satire for the literate – OH REALLY?

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011

I have put this off but when really great material taunts you, year after year, eventually one must give in. And, as this could be the end of the road for The Real Housewives of New York City — in six months these women will be as relevant as The Jonas Brothers — this could be my last chance. And I’m taking it.

Let’s deconstruct the title: The Real Housewives of New York City.

Real – These women are about as real as a piñata. There’s less skin-stretching, filler and stuffing in the Museum of Natural History’s Hall of Mammals. You know those beverages that have to be called “juice drinks” by law because they don’t have enough actual juice in them? Think of them as the human equivalent of “Sunny DeLite.”

Housewives — Back in the 1950s, my mother was a housewife. My dad went to work, and my mom stayed home and raised us. She took us to school, went on school trips, shopped at the butcher, the baker and the fruit market, prepared the meals, sewed, did laundry, helped us with our homework, read to us, watched “Leave it to Beaver” and “The Beverly Hillbillies” with us.

These women may be a lot of things, but “housewives” isn’t one of them. So “girls” – which is what you refer to yourselves as even though you haven’t been girls since Central Park was a cow pasture – please find another common noun that describes you more accurately. And really – what’s up with “the girls” thing? Does it make you feel younger to call yourselves “girls”? I wouldn’t feel wealthier if I called myself The Beatles, so I’m not sure how that particular delusion works. Do you think that the power of suggestion will somehow fool us into thinking – “no – they’re not pushing 50. No, they aren’t Spanxed from their ankles to their necks. They’re really quite coquettish.”? Hmm…. (Oh, and Jill – Spanx – Skweezed? Screech at Bobby to call your lawyers…)

Real and Housewives — Perhaps Bravo’s Andy Cohen’s crossed eyes served as an impairment when casting this show.

Had he looked hard or harder or at all, he might have discovered authentic “real” New York City housewives, maybe even women who don’t down Pinot Grigio like it’s “The Last Supper” or wear earrings the size of light fixtures or record “disco” songs when their “vocal stylings” make me miss Madelaine Kahn’s “I’m So Tired,” from Blazing Saddles.

Next, note that part of the compound word “housewife” contains the word “wife.” Is it possible to be a real housewife if you aren’t a wife? That’s like saying you’re a real starfish only you’re a bagel. So, now we see that not only are none of them are housewives — half of them aren’t even wives. Let’s look closer. Closer…

Ramona Singer

Okay, she does have a husband, which technically and legally makes her a “wife.” But she’s a wife who married someone name “Mario,” whom she insists on calling “Mourrio,” and is about three cases of wine away from a stint at Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew. The Upper East Side’s Scary Spice.

Vajazzle Brazil-Wax Queen Cindy Something

Did this show really need another woman as in touch with her chronological age as Dane Cook is with his entertainment value? “Housewife” Cindy is actually closer in age to social security recipients than the mommies at “Mommy and Me” classes and seems to be more interested in ridding the city of female body hair than raising those twins who will be sophomores in college when Mom is 75. She has at least one nanny per kid, a very annoying brother and very, very old parents. But a husband? I think you need one of those to qualify as a wife…

AlexandandSimon, a.k.a “Silex

Remember when the expression “They’d go to the opening of an envelope” was used as hyperbole? Well, Alex and Simon actually would. No. Really — manila, #10 envelope, Jiffy Bag, glassine, one of those envelopes with the cash-card you give at a Bar Mitzvah or christening? They’d be there and he’d be wearing something inappropriate, cringe-worthy, and probably made of animal skin and glitter. In their case, it’s clear that neither of them are “real housewives” because I’ve seen their sons, you know – the ones with the ridiculously pretentious names? Johann and Francois? The ones they force to speak French (for god-knows what reason as they live in Brooklyn), one of whom threw a fit and smashed around someone else’s thirty-dollar hamburger at “The 21 Club”, both of whom, I am guessing, wear Speedo mankinis when dragged to St. Barts in the off-season? Maybe when they make a show called SOCIAL CLIMBERS WHO LIVE IN CARROLL GARDENS AND MISTAKE THEIR CHILDREN’S ADHD FOR ‘GIFTED,’ they can have their own show. And wouldn’t that be special?

