snark addiction!

Emmys and enemas being used in the same breath with the same wish expressed. And have you noticed, not one Harry Potter movie has been nominated for either an Oscar or an Enema?

Posted by: Lord Voldemort at September 19, 2005 02:01 PM

Cass, the fashion police babe shot could almost be another caption contest. She looks like a publicity photo for the Spawn of the Village People.


Posted by: Cricket at September 19, 2005 03:11 PM

Oh - like you don't have an outfit just like that in your closet for the Engineer, Cricket?

Heh. Actually I really hate those boots. I've been shopping for clothes this fall (for once) and I am kind of missing being out in California - they are always light years ahead of the East Coast. The nice thing about being out there is that you can buy things (if you have a good eye for design and you like simple lines) and they are still in style back here for years and years.

My son is going to take me over to Georgetown to all the places his rich girlfriend used to shop before she had to live on her grad student's salary. So when I have a fricking heart attack from the prices, you'll know where to come looking for me - it should be amusing. But fun.

I'm kind of excited - I'm finally getting my hair done now that its gotten too long to do anything with, so I figure I'd better get some clothes and shoes to go with - besides I have to travel again at the end of the month to see my engineers and I don't want to look frumpy :D

Supposedly there's some big jazz thing they want to take me to - should be fun.

Posted by: Cassandra at September 19, 2005 05:40 PM

actually, we don't use outfits...heh.

I love to shop for good clothes. My sister used to model for Lord and Taylor, and she was great to take shopping. I bought my first pair of Italian shoes (open toed pumps) at her urging, and haven't regretted the price...that was over 20 years ago and they are still in style.

She used to get some fanstastic deals on clothes in NYC, and we used to shop in the garment district in San Francisco. I wanna see pics of your purchases. I hope you have a great time.

I have to jam; the Engineer is helping me sort our bills and files.

Posted by: Cricket at September 19, 2005 06:05 PM

It is not to be borne

Neither are these HICCUPS you've given me from making me laugh so hard I swallowed wrong.

Fashion Week is fertile ground for mockery, oh yes.

Posted by: ilyka at September 19, 2005 06:32 PM

Um, like I have a question here about the dude and the Penguin Pouch. Like, was he waxed everywhere?
Or is that a chyck who wore a stuffed g-string?

Posted by: Cricket at September 19, 2005 06:47 PM

Macho, Macho, Penguin.

I've got to be, a macho penguin.

Just be thankful Cass didn't find the penguins with the faces of folks such as Kerry, Dean, Edwards, et all on them.

I guess Gwenny would rather live in an area that is becoming vastly Muslim. Someone remind me what her last hit movie was.

Posted by: William Teach [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 19, 2005 07:01 PM

Cricket, just *how closely* were you scrutinizing that photo???? :)

Looking at the waist-to-hip ratio, that's got to be a guy. I think he's either waxed or lasered - that's big with bodybuilders who don't want to have to keep going in for wax treatments. Also a lot of gay guys prefer the manicured look (and I got it from a gay site, so that may be the deal here). I guess he *is* unusually hairless, isn't he?

I was half-asleep when I posted this, so I didn't get much beyond the penguin wear (which is actually what I was searching on: "gay penguins" - I just lucked onto this particular photo).

Posted by: Cassandra at September 19, 2005 09:10 PM

Ilyka, I still can't get over the cruelty-free S&M gear... I still haven't told my husband about that one. I'm saving it for that moment just after we turn out the lights tonight.


Posted by: Cassandra at September 19, 2005 09:15 PM

I knew it was a man, but good grief! Waxing and lasering that close has got to be wicked painful.
I hope the money he made for that shot was worth it.

Nothing like a little internet chat after lights out, isn't there?

Posted by: Cricket at September 19, 2005 09:40 PM

Why is there a penguin on the telly?!

Posted by: camojack at September 20, 2005 01:24 AM

Dr. Stuhl,

Let me guess: you're a proctologist, right?

Posted by: Sloan at September 20, 2005 01:46 AM

I still can't get over the cruelty-free S&M gear

Sort of the inverse of "cruel to be kind." Well, at least they're not using hemp. Progress, not perfection.

But no one is ever going to pen an erotic story with lines like: When I came to and opened my eyes, I beheld a grim-faced goddess clad solely in Lorica, and wielding a whip of like material. I had never admitted it to a soul, but my most pleasurable fantasies had always involved Lorica . . . ."

Posted by: ilyka at September 20, 2005 04:48 AM


Posted by: Cricket at September 20, 2005 07:59 AM

I beheld a grim-faced goddess clad solely in Lorica, and wielding a whip of like material.

I almost spit out my morning coffee, woman. It was only with the utmost difficulty that I was able to concentrate on my post for at least 20 minutes.

Shame on you. That was hysterical.

Posted by: Cassandra at September 20, 2005 08:29 AM

Dr. Stuhl is not only a proctologist, but our resident guardian of the funny bone.

Posted by: Cassandra at September 21, 2005 01:31 PM

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