I’ve had a cappuccino and a half by the time Phil Oh, forty minutes late, finally locates my favorite little brunch joint in a labyrinth of alleys on the Lower East Side, but his level of energy still kicks the shit out of mine. Rosy-cheeked, with a tousle of precisely mussed hair, a gravelly layer of party-boy stubble, and slick geek-chic glasses, he explodes into the restaurant, sheds layers of beautifully made, artistic clothes that anyone less confident would look like a total arse wearing, and apologizes profusely. Don’t sweat it, I tell him; I’m perpetually late, and rather needed to bond with my cappuccini.
“I just got back from Fashion Week in Paris,” he breathes, breathlessly. “And Berlin. It was crazy. This was the first time I had a press pass, too, so I didn’t have to be all” (here he slits his eyes, preens his voice, and hams it up) “Ah, hel-lo! I am ah-ssistant to fehmous Japanese phot-hoh-grapher! We leave pass at hoh-tel! Ai-yah!”
The man has clearly resorted to such tricks before, and has his schtick down. I like him already.