Sonja Morgan

First, isn’t “Sonia” spelled “S-o-n-i-a”? What’s up with the “j”? Is that because she thinks it looks fancier? It doesn’t. It just looks more Scandinavian-er Sonja is also not a wife, but a woman in her forties who thinks she is in her 20s, divorced from the 80-year-old heir to the J.P. Morgan banking fortune. Anna Nicole Smith with better table manners and no Howard K. Stern. Stop showing me your thighs and your ass, Sonja. Stop dressing up in Marie Antoinette shit and Caberet burlesque shit because real housewives don’t have the time for that shit. But I would like to see you weep again about the possibility of your losing your $14 million dollar townhouse because 1) it really wasn’t ever yours and 2) I want to feel financially superior to you. I already feel morally and ethically superior – just wanted to go three for three.

Bethenny Frankel
Even though you “spun off” into the egocentric center of an unwatchable show, (except when you berate your house-husband and his small-town parents), The Real Housewives of New York City catapulted you into the reality star you’ve become. Actually, you began on “The Apprentice: Martha Stewart,” which you’d hoped, everyone had forgotten. You were a caterer living with a long-haired dog, hawking Skinny Girl Margaritas, but you were not a housewife. You still really aren’t, but your husband is, so I guess that’s something.

Kelly Bensimon

Ah, Kelly – you’re kooky but that’s the worst I can say about you. You’ve grown on me. You’re the most genuine, most sincere, most attractive one on this train-wreck of a series. I like Kelly and she’s a real mom but not a real housewife. So, when they do “The Real Housemoms of New York City,” she’s a natural.

Countess” Luanne de Lesseps

First, aren’t the words “Luanne” and “Countess” mutually exclusive? “Luanne” is a name as in, “Luanne, go check the still to see if the moonshine’s ready,” or “Luanne – Go see who moved into the double-wide next door,” or “Luanne – there’s company– go and fetch us some vittles.” At best, she’s n she’s an ex-wife of an old coot of a “Count” less attractive than The Count on “Sesame Street.” She now dates a Frenchman named Jacques, who, she’s revealed, her –ex would never approve of because, “well…you know…Jacques is…well – he’s a Jew.”

Also, Luanne, darling, please note that we are not living in pre-Revolution France and therefore we are not only unimpressed with your title, we snicker at it. We know that even you think it’s important, we know it’s a made-up title that you got by merely marrying someone. It doesn’t really count, “Countess.” And after “The Count” divorced you, his next wife he takes also gets to be called “Countess,” and so on and so forth. And eventually, after so many Countesses, the title has about the same value as the Rolexes they sell on Canal Street. And stop singing. You can’t sing. Even if all of your rich sycophant friends say that you can. Marlena Deitrich, dead, has a better voice. Word.

Jill Zarin

Oy. What can I say about her that hasn’t already been said by her? Okay – at least I can say it more softly and without the cackle. Who thought I’d ever miss Whitney Houston shouting “Bobby!” It seems that every ethnic group and minority has some of its own that make the majority of the group cringe. As part of your ethnic group, Jill Zarin and, on behalf of all twelve tribes, I implore you – STFU.

So there you have it. Not real. Not housewives. And…

Q: If all of the Upper West Side moves to Park Slope and Cobble Hill and Brooklyn Heights, and they open up cheese shops and hipster boutiques and Fairway Markets and Whole Foods, when does Brooklyn become Manhattan?

A: It doesn’t.

Not New York City. Thanks, Alex and Simon. Maybe next season you’ll social-climb your way out of bridge-and-tunnel status. Now, there’s a story arc…


Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

Dear Time-Warner Service Rep:

This wasn’t what I wanted to write about this week, but following our anything but brief encounter last Sunday night, I’m afraid you are, how shall we say, my “muse”?

It was a hectic week and I needed to relax and decided to kick back and order “The King’s Speech” on Movies-On-Demand.

Not something I do too often. $4.99. I’m sure I spend more than that a day on coffee and Diet Pepsi and newspapers, but the $4.99 for Pay-Per-View, the commitment to push the little yellow triangle on the remote that says, “Accept,” has always been a problem for me.

So? I have issues. So do you. You don’t have to write about them – maybe you can’t leave your house without orange-flavored Tic-Tacs or you have to hum Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries,” before you unlock your front door; maybe you have to put on a sock and a shoe and not a sock and a sock, then a shoe and a shoe – trust me – the fact that I know my issues gives me a decided advantage.

But I’d seen “The King’s Speech,” and was hankering to see it again. Cell phone off. Dog sleeping. Comfy position. Can of Diet Pepsi Cherry by my side. And, after minimum hyperventilation, I hit that little yellow “Accept” triangle.

