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Fashion People at Risk for Fashion Flu at Fashion Week

The people that make up the fashion industry in New York may have quite a few advantages over the average chump, but bodily invincibility is not one of them.

Today The New York Times published an extensive report on how fashion is coping with the Worst Flu Season Ever in anticipation of NYFW, that cruel mistress.

(I don't want to joke too hard because this winter's been a tough one: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that there have been so many flu-related deaths this season, we can go ahead and call it an epidemic.)

Prospective showgoers can expect a lower-than-usual rate of air kissing (as Dr. Barry Cohen, who works across the street from the Marc Jacobs office on Spring Street, explains: “Fashion people touch each other all day, so they get exposed over and over.") and a higher-than-usual rate of icy mistrust.

Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra of Costello Tagliapietra said they heard of one major designer who forced his runway producer to spend the week working in a closet: “She was humiliated, but wasn’t going to let that get in the way of getting paid.”

Meanwhile, Marie Claire editor and Project Runway judge Nina Garcia is warding off the cold with the help of a black cashmere Hermès scarf, which she WEARS AROUND HER MOUTH: “I try not to breath anybody else’s air,” she says, as if this were a perfectly reasonable position. At least her mouth-scarf is by Hermès: The rich do crazy with so much more style than the rest of us. 

Other things people are doing to ward off illness:

  • Trying to build up their immune systems with a diet of exclusively raw greens. Dr. Robert Glatter tells the Times he had the privilege of treating one fashionista after she got diarrhea from eating too much kale. 
  • Cynthia Rowley has been draining her bank account staying healthy by "chugging" $10 seventeen-ounce bottles of juice from Juice Press. 
  • Rachel Zoe lives in deathly fear of doorknobs. But that doesn't really surprise me; if I were her, I'd be scared of doorknobs too. 

Simon Doonan's perspective on the whole flu fiasco seems to actually be sensible: “Stay home and watch the shows [online]. Thinking you need to be there even if you’re communicating the flu is demented.” 

Yes. "Demented" is such a useful word.