Welcome to Cloutchella (According to Linux)

This is What You Missed Last Month (According To Linux), in which nightlife it-girl Linux takes us behind the velvet rope and into the VIP section of Scene-City. Through her extreme (sometimes exaggerated) lens, Linux gives us the tea on what really happened at every party-of-the-century that floods our Instagram feeds. (A note from the author: don’t take what she says too seriously — she’s just a club kid after all).

Coachella has blossomed into a place where music fans go to experience heaven on Earth (in Indio, California). Recently, things have changed; Coachella has nearly become a war zone — a territorial standoff where Audiophiles and Influencers battle it out on the lawns of Empire Polo Club. It was only a matter of time before Coachella became ‘Chella, the campgrounds became music festival skid row and Artist wristbands became the new GA. Finally, after countless brand deals, celebrity sightings by the VIP bar and OOTD’s, our master plan is set into motion. The music lovers are banished, gates shut, locks changed… and us D-Listers are free to reign over Coachella without being judged by the holier than thou.

The TikToks you saw all month that “Coachella is Dead” might be accurate, but that’s not necessarily bad. We must think of the New Coachella as a form of reincarnation. Gone are the days where we have to “go for the music.” In fact, most of us might’ve forgotten music was actually playing while locked in drug-fueled conversations networking with the A&R of our fav’s record label, acres away from any actual stage. (Nobody watches a movie for its soundtrack!) Only three things matter at Coachella now: the outfit you wore, the famous person you were photographed with and the brand who fronted the bill.

And who am I? My name is Linux, I am The New York Downtown It-Girl. For years I have journaled the hottest parties happening: from Met Gala red carpets to the Berghain bathroom stall. And if you know anything about going out: Coachella is the clout-Olympics, especially for a tainted individual like myself. Come along, as I tell you everything and everyone that happened at this year’s Cloutchella exclusively for PAPER. Coachella, consider yourself coup’d!

Day One

After 365 days of waiting to feel alive again (because my life as a party-hopping jet-setter is just so boring) Coachella day one had finally arrived. Unfortunately, my hangover did as well. The night prior I had been out until the early AM due to PAPER throwing a pre-Chella party. Nobody wants to start Coachella weekend dehydrated with a raging headache, but here we were. Nothing a quarter Xanax and Liquid IV couldn’t fix. I had to get my shit together ASAP, as Charli XCX was rumored to be holding a pop-up performance at the White Claw tent by 3:30 (3:30 is like 9 AM by Coachella standards).

After accosting my Boiler-Room-Bestie over a vodka-spiked Whiteclaw, it was time to head to Do LaB to see my man, The Dare. Ever since I heard the lyrics that he likes “girls with dicks” I’ve been doing everything possible to be his number one groupie. (I need a famous boyfriend already!) I went backstage to harass him for pictures and somehow, thanks to Ty Sunderland, ended up booking him to DJ Paul’s Dolls once we’re both back in New York. (Nobody tell him the budget is only $150!)

During the lull of acts on my schedule, my friends convinced me to see Bizarrap. Reluctantly I joined, although I’d much rather be eating the chicken tenders at Do LaB and still flirting with The Dare. As always, I was wrong and realized my friend’s were right to drag me along when halfway through Bizarrap’s set Shakira came out for a surprise performance. To say I was gagged is an understatement. When I was a kid, I had a poster of Shakira’s Rolling Stone cover taped above my bed that I would pray to in Spanish every night. Seeing her IRL was an out-of-body experience like no other.

After an already extremely gay afternoon, the Coachella demons started to come out and it was time to get even gayer at Honey Dijon’s set. In a sea of G-Queens while Honey blasted house music through the Quasar Stage speakers, it was almost as if I was back in NYC at a Ladyfag party — only this time I had to pay for drinks. (Well, when the few bi-boys in my vicinity weren’t doing it for me!)

The clock struck 11:20 PM, and my bestie Aquaria and I sprinted to the main stage for Mother Lana. Or, I should say Motor Lana, who entered the festival with a fleet of older men on motorcycles and their sexy female counterparts straddling the back of them. Together we held onto each other and our of-the-weekend situationships as Lana Del Rey performed the music that first got us into toxic men. It was a canonical full circle event. To make things even more cinematic, Tana Mongeau and her man were cuddling directly in front of us. I chose not to bother her, as they say to never meet your idols.

When the final firework exploded, my friends and I walked together back to the gated community we were all staying at. We were finally in the thick of what would be another successful Coachella.

Day Two

At 12 PM on Day 2, I enjoyed my breakfast in true Coachella fashion: in the Verizon store parking lot while my DJ friends, Ty Sunderland and SG Lewis, got their replacement phones after both getting them stolen the night prior. The store manager said they prepare for this every Coachella, ordering thousands of extra iPhones specifically for those who fall victim to the festival’s heavily organized pickpocket ring. (Sounds like an inside job if you ask me!)

