What Tara Reid Can Teach You About Happiness – At the Ashley Paige Bikini Factory

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I had ventured out of safety of the Miracle Mile to attend “An Evening of Art Featuring the Work of Johnny OttoAnnie Preece & Yuri Sountsov” at the Ashley Paige Bikini Factory with my stunning and hilarious friend Ginger Pullman.

Tony DeNiro, Ashley Paige, Tara Reid, and Annie Preece at the Ashley Paige Bikini Factory.

Tony DeNiro, Ashley Paige, Tara Reid, and Annie Preece at the Ashley Paige Bikini Factory.

The event showcased paintings, photography, and swimwear, and drew those in the art, film, fashion and music industries, including the aforementioned Tara Reid, record producer and Pheed co-founder Tony DeNiro, and celebrity blogger Gary Sun. It was L.A.’s unique combination of kitsch and art, hipster and sophistication, that makes this town so compelling, electric, and stylistically schizophrenic at times. Though Tara Reid was very sweet, I got the distinct impression she was under the influence and rather troubled.

Tara Reid and Pheed co-founder Tony DeNiro.

Tara Reid and Pheed co-founder Tony DeNiro.

The event would have downright perfect if not for the rather disturbing course of events that night  (completely independent of the gracious hosts and artists!), facilitated by what I like to affectionately call Hollywood Creeper Scum.


And no, I’m not referring to green gook stuck to the bottom of Hollywood sewers or the like (although this certainly would be an apt metaphor); no, rather, I’m referring to the shysters who run at the very bottom of Hollywood circles, desperately trying to convince the world (but mostly themselves) that they’re big Hollywood players. After all, a Hollywood event wouldn’t be a Hollywood event without some chauvinistic weirdo trying to rile things up, now would it?

Not this Hollywood Creeper Scum!

Not this Hollywood Creeper Scum!


I happened to bump into just this kind of person, this kind of person who is in such abundance in our society, and he started talking real big Hollywood game and what big-shot he is. About what you have to do to make it in Hollywood, and all of his dazzling successes in H-town (hint: nada).


At some point, he asks if I have a boyfriend. I say yes. As expected, this doesn’t sit well with him. “No, you can’t have a boyfriend,” he slyly says,  “You have to be free for opportunities and connections that might arise.”


Um, what?


I’m sorry. I was under the impression that we were talking about acting, but clearly I was wrong, as this conversation seems to be more about prostitution. Charmed, I’m sure, but I’ll pass this ride on the merry-go-round.
Creepy carousel from "The Crush" with Alicia Silverstone.

Creepy carousel from “The Crush” with Alicia Silverstone.


He rambled on half-drunkenly quite a bit longer about the merits of making oneself available for these “opportunities.” Finally, he gave me his card. “Call me” he said. “Mebbe we can work something out,” he said.  “Get together and talk business in the hot-tub,” he said.


Ah, yes… ever since I was a little girl, I always dreamed of hatching Hollywood-domination plans in a hot-tub with a guy who wants to pimp me out on “auditions.” NOT.



UGH. I could have just puked. You know how sometimes you meet people and you feel like you need to take a shower after meeting them? After this guy, I wanted to scrub myself with hot water and lysol.


My heart goes out to Tara Reid. People like to deride her for her train wreck behavior, but I am sure she has stories she could tell if only she dared. You don’t show up intoxicated to art shows at the after the age of about 21 if you’re not battling some serious demons! After all, constantly being around people who make you want to bathe in lysol after meeting them certainly doesn’t help.


It’s so sad and it makes me so mad that there are so many predators who apparently skipped down when the empathy chip was given out, and think nothing of deceiving and/or using naive young hopefuls – male or female.


I don’t know Tara Reid’s life story, but I can guarantee she’s had her fair share of creeps and traumatic situations. She felt she had to concede, or she simply couldn’t deal with it in the long run. And now she’s the one who is getting publicly ridiculed and laughed at because her scars are too big to hide. I’m not turning her into a victim. After all, at the end of the day, the choice was always hers. But I can’t stand seeing predators screw up a girl, discard her when she’s no longer appealing, regard her with distaste, and make her into some crazy psycho simply because she’s exhibiting a reaction to trauma. Being repeatedly treated and talk to the way I was by that guy will take a toll on a woman’s psyche!!


It’s our job to have the wisdom and discernment to see what is real and what is just fool’s gold being dangled in front of our nose. It’s our job to be in touch with ourselves and be true to ourselves so that we don’t fall for other people’s sick interpretations of what or who we are or should be (in their eyes).


If you stand for nothing, you fall for everything.


However, despite one lascivious guest and Tara Reid’s state of happiness, the event itself was very enjoyable. Johnny Otto, Annie Preece, and Ashley Paige were were lovely and very down to earth. Like a breath of fresh air! And it was kind of cool to see Ashley Paige in a Renaissance-inspired dress and Annie Preece in a gorgeous vibrant red outfit  – instead of the usual fare of skimpy dresses and too much make-up.
Annie Preece and Johnny Otto pose in front of one of Otto's paintings at the Ashley Paige Bikini Factory. Photo courtesy of SunofHollywood.com

Annie Preece and Johnny Otto pose in front of one of Otto’s paintings at the Ashley Paige Bikini Factory. Photo courtesy of SunofHollywood.com


The Ashley Paige Bikini Factory is a seriously cool little space, just over yonder on the corner of North Gardner Street and famed Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood. I love the open floor-plan loft style, especially with wood floors and exposed brick walls!

Ashley Paige Bikini Factory on Sunset Boulevard.

Ashley Paige Bikini Factory on Sunset Boulevard.


And her crochet swimwear!! I’d never really understood crochet swimsuits before; I mean, it kind of seemed antithetical, like combining your grandmother with bikinis, but Ashley Paige has definitely made a convert out of me.

Ashley Paige Summer Collection.

Ashley Paige Summer Collection.


Johnny Otto’s work reminded a bit of Picasso, particularly the latter’s older art work.

YYXXYYXX by Johnny Otto

YYXXYYXX by Johnny Otto


Annie Preece’s work was more colorful and commented on our consumer-drive society.

Fuck Your Soup by Annie Preece

Fuck Your Soup by Annie Preece


While Johnny Otto’s work feels more rigid, geometric, and minimalistic, Annie Preece’s work features bold colors, rounded shapes, and a bit of a caricature interpretation of pop culture icons.

Los Angeles by Amy Preece

Los Angeles by Amy Preece


I really liked Yuri Sountsov’s concept photographs and it’s a pity I can’t find any online :(.


Links to photos:








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