By Ray Stern
By New Times
By Amy Silverman
By Stephen Lemons
By Stephen Lemons
By Monica Alonzo
By Chris Parker
By New Times
Like Tara Reid getting a new rack or Cynthia Nixon deciding to bat for the home team, it's a time of transition for Inferno, y'all. First off, Implants cartoonist Elaine Bell fled Phoenix for Manhattan a couple of weeks ago, where, from this point on, she'll be seeking her fortune working for the family's lucrative import/export biz. So, as some of you brainiacs have already figured out, the last Implants cartoon ("Wham-Bam, Amsterdam, Ma'am," November 4) really was the last Implants 'toon.
We wish Bell the best at trying her hand at a real job for a change. Her sextuplet of illustrated ta-tas will be sorely missed.
But before all you pervs out there start poppin' fistfuls of Paxil, be easy, greasy. Kreme's got a consolation prize for yo' ass. Seems Jett, formerly the L-word Dita Von Teese, woke up one day and decided she's one of them thar ambisexuals. Oh, she still enjoys deep-sea diving with the gals. It's just that some lucky fella has turned her on to the pleasures of swordfishing.
"Kreme, you'll never believe it," relates the Omni-Oriented One, as we head from the parking lot to SMoCA (the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art), where we're scheduled to cover its fall shindig. "I was at this co-ed pajama party the other night, and everyone was hookin' up. There was this boy there as pretty as Jude Law. I mean, prettier than a girl. Well, we were sippin' some Moet, and ended up in the bedroom alone. One thing led to another, and before I knew it, we were getting buck wild!"
"Jesus H. Christ on a crutch!" I cry. "I thought the idea of taking the stick made you wanna hurl!"
"It did," replies the Jettster, emphasizing the past tense. "But he was so good at it, I'm making an exception from now on for pretty boys with extra-longs. After all, it seems kinda prejudiced to exclude one-half of the human race from your bed. Better to have more options than less."
"Keep it in your pants, Kreme," says Jett, putting her hand up. "You ain't Jude Law-pretty, bro. And I ain't smokin' no fatties."
Sigh. Seems like I'll never be graduating into the Jett patrol. Good thing SMoCA Nights is a drinking event, with two cash bars serving a crowd of several hundred coolios who're here to rub elbows and just about anything else they can get near. The whole idea at these things is to get hipsters inside to peep the art with the help of a fashion show, DJ, rock band, tarot card reader and just about anything else they can come up with to ease the pain.
Actually, SMoCA puts on an impressive par-tay, and I'm wowed by the art, which is as good as anything you'd see at, say, La-la Land's MOCA. Of the four exhibitions SMoCA's got on display, Brad Kahlhamer's watercolors of skulls, eagles, Indians and Zona landscapes are off the chain. I was also feelin' the Samuel Mockbee installations, one of a "room" made of straw bales and another of a motley collection of different-colored yarns. That's some freaky Hee Haw-type shit, yo.
After the switch-hittin' Sarah Jessica Parker and I grab some drinks and tour the art, we bump into Nicole Emmert, 19, an aspiring fashion designer at Mesa Community College, and her boyfriend Michael Donnelly, 21, a poli-sci student at Arizona State University. As the election is recently behind us, I can't help but wonder if Donnelly's been in mourning or celebrating, considering his major.
"I've been celebrating for about 40 hours in a row now," replies the spiky-haired, goatee-sportin' Bush lover.
"That's nutty, you don't looklike a Republican," I say. "I expect them to be all prim and proper. Maybe you're more open-minded than your compadres."
"I'm an intelligent Bush guy," smiles Donnelly the non-Dem.
"There's no such thing," interjects the Jettster.
"Now, now," I say, wagging my finger. "We have to reach out to the other side, like the president said."
"Yeah, he also said he wants to cut the deficit in half, then asks for a bunch more money," growls the J-grrrl, getting all righteous.
"Hey, my taxes got cut last time 'round," Donnelly says, shrugging.
"That deficit stuff's all funny money," I say. "And Jett, is that any way to talk to a patriot who'll soon be buying that one-way ticket to Baghdad? I mean, since you voted for Bush, and since you're the right age, you should join up and defend this great country from the terrorists in Eye-rack."
"When I get out of college, I want to either teach high school government or high school political science," he opines, nervously.
"Heh-heh, that's a good one, Mike," I chuckle. "Unless it's an Iraqi high school. But don't worry, if you come home in a casket, at least your 'rents will know that you died bringing democracy to the Middle East."
