Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Me and Jackie, we were tight like that..

Long ago in the dim recesses of time- you know the late seventies- I had an encounter in New York that dear Al inadvertently reminded me of the other day. I thought it might give him a smile.

I had more or less bailed on my very proper upbringing and ventured off to the wicked city to pursue my dream of being the next Gelsey Kirkand. Well, let’s just say that knees are a very poorly designed body part and we’ll leave it at that, shall we? Well yours truly was pretty much having a ball. Working hard at dancing, doing the occasional modeling gig to make some cash and partying my ass off more or less. I lived in a second floor walk up on Christopher Street. Yes, really. Myself, two anorexic psychotic models and a drag queen named Ramon/Ramona shared a two bedroom apartment. I opted to room with Ramona because the other two pretty well annoyed me. Let’s say it was a learning experience. All I know about makeup dears was learned there. I still miss you R..

I had met a quite fetching young man that I rather liked and he invited me to a very fancy gathering that his parents demanded he attend, a schmoozing thing for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Well, as he was quite good looking, and let’s be real- completely loaded in the trust fund sort of cash reserve way, I accepted. Give me a break, I was flat broke and he was actually quite a nice guy in spite of the trust fund.

Well this did pose a bit of a problem. I had decamped to the metropolis with the leotards and such, the punk princess wear and the disco queen stuff. I had nothing even vaguely appropriate. So, I did what any sensible girl would do , I called my Mamma..

Well bless her heart, she called a shop she was quite well acquainted with and made an appointment for me to acquire something appropriate. While I never did learn what the conversation actually consisted of, I have a deep and abiding suspicion she said something to the effect of “put her in something by Monsieur de Givenchy- period.” Yes, I ended up with the quintessential Givenchy “little back dress”. And she naturally sprang for shoes and a bag, she was like that. You were indeed the best Mamma..

And it was a smashing dress. Very simple, immaculately tailored and I felt like a princess the moment I put it on. Trust fund boy and I arrived for this big soiree and I felt a rising sense of panic when we walked in. All the women were doing the late seventies pre “Dynasty” thing.. I felt like the ugly duckling in a room full of peacocks. Thus, I was feeling very awkward and quite out of place as the simple southern deb in her black dress and pearls.. The pater and mater were quite charming truthfully, and I proceeded to have actually a relatively pleasant evening.

And then it happened. The one and only Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis showed up. I must say I did consider fainting as an option. Really. While trying to be cool and not stare while she was making the quick rounds of the various loaded patrons, and I wasn’t the only one, I was literally captivated watching her.

She approached the mater and pater and did the quick, how lovely of you to come bit, and went to move along. She looked at me and smiled and gave that regal little head incline thing and gave me a quick little wink. I think my smile must have lit up the entire upper east side.

At that moment I realized we were actually the only two women in the room wearing the proverbial “simple black dress”.

I made the most expensive collect call of my life that night..

26 comments:

Maine Gay said...

What a cool story.

Winked at by Jackie herself - cause you were in the know and such, 'natch.

My heart fluttered a bit reading that.

Speck said...

Oooohh! What a magical moment in a most memorable evening! Lovely, just lovely.

Al said...

Clicking on here I had a smile and a sense of it. I was right, and it was perfect. Thanks. With a wink back at you.

tater said...

I adore you. If anyone could hold her own in a room with Jackie O. It is you my dear. That she would single you out with a wink and an esprit des corps attitude, comes as little surprise. I bet you own every room you walk into, sunshine.

Sling said...

I remember,back in the day,the magic that was Camelot.
There aren't enough sheckels in creation to buy a knowing wink from Jackie!..and she gave it,freely,to you!
Plus!..we both used the phrase,'Trust fund boy',in our blogs today...Life is good! :)

Jeff said...

What a marvelous story! I hope your date was suitably impressed.

And is there anything more universal than the little black dress?

Willym said...

Doralong you should see the grin I'm wearing - that is a wonderful story. Jackie O obviously knew class when she saw it.

Now I know red is your colour of preference - and that you'll be wearing it the night you and I go to the ballet here - so tell me that you and Ramon/Ramona choose a subtle red lipstick that whispered sophisticate and screamend SEX!

Java said...

Wonderful story! You've been classy even when classy was out of style. Truth be told, you and Jackie will always be in style. It's those other wannabees who lost sight of style.
You got a Jackie wink! Wow. I'm impressed.

Doralong said...

MG- I expect she was merely being kind. And my heart was doing some serious pounding truthfully.

Speck- You know, for me it really was both. I know, I'm such a fan girl.. I can live with that actually.

Al- I hoped you might chuckle a bit.

Tate- You're terribly biased honey.. But I do know how to make an entrance I'll grant you, whether that's good or bad is another story entirely.

Sling- A thing without price indeed my friend. As to the odd turn of phrase we both popped out with, it's just our psychic connection baby..

Jeff- As I tell Miss Thing, there's a big difference between style and fashion.. and often they have little to do with one another. Look at Lagerfeld.

Wills- I don't know about that, but she was terribly charming for real. And naturally dear, Ramona taught me that if you're going to do it, do it right! And for the record I rarely wear any shade other than red lipstick, whether it's "in vogue" at the moment or not..

Java- I felt pretty out of place in that room full Bob Mackie excess.. but I tend to be a less is more sort of person

billy pilgrim said...

so you got that going for you too.

which is real nice.

more cowbell said...

What a memory - that had to feel fantastic.

Doralong said...

Billy- you know, you really can be terribly sweet.

CB- You know, it really, really did. As noted yes I can say I am a total fan girl for herself. Could be worse,

Elizabeth said...

Wow! What a completely thrilling moment! This inspires me to do my own post about a Very different dress and a very different meeting with a Kenedy!

sageweb said...

That is a great story. What a great opportunity.

evilganome said...

I always knew you was classy! I caught a couple of glimpses of Jackie in the 70's when Caroline was attending Harvard. But not such luck as far as getting a wink from her.

Now we know where the blog title came from!

Doralong said...

Elizabeth- I LOVED your story and I can't wait to see the pictures!

Sage- I really didn't suck in any way ;)

Tony- Actually the title came from Mamma.. She had a theory, if you were properly dressed to meet whatever it was head on, you'd manage just fine. I don't know about the classy part- but I can usually behave myself in public. Most of the time.

Auld Hat said...

Get.Out!
Oh you win girl. You win. Hands down. Contest over. Best brush with fame evuh!

Doralong said...

Sgae- Oops I meant IT not I..

Hat- Probably not, but it sure was for me.

Kimberly Ann said...

That is an amazing story! Love it. I want to hear more about Ramona and your life in the apartment. More, more, more, please!

Jeff said...

The more I read this piece, the more I see a short film in the offing....

Doralong said...

KA- Ramona was a total trip- no doubt about it!

Jeff- you write it and get it produced babe, and I'll show up and applaud for you.

Red Seven said...

Totally late for the party, but wow -- how cool.

Miss Janey said...

What a great story about a great moment.

mumbliss said...

Dear Doralong,
I am here via elizabeth's blog. I am wondering how she is doing and fidgetted over to your wonderful story. I love it. Like a delicious chocolate you can have over and over again. Of course I wish it was in my candy box, but I still love it vicariously. My fater shared winks with Marlon Brando in an elevator once, but the stunning glamor of your story, absolutely shoots to the top of the stack. Thank you.

Lorraine said...

OH. MY. YORD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Best. story. ever.

booda baby said...

It was a long route I took to get to this post but what a reward! Jackie winked at just the right person; it could NOT have been told better.