On Day 1 of New York Fashion Week, writer-in-residence Mike Abu delivers his notes on the vibes and tribes busily preparing the eight floors of Milk Studios to receive the worlds fashion press and industry…

People were rushing all around, taking care of countless last minute tasks in a frenzy. Activity swept the hallways like floodwater, and people only stopped to rest when forced to wait for the elevator. The look on their faces was utter concern, as if a category 5 hurricane was rapidly approaching the studio. It would be an uphill battle to survive.

Prepping for Fashion Week can be summed up in one word—intense. It’s a daunting period of production, a trial with extreme consequences. Stress levels sit at an all-time high. No detail can be overlooked, no imperfection tolerated. Everything has to go right. People have no choice but to push themselves to the limit, working tirelessly against the fear of failure. It’s a scene of great drama, and everyone’s on the edge of their seats.

Well, almost everyone.

I sat there lazily drinking coffee on the couch, watching them work all around me. I wondered if I should order one of those blended green drinks? I wasn’t sure what was in them, probably some vegetables pulped down to juice, but it didn’t really matter, they looked good. Maybe an orange one? I wish they came with mini-umbrellas. Better just stick with coffee.

When it comes to work, I do more than simply write—I’m saddled with the additional job of keeping people calm. It’s a hard job, but I find it very rewarding. Stopping people from crying is a good way to ensure a free drink later. Making some self-deprecating story about how horrible my life is makes people happy, though I’m not exactly sure why. Walking down the hallways giving people high-fives is written
into my job description. I don’t appear lazy because I want to be—it’s because it’s necessary.

The storm is coming. We’re in it together, and we have to keep our wits about us. If that means I’m gonna have to work harder than I’ve ever worked before, so be it. Better get that green drink.

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