"I'm just trying to give you a good show," said Rory Markham. An endowed 170-pound fighter, Markham had just finished his weigh-in for the International Fight League semifinal showdown, taking place the next night at Memorial Coliseum.
"Then you must be gay," shot back Dickinson.
Wait—am I on a reality show?
Short answer? Yes. The former America's Next Top Model judge and her entourage—including son, hairdresser and full camera crew—was in town last week to shoot footage for the second season of her cable hit, The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency, which purports to show how a "real" modeling agency works. Three of her model hopefuls were at the mixed martial arts event to interact with the IFL, and its fighters, as ring girls. But the real match was between Janice and anyone who got in her way (including me).
"Back off, buddy, I'm working here," said Dickinson when I asked a question. Then the 50-year-old took a swipe at me when I photographed her son and her pain-in-the-ass-ness. "You're too close!" she bellowed.
What a difference a day makes.
When I arrived at the Coliseum Thursday night for the big fight, where athletes from the across the country (including Portland's own Wolfpack) pummeled each other into bloody, homoerotic pulps, Dickinson was nowhere to be found. According to her "people" she was in the back, vomiting. Finally, though, this real-life Cruella deVil stormed the room, looking fierce and fabulous. She then proceeded to sit right behind my partner, Juan, and me. Gathering my courage I turned and asked her the one question I thought she might answer: "Janice, are you a lover or a fighter?"
"Definitely a fighter," said Dickinson, who'd somehow forgotten that she'd treated me like shit the night before and now had mistaken me for one of the martial artists. "I love you guys," she cooed as she turned to Juan and asked, "Are you a fighter?"
"No," said Juan. "But we love you, too."
Whether you love or hate this supermodel, you have to respect her. And not because she's as smart as an IFL fighter (including P-town's own Aaron Stark, a Mensa member and budding winemaker). Or as pretty as one of these buffed-up bulldogs (I'll take brawn over Botox). It's because this narcissist has what it takes to survive in a dog-eat-bitch world, even though she makes Joan Crawford's "Mommie Dearest" look like Mother Teresa. I've always had a hunch people like Janice, who have their lives taped and put on television, are much nicer than they appear onscreen. Truth is, Dickinson is much worse. And I'm sure she's one lady even the world's toughest IFL-er would think twice about before putting in a head- or liplock.
Check out more at ifl.tv (and whatever you do, stay out of Janice's way).