NYC <$20 a pair: Dumpster Diving on the Upper West Side
|Score! (As we say downunder)|
What's cheaper and choosier than finding a rococo chaise at the Salvos? Pouncing on a pair of apple green boudoir chairs turfed out with the trash!
It was precisely the good fortune of fellow Aussie Sarhys Page and me after emerging from a Cheap'n'Choosy night at the Hudson Hotel.
The hipper than thou Hudson - recently tarted up by Philippe Starck - turns hotel design on its head, with a pair of escalators bathed in a yellow light as the "stark" entrance, leading up to an impossibly dark lobby dominated by a dangerously low hanging mega-chandelier. (I need to publicly berate Mr Stark for placing mirrors in the ladies' restroom too high for anyone under 5-foot nothing).
On this night I was carousing with the first person to give me a break in advertising Downunder, John Doorley, and budding Aussie actress Sarhys (pronounced Sar-reece). We were partly celebrating being legends in our own lunchtime, having been featured in the same issue of Aussie coffee-table interviewjournal, Dumbo Feather.
(Click here to see the piece about yours truly in Dumbo Feather).
We stumbled out stone cold sober as you do on a C'n'C binge, to spot this pair of ornate chairs perched on the pavement beside a pile of garbage bags.
"Oooooh, they'll match my kitchen perfectly!" squealed Sarhys. We hoisted them on our shoulders and made for the subway, getting all kinds of attention from bemused security guards and bystanders.
"You know you want 'em, getcha hairy eyeball off 'em!" yelled Sarhys over her shoulder.
On riding them down the escalators (see the video) we enjoyed even more leatherette envy.
"Ooooh, they'll match my kitchen perfectly!" squealed a woman to her friend. "I'll give you 30 bucks each for them!"
"Twenty bucks each," hissed a black gentleman lurking beside a post.
"Not enough!" shouted Sarhys.
"Tell him fifty!" advised another woman.
On the train we had the best "seats" in the carriage. I offered my seat to a fur-trimmed matron with pursed lips who pursed them even tighter and looked the other way.
I left Sarhys to get them all the way to Bushwick in Brooklyn, where they now adorn her kitchenette.
Update 2012: I knew her before she was a star! Sarhys plays feisty waitress in a new Melbourne web series, 6 SEEDS