It was August 3rd, 1999, I stood in awe at a local bookstore staring at this fabulous book called Confessions of a Window Dresser by Simon Doonan. The images captured me completely and I knew at that moment that I too was destined to be something greater. At the time, I had no idea what it was about or why I was so drawn to it but I knew that I had to have it. Later that week, it was given to me as a surprise with a message inside that read:
“Be what you want to be.
Do what you want to do.
Most of all, believe that you have the talent,
the knowledge and the power to do so.
Here’s to unlocking your dreams!”
So, who is this guy and what is this book about? Why is it so special? Well, Simon Doonan is the man who made Barneys’ windows famous. He designed all of the controversial windows of the mid to late 80′s. It was a complete scene! People couldn’t wait to see what he did next. Every celebrity you could imagine wanted to be a star in his arena, although some feared it just as much. The point is, if this flamboyant, crazed, genius can make his way in the U.S.A. so can I. This book has moved all over with me reminding me to stay steady on the course and keep my eye on the prize. If you work hard and stay connected, things are bound to happen.
This past December, I received an email entitled “Your Chance to Meet The Doon”. Of course I immediately opened it to see what it was she was referring to and there it was. The invite to Barneys to meet Simon Doonan in person. AHHHHHAHAHAHAHHHHHH! Awesome! Let me clarify something. It’s not like I am crazy over him, I am crazy over what he represents to me. This book inspired me to push harder, look further and do more than what was in front of me and that is what I live by.
This past Saturday, there was a book signing for his latest release, Gay Men Don’t Get Fat at Barneys in San Francisco. I knew that I had to go and see just how this man fared after all these years. Is he still as cheeky and well dressed as I imagined him to be? What would I say? What would I wear? It was boggling. Just get there and go with the flow.
I arrived early and stood in a short line watching everyone swoon over his hot husband, Jonathan Adler. I waited patiently while the super fans hogged the stage. I was behind an obviously annoyed couple who were pissed when I applied Purell. Read page 33 boys, he endorses Purell by the vat. The hag behind me had the same concern I did, “What does one ear to such an occasion?” The truth is, unless I own an entire floor of clothing, I will never be comfortable. I ended up dressing like a complete dingy and was conscious the whole time. I won’t do that again!
Finally, it was my turn. I had a list of questions to ask him about food and the school systems hot lunch programs, charity work and more but the cat got my tongue and I was completely star struck not wanting to say to much at all. He loved my name and was surprised when I said that it was mine (total highlight). He noticed that I had my other book as well and offered to sign it for me. Obviously the first page was already taken with the note above so he chose the next best page.
A quick photo opp and I was on my way. I left the line smiling from ear to ear wondering how fast I could get home to read my new book. It was the perfect little Saturday.