New York: Still a Place Where Quiet Nerds Blossom Into Awesome Exhibitionists


Today’s Times story about groups of youngish Bushwick hipsters who throw giant crafty parties contains a lovely little sub-narrative about a 23-year-old from Ontario, New York, called Kae Burke, who, soon after moving to the city, emerged, pupalike, from a suburban shell into a full-on New York exhibitionist.

This is her story:

Burke was studying fashion at F.I.T. and attending Brooklyn’s theme parties because she was new to the city and didn’t have any friends. “But I had this awful social anxiety, which meant I couldn’t stay longer than an hour at a party,” she said. ‘I didn’t know how to stand around and do nothing.’”

She got a volunteer job at a place called Kostume Kult, went to Burning Man, moved to Bushwick, acquired a Martha Stewart fixation, began “spray painting this, stitching that,” and then suddenly:

Watching her M.C. Sunday night’s party from 20 feet in the air, clad in a red lace unitard and hanging upside down, it was clear she no longer suffered from social anxiety.”

Weird. It used to be drugs that inspired the young people of New York to let go of their inhibitions. Now it’s apparently Martha freaking Stewart.

Decorating the Night in Brooklyn [NYT]