Thursday, March 29, 2012

plastic baby bellies, bourbon party favors, and other things worth having

The other week I ventured into downtown to meet Olivia Palermo, former The City television actress turned trend setting fashionista. She was doing a synchronized broadcast, meaning several television shows called in to interview her throughout the morning in a very chilly studio set. The reporters asked her what her faves were, and she talked about the very cute high heels, handbags, accessories and outfits surrounding her on set. ABPR's fashion team had some of our clients' samples in the mix and we set up the sync.The real fun was off camera, in the other room with her stylists and makeup artist. We down and dirty talked celebs, and my eyes are now open to a scandalous world of plastic pumped faces, plastic baby bellies, plastic everything. "Is her baby hers?" was a trending topic of conversation. Apparently it's commonplace for celebs to wear a fake tummy and turn to either surrogates or adoption to keep their bods. We talked Beyonce (it's actually hers, and apparently she's super glam, super nice in person), Nicole Kidman ("no way, she's too vain to get real-pregnant"), and others. Oh look at her, red carpet ready in just two weeks, and even with a baby...........goddess.
If you don't have plastic surgery, you don't have a job in Hollywood...or live there. I basically knew this, but didn't realize that even the "natural beauties" actual aren't natural and timeless. Think Jennifer Aniston...maybe I'm just super niave. I blame it on Loveland and Waco.... can't argue. I did compliment the hair stylist's third nose job after he confessed to the work of art. It looked good, really did.
I also found out Lindsay Lohan does coke behind her purse in public (was that really not public knowledge?), but that if everyone knew her background story the public may forgive her downward spiral. Eva Mendes is gay, among a couple surprising other mentions. SO many celebs don't know what fidelity is, especially on set....ETC ETC ETC
It was fun. It was eye-opening. I always thought I'd be the best celeb, but my cheeks would look wierd with plastic, a fake belly wouldn't fit into my morning routine, and I LOVE men. So...
Last week I went to a Stetson Western Wear spring collection launch party (Stetson is one of ABPR's clients)  and was the official hatwear assistant! It was way fun. The caterers kept bringing me delicacies (fatty in the room? it's fine), I'm awesome at the "That look's SO great on you!!!!" lines, I met the CEO of, and I found a Bourbon drink that I enjoy. All of the guests were given Bourbon bottles as party favors, along with their new Stetson hats. HELLOOOO grown-up parties. At college parties the only thing you leave with is a stained shirt. And hopefully your dignity.
See bottom left.
That same week I was also able to attend the launch party of a new cosmetic line called Elle. Elle Cosmetics hired ABPR to launch their brand new makeup collection, and so the ABPR gals created an event in one of the studios at the Chelsea Market building. In the suite there was a fashion runway structure in the middle of the room, which split the room into two areas-- a backstage that had makeup artists and manicurists to test out the new Elle Cosmetics on curious bloggers sipping flower-infused cocktails (they looked awesome), and a front stage that included the fashion runway surrounded by chairs and displays of Elle makeup products. Pretty awesome that the room was totally transformed within a day (by this very attractive foreign couple who ran their own event business together, how do people fall into these adorable lives?). I was the official gift bag creator turned director of people to the event upstairs. The gift bags included as much makeup as three hours can take putting the product into gift bags, and red bows that had to be tied twice by me and then another time by someone else (fail?). And the bows were tied twice by me becuase the hang tags needed to changed last minute. The difference between the two was like night and day (see picture.) It was cool to see the kind of planning and execution of an event like that, and I even got a manicure backstage. Well, half of one, I had to grab some stuff the clean the white runway (double fail.)
This past week the intern gals, Cherie, Marissa, Carey, Audrey, and I went to lunch and chatted about one of the gals 36-year-old-divorcee-with-kids stalker/obsessor/fanatical texter who had nice shoes. "I swear he looked ten years younger." He must be from Hollywood. Or something.
So I haven't blogged in awhile. To make this not last forever, let's do a quick recap of the past weeks:
Bring your green hat!
The other night I was prevented from going to some kind of DJ Disco in Brooklyn becuase a fight broke out in the subway and a dude fell into the tracks and was killed--luckily I was not present. I've had AMAZING Spanish tapas at Boqueria (and a surprising first date), and also Macondo (you can write on the bathroom walls--made for a long line after Sangria). I filmed a work-in-progress segment for class in Madison Square Park using the name Jessica Fox... for FOXHUNT: New York-- seeking out the best the city has to offer! (hashtag famous).  Fell in love with LUKE BRYAN for his tight jeans and muscles when he played in concert with Jason Aldean in New Jersey; the concert was phenomenal. Finished all three Hunger Games books within a too short for public knowledge time period--seeing the movie with my film class Monday night, hollerrrr. Applied to 2340987 jobs. Had my first real New York City job interview with New York Business Partners, ANDDD was called back to a second interview scheduled for tomorrow--it will last a full day and I will be shadowing an exec in the company.
Black spots="Can I have highlights?"
 Saw THE BLACK KEYS in concert at MADISON SQUARE GARDEN--Awesome, awesome experience. Accomplished my goal of finding a green hat on St. Patrick's day in the city. Spent $500 on my hair color and cut which went from splotches and lines, to dyed black spots, to less black spots with an edgy super short cut, to even less black spots--both 40+ year-old stylists hit on me-- one offered a complimentary back massage followed by dinner and the other offered sushi for lunch the first time and to pick me up from class for a wild night on the town the second time, and it was all in all a terrible experience that could only be made up for by numerous hair masks and roommate talk therapy.
I witnessed a "long hair, don't care" kind of guy who appeared to be a member of Occupy Wallstreet roll a blunt in Union Square. I unpacked several boxes of MATRIX hair care products. Several.
See: Smoke.
Helloooo MATRIX products.

