“I’m definitely cooler in my head than I think I am in real life,” says Jake, but no – he is as cool as it gets. A jock in high school with a passion for fashion magazines, Jake hot glued bandanas into the bells of his jeans and tied his grandfather’s scarecrow’s bandana, with the perfect fade and size, on his head with snakeskin boots for his yearbook photo. In addition, his paisley floral tattoo which is the size of his forearm is an homage to his rodeo days in Arkansas. However, what is ultra cool is the honest and hilariously funny theater that goes on in Jake’s head with his detailed and tasteful attire. The silver lamé and shrug moments at the Marquee with two hundred pounds and a self-consciousness of being bald are long gone. Today, he satisfies his junkie-like obsession for avant-garde designers and smokey eyes as if he was being documented moment to moment for his own version of “The September Issue,” without any pretension and entitlement. He will add the detail of a red sock to an all gray outfit and wait for just the right moment to cross his legs. The bomb, but hard to wear, Duckie Brown imposing pom pom hat to a “fashion” party that is strictly in and out quickly for the impression it will make. A crisp Thom Browne khaki trench and luxe “gym” bag with silk Balenciaga harem pants, his “upstanding man look,” is worn to a basketball game that he his is playing in, with the idea of walking into the stadium for the applause from the bleachers.
What makes Jake so adorable and his style monologues so compelling is the combination of his talented mind’s eye with his humility and self-deprecation. Although he wonders, as do I, why Bill Cunningham never shoots him while strolling on 57th Street in Rick Owens, Ann Demeulemeester and Commes des Garçon, he is perfectly happy to have the attention of the street vendor who compliments him and who he now refers business to. In truth, Jake need look no further than the accolades he recieves from his clients. One of his many characters is the “fashion drug dealer, a term coined by our own Karen Robinovitz for the passion with which he fields the fourth floor of Barney’s NY. He is like the palace guard, the director, the interpretor, the dramatic and witty personification of art when it meets commerce.