New iPhones (and a fresh pack of Light Blue American Spirits) secured, we made our way back to our house and to Coachella to get a start on the day. Our first stop was Raye. In the crowd I heard a gay say to his friend, “She’s like the sober Amy Winehouse,” which, honestly… so true. After Raye I was forced to make the painful decision between seeing Bleachers, Billie Eilish DJ at DoLab or Grimes. I chose Grimes, which turned out to be the best decision of the three, as that would become one of the most viral moments of this year’s Coachella altogether.

When Grimes initially came out and began her set, all seemed to be well. That was, until five minutes went by, she stopped the music and began screaming into the microphone bizarre claims of technological difficulties. She was speaking in a language only a heavy ketamine user would understand. I bummed a cigarette from the group of nonbinaries in front of me, and we chain smoked as Grimes tried to figure it out. (She mostly just moaned and screamed into the microphone.) The irony was not lost on us, as we quickly realized we know whatever software she was using to DJ much better than her, yet she was on stage. After a painful half hour, I decided to give Grimes the benefit of the doubt and leave.

Then, Ice Spice performed the most New York show in the most New York outfit imaginable. Dressed in a lace I Am Gia catsuit with matching fur boots in front of a graffiti’d subway train, Ice Spice ran through 30 minutes of her songs, all hits, and for a moment I almost forgot I was in California. “New York City, baby!” I screamed repeatedly on a quarter pill of Ecstacy while spilling my drink all over myself. Ice Spice had me recalibrated. On my way out I ran into LA Royalty, Sydney Lynn Carlson and Father Kels, where we took our annual Coachella photo as I showered them with my annual compliments. Our interaction had to be quick though, as I was running late to No Doubt.

I could’ve missed No Doubt entirely, however, as I in fact don’t remember much of No Doubt. Unfortunately, I found myself in a K-Hole that lasted half their set. But who cares, as I said earlier: Coachella is not about the music… it’s about the drugs!

Day Three

On the third day the Cloutchella Gods said, “Let there be blisters, muscle pain and low bank balance alerts from your card issue… and today is the final chance to make it worth it.” So hold onto your fake friendships and photo galleries, because it might be the only thing you have left after this festival is done with you!

Chugging my quadruple vodka cranberry outside security, I immediately ran into Ava Max and Blu DeTiger. Blu just released a new album where one of the songs includes a drunk voice memo from me (surprise, surprise!) bitching about her constantly stepping into my BFA photos. Ava Max and I bonded over when we’d go out to EDM raves in Milwaukee in high school. She then went on to tell me how her Shaman told her “no more white wine, only tequila from now on!” We then finally took a photo, where I edited a fake smile onto her (so I could say she was happy to be there with me.)

After our hot-pop-girl link up, the three of us went our separate ways, with me heading towards Bebe Rexha who was performing at sunset on Coachella’s main stage. While in the Artist Viewing area, I ran into PAPER Editor-in-Chief Justin Moran. There I shouted at him to give me more responsibilities at PAPER, only to now be eating my own words as it’s taken me two full weeks to write my Coachella article (oops!) The woes of being the personality hire…

I then took my Ecstasy and Tylenol like vitamins, and took 20 minutes worth of selfie videos of James Charles and I singing horribly to Bebe Rexha’s radio hits. After Bebe, while everyone headed to their favorite Coachella food spots, I was peaking so the thought of food disgusted me. I finally re-met up with my core group on the opposite side of the grounds, where back-to-back tech house DJ’s were playing. What happened next was a blur, but I somehow became an avid cisgender heterosexual tech house fan along the way. I got to see in person the Alessio De Vecchi visuals that went viral from a festival in Tulum earlier this year while Anyma DJ’d. Anyma’s girlfriend, Grimes, came out to reclaim her reputation. I was introduced to DJ Snake after his set, where my Shazam button almost broke from me trying to get so many tracks from him. And somewhere in between I threw up… twice!

Coming back to reality and finally drinking water, the EDC of it all had ended and it was time to choose between Doja Cat or John Summit. Rumor had it we were seeing Summit DJ at the gay circuit after hours (which we did!), so we took the risk and saw Doja’s highly anticipated headline set. I mean, you cannot miss the Sunday headliner… unless it’s Frank Ocean!

With multiple incredible outfit changes, impeccable stage presence, choreography and set design to match, Doja Cat reached her Magnum Opus. (Special shout out to Brett Alan Nelson, Doja’s creative director and stylist!) She mostly soared through her newer discography, while only touching on a few of her iconic hits of yesteryear. The show ended with Doja and her dancers orgying in a sea of mud as fireworks lit up the sky. It was in that moment that all of our phones were in our pockets, jaws were on the floor and the names of the people around us no longer mattered. The festival’s finale was packed with Coachella excellence that had me wondering… maybe we are here for the music after all?

Art direction: Chris Correa

This is What You Missed Last Month (According To Linux), in which nightlife it-girl Linux takes us behind the velvet rope and into the VIP section of Scene-City. Through her extreme (sometimes exaggerated) lens, Linux gives us the tea on what really happened at every party-of-the-century that floods our Instagram feeds. (A note from the…

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