I also became one of those people that enjoys going to indy movies at the Angelika in New York by myself. Seriously though... it's invigorating.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Bocce Ball doesn't make you an ATHLETE, but 27 dates might

I think I tore my calf muscle running last weekend in Central Park (my foot has been numb ever since), and so I’ve been limping around the ABPR office all week. This put a little stress on me to keep up with the unofficial high heel policy, and I had to politely bend the rules in the name of flats. Don't think I went unnoticed.
...Especially by the spa package scam men on the street, who actually commented on my "so cute" flats (well, the guys wearing pastel did?). I literally made fun of two girls from our program last week for handing out their credit card info in exchange for a hypothetical spa packege, yet here I am now, a hypocrit who will soon have great skin and nails if my gamble proves legit.

This week I was a part of setting up ABPR's beauty product displays for the CEW (Cosmetic Executive Women) 2012 Beauty Awards. After overly filling two black SUVs with eye shadows/liners, lip sticks, face creams, hair product, those annoying acrylic display risers (which NO stores around ABPR sells, in case anyone was wondering...hashtag intern problems), and several beautiful sweet-smelling flower arrangements, I found myself barricaded into a backseat corner with pink ABPR bags piled on top of me. Once we arrived I shook out the leg cramps and helped Danielle, my mentor, set up Stila makeup and Darphin displays in one of the two large rooms designated for the beauty exhibitions. Vendors from all over came to showcase their latest and greatest in the hopes that later in the day the beauty magazine editors, CEW members, and other women of beauty prestige would choose their product for an award. It was fun to see all of the new makeup and skincare launches, as well as see brands I had never heard of before. Jodi, the VP at abpr mentioned that CEW membership fees raise for those women over thirty. Happy thirtieth you senior citizen. Oh, the beauty industry is cruel.

On Tuesday I met Danielle at the building in SoHo that will soon be the NYC Erno Laszlo Institute when it opens to the public later this year. We were meeting at a conference to gain product knowledge for Erno Laszlo skincare and sample some of the products ($250 velvet night cream anyone??). I really liked the animated speakers throughout the morning and began to wonder what public speaking, meeting new people, and traveling have in common... Oh, all of my interests. Add that to the job search list.

Tuesday night was a WICKED first Broadway show experience at the Gershwin Theater. While watching the performance I recognized songs that I've heard my 12-year-old little sister sing, but other than that I didn't know what to expect from the elaborate set with a huge red-eyed mechanical dragon looming overhead. Wicked is about the background story behind the Wizard of Oz classic. The Wicked Witch of the West, through her AWESOME vocals, relayed the real experience which involved a lot of miscommunication and bad luck. Quite entertaining, especially during the scene with Glenda (giggle, giggle, hair toss, hair toss) attempting to make green skin pahhh ahhh ahh ahhh ahh pular. All in all, a good field trip in leui of class........

I had 27 dates last week. They were all about three minutes long and, aside from the occassionally breach of personal space, I was entertained. For my Culture and Communications class I have to attend an event in New York City and write a research paper about a topic of communication. So hello physically fit and athletic singles speed dating!! I'm intrigued with first impressions, what people say and do to command initial attentions. Well, let me tell you what they do. Some sat next to me and kissed the top of my hand profusely; I'd describe the experience as wet. Another tried to intrigue me with his Spanish dance moves, which I must say I WAS intrigued until the dance started. And others tried to cram in as much info about themselves as if I had a large information retention capability. I played nice, didn't stare too intensely at hair line recedings, and even let someone buy me a slice of pizza. However, let me tell you, NONE of the candidates I'd personally place into the athletically fit category. It was on the same scale of me showing up at Asian singles night. Some men would sit down and one of their questions would be "so this is athletic singles night (thanks, didn't realize) and so what is it your into?" My alter ego came out in several different forms and throughout the night I became a scuba diving instructor, a skydiver fanatic, a marathon extraordinaire (eh I ran a half once) .... Meanwhile the male forms of athleticism included bocce ball, zumba, and the forementioned, Spanish dance. I think someone liked to ride bikes in there and there was one lone weightlifter that caught my eye until I noticed his near forty age lines.  Someone else should have brought their alter ego, then it really would have been a party. I didn't circle anyone's name on the sheet and therefore a mutual consentment to give out my contact information did not occur, but I do still recieve the physically fit singles! event emails on the reg.

