Social Circles

Social Circles

Alex talks tennis matches, Facebook fanclubs, and helping out a friend.

Late blog, sick and busy – well, at least the busy bit is positive… Late enough that I’m now watching Simon’s Facebook Fan Club gain 100 members in less than 10 minutes! Thank you MM & J. Let me also do a little housekeeping to say that the green sunglasses with the skull & crossbones are by Loree Rodkin, available at Ilori. The pink feathery bag from this episode is Galliano.


This week Bethenny followed up on the logo conversation we’d started back at the Help for Orphans benefit. I hadn’t taken on any freelance projects in the 2 years since starting at VS, and logo & brand identity projects are one of my favorite things to do. I was still reluctant to take on the project as it was October, which is the beginning of what we call “Holiday” in retail. The Holiday season is retail on crack – it’s when most businesses make the lions share of their profits. It’s when we start work at home at 6am, take a commute break to get to the office, then it’s a full-on sprint until 6 or so when we take a break to get home, then do maybe one more hour work after the kids are in bed. That’s the mommy track – people without kids work longer hours. Anyway, it was a busy time with work & our renovation, and I don’t like to take on projects unless I feel I’ve got adequate time to devote to them.

Nevertheless, I wanted to help Bethenny if I could, and she’d asked multiple times. We had a meeting where I threw out some ideas, and asked if she’d like the logo to look more like her than a generic brunette. An idea was hatched. I said I wouldn’t charge her as I would only have a limited amount of time to work on it and wasn’t sure whether I’d be able to finish it in time for the charity benefit, but that I would try.

It was surprising to hear Bethenny say that she felt badly about saying mean things about me. But perhaps not that surprising, as Bethenny tends to say one thing in person and other things in interviews. I’d really have preferred an in-person apology & a ceasefire versus her asking me to take on a project I didn’t really have time for. But that’s a moot point – I went into the meeting determined to at least give her a starting point that she could take and run with. And as I said – I like doing logos. I could have said no, and if it had been any other request, I would have.

Simon and I were shocked one day to see that two people we didn’t know had started a Facebook fan club for Simon. Assuming it had to be tongue in cheek, Simon invited the ladies to lunch and they had a great time gossiping. He was flattered and the club is fun. At one point the ladies invited Molly and/or Bethenny to join, which sent them onto our family website from last year. It’s weird that as Bethenny has gotten to know me, she still regurgitates shtick from season one. Although Simon and I enjoy going out as a way to blow off steam and separate ourselves from work, renovations and the boys, it’s quite true that we try to never both be out on two consecutive nights. 99% of the time we stick to that, at least in the boys’ perception. In NYC there are lots of opportunities to go out, so on a night out we might go to three parties, and spend dinner money on a driver to take us around since each place has munchies – one hour in each place. If there’s ever a time when it’s impossible to avoid us both being out two nights running, we might go to one event as early as possible, stay for half an hour and then go home, where the boys are allowed to stay up half an hour late so we put them to bed. Another way to go is to wait until after they are asleep (they are young, we’re talking 8-830 max) and have a neighbor sneak in while we go out for two hours – travel time + one hour at a party.

As planned, I popped by Bethenny’s apartment to take reference photos and was surprised that she lived in the same building where a dear friend’s family has a pied-à-terre. When she lived there I used to be over there often. Same doorman. Big city, small world. She offered me a glass of wine, and I had to laugh at myself stuttering over myself over being busy with work, renovations, etc, etc. At that point hysteria was starting to set in with the renovation and I’m actually surprised I didn’t start breathing fire and speaking in tongues. We had been out recently, and I don’t remember whether it was the night before or the week before, but anyway Simon and I had seen Kelly at 2 or 3 events in the same night. Bethenny suggested I traveled in the same circles as Kelly – I said “right” which was semi-sarcastic. Last fall, if I was at a party and another housewife was also there, it was more often Kelly than anyone else. All that means is that we both attended a lot of fashion-related parties. No more, no less.<./p>

Anyway, at that point I had already drawn Bethenny’s face but needed a body, which is where the photos came in. When you’re doing a quick-and-dirty caricature of someone – which is what I did, it’s a tremendous help to have a photo of them in the position you’re going to draw them. So I grabbed shots of her holding a cocktail shaker sitting the way I was going to position her in the drawing. More to come in future episodes.

Oh, the tennis match we’ve all been waiting for, and waiting, and waiting…wait, stop. So, Jill’s pro couldn’t make it, and Bethenny & Jill asked Simon to play. I thought it was hilarious, though it was unfortunate that he was sick. I’m not sure why Bethenny thought that we’d be flattered for Simon to be included, nor could I imagine that they would ever win, but of course we were all hoping for big laughs and that Ramona would start levitating and maybe singing Let it Be for good measure. The biggest problem here was that Ramona would not get away from the club door. I wondered if she was trying to ensure that Jill’s mystery partner wouldn’t have time to warm up, or if she was just a curious puppy jumping up and down. Either way, Simon was stuck in the back of a car outside the front door. You can imagine the phone calls and texts going back and forth. I’m not sure whether there was no back door or whether they just couldn’t access it, but either way Simon couldn’t get in. By the time he finally got in, he was freezing and really, really annoyed. He went straight onto the court from the dressing room, and it showed. Ramona didn’t flounce out of the room, to her credit, and the game probably would have been fun if it wasn’t so anti-climactic. The impromptu party afterward was more entertaining.

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