Trouble loves me and I love trouble. I like to start a new year off with a bang, but not a tumble. “Are you OK?” someone asked, concerned. Not really—my lip was bleeding and my ankle sprained. I shouldn’t have worn those red patent leather slides but it was the Red & Black Masquerade Ball that the Rated X Panty Party team held at Don Hills. Shortly after I arrived, I tripped over a drum set near the stage. I´m a klutz.Two nights earlier, my warm winter coat was pilfered at The Gates. Aren’t clubs fun! But the crowd at Rated X was hot, clad in latex and leather, chains and studs, with spiked hair and pierced, tattooed faces. It was a dark and scary New Year’s Eve, with none of those vanilla party hats and noisemakers in sight.
“Get there at 10:15! I’m starting sharp as a knife,” singer Kayvon Zand warned me. I arrived uncharacteristically early but was glad—Zand was smokin’.A blend of Elvis and Ziggy Stardust, he wore black latex pants, a black vest made of belted straps, a huge collar and a pompadour so well done, it’d make Little Richard cry. His band, including blond bombshell Anna Evans, was all eye candy, too. Ready to kill some pain, I hobbled over to the so-called VIP area near a bottle of vodka doled out by host Herra*C. A man
with an electric blue shock wig, clown makeup and silver stars over his eyes sat down and embraced me. "Hello, dahling!" It was Deryck Todd, one of the hosts of the night. A fashion designer, he looks completely different depending on his costume du jour.
Looking for some holiday cheer, I greeted DJ Michael T and got a frown in return, but I suppose it was one of those nights. Theo Kogan co-produced the party, but wearing a mask, so the former Lunachicks frontwoman was hard to spot.Worst of all, I missed the X- rated fun by leaving at 2:45 a.m. Shortly after 3 a.m., T-Boy, Dirty Martini, Julie Atlas Muz and Peppermint performed. Unlike most boring contests, this stripping contest required taking it all off down to the panties or jockstraps and then going totally naked.
When I emerged from Don Hills, taxis were almost non-existent. Amid the snowflakes, I spotted one and limped toward it desperately in the dark. A 20-something guy was already opening the door.“No! It’s mine!” My luck was turning because he offered to share.The trip up the FDR was convivial and I told him about my night. An investment banker from Memphis, he’d had a so-so evening at a house party.When we reached my block, I was sad to say goodbye. “You have good energy,” he told me, smiling as we shook hands. Even the taxi driver, eavesdropping on our conversation, was suddenly in a good mood. Happy New Year? Maybe.