It’s summer! And that means on Fridays, everyone should be sneaking out of work a little bit early to go on a weekend jaunt or grab a drink on a sunny rooftop. The fashion industry, which works very hard, also knows a thing or two about how to cut loose. In our weekly Summer Friday column, we catch up with industry insiders to find out what they do, where they go, and what they bring with them when they escape the daily grind. Last week we went on vacation with supermodel/actress Tao Okamoto. This week we go on vacation with Esquire’s senior fashion editor, Wendell Brown.
When Esquire‘s Wendell Brown is not busy on photo shoots or hand-picking the next “it” items, he’s jet-setting all over the world–swim trunks in tow. From getting into an all-out brawl in Istanbul, to risking his life by climbing up a mountain while skiers were zooming past, Brown regales us with his travel tales. He’s obviously not one for modesty…and we’re not complaining.
How do you pack for vacation?
Very methodically. I love weekend bags and I have a ton, so once I choose which bag I’m bringing I’m almost done. I have a perfect system because I travel for work constantly. Always the same order: pants, shirts, underwear, swim, shades only folded in half and stacked perfectly, iPad in between. Then toiletries and toothbrush is last.
Is it OK to look like a tourist on vacation?
I think if you do, you probably didn’t plan to on purpose. I think it’s more important not to look like a slob. That’s basically the new version of looking like a tourist. Enough with the flip flops everywhere.
What’s the most daring thing you’ve ever done abroad?
In Zermatt, I walked up the Matterhorn while skiers whisked by me. It was actually scary as hell and totally foolish of me, but we had a laugh.
What’s the greatest mishap that has ever happened to you on vacation?
I got into a fight with a Muslim extremist in Istanbul, but the whole thing was a misunderstanding. He thought I was hitting on his wife–AS IF.
What’s one moment you’ll never forget?
I have seen quite a few amazing things, but these stand out in my mind: the Australian outback, the architecture at Fire Island Pines and the James Bond exhibit at the Barbican Centre in London while I was there for the Olympics. I nerded out.
Who is the one person you always travel with?
My bestie, we like all the same things and he is a super organized traveling companion who thinks of everything.
What’s your favorite purchase while on vacay?
I tend to never buy anything because I usually regret it or never use it, but I love to pick up little silly things to make my friends laugh.
What’s the sexiest thing about summer?
Everyone is showing skin.
What’s your new song of the summer?
“Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke always gets the party going. I also usually re-discover a few old songs. Right now they are “Blind” by Hercules and Love Affair, and “Get Loose” by Evelyn “Champagne” King.
What are your packing essentials?
My iPod that has my awesome Erykah Badu playlist, Bose headphones are a great way to shut down a chatty seat mate on a plane, and the latest issue of National Geographic. I’ve been traveling with them since I was 11. I always pack my Charlie by Matthew Zink sweatshirt for when they blast the A/C on the train or plane (777′s are like meat lockers), at least two bathing suits, one for the pool and another for the beach, and finally, Cliff bars. I live in a constant state of hunger.