with the Rockwood II gig behind us, we’re burning on all cylinders for the EP. We’ve got album artwork to figure out, layout and all that jazz, and finding a good place for the record release party.
toward that end — and because we’ve got a photo shoot coming up on the 6th — it was time to go shopping. the transformation from schlub to slickster is one we know all too well. but we didn’t want to go into this shoot without stacking the decks in our favor. so with the help of our crack photographer, Jennifer Painter, and our intrepid stylist, Kendall Nash, we took to the streets in search of some good clothes.
Ari and I arrived on the scene a bit late — my Ford Focus was feeling the strain that morning — with our requisite coffees and cigar (for me). if we look a little bleary-eyed, confused, distressed, or confused its probably because we almost never go shopping and couldn’t be certain what the day would hold.
however with a little help — and a great deal of supervision — from Jen and Kendall we were able to throw ourselves into the act with some gusto after a few minutes. the first round was sort of a warm up. we walked through the store, picked out some shirts, some ties, some hats and things. and we adjourned to the dressing room to try it all on. i think, of that first batch, there was only one keeper and particularly excellently brownish tie with quails (or pheasants, we’re not sure) on it. other wise, nothing really stuck. i’m sure it will feature prominently in a later post.
for the second round through Beacon’s Closet, we decided to go hard in the proverbial paint. Jen introduced me to something I can only describe as a shopping flux-state. just as with playing music where you enter a sort of hyper-consciousness when you’re playing dynamically in front of an audience, making thousands of little decisions at once and trying to maintain and overall sense of cohesion — such that your mind will either shatter from the pressure or jump up orbits like an excited electron — so: we did at the store.
we went rack by rack, quickly flipping the items on the hangars. pulling what caught our eye or otherwise moving one. so with dozens upon dozens (maybe hundreds) of options before us, we were able to get through everything in like ten minutes. i didn’t think i would be able to do it at first. but i did.
and we took all that stuff back to the dressing room and tried it on. again… not much that we really, really liked. i found a particularly interesting peach-colored shirt (again, it will have a post of its own, i’m sure).
we did find one last item, however, that we simply could not put back. a divinely pinkish cardigan. now, i don’t wear too many cardigans really, but everyone told me it was a great look. suffice it to say, i got it. and i can’t wait to wear it about town.
akie's new look (see it. believe it!)
…next we headed to Buffalo Exchange (right up the street, really). And there we found quite a few things we needed. something was lacking however: the consensus was, cool as we might look in our new stuff, we were rocking some inexcusably wack pants. now: no man wants to hear this kind of thing. but all i needed to do was look down and see Jen and Kendall were right.
as such, jeans became the ultimate mission of the day. i tried on a couple pairs at Buffalo… most didn’t make it past my kneecaps, but i did manage to get myself in to one pair in particular (it wasn’t pretty the things i had to do to myself to get IN those pants). and, after all that exertion, the response was mostly positive!
tight pants and plaid.
we were pretty happy with the take at Buffalo. so we headed back to the car with our new acquisitions!
the take, from Williamsburg...
now, if anyone has ever spent prolonged periods of time with me and Ari, they know it can be a bit awkward. we decided the last stop on the aabaraki-day-of-shop would have to be Uniqlo in SoHo so that we could get some jeans that really did the trick. Jen had her bike and actually rode off into the sunset. Poor Kendall had some quality awkward time with Ari and me.
this is where it gets good. by the time we got to SoHo and found parking and made our way to Uniqlo we knew: it was great jeans or bust! and so we entered the store in full on shop-flux and in just a little while we had our hands FULL of clothes to try one. it was sight to see, to awkward men heavy-laden with clothing waiting in line to try them on.
i’m honestly not sure we’d have been able to sort through it all without Jen and Kendall. I mean, we probably would have given up before we even found the floor with pants on it. It was like the maze at the of the TriWizard Cup, i’m saying.
Ari -- with Jen (furthest right) and Kendall who were examining the threads
there was plenty for Ari to try on!
same here. oh the joy of dressing rooms!
i’d love to show you all the crazy stuff we tried on and what we eventually ended up with but I don’t want to spoil the surprise when the photos come out. so you’re going to have to wait just a little while longer to know how this whole shopping thing turned out.
after Uniqlo, we were completely tapped out. we didn’t know if we should get coffee, get beer, get food or what. eventually we all went our separate ways. still pretty excited for sunday… when everything comes together. O, synergy!
…post-script: regardless, music is everywhere
shortly thereafter, i found myself in Penn Station waiting to catch a train. Just as i was debating which horrible underground fast food establishment to get some victuals from i strode into the atrium of the Penn Station to find a trio ripping it up right by the Ticketing machines. For no good reason. And they weren’t just playing around.
interestingly, just as i stepped up close to them the drummer executed a very Aaron Steele-like fill (straight out of the reduction.stutter.funk handbook) and then popped out of his seat like he’d gotten stung by a bee.
it was then i knew: this is only the beginning.