We assume Olympic gold-medal-winning swimmer Ryan Lochte is in town to support his pal Michael Phelps, who is dipping his toe in shark-infested fame waters this weekend by hosting Saturday Night Live. But what we can’t figure out is why we’ve seen him at two shows, Max Azria on Tuesday and Anna Sui on Wednesday night, shows that only involve womenswear — and at Sui, he didn’t even have rumored (well, by us) girlfriend Nastia Liukin by his side. Curious. Maybe the kid just digs the parade of hot skinny chicks marching toward him, but we’d rather imagine that he’s developing a clothing or swimsuit line inspired by his professional waxer — or even trying to become the new Sean Avery and snag an internship with someone who will let him into their shoe closet to grab Nastia some tiny Jimmy Choos. Regardless, Lochte was on great behavior, totally unconcerned about a seating change and all gussied up in a casual suit. A geeked-out fan plopped down for a photo with him just moments before the show began, and their conversation, which seemed accompanied by an effusive thank-you from the teen boy’s parent, stretched enough that security actually had to steer them away. Given the commotion this morning over Lauren Conrad, who is essentially famous for hating her friends’ boyfriends, it’s awesome to see These Kids Today idolizing someone who actually DOES something.
Director Sofia Coppola also showed up to support Sui, alongside regular attendee Vincent Gallo and actress (well, according to IMDb) Monet Mazur, who wore super-dramatic black eye makeup and a coat that might have been patched together from old Elvira wigs and a matted bearskin rug. Across the way, rocker Amy Lee — in what appeared to be a black silky dress with a paisley-gone-aflame pattern all over it — bobbed her head along to the music. This commanded our attention because her hairdo was so crazy: She had configurations on either side of her neck that looked like back-combed, ratted-out pigtails, but also kind of visually evoked the hat Agyness Deyn wore down the runway to close the show: half fez, half camel-saddle, with curtains of tassels on either side. We kind of wanted to ride it through the Pyramids.
But the biggest head-scratcher, for us, happened right as we arrived. See, until this week, we wouldn’t have recognized musician Roisin Murphy if she’d walked up to us wearing a name tag and singing a song entitled “Remember My Name (Which, by the Way, Is Roisin Murphy).” Ergo, it startled us to arrive at the Sui show and notice photographers stopping the lanky blonde Murphy at every step and then snapping her again at her seat — the fuss seemed disproportionate to her current fame level over here. But then we heard several of the lensmen affecting fake Russian accents and saying, “It’s Maria Sharapooooova.” Murphy might find that flattering; Sharapova, on the other hand, may be less thrilled to learn that people thought she was sitting in the front row wearing a bad hat and red paisley tights that, from a distance, made it look like her sunburned legs were peeling energetically. Maybe Maria should try a new hair color, or even go full Posh, to avoid such potentially malignant confusion in the future. At the very least, we expect a press release.