First impressions are tricky. I decided a universally desired trait to creating a great first impression was the ability to make the other feel comfortable. Being (or at least acting?) genuinely interested, paying attention, smiling, open body language, contributing to convos......
It'll be a good college level research paper.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Falling Asleep on the Subway, Turkish hair care and other fun things.

My roots finally reached the tip of my ears (hopeful slight exaggeration?) and so I decided this weekend that it was time to get that fixed. This necessity became more pressured after a close up camera shot of the not blonde strands in a recent segment on the Wall Street Journal. I woke up late that day of the segment, and decided a shower wouldn’t be necessary to jumpstart my day. Little did I know my hair would be broadcasted to publics everywhere and high end stylist Oscar Blandi would point out that I have an oily scalp on air. Fab. At least he saved the “your hair color is so harsh” for moments beyond filming?
Ugh, interns.

The short segment was for Off Duty, a section on the Wall Street Journal’s website, and that day my hair was made over into curls to represent a hairstyle appropriate for the 2012 Oscars. I was told to smile at the camera while Blandi styled my hair, and if you watch the segment I think an awkward grimace would more accurately describe my facial expression. Smiling while your hair is being pulled is just weird anyway. Regardless, hair model on the resume. Check. And the chic, sophisticated salon enclosed by glass windows overlooking the city streets made for quite a nice ambience. The fruit infused water, foamy lattes, and shiny everything added to the glam.

This weekend, I decided to stray from my Aveda promise to never have my hair done anywhere else, and turned to ChicHighlights Salon sounded nice, I’d like some chic highlights? But when I was walking on the block of the salon passing the Hot n Crusty Pizza Parlor and 24 hour Duane Reed THAT’S the moment I began to feel uneasy. The salon was cute, quaint, small and run by a Turkish man who is apparently internationally talented in hair care. I sat in the chair, had a glass of red wine, and the stylist went to work while I talked Spanish culture with his assistant. By went to work, I mean throwing out all methodology and throwing in random aluminum foils. While he did an good job with adding gloss and conditioning treatment times three, I left the salon with some spots and stripes and roots that are forcing me to make a second appearance tomorrow (taking my roommate for moral support). To make matters worse I temporarily strayed from what is socially acceptable and decided I wanted bangs. Bangs. Bangs are for three types of people: thirteen-year-old girls trying to grow them out, high-end fashion models, and soccer moms. Since I fit into none of those categories, I made a new pact with myself to not only stick with Aveda, but to never use the sentence “Oh, why not?” because at the first step out of the salon all of the reasons are made clear to “not.”

At Alison Brod, Jodi, the vice president, had a meeting with all of the interns and opened with the line, “Stop quitting, just don’t do it” now that three interns have quit. We discussed what can be done to improve our internship experience, and all I had to say was more beauty samples because I really am learning a lot, and unpacking boxes is really just part of the job, I know this. Jodi’s awesome. She’s very real, very lively, and even painted my nails at work last week because some gals were playing with the polishes of a new client ABPR just landed. Jodi is now going to meet with the interns a day each week and go through the magazines that are published weekly to point out various PR efforts. Example: Source gives info about Kim Kardashian and Reggie Bush’s date at this restaurant, and eight pages later that same restaurant is featured as a new hotspot. Gossip is money in PR. I’ll trade this info, you feature my restaurant. And those “who wore it best” features? Don’t even think those are coincidental. Jodi also talked to us about various pitching strategies to land publicity for different products. Example: ABPR client Sky Vodka released Dragonfruit, so how do we show the public that Dragonfruit is totally a trending fruit? Yes, even fruits trend. Sometimes stories are generated from nothing, sometimes it takes a google search or a posed “candid shot” of a paid celeb on the street to launch the trending of a product.

"Your biggest smile, Jess!" Grilled Kanga.
So because Australia is on my potential next place to live list, last night I went to an Australian restaurant, Public. There were chili-infused margaritas, and they had a delicious biting kick. Since my roommate, Audrey and I had already eaten dinner (cereal for dinner anyone?) we split a grilled kangaroo appetizer. Despite feeling bad for eating the probably once cute animal, it was SO good and much enjoyed. We ended up going out dancing afterwards, and Audrey and I fell asleep standing up leaning on each other on the subway on the way home. We dance hard? Chris was there for protection and the usual 3 am mac n cheese.

Jill and Lisa, my girlfriends from high school came to visit the last weekend. We were mainly night creatures, but did take some time out in the daylight for a museum that featured Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton, and some interesting costumes. We also took the ferry to Staten Island, passing the Statue of Liberty. While she was BEAUTIFUL and I felt so much pride looking at her, she was a bit on the small side? I do wish tourists could climb to the top of the statue, but since 9/11 that’s no longer an option. While Lisa is moving to Aruba in the summer for a while, Jill and I are becoming bogged down with anxiety about the job search. I gotta get a move on if I'm going to live in a foreign country. My goal really is just to get some experience somewhere first. The first two years of my career are most likely not going to be the highlights of it. I just need experience, build trust, skills and a resume, then on to bigger and better things...

If you're reading this....hire me?