I first met Nerissa when I was an assistant A&E editor at the UCLA Daily Bruin and she was a new writer. She was also in one of my American lit classes, which should have been a tipoff that we had a lot in common. But her clothes were so cute and trendy that I decided she must be a sorority girl. I believed sorority girls and publicists were at the worst end of the respectability spectrum (at the top: Stephen Sondheim, my gay RA, my radicalized American lit professor).
But soon Nerissa and I were making study dates to work on our senior theses (these took the form of eating chocolate cake at Anastasia’s Asylum and complaining) and doing a lot of shopping on Melrose. She gravitated toward size two outfits suitable for hip hop clubs. I gravitated toward clothes that the chorus of homeless people in Rent might wear. On Melrose, both were widely available. Once our friend Stan came with us and convinced some trashy shop to give us a big discount. I can’t remember what his hustle was, just that it involved him and Nerissa being married, which struck us all as hilarious. We were 21! Stan was possibly gay though he never said so!
Then we graduated and Nerissa went to Berkeley for journalism school and started writing about fashion for all sorts of fabulous publications. I went on to dress ever so slightly less like a homeless person. But I could still use some help, which is where Nerissa’s new blog, Nerissa’s Notebook, comes in. It’s a blog by a real journalist, with interviews and correct spelling and everything. And there are clothes. Check it out.