A few weeks ago, I got invited to a party for Q&Q watches, a colorful line of watches that run on solar power. Much to my surprise, I had a blast. I swear, it seems like every time I’m reluctant to go to an event, it ends up being so much more fun than the ones I’m really excited about. I came so close to bailing on the Q&Q thing because I was all like “Whoop-dee-do, watches.” Sounds jaded, I know, but time is precious! If I have to decide between going to an industry soirée (that's not crucial for work) or going home and cooking a lovely dinner, I want to make sure I choose wisely. But I had invited my friend Cedric to go with me and I hadn’t seen him in a while, so that’s ultimately what made me take my ass down to Soho for the party.
As soon as I walked in, I was so glad I came. The cocktails were delicious, the music was amazing because Solange Knowles was DJ-ing (this was weeks before Elevatorgate) and best of all, The Bumbys were there! The Bumbys are Gill and Jill and they get hired by companies hosting events to give attendees a “Fair and honest appraisal of your appearance.” I heard about the duo a while ago when my boyfriend Ibra got his appraisal done at a hotel opening he went to for his job. It was so hilarious and so good that I was dying to get it done myself. I got my wish at the Q&Q party! Clearly, it was meant to be.
It works like this: The Bumbys sit at a table wearing disguises and people line up in front of either one. I chose Gill’s line because it was shorter and I have no patience. When it was my turn, he looked at me for about 20 seconds then he started banging away on his typewriter while I stood there grinning in anticipation like the dork I am. The Bumbys wear headphones while they work and they do not utter a single word (it’s all very Daft Punk). After less than 5 minutes of thinking and typing, Gill handed me my assessment and it was DEAD ON.
No matter how much of a frazzled train-wreck I feel on the inside, people always perceive me as being calm and on top of my shit. I’m the one people lean on in times of crisis and it’s been this way since I was a teenager. It’s crazy that Gill picked up on my rep as being reliable so quickly. I would love to know their secret –- it’s a mix of razor sharp intuition and…what?? HOW DO YOU DO IT, BUMBYS?
I got such a kick out of the experience that I asked The Bumbys to dish out appearance appraisals to the xoJane staff and they generously obliged. Gill and Jill weren’t able to come into the office to size up the crew in person, so I sent them pics. And still, they nailed it!
We all agreed that these assessments are eerily accurate. And funny! Gill and Jill have a gift -- a highly amusing one -- and I'm glad they're sharing it with the world. Or at least New York scenesters.
Seriously though, how fascinating are these appraisals? It’s one thing to know that the world is getting an impression of who you are from your clothes, hair or even your makeup, but it’s a trip to actually find out what a total stranger thinks of you based on that stuff. And weirder still to have their snap judgement be so right. There's so much good people watching in this city that I wonder how The Bumbys turn it off. Like are they ever tempted to hand out unsolicited appraisals on the subway? I guess if they did that, their cover would be blown so maybe not. But it tickles me to think about that.
Have you ever had a friend or someone admit what they thought of you when they first met you based on how you look? Were they right or way off the mark? What do you think The Bumbys would say about you?