Rain, Gangsters, Madonna, and other Provincetown Influences

The show must go on.

Greetings from Northampton, Massachusetts, land of coffee and juice drinks and giant oak trees and rivers and that other tree that no one can tell me anything about but it’s scabby little blossoms bloom only at night and smell like the most lovely thing that has ever wafted up your nose, with the exception, perhaps, of your beloved’s skin after she has worked up a sweat being perverse with you. It smells that good. Also, there is currently sun in Western Massachusetts, unlike on the tip of Cape Cod where I recently lounged in nothing but pouring rain and a Portland, Oregon-like lack of bright skies that had me teetering on the tip of some vacation doldrums. But as the excellent designer Norma Kamali models for us in the photo above, the show must go on. Norma didn’t let some showers wash away her fashion show in the streets of New York City, and I didn’t let Mother Nature crap all over my travels! Read on for a blog full of fashion inspirations gleaned from a stormy stay in New England’s Portuguese/Homosexual mecca.


Not only did I forget to pack my beloved nautical-striped J Crew umbrella, I forgot to pack any umbrella whatsoever! I would have loved to clutch this edgy, Dutch-designed parapluie from Senz whilst tripping about the damp cobblestones of Ptown.

Once I endured the luxurious mishap of being on a vacation in the South of France with an unsuitable partner. Having scant vices at my disposal with which to express my misery I chose smoking Marlboros and buying things I couldn’t quite afford, like an Isabel Marant sweater. I do wish I had pushed my angst a little further and left the country with this perfect yellow raincoat from Le Petit Bateau. I think of it whenever it rains, and so I think of it often, and was especially haunted by its specialness while skulking soggily down Commercial Street.

Gangsta rap

It was interesting to be in New England when the Feds caught the legendary Boston gangster Whitey Bulger living as some incognito elderly beachbunny down in Santa Monica. Fellow Irish New Englander Eileen Myles mentioned to me that back in the day the crook used to be quite a looker. A simple Google proved this to be so! Society was so much more polite back in the day, allowing hardened criminals to take their mug shots while wearing giant criminal fedoras and what looks like a Pendleton x Opening Ceremony wool coat.

Let’s update Whitey’s olde tyme gangster style with the help of Lanvin, shall we? Sweet and tender hooligans.

If I had a millionaire gangster boyfriend who was on the run and forced me to prove my love by ditching m identity running away with him to some isolated beach town, this is what I would look like.

And this is what I would look like while hanging out with other wealthy on-the-lam gangster girlfriends getting our hair done so we could look the way I look in that last picture.

I was also in Provincetown – in a shamefully deserted lesbian bar – when I learned that gays can now marrying in the state of New York! This made me wonder, should I ever get gay married whether I would walk down the aisle in Alexander McQueen –

…..Or Viktor & Rolf?

I know I’ve blogged about these V & R gowns before, but I just can’t post about gay weddings and not make you look at them again.

While dancing in gay video bars, I saw much Madonna,

Lady Gaga,

….and Rihanna.

I also watched what felt like four hours of Real Housewives, but it was actually only one single hour. Those tacky, petty, mentally ill females suck all the glamour out of being a kept woman! I had to replenish my psyche with these images so as not to have my fantasies ruined:

Ooops don't vacuum the baby!

Dishes so clean you can do your makeup by them.

Relaxation lifestyle

How long do I have to keep that child locked in a closet before it stops screaming?

A stove so clean you can light your cigarettes off it.

And finally, I saw the Portuguese parade dancing down Commercial street, making me realize I know nothing about the gorgeous folk dress of this nation, which felt like a cross between South America and Poland! The menwore Amish hats and danced like dandies, and the ladies wore lots of red, with fringey turban made of scarves on their heads! There were accordions and little snappy finger clackers and lots of spinning. I leave you with some looks ripe for interpretation.

The End.


About Michelle Tea

I chanted "I am a fashion magnet" in the shower and subsequently found a Gianni Versace - era Versace skirt at Buffalo Exchange for $17. Once I got a beyond-my-means Fendi purse for free and sat staring at it, crying. Also cried at Olivier Theyskens' last show for Nina Ricci in Paris. Other things that make me cry: a good lip synch; my emotions. I have stolen two Jeremy Scott swag items from two Jeremy Scott events I was not quite invited to. Sometimes I want to age into Patti Smith, sometimes Baby Jane Hudson. I frequently dream I am in a magic thrift store where I can have whatever I want. I regret not buying the Alexander Wang purse when it was half price at Barney's. Like a delusional guy at a strip club, I feel special when the people who work at Barney's remember me. Having a Leo rising gives me big hair and a need for attention. My favorite designers right now are Alexander Wang, Philip Lim, Proenza Schouler, Vivienne Westwood, Viktor Rolf, Rick Owens, Rodarte, Helmut Lang and Surface to Air. I was once shamed by an employee of a high-end department store for pronouncing 'Rodarte' incorrectly.


  1. Michael von Braithwaite

    For reasons I can’t quite explain, McBee and I high fived multiple times throughout reading this post together. Your successes are everyone’s successes, Michelle!

  2. Dori Midnight

    That would be the Linden Tree, also a favorite of Marcel Proust, ps.

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