The CityFriends in High Places Season 2 • Episode 2
Finally, after a full episode of girl drama only, the producers shoved a greasy-haired love interest into the mix to give Roxy something to do. His name is Zach, he flaunts his spectacular heavage, and we hope he keeps things interesting for a little while. The gods of this faux universe will never let these chicks lust after people who appear to regularly bathe and don't do creepy things like shoot naked people in the subway, but that must be karma for everything else that falls into their laps. Olivia has also made a startling shift from lip gloss to lipstick, and despite wearing her hair in a tousled style, is uptight as ever. And Erin gets their feud going again. And now this week's lessons.
Lesson 1: Mentoring a young fashion designer.
Do: Encourage her by finding some positive reviews of the show. Kelly quoted WWD’s review of Whitney’s show, which read:
Anyone who’s ever ogled the attire on MTV’s “The City” will find plenty to wear in star Whitney Port’s catwalk debut, with body-skimming brocade dresses, rainbow-hued slinky silk jumpsuits and flowing tops that would take a viewer to any hot spot in style.
Awesome! One positive sentence! Kelly clearly found some other mostly pleasant things online to read aloud for the entire office. The mood of People’s Revolution after this show — the clapping, respectful listening, sense of accomplishment — is strikingly different from the mood at People’s Revolution after the fashion shows we saw on Kell on Earth on Bravo. But this is the beauty of mentoring a designer who doesn’t really know what’s going on: She won’t know when something goes wrong (not that, unlike those other shows on Kell on Earth, anything did, from what we could tell when we were there).
Do: Encourage the designer to take the criticism constructively. Kelly does this when she comes upon a more negative review. Sadly, she fails to read our thoughts on Whitney's show aloud:
Butt-cheek-skimming hemline after butt-cheek-skimming hemline followed in shades of black, floral, silver sequins, and even tie-dye. One mullet-hemlined minidress came up so short in the front we winced in fear of the model flashing her crotch as she walked. Another silver minidress with a scary-short hemline was tragically see-through under the runway lights, which clearly illuminated the model's white thong underwear beneath.
Reading that aloud in front of someone who actually wears these things regularly could be seen as a personal insult. But this is Kelly Cutrone, who once yelled at her feeble interns, “I have worked my ass off for twelve fucking years to build this company. Do not make one fucking decision about my clients,” when they did the gift bags wrong.
Lesson 2: Making it seem like someone works on the website of a major magazine. (And this is specifically for MTV and Elle.)
Don’t: Have her stand around the fashion closet for no reason while the creative director picks out clothes for a cover shoot. Young girls around the world who want to work at a fashion magazine in Olivia’s capacity — and MTV producers have done a poor job of defining that — should know they don’t get to help style cover shoots.
Don’t: Let them leave their chair, unless it’s for espresso or caffeine pills. People who work in editorial on websites don’t have time to do anything most people in offices do, like take phone calls, run out to pick up dry cleaning, go out for lunch, breathe, go home at the end of the day, talk to people, have lives, etc. Finding time to go to the bathroom should be a challenge. Yet Olivia does jack shit all day and, despite scolding Roxy for calling her an hour before Whitney’s market appointment, gets up and goes immediately anyway, thereby further proving she has absolutely nothing to do. Also, publicists call press last-minute and try to get them to go to things all the time — if Olivia was really some sort of editor or writer or reporter, this wouldn’t piss her off so much, especially on a day that Erin gave her a compliment (if also a wry smile).
Lesson 3: Dealing with editors at market appointments.
Do: Be nice. Editors go to market appointments to look at clothes in person to decide what they want to shoot. The designers and publicists want to butter them up so they call some stuff in. On the runway, Whitney’s clothes looked like the kind of stuff preppy Harvard kids might wear to a party themed "Spring Slutstice," so winning editors over with her personality is key here. Kelly sets a good example for Whitney, saying to Olivia, “It was nice of you to come,” after Olivia told them how “unprofessional” they were as soon as she walked in the door.
Do: Resist belittling guests. Whitney and Olivia used to be colleagues at Diane Von Furstenberg, which is where the third world war between them began brewing. So to Whitney, Olivia is that bitch I used to work with (most people in fashion probably have one or five of those). And after Olivia tells her she’s working for Elle.com and doing backstage videos (which is a lie — she did one backstage video there and spends the rest of her time standing around wearing lipstick), Whitney can’t resist a subtle dig: “You’re like a little journalist — that’s so cool.” Fortunately, Whitney’s expression is consistently blank enough for any crafty activity going on in her brain not to register. Yet Olivia, pissed off already, is the one Whitney had to impress.
Do: Invite Ladies' Home Journal. WTF? you thought last night? Well, why the hell not?
Lesson 4: Picking up men.
Do: Use eye contact. As soon as Zach, the photographer who shoots naked people on running subways during broad daylight, walks into the People's Revolution's office, Roxy is entranced. She immediately engages in eye sex with him as he strolls from the front door to Kelly's office. If a girl knows what she wants, and if that happens to be an ever-so-slightly greasy and unshaven nude photographer with black hoop earrings and a tight deep-V tee, she should by all means go for it.
Don't: Go in for the kill when you hear him talking about taking pictures of naked people on trains. Kelly sees Roxy leering at tight-tee Zach and calls her into her office to maximize the awkwardness between the three of them. "You're talking about people getting naked on trains — I'm curious," Roxy says in defense of her leering. But it really comes off as a set-up for her to one day be one of those naked people on the train and then one of those naked people in Zach's bed and then one of those clothed people who goes home at 8 a.m. without homemade blueberry pancakes truly good men will make for you.
Lesson 5: Asking someone out.
Don't: Initiate this exchange:
Zach: Um, so, what's going on with, uh, your, your um, situation?
Roxy: My situation?
Zach: Your situation.
Roxy: We'll see.
Zach: Ohhhhh. All riiiiight. Well, that's cool.
Roxy: Is that bitterness?
Zach: I don't know.
Roxy: All right.
Zach: All right.
Roxy: Thank you.
Zach: You're welcome.
Do: Say no when someone initiates the above exchange. Roxy only half said no, but just for that we're so proud of her! She has fingerless leopard gloves and her own plotline now!
Lesson 6: Ideas meetings.
Do: Come to the meeting with ideas. Joe asks the staff members sitting around the table what they have going on. Olivia's supposed to be finding young designers to cover for Elle.com, but she has no one to talk about because she's "seen everything." Lies! No one has seen everything. People who work at fashion magazines get at least five look books in the mail every day. And as we've seen, Olivia has nothing to do as it is, so she should just play with the mail.
Don't: Start wars with people who sit next to you in the office. Erin says that even though Olivia went to the Whitney Eve preview and passed on it, she disagrees (HISSSSSSS), and wants to use the line for Elle's Rue La La boutique. She did not tell Olivia she planned to make her look like a fool before the meeting. This makes for great television, but, Erin, she sits next to you and is fully capable of sabotage. Whether it's tripping you or pulling up porn on your computer, she's crafty and cannot be trusted.
Do: Believe in things you really believe in. One can't help wonder if all these editors are lying about their feelings for Whitney's line. "I think it’s a really fresh perspective," Erin says. Kyle, the senior accessories editor, adds: "She had such a great look book." Olivia had previously said of the line: "It ranges — I don’t think she focused on one specific thing. There’s not a theme; it’s sort of all over the place." Well, there was a theme along the lines of "See if you can avoid flashing the world in this skirt," but its biggest problem was how chintzy it looked. Erin obviously wants to resume feuding with Olivia, but at the cost of plugging Whitney Eve, is it worth it?