I won’t propose a toast this week, I’ll propose an idea: Let’s all try to be better versions of ourselves — for once.
The show so far revolves around two things: Jules and John. Thank God for me, right?! What did they ever do without Dorinda? Oh that’s right…lie, deflect, attack, belittle, accuse… I wasn’t raised that way, and I’m going to go out on a limb and say the others weren’t either, but there’s something about having privilege and opportunity that turns a lady into a vixen, or a vixen into a viper. I remember when Joan and Melissa Rivers were attacked by those “vipers” on Celebrity Apprentice years ago, and I was immediately reminded of the snobby, crotchety, self-crowned princesses in London who felt they were automatically a step or two (or three) higher because they were born with an accent, or in a villa, or married someone who was.
Like Bethenny said this week…Women, it doesn’t work like that. You’re you from Day 1 till Day 29,000. (Yes, some of us might even live to be 81 like good ol’ Joan!) It’s your responsibility to stay true to that, no matter what you’re given, who you marry, who you give birth to, what you win, and what you make. If you lose yourself because of any of that, then you’re a fraud. That is never easy on someone…once you’re a fraud, you’re the first one who knows it, and you just end up tearing through life, tearing people down because you almost can’t stand seeing someone be themselves, be real, be happy, be NORMAL… It’s sad. So I have a suggestion: Live your damn life and BE YOURSELF. If your “brand” or “truth” is just an excuse to hurt others and the life they’ve built for themselves, your brand is sh--. And you might be too.
These good old adages are there for a reason: “If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all;” “that’s the pot calling the kettle ‘black’;” “it takes one to know one;” “let him without sin cast the first stone;” and how Jules so “eloquently” put it a few weeks ago, “those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones,” (she just did a minor variation here and there). Look, the list goes on…and I think I quoted everyone from Thumper to Jesus, and they both were pretty good at this whole “life lessons” thing. Of course, some people around us think they’re actually God (or Goddess) and believe they know enough to be judge and jury, but really……it’s been DONE, sweetie. It’s been written, it’s been said, it’s been DONE.
So let’s take a page from Thumper’s book: If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all. (By the way, whenever you have the option to quote a Disney rabbit, take it. I’m pulling Roger Rabbit out of my hat next week, stay tuned.) Telling the so-called “truth” and being so-called “honest” does not give anyone license to destroy someone’s character. Hey, here’s another one I just thought about: “Some things are better left unsaid.” And what I’ve noticed is that there is SO MUCH TALKING and so much being said, what jumps out at me the most is what’s left UNSAID. The insecurity, the resentment…it’s staggering. Look, Jules is a beautiful (and I mean beautiful), effervescent, hilarious, stylish, three-dimensional, successful, youthful and young, loving wife and mother, entrepreneur, friend, and inspiration… Most people, even among the stars in our RHONY galaxy, couldn’t call themselves half those things. I’ll leave it at that.
And if someone has more going on for them than we do, whether it be their looks, their potential, their talent, their age, or their privilege and opportunity, it’s not right and it certainly isn’t fair to either discredit, destroy, or disavow any of it. Once again, women: It doesn’t work like that. We have a near-spiritual responsibility as people (maybe even more as women) to look out for one another. We should relay potentially harmful information in a way that helps and builds UP — in a way that solves and heals — not in a way that decimates or disembowels someone’s confidence, hope, or accomplishments. When someone’s down, it is NOT the time to posture and rejoice at their demise. Like I said last week, schadenfreude is a nasty, nasty thing. (It even sounds nasty.) I think we are seeing a lot of this so far, don't you agree? So, let SHE who has no sin cast the first stone then… Look, no one is perfect, and that is PARTICULARLY true of ALL of us beloved housewives. We all have lived a colorful life and all of our lives have come with their ups, their downs, successes, regrets, traumas, and triumphs.
Bethenny knows this well, and I was so proud to see that flashback: from a muffin drop to a mic drop in a rainy Union Square just a few years later. It’s truly inspiring. Why is it inspiring for me, you may ask? Because it shows that good old-fashioned hard work, a great idea, great brains, and not caring what anyone does or says to prevent or destroy it can pay off and pay off BIG. She goes from pushing a cookie on someone to thanking someone for coming hundreds of miles in the rain to ask for one. Isn’t that what life’s about? Same girl, same idea, bigger stage. And now she is giving them away instead of selling them, because she’s been blessed with good fortune, good drive, and a good head on her shoulders. That work ethic hasn’t changed; the dedication remains the same. What’s not to love? That’s empowering to anyone, women or otherwise, and proves that an idea and the willingness to devote yourself to building yourSELF up is the stuff dreams are ultimately made of. Not who helps you, who you know, what you’ve won, and who you share or shared a bed with…it’s got to be all about YOU. And this is one of the best examples of that: a single kick-ass mom with a hell of a success story. Here’s another adage: I am woman, hear me roar. (And we know she can.)
On the other side of the spectrum, if Jules were to win an Oscar, it would undoubtedly be written off by some vipers because she used someone else’s talent or just had a great scene partner to work with. If she wins a Pulitzer, it’s because she’s beautiful and charmed the voting committee. If she got herself onto a show and gets laughs and raises brows, it’s because…just stop. I’ll tell you why: It’s because she earned it on her own, simple as that. And she’s great at it. Very great. And she is earning the attention, too. Just as she earned her family, her loved ones, and the future that awaits. She can lay food out for a guest, like a true lady does, and is criticized for laying out too much. She can bring all the food to a friend’s party and is criticized for not eating any… Just stop.
Believe me, after my outburst that afternoon, we all cleared a tray of cheese. And afterward, we cleared the cocktail list at Balthazar just to get a break. After that haunting visit from husbands and fathers, we were ALL tipsy girls…which leads me to this: Remember those commercials from Doritos a few years ago? Yeah… Get your own bag.
WHAT ARE YOU DOING ON SOCIAL MEDIA WITHOUT DORINDA?!?!
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