The tail end of the Project Runway finalists' show held last Friday at Lincoln Center featured an odd little scene of mild-punishment infliction — accompanied by complaints at the mildness of said punishment — played out by Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum. The punishment was doled out by Klum in the form of a bucket of ice water she dumped on Gunn's head. The complaining was also doled out by Heidi, who clearly believed that Gunn's paltry portion of ice and water didn't make the man suffer enough ... the way she had recently suffered.
Her desire for Schadenfruede was thwarted by insufficient Schaden. Is there a German word for that? Heidi would know!
The scene began after all the contestants had presented their Fashion Week collections, when Klum strode out on the runway and announced that she'd recently done the ALS Challenge and nominated Gunn. Declaring that now was "the perfect moment for Tim to get wet," she called him out onto the runway. After a clearly scripted bit of comedy — in which Gunn tried unsuccessfully to get away with doing his own version of the challenge, which involved putting ice and booze in a glass and drinking a toast to raising money and finding a cure for ALS — he braced for the dousing he'd obviously already agreed to be subjected to.
But what followed next didn't appear (to me, anyway) to be scripted: Heidi was not pleased with the ice-water-bucket brought out onto the runway by a few minions. "This is it?" she complained. "I need more ice! I need more water!" She went on to explain that when she did the challenge, she was "drenched with two huge buckets." She had suffered, you see — and the paltry amount of ice water fetched for Tim's drenching was insufficient by comparison. Klum then called for someone backstage to bring out more water as Gunn, mensch that he is, waited patiently with a forced smile in the middle of the runway, despite clearly wanting to get the whole thing over as quickly as possible.
Minions eventually appeared with little plastic bottles of drinking water and poured a few in the bucket, which didn't appear to make Heidi any more pleased. Nevertheless, the dousing was finally able to commence.
So here, for your edification, thanks to my camera's clear vantage point from the third row, is what Tim Gunn looks like before, during and after getting doused with a bucket of ice water:
He looks happier after the event then he did before, doesn't he? Tom Petty was right, it seems: The waiting is the hardest part.
But in contrast to Tim's happy relief, Heidi didn't seem satisfied when it was over. Her face made it clear: She still wasn't happy with the paltry contents of Tim's bucket, as he hadn't been subjected to nearly as much ice and water has she had endured when she took the ALS challenge.
You see, Heidi wanted Tim suffer. The way she had suffered.
And haven't we all felt that way, about someone, at some point in our lives?
[Photos by Ned Frey]