So around 11:35 PM I was standing in front of the Slick It Up area, thinking that I should have brought my SLR camera, and trying to decide whether or not to go upstairs to the less crowded bar to get some more Perrier, when someone taps me on the shoulder and says “Hey Sue!” It was Dave Mason, but I never would have recognized him in his full black SIU suit and hood, though I had already figured that he would be garbed so that I would not recognize him. Then he said “Look it’s François!” And there was François Sagat! I never would have recognized in his winter jacket! [Too many clothes! LOL!] François said “Finally we meet! What has been, 3 years?” I answered that I thought so. They were in a hurry to get ready, but Dave real quick passed me a paper wristband so that I could get into the back dressing area when I wanted to. Then they rushed off. I went upstairs, got my Perrier, and joined them in the dressing area.
Dave was running around like a madman in what one of his models called controlled chaos. François came over and we began to talk. We talked briefly about NYC and I told him that though I am a native it is a nice place to visit, but I preferred the cities in Europe. After a short discussion of European cities, we both agreed the best destination city in the world is Rome because of the architecture, food and art. Then we began to talk about our mutual friend Cristiano and how he was always traveling and too busy to see anymore. François mentioned that he did connect with Cristiano for a few days recently and I said that Cristiano’s passport must be a tome! But fans who wanted a photo with Sagat kept interrupting our conversation and I decided it was better to let him work, so I faded to the background and just took photos. I sure hope I get to see François again when he is not working! I would like to talk about his art and his movie!
My first photo is of one of the SIU models who is wearing Gladiator Pants and of course François is wearing a pink and sparkly Shredder Suit with a matching hood examining a photo they just took.
The next photo is of a young SIU model in his best “wannabe” porn star look. LOL! He is wearing the lederhosen. François assured me that is was the only real porn star there and that all others should be strongly dissuaded.
I just loved this tall, cool gal. Biding her time before the shoot by relaxing in a chair. She looks great!
Before we went out for the first set of poses, Sagat came and stood before me, as if for final instructions. I said to him “Are you focused?” He just looked at me uncomprehendingly. But of course he was. He has done this millions of times! I should have known.
In the first group shot, you can see that there is too much black for my puny camera flash to deal with. Anyhow, I am sure you can pick out Sagat, and to his immediate left, in the fancy headress with his leg in the air is Dave. The guy dressed as a baseball batter is from Bulgaria and came up to me and told me that this is all new to him, since Halloween is not celebrated there. He seemed thrilled to be in America.
In these group shots, François and Dave just moved from pose to pose, and everybody else did whatever. I really suffered having the wrong camera and missed many shots. Actually only two were decent.
Then they broke for refreshments, which I also photographed. Sagat could not wait to get out of the hot Shredder Suit. It only has one zipper that goes the entire length, so it comes off very quickly. One shot is of Sagat bending over to get out of the suit and the other is of him sitting back down. Dave passed around drinks; it was vodka and orange juice. He offered me one, but I said no thanks, I cannot drink alcohol. Boo hoo.
Then, with their drinks, they resumed posing! I like the next shot where Dave has his arm around Sagat and Sagat is reaching to pet the man dressed as a cat.
Then someone told a joke and everybody laughed; that made a great shot too!
The next shot I like because Sagat is making a connection with the tall gal. It lights up the entire shot and makes it into something special.
The next three shots are of Sagat and a man dressed up as a poodle. In the first shot, Sagat fucks the poodle doggy style. In the next he admires it and in the final shot he is kissing the poodle. The poodle was an Asian man and there was stray poodle fur all over the dressing room! Sagat has a poodle obsession.
After everybody left, but Sagat kept on posing. The red mark on his arm is blood. He was scratched during the shoot. Even though he is already a star, he is still hungry. This is only a party for a pal, but he is working HARD. The ultimate professional, who knows his business cold. That is the François Sagat I met. He is also compelling, smart and a real character. I would love to get to know him better.
The models returned to the dressing room and Sagat and Dave returned to Sagat’s room at the hotel to don their next looks. Then the ladies had their turn in the SIU area. I took this picture of one I had been talking to in the dressing area. I joked that wouldn’t be doing much typing with those fingers. But look how fabulous her make-up is! Those were tiny white blobs on her fake eyelashes.
Then Sagat came out with his next look on and it was the jewel encrusted gold armor thing with spikes on it! They had to walk him from the dressing area to the stage, which was quite a walk through a very dense crowd. I decided to help, as they only had one person to guide him there. So, I followed him behind and pushed people aside when needed. But then I was thinking, why am I taking these spikes in me, when they are made for this??? Once there, I told him what I had done; I think he was grateful. I asked him if his costume was heavy. He said that it was a bit heavy, but not that much for him. Then he got on stage and put his ass right in front of my camera! He did not move it for the longest time and so I took a photo of it! What was I supposed to do? I know it looks really big, but it is not at all big. Actually when I first met him, his back was to me and it looked really small and tight. Two tight little loaves!
Then he turned and his eyes were closed. I don’t know if he was feeling the energy from the crowd and drinking it in, but it was definitely a moment in time to be there. They were announcing his name at the time and he was waiting for it.
In the next shot, he just raised his fist into the air and it was magic! I am so glad I got this shot! The armor is astoundingly beautiful, isn’t it?
This devil lady kept turning too quickly and I couldn’t get a shot of her face. At least I got her wonderful nails. I had to help her fetch her black lipstick out of her bag though, since her nails were just impossible!
I headed back to the dressing room only to hear that the FDNY was shutting the party down because it was too crowded!!! It was only 2 AM! Fuck! I decided to wait for Dave and François to say thanks and goodbye. I peeked outside and the exits were jammed with people leaving. That was a scene I did not want to join. After about 15 minutes, Dave walked in. He told me that François had already gone back up to his room when I told him that I wanted to say goodbye. But I asked for a picture with Dave.
Finally, a shot of me with Dave Mason, whom I cannot thank enough for being such a gracious host even though he was crazy busy. He was always checking to make sure I was okay and had what I needed. So nice! I sure hope I get to see you again Dave when you are not putting on a show or crazy busy with something. I had a super time at the party!!!
THANKS SO MUCH!