The XX Factor

Why Women Need Wings of Their Own

With the opening of the Wing, PR exec/socialite Audrey Gelman has solved one of the most persistent problems plaguing New York’s career women: the lack of a place to eat wings away from the prying eyes of men.

Seriously, where has this concept been all my life? Every New York woman has been there: You’re out there pounding the pavement when you find yourself with a couple of hours to kill between meetings, hungry and in need of a place to park it. You want what every woman wants but that our male-dominated society has denied us: somewhere to eat wings in sisterly peace. And there sure as hell better not be any guys around to see you at your most vulnerable, covered in buffalo sauce and greedily sucking the last bit of meat off a miniature chicken bone. Thus, the Wing was born, as Dayna Evens reports in a piece for the Cut: Finally! It’s radical, it’s empowering, it’s deep-fried with an inexplicable side of celery. (The Cut’s editorial director is a member, the piece discloses. Seems reasonable, who doesn’t love wings?)

Previous options for a gal on the go looking to escape with a plate of wings were sparse: You could go home, a location you’ve probably already exploited the best Instagram angles out of, with little chance of running into an acquaintance you could leverage for added likes. You could go to one of those places where they let men partake in the wings too—but how can a woman truly be herself when there are men watching her eat? No, it’s 2016: A lady needs her own ladyplace in which to indulge in some wings. At those other places, they also make you pay for the wings themselves, whereas the Wing operates on a much more practical model of $1,500 yearly ($1,950 if you weren’t a founding member) and $185 monthly memberships. Think of it like a Zipcar membership, except way more expensive, occasionally it hosts sleepovers or other fun rituals that would be called hazing if it were a sorority, oh and no cars, obviously. And you should probably be wearing Rachel Comey boots if you want to fit in.

The price ought to keep the riffraff out, but in order to ensure that you won’t have to be around people who aren’t sufficiently attractive or accomplished, there’s an exclusive application process. Sample question: “What’s your side hustle?” Here, one talent (in addition to your passion for wings, of course) is not enough. Because you don’t want to eat wings with just anyone: It is very important to eat wings in the vicinity of other cool people who have been pre-approved by one overarching cool person whom you are also paying, so you can trade wing-eating tips and collectively help each other eat the most wings you can and achieve greatness. It’s like shine theory says: Use a rigorous process to determine the exact value of each potential friend you meet, weeding out anyone who can’t do anything for your career or social position, is still figuring herself out, lacks self-confidence and branding knowhow, or is merely average. Why would you want to eat wings, let alone take a post-wings nap, which you can also do at the Wing, near a person like that?

Women, shoulder to shoulder, networking, cliquing up, appreciating fine aesthetics, avoiding the hoi polloi, toppling the patriarchy, and bolstering capitalism, just as corporate feminism intended. Actually, maybe it all sounds a little culty—except for the hot wings part. That I like.