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Carole Radziwill: To bNice or Not to bNice, That Is the Question…
"As a woman, it makes me sad to watch another woman, who I thought was my friend, talk behind my back with such cattiness and disrespect."
Spoiler Alert: What would you do if your friend called your boyfriend, secretly behind your back, and asked him to go to Houston with her? Yeah, that happened. Stay tuned next week for As RHONY Turns…but let’s begin with this week.
I haven’t blogged in several years and now I know why…unlike my fellow Housewife, it’s not sport for me to voice opinions that may be hurtful to other people, including her…but this is why these blogs exists and also to correct the lies, insinuations, and false characterizations made on the show. So…ugh.
I loved this episode! It’s important to be reminded not only of the devastation from Hurricane Maria, but of the enduring nature of the human spirit.
I’m glad to see my friend Bethenny step outside her affluent bubble, with her stream of rich boyfriends, rich friends with private planes, million dollar homes, and five-star resort vacations. One gets the impression this is the first time she’s witnessed real poverty. It can be life-changing. I know it was for me, many years ago when I first covered tragedies as a journalist. The shock of having, then losing, one's home and all its possessions (and having the guts and dignity to soldier on) is awe-inspiring. It is partly why I quietly give money to charities and political campaigns I believe will make a difference in the world. And why, years ago, I created my own charitable foundation.
It is a good use of celebrity, and I hope this journey will make Bethenny a wiser and kinder person closer to home too. From the looks of it she’s got a ways to go. But I’m not counting her out yet! We are now in Episode 7, and as I continue to say how proud I am of her, and ask her about Puerto Rico, she continues to be out-of-control aggressive, parrot back anything Sonja tells her, berate Tinsley (a woman who wrote her a $10k check) and insult me behind my back. And that's just over drinks at Megu. Lol.
At lunch Dorinda is being verbally water-boarded, (that's what we all call it). Bethenny does this often, you’ve all seen it: her uninterruptable talk pattern that leaves her victims helplessly nodding in agreement. Sonja does this too which may be why these two are attached at the hip now.
Dorinda is being used as a pawn to further Bethenny’s agenda and she doesn’t quite know it — yet. Not only am I a high maintenance, eyelash-wearing, fashion-obsessed, childless friend who doesn’t have a job and isn’t interested in what’s going on in the world, but guess what, Adam is too (minus the lashes)! As a woman, it makes me sad to watch another woman, who I thought was my friend, talk behind my back with such cattiness and disrespect. But it makes good television and in the end that is Bethenny’s one true friend. Pass the popcorn.
All I’ll say about the latest bunch of insults, including the bizarre claim that I don’t have a career, is this: I will put my resume up against Bethenny Frankel’s any day of the week. When Bethenny was auditioning for B movies, I was travelling for ABC News to places similar to what you saw in Puerto Rico. After that I worked in publishing and wrote for national magazines, and now yes, I am on Reality TV. The irony isn’t lost on me that while Bethenny is gossiping about me over pizza with Dorinda, I’m working.
The entirety of Bethenny’s career, other than some minor success she had as a caterer, has been in Reality TV. From Apprentice to Housewives and all that it has brought her — including launching her Skinnygirl business — Reality TV has been very good to her. She worked hard, and I’m glad to see she is giving back. I’ve been her biggest cheerleader. I show up at all her launch parties, from booze to sparklers to candy. Last year in Mexico, I wore my Skinnygirl hardhat with enormous pride.
Unlike Bethenny, I don’t need to be biting and self-righteous in order to make myself feel better, smarter, or more successful. I hardly recognize the woman on television shaming women simply for having different opinions and interests. Obnoxious lines like, Call me when you’ve had some success, set all women back. Ramona, whether you like her or not (I do) is a very successful woman. She has had success in business, gracefully navigated a nasty public divorce, and raised a thoughtful and intelligent daughter. That’s my definition of success. What’s yours?
Since when is it ever okay to insult a woman’s accomplishments? Her career? Especially in 2018 when women have finally found the courage to speak their truth? It’s one of the reasons it was important for me to write about self-esteem for Cosmopolitan magazine and its millions of young female readers. (Thank God I have a healthy amount of esteem or I wouldn't have lasted one season with this flash mob.)
Bethenny did get one thing right about Adam: He is richer, in all the ways that count in life, than Bethenny will ever be. Unlike Bethenny, Adam was 23 and dead broke when he created and ran an actual licensed charity. A not-for-profit that helped sustain a small farming community in Nicaragua. He fundraised and took money from his rent budget in order to keep the charity afloat. No five-star hotels, camera crews, or privates planes to jet in and out of disaster zones, but still he managed to do this and so much more. Two years ago, Adam was in Africa making a film for a not-for-profit children’s hospital. For free. This year he got straight off a red-eye from SanFran, ran the marathon in four hours, and raised $3,200 for North Shore Animal League. It’s still not too late to donate.
When Harvey hit last summer, Bethenny was partying in Ibiza, I was taking care of a friend whose husband had passed away, and Adam was working hard commuting three hours between clients each day. So, no, Adam couldn't go to Houston at Bethenny’s whim. He is building his business, and he has to hustle — you’d think if anyone would understand that it’s Bethenny. How quickly she forgets the struggle. He suggested switching one client’s day but couldn't afford to lose his day rate — certainly not to take pictures of Bethenny to post on her social media. So off she went to Houston with a professional paid photographer in tow to take pictures of her and the endless selfies she allegedly disdains. Yes, that makes everyone I know chuckle too.
But the most priceless, pass-the-popcorn moment was the bewildered/bitchy look on Bethenny’s face when she said I was having a book party not for myself but for a friend. Rewind…wait for it. Another dig at me? [eye-roll] Yes, Bethenny, I took a short break from writing books while I am on TV.
And yes, I support my friends, much like I did last season when my pal Linda Mason had an art gallery opening, and before that when my friend had a baby on her own. I celebrate my friend’s accomplishments. Because this is the way you support friends — by showing up. This concept, of celebrating others accomplishments, is a foreign one to Bethenny. In the 10 years she’s been on television has anyone seen her promoting a friend, especially one on the show? She barely shows up to support the friends on the show with her. She should consider changing her tagline from it’s more important to bStrong to it’s more important to bNice. Because if mocking, insulting, and shaming her friends is a sign of strength, she can keep it.
Click here to order my friend’s book, Backbone.
And if you think I don’t have one you’re sadly mistaken. So get off my jock and if you’re going to come for me — you better not miss. You did a great thing in Puerto Rico, then you let your ego get the best of you. I’m still rooting for you… Until next week…