About then, the Jettster and I hear some commotion coming from the big gallery where they'll be having the fashion show in a bit. So we fight the crowd to get in. There we see a troupe of men and women in flared white pants and white tees giving a demonstration of capoeira, an Afro-Brazilian combination of martial arts, dance and music. About a dozen or so members of Arizona's Capoeira Brasil (www.capoeiraarizona.com) are playing funky, percussive instruments, while others perform their graceful, powerful moves before us. Normally, this kind of thing might bore the crap out of me. But as just about all of the capoeiristas (male and female) are hotties, neither bisexual Jett nor I can peel our eyes off their bods.
We attempt to interview some of them, but as one capoeirista, Angelique Marquand, tells us, they're off to another demo right after this, so they have no time. Still, the toned, curvaceous Marquand performs a handstand for our camera before she runs off after the rest of her crew.
Time for another drink. So I hit the bar, after which I turn my head and see that Jett's exploring her newfound interest in boy toys with three eligible bachelors nearby. These are Simul Parikh, Kenon Ronz and Jiger Shah, all in their 20s. Come to find out, Parikh's soon to be a doctor, Ronz plays minor league baseball, and Shah works for a medical consulting company. All three are fairly fly guys, and Jett's making googly eyes at them as I approach.
"So, Simul, think you'll be able to cure what ails me?" asks the now het-frisky Jett.
"I don't think you'll want to come to me," says Parikh, oblivious to Jett's advances. "I'm going to be an oncologist, which means I specialize in tumors. I'm not a doctor yet, but I should be in a few months."
"Have you been to these SMoCA events before?" I ask Simul, before Jett rapes the guy.
"I've been here a few times," he says, sipping a Merlot. "I like it. It's kind of East Coast-ish. Very non-Scottsdaley."
"Who gets the most chicks," I wonder, "baseball players or doctors?"
"Not this doctor," laughs Parikh. "None, in fact."
"How do you know these guys?" inquires Jett of Ronz.
"I'm friends with Jiger, and I just met Simul tonight," he answers, nursing his rum and Coke. "This is a cool event. I just wish I could take my drink in to where the art is. I'd like to check it out. The security guys won't let us past until we finish them."
"They know you're trouble," I tell him, then turn to Shah. "Hey, Jiger, is this a good place to meet babes?"
"Well, I'm one for one tonight," he smiles, gazing at Jett's exposed midriff in the purple, tasseled getup she's wearing.
"Reminds me of my mom's purse," says Shah of Jett's dress, effectively striking out with her.
"Come on, Kreme, I think this interview is over," pouts the bawdy bi-star, strutting away. I follow her outside so she can enjoy a ciggie. There we get to hear the tail end of a concert by Phoenix rockers the MadCaPs (www.themadcaps.net), who are tearing up the stage before a crowd of about 100. A lot of you may be familiar with the trio from their antics on First Fridays when they ride around downtown in a flatbed truck and give guerrilla performances until the po-po show up.
While Jett's smokin', I'm getting next to two luscious black ladies, Simia Henry and her cousin Bonita Arnold, the owner/designer of Boco, Bonita Clothing Co. (www.bonitaclothingco.com). Arnold's got curves in all the right places, and she boasts a badunkadunk so fine it'd make Oakland rapper Too Short beg.
"You should see my stuff. It'll knock you out," says the bodacious Bonita, who doesn't have anything in this particular show. "It's kinda classy from the front, but a little bit of hoochie from the back."
"Mmm, you know what I like," I say, grinning.
"Yeah, cutie, my fashion is bangin'," she asserts with a wink. "All I got to do is get it on the right person, either Brandy or Oprah."
I wish Bonita the best, and go in search of Jett. But by the time I find her, and we make it through the crowd again, most of the fashion show has flown by. We just get to peep a few standout pieces, such as a revealing white gown by Alma Primero, a graduate of FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising) in L.A., and a wacky circus-themed design called "Cirque de Stompe" by Angela Johnson, Rhonda Zayas, and Brian Tanner of LabelHorde fame (www.labelhorde.com).
"Next time, Jett, spend a little less time scoping dudes, and we might see more of the fashion," I snarl.
"Au contraire, Señor Fatso," says Jett, equally snarky. "We'd get a lot more work done if you'd stop messin' with them black chicks."
"You know, I think I liked you better when you were a lesbian."