Penthouse magazine has moved downtown, next door to the Stock Exchange. So, on Friday night, some beleaguered Wall Street types packed into the back room of Fraunces Tavern to drown their sorrows and ogle the new neighbors. When asked his thoughts on the scene, Richard Torres—a business writer— ran his hand over his shaved head and looked at buxom blond Penthouse Pet Lexi Blade.
She was wearing a miniskirt, unbuttoned men’s dress shirt and lavender tie. “If anything can cheer us up right now it’s a beautiful blonde,”Torres said grinning.
I planted myself on a lumpy couch next to Lexi as she signed autographs for a stream of 9-to-5 schnooks. One nebbish in a button-down plaid shirt passed her his business card. Fluttering her eyelashes, she gushed, “Oh how exciting! I’ll be in touch.”
Are you going to call him? She shook her head violently and mouthed “no.” A gaggle of Russians pushed me toward a thin brunette in flared sweat pants. “My name is Natasha, and I’m from Russia,” she said. “You should really talk to my manager, because my Engleesh is…” Frustrated, she shrugged and pointed to her skinny countryman in a green nylon jacket. I tried to break away, but he blocked me. “Yes, I manage people,” he said with a drunken laugh. “She has a talent; she just needs a little push.” I ran into someone else who saw the Penthouse party as a business opp. Amy, a longlegged aging blonde in fishnets told me, “I’m trying to recruit Natasha…for stripping and parties,” she said.“I don’t strip at a club. I only do champagne rooms and have dinner with people.” And how’s business lately? She looked around. “Down, really down.”