"You want to make me walk up stairs?!" I harrumphed. "Are you kidding? What kind of snotty exclusive private club is this?" I trudged up the stairs anyway. Stairs with dirty carpet, industrial steel rails, and oddly, really cool bizarrely shaped chandeliers.
Okay, so I didn't really harrumph; I just walked up the stairs like a normal person. But I would imagine that most people who paid loads of money and kissed ass to get into Soho House would harrumph at stairs. Loudly.
I was told that Jay McInerney had been there and Stephen Daldry had shown up earlier, kid in tow, but it was sometime around midnight so I missed the fun. Apparently people were following the British convention of getting drunk fairly early and being completely wiped out by 11. (The actual Brit ratio, according to the PR guy, was approximately 15% but it seemed higher, as the Brits were the ones still out and still drinking.) Alan Cumming had made an appearance the night before, and there were several journalist-types. (Joanna Coles and Michael Elliott had been there.) "Lots of media people," Choire had said earlier, wrinkling his nose and making a face like he'd just swallowed something vile. Overheard later: "I don't like media people. They're so vapid."
Also overheard: "So I told him, 'I'm a Morgan Stanley platinum customer.'"
Choire flashed his membership card. It's completely black with little silver lettering that says "Soho House". It looks more like something that should contain a list of nuclear codes than an entrance card to the Land of the Vapid. "Where's yours?" I asked Nick (Gawker's publisher). "I lost it," he shrugged. Nick clearly has trouble taking his Soho house membership seriously. If he doesn't change his attitude, they'll very likely question his devotion to aggressive social climbing and kick him right out. (But don't tell him I said that.)
There were plenty of flat surfaces, unlike London Soho House, where they have all reportedly been eradicated to curb drug use. (Everything is, I suppose, roundgod knows, it's impossible to snort coke if it's settled in the bottom of something concave.) There were, for example, flat hardwood floors, flat marble-top tables, and a flat bar. Fascinating.
The decor, generally, was less "posh private club" and more "hey, let's throw darts at a design catalog and see what happens!" Tin roof (more techno silver squares than antique), massive velveteen cushions, Eames-esque chairs, and glass partitions. Not that you really care. It's dark; they serve cocktails; and you can smoke. If it weren't for the vile media people like myself, it'd be perfect.
I passed "cad"/"toxic bachelor" Rick Marin on the way in, and Bridget Harrison from the Post stopped by to chat. I inhaled several cigarettes because I was indoors, and for once, I could. Then I left. (The coat check had disappeared and everyone's stuff was just sort of haphazardly crammed into a corner. Reminded me of the Gawker launch party.)
Doesn't sound too exciting, does it? I'll compensate by talking about notable things that did not happen:
· No ecstasy was licked off the floor (while I was there.)
· Graydon Carter (comp membership) and David Bowie were not making out in a corner (while I was there.)
· There was no table dancing, fortune telling, or smashing of sound equipment (all of whichif that's your thingcan be found at the Bulgarian bar at the corner of Broadway and Canal.)
If, however, any of you do spot Graydon Carter and David Bowie making out inanywhere, reallyplease tell me.