I was walking up First Avenue in the East Village where I live when I saw this super-butch girl at 12th Street who looked like she’d been through some hard times and clearly didn’t have much money. But what she had, she wore well: a clean wife-beater, old but ironed roll-up jeans, hair pulled back in a good bun.

She made me think of the kind of brave kids you see at Safe Horizon. This corner was desolate for some reason. She had an MP3 player’s ear buds in her ears and she was singing Gaga’s love letter to Alexander McQueen, “Fashion of His Love”, real loud, and she did not give a half fuck who cared.