Diplomats, hacks and relatives: US is back in the international fair game!

Considering the hiccupps (okay, full-blown tuberculotic coughing fits) the US diplomacy program has been suffering, I really shouldn't be surprised that the US government hasn't participated in a world fair in several years. In fact, Congress banned the federal financing of world's fairs in 1999.

Luckily, the US pavillion at the 2005 fair in Aichi, Japan will be funded by private donations - and the VIP suite will be designed by Thom Filicia of Queer Eye.

As the NYT tells us:

    The 7,000-square-foot suite, Mr. Filicia said, will have a "clubby" look — with real leather floors donated by Edelman — and an industrial feel, since much of the building's warehouse structure will be exposed. Mr. Filicia said that Pier 1 — which he represents on television — will donate dishes for corporate entertaining.

Leather floors? What sort of feature is that for a VIP suite? Maybe Thom can explain it:

    Thom: You know this leather headboard—which you can clean easily. I don't even want to get into it, but just a little FYI.