[Ed.’s note: Originally published on March 13th, 1995.]
A door opens at the top of the stairs and Michael Bergin, the Calvin Klein model and budding actor, stands silhouetted in the doorway of his apartment. One arm is up and he’s leaning against the doorframe and his dark brown hair is falling in his face and he’s laughing as he watches you trudge breathlessly up the stairs.
“You’re always on the go,” he says, like all he wants to do is lie around in bed all day. You remember what his manager, Clifford Streit, keeps telling you: “Michael looks like he travels with his own lighting director.” And then it’s too much: You have to look away.
“Michael is the human equivalent of a sable coat,” Clifford says. Clifford has been bugging you a lot about Michael lately. The phone rings and you pick it up and it’s Clifford. “Who’s sexier? Michael or Keanu Reeves?” You sigh. And even though you sort of really don’t know who Michael is and don’t really care, you say, “Michael.”
Maybe it’s partly out of guilt. You know that you should know who he is: He’s that guy who was splashed—muscled, naked except for a white skein of underwear—on that giant billboard for Calvin Klein in Times Square, and he was all over the buses. But you never go to Times Square and you don’t pay attention to buses, except when they’re about to hit you.
But Clifford keeps working on you. “Michael and I were walking by his billboard the other day,” he says, “and Michael wanted to get a piece of it to put in his apartment, like maybe his nose. But I told him he should take the bulge in his pants. That way, when women ask him how big he is, he can say 14 feet.”
“Michael did the cutest thing today,” Clifford says. “He tried to take me out to dinner. He said, ‘Clifford, you’ve done so much for me. I want to do something for you.’ I said, ‘Don’t be silly,’ but you know, he is the only person who’s ever offered to take me out to dinner in my whole life. Can you believe anyone that beautiful is that nice?”
You agree to meet Michael.