Anyone who made it out to the American Apparel Flea Market event last Sunday knows what I'm talkin' about when I say it was post-apocalyptic insanity- a flurry of t-shirts, tube socks, hoodies, tees, halter dresses and (the highly coveted) metallic disco dancewear….lines, lines and then more lines… too loud music.
But first, you had to get in. The main line snaked throughout the factory's gigantic parking lot, and when I got there -around 2 pm- the security at the gate told me it'd be at least a 2 hour wait.
Stand in line for two hours… for t-shirts? Yeah right. Still, I was there as much for the atmosphere as the deals. I decided to get out of my car and check out the scene, even if I never made it inside the promise-land.
As I zigged and zagged along it, it was just cool kid after cool kid anxiously punching their cellphones as they waited, looking so miserable. At least it was a beautiful day (check out the ultra-blue skies in my pics).
Shockingly this crew (below) were actually in pretty good spirits. They told me they had been there for 2 1/2 hours!
When I got to the end of the line, who did I see but AA's head honcho Dov Charney with his little dog “Headcase.”
“I'm embarrassed,” he said, when I asked what he thought of the turnout and endless wait time. “I had nothing to do with this. My staff put it together. Next time we'll be more prepared and organized.”
Naughty ads and bad press aside, I actually found Charney to be charming and humble.
He posed for pics (no provocative AA-style poses though) with some shaggy dudes and this Cobrasnake-lookin kid.
The guy had on an ugly Dayglo windbreaker which Dov loved, so he gave it to him off his back. He may as well have said “open sesame.” Dov directed one of his employees to let the kid and his posse have VIP entry through the exit into the sale, and we sneakily tagged along.
I was in. But it would end up being 2 hours anyway before I left with my purchases.
It was quite a sight: mounds and mounds of cotton crap (okay, there was a lot of cute stuff too… it just looked like crap the way it was piled on the ground) flying and flinging about as rabid hipsters pilfered and horded. No fights broke out, but some gals were a bit too aggressive for my tastes, especially when it came to those damn metallic leggings.
Then, ya had to deal with the lines to pay for the stuff. That's when I really realized what Dov meant about organization. Instead of paying for all purchases at one cashier, there was a line for each section, which meant if you picked out an assortment of styles, you waited in at least 4 different lines. Ugh!
I left with a couple hoodies, sweatpants, a dress that I've never seen online or in their stores and some baby onesies (including a couple of organic cotton ones)- all for under 50 bucks.
I put back some gold leggings so I wouldn't have to wait in another line. Metallics might be hot, but they aint worth that kinda hell.