On our way to Parc on Rittenhouse Square, a car stopped at a traffic light on 17th Street lowers its windows; it’s filled with what appear to be college-age guys. One shouts, “Arthur Kade! We love you!” Kade looks prouder than a peacock. A minute later, three blondes come out of a bar on Walnut Street. Kade eyes each of them, spins around to take them in from the back once they’re past, then announces that “the one in the middle’s an 8, but the two on either side are 6’s or 7’s, because of their bodies.”
At Parc, he spots a blond girl who’s “mother hot and stripper hot” and who “could be a 9” were it not for her “teeth, her gums.” He nevertheless is interested. “I’ll have her number in no time,” he tells me, and invites her and her friends to head to Strongbox. On the way, some of the girl’s friends ask Kade what he does. “I’m an actor,” he replies.
It’s loud and crowded and hot inside Strongbox. After making the rounds, Kade moves back in toward the blond girl with the gums, who seems drunker than a little while ago. I watch Kade’s face light up in the glow of his cell phone as he enters her phone number into his directory. Not long after, as I’m getting ready to leave them, the girl tugs Kade in toward her by the waistband of his tight jeans.
Still the drought persists. Kade tells me later that while he certainly could have had sex with the girl that night, he ultimately decided it wasn’t worth it. “I’m a different man,” he says of his former ways.
THERE IS ANOTHER side to Arthur Kade. Or at least, to Arthur Kadyshes.
Kade is the only child of Russian immigrants Leonard and Marina Kadyshes. His father, a former fencing champion, was a masseur; his mother was a manicurist. When Kade was six, his parents separated when his father left his mother for a hairstylist — another Russian immigrant, Raya Yukhimov. Kadyshes and Yukhimov now operate the boldfaced Raya Coiffure Boutique in Haverford. (Leonard is, apparently, a full-fledged character in his own right; five years ago, according to court papers, a state committee found he had unfairly fired a salon colorist after repeatedly sexually harassing her, touching her breasts and rear, and telling her that he would perform an abortion on her himself if she ever became pregnant.) Meanwhile, Kade’s mother embarked on a long-term relationship with a man she would also end up marrying (and eventually divorcing) who owned an auto import/export company; she was always away with him. “Coming from a Communist country, once they started making a good living, they pretty much started reliving their childhood,” Kade says, munching on octopus inside one of his favorite restaurants, Stephen Starr’s kitschy Midtown Continental.