Thursday, August 09, 2001

A Melting Pot of a Different Sort

Hairdos weren't the only thing to flop in the city heat this week. The New York eComm Summer Reception had all the makings of a fabulous fete except for the faulty cooling system. Over 300 people RSVPed for the event held at St. Bart's, but the crowds were dismayed to find out that the AC units were as antiquated as the building itself. Before retreating to more refrigerated quarters, I first caught up with eComm president Bob Johnston who was chatting with Geoff Judge, 24/7 Media's senior VP of national sales, on the outside terrace. As convection breezes whipped around us, Johnston told me that has been happy with the amount of people coming out to network at events, despite the clouds of despondency over the industry. Indeed, a whole crew of top managers from were having a good time despite the heat and high-temperatures. Jeff Cutler, the GM, told me that this Friday would be his last day at the company, which has cut staff from 200+ to 16 in recent months. Helping him celebrate his final countdown days were other folks such as Howard Fishman, Gary Lazarus, Robert Garcia and Rick Pretsfelder. The bartenders were working in overdrive serving up cocktails to keep the crowds cool, but alas, by 7:30 most abandoned hopes of rallying against the heat and fled for frosty shelter elsewhere.