09 February 2007

Trying to make ConnAve MadAve

Yesterday I was in mourning because my small circle of DC friends had been reduced once again.

Today, that same mourning is compounded by the fact that my best friend went to New York City without me.

How badly I, too, wanted to board that 4pm Acela with my daybag packed tightly with heels, makeup, toiletries and a panoply of cocktail dress choices; how badly I wanted to peruse my collection of action movies and pick out the perfect on-my-way to Penn Station kick-ass Jean-Claude DVD; how badly I wanted to drink in the lights, the characters and the Veuve with a 37-floors-up Central Park South backdrop. But due to circumstances beyond my control (i.e. my full-time job, my full-time puppy, my full-time budget, and his full-time issues), Manhattan will once again have to endure another weekend without me there to worship it.

To soften the blow of my disappointment and to distract myself from the new memories he'll create in my absence, I decided this morning I would go to New York, anyway.

In my own way. With my clothes.

Instead of wearing the dark wash skinny jeans, brown croc bow-adorned heels and tailored red flutter-sleeve tuxedo blouse I laid out last night, I put on my what-would-I-wear-if-I-were-spending-the-day-on-Madison-Avenue thinking cap, looked to Montesquieu for support, and reassessed the outfit situation.

As always, I scanned my shoes for that first burst of inspiration.

"I think I'll wear you," I said, cradling my new black suede grosgrain-bow peeptoes.

"And then...you," to my black and red scribble-print DVF wrapdress -- a dress that already has ingrained in its silk fibers many fond New York City memories, including a did-that-really-just-happen bathroom rendezvous at the Hudson Hotel with my lightweight stern-pair and a two-plus hour visit to Sotheby's ancient Asian art exhibit.

"And you and...you," I announced to a tissue-thin black boatneck tee and my black asymmetric mandarin-collar cropped wool jacket.

After shimmying up my thickest, warmest pair of black opaque tights, pinning my bangs up-n-back Kingston Stefani-style, I was now ready to put on a face so NYC-ready that even if the doorman at Prada knew I couldn't afford anything in the store, he'd be so bedazzled he'd have no choice but to buzz me in, anyway.

Aware that I was only going to Manhattan in my head and not in real life (sigh), I chose a less dramatic palette than I otherwise would have: a relatively bare eye - only a light gold base shadow, ivory shimmer in the corners, and one coat of mascara - bronzed cheeks, and the pièce de résistance -- a meticulously-applied "Shanghai Express" lip.

I've never sported a red lip during the day, but I figured that since very few DC women take the plunge, it was probably something worth trying. And admittedly, as I was touching up the two tiny-peaks of the upper part of my pout, I couldn't help but look forward to the where-does-she-think-she's-going looks I would no doubt invite from the throngs of beige-enrobed women with chapped lips passing me on my way to and from work.

"I'm going to Manhattan," I would say through a dance in my eyes.

And then I'd purse my ruby lips just so to assure a perfect color distribution, turn up the volume on track 3 of my newly-assembled "I love New York in February" iMix and saunter down to Bergdorf's to check out the new window displays.


bff in chicago said...

I'll meet you at Barney's on my lunch hour, and we'll go shoe-shopping with our $30K/month clothes budget.

This fantasizing sure is fun!

nyc admirer said...

doll, just say the word, and I'll find a way to get you up to my city.

and to those resplendant Bergdorf displays...

knew you as hannie, too said...

yes, come back to NYC! it misses you!

Johanna said...

And I miss it. But it t'was not to be this weekend. Definitely before my birthday so I can catch the Nan Kempner exhibit before it blows out of town on 3/4!

Give the Old King Cole Bar a double-cheek kiss for me :-)

a fan said...

you're the only one I know who could talk to her clothes and it wouldn't be creepy.

like everything else you do, it would be adorable.

Anonymous said...

could you show us a picture of those lips all Shanghai Expressed?

Johanna said...

I would have if I'd seen this request earlier, but now my red lips are dressed back down to their regular peachy selves.

Next time, I promise.

nyc admirer said...

I just checked, and there are about a dozen DC to NYC trains today.

come on, you know you want to...