27 August 2008


Okay, so this is my first big fashion industry show, and it is HUGE. It takes over the entire Las Vegas Convention Center complex, which is several enormous buildings, plus the adjacent Hilton - a big complex in itself. It's not just designers showing their lines here; there are buyers looking for product, of course, and sales reps looking for lines, other designers looking to see what's out there, suppliers looking for potential customers - upwards of 100,000 people. Like I said, HUGE!

For all that, though, the "Ecollection" section where we are feels small and intimate. And we've got musical entertainment. Yesterday, while I was stuck at the booth by myself, a singer with guitar started playing and singing. A lot of his repertoire were songs by Toad the Wet Sprocket, which was a band who started up when I was in college 20 years ago and one I absolutely loved (not the least because they had a really cute lead singer). I only got to see them play once, back in '95, but it is one of my favorite concert memories.

As I sat there waiting for potential customers to stop and ask about David's line, I thought, "Boy, that guy is doing a pretty good job of sounding like Glen Phillips." When the mini-concert was over, David's production manager, Christine, came back to the booth and our conversation went kind of like this:

C: "That guy used to be the lead singer of this band, Toad the...."
Me: "OMFG, it was Glen Phillips!"
C: "Yeah, I went up and introduced myself."
Me: "OMFG, I am soooo jealous!"

Not only that, he was there with Sara and Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek, another band I love. They played today, and Glen got back up on stage for several songs with them. And this time, I got to go over and say hi and had a really nice conversation with a musical idol. And then David brought over socks for them all.

What's even funnier/odder about all this is that all last week I had Nightingale Song by Toad bouncing around in my head for no apparent reason (It's a YouTube video, but I can't figure how to turn off the autoplay so I'm just linking - and I'm not sure what the deal is with the trains). I hadn't even heard any of their music in quite a while and it just popped up in there.

So yeah, it totally made my day.

Small World

The other freaky thing that happened today is that this morning we were sitting in the booth when this guy comes by looking at the line and he turned out to be someone I knew from college in South Carolina. For those who may be a little confused, I started college at a small school in South Carolina, then went to Spain for a semester, then went to the University of Maine, where I earned my undergrad degree - a little complicated, but that's how life often works.

Anyway, this guy was a year behind me, but he had an older brother in my class, we lived in the same dorm and basically ran in the same circles (not hard, considering there were barely 1000 students at the entire school). He actually ended up rooming with my former roommate when I left for Spain. Now he's in charge of sales for a knit fabric producer in South Carolina with a division that specializes in organics. So freakin' bizarre to bump into him like that after 20 years.

When we were in school, he was a buff, blond 18-year-old hottie. Now I can work a fitted t-shirt so much better, despite having a little extra flesh of my own. I think I even have better hair - what's left of it. Is it bad that I feel just slightly good about that?


Anonymous said...

Toad and Nickel Creek? Bonus! Were they just playing together for the show, or are they recording together? While reading this, "All I Want" immediately started going through my head.

Anonymous said...

"Now I can work a fitted t-shirt so much better, despite having a little extra flesh of my own. I think I even have better hair - what's left of it. Is it bad that I feel just slightly good about that?"

Absolutely not. Some people reach their peak hotness in HS and then it's all downhill from there for them. Others just get better and better with age. I'd rather be the latter, frankly.

Scoutj said...

Not bad at ALL. Rock on with your bad self.

And I loved Toad!!

Juno said...

Nope, not at ALL bad.

Sheepish Annie said...

It is never wrong to feel good by comparison when meeting a former acquaintance. Never. You enjoy the moment. You savor it. You relive it whenever possible.

You do it even more after 40...

FiberQat said...

Think of your fitness comparison as a guilty pleasure.

How fun you got to meet Glen Phillips and heard great music. Conventions can be so dull.

knitnzu said...

Oh no, not at all... and if the person in question was a total jerk those 20 years ago, it is even not a bad thing to mention how you feel good to still have some body/hair/etc left, and do it in some snarky way. My 20th reunion? First thing this woman comes up to me all cheery smiles, "remember this?". WTF??? I was struggling to remember her name (I left and only went back that night... so it was like digging up fossils remembering some people's names), and she's asking if I remember her DRESS??? It was the same she wore to the prom. Give me a F'in break here... Anyhow, she and a couple of other women made a point of how they were wearing or almost wore their prom dresses. Me? At that point I WAS some 15 pounds heavier, but it was all muscle and back when I was such a twig (a very booby twig). Cool about Glen!

Angie said...

I LOVED Toad the Wet Sprocket!