And, for a little more than 40 minutes, I was back there in the 1930s Britain– the clothes, the music, the acrid smell of war in the air, (to everyone, apparently, except heir apparent and the Royal Nazi Dunce of Windsor). And then suddenly – freeze-frame. Colin Firth, and Helena Bonham Carter in a beautiful satin understated robe that was clearly not chosen by Helena Bonham Carter.

No matter which button I hit on my remote, the frame remained frozen.

Mollie, you’re thinking – big deal. You saw the film. And even if you didn’t, big deal. All you had to do was call us and we’d have taken care of it. Wait. I haven’t stopped laughing yet. Okay. Just one more “Ha!” and I’ll respond. I did. I called you, Time-Warner. And though, finally, after approximately an hour and 38 minutes, two reps who hung up – (I’m sorry – accidentally disconnected my call), and several other inconveniences the problem was solved, I wanted to finish watching the film that night like I wanted to stick push-pins in my eyes. You “hoped you’d solved my problem,” Time-Warner. But I’m not completely satisfied…

*When I call you from my home phone and my name and number come up on your screen and you ask me my name and phone number, isn’t that just a tad kooky? And then, when I tell you my full name and number and you ask, “And who am I speaking to?” Is that a trick question? Are you writing a dossier? Isn’t that kookier than Ramona Singer’s eyes?

*After we finish the above nonsense, you know I’m me and I know I’m me, I have to verify my address, which – surprise – I know! – but this is not enough. Now you need my 16-digit account number, which you think I’ve memorized like a geometry theorem. It’s my paid bill stub, which is stuffed in a “Paid Bills” shoebox that’s about as organized as an orgy. Clearly we are not on the same page – I think I’m calling because my cable is out and YOU think I’m calling to get Pentagon clearance. So then you go for the cherry on the icing on the cake – “What is your PIN number?” Do you think that I think I have a Time-Warner Cable PIN number? Even if I believe you, do you think I know that PIN number?

Oh wait – I just remembered it – 3825 – 968! You do the math…

*Do you think I went to Time-Warner Cable School? Do you see a tool-belt around my waist? Then why do you think I want to start working when I call you? I call you because my cable isn’t working, not because I want to learn a trade. And yet before you will agree to send a service rep out, you have me unplugging my cable box, locating a coin or screwdriver to take the back off of some box, reading serial numbers smaller than rice grains to you, checking all every outlet in my house, counting lights on modems – sheesh! Look — I already worked this week. I know I did because I got my paycheck and was tired on Friday. You do it. “Well, ma’am, if the service man comes out and finds that the problem could have been solved on the phone, there will be a service charge.” Oh really? I think that for almost $150 (plus inexplicable-and-probably-made-up taxes and tariffs), for phone, broadband and cable, you can send one of those ass-crack-showing repair guys over. Leave the cable box; take the staple gun.

* When I become sufficiently outraged and ask for your supervisor, don’t tell me, “I don’t have a supervisor.” Unless your last name is Time-Warner trust me – you have a supervisor. Why not be truthful and say, “I only gave you my first name, made up my extension and badge number, so I could tell you to kiss my ass and you’ll never be able to track me down and report me. Of course I have a supervisor but I’d sooner date Seth Rogan than connect you to her. Click.” I’d still want to pull your eyelids over your knees. But at least I’d respect you.

* Finally, it’s really nice that you offered to let me re-order “The King’s Speech” for free, which only means I’ll have to sit through the first part again, but it’s the thought that counts. And you gave me a free month of HBO, which I cancelled a few years ago because I didn’t think it was worth fifteen bucks a month to watch “Bridge to Tarabethia,” “Superbad,” or “Good Luck, Chuck” even once, let alone every time I put HBO on. For a micro-second, Time-Warner, I felt like I just won something, even if the mere sight of Bill Maher makes me dry-heave.

Who cares — woohoo – I got HBO for free! For a whole month! So, thanks a heap for “Jennifer’s Body,” “Bad Boys II,” and “Rollerball.” I’d almost forgotten why I’d cancelled HBO. Just so that I don’t forget again, I wrote “The Best of Katie Morgan” and “Pornacopia II” on my fridge.

And now…

Please hold. Someone will be with you in just a moment…. Mwahahaaaa.

satire for the literate — JULY 4TH RULES

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Fourth of July

First, please understand that the title of this piece is “July 4th Rules,” as in rules you might want to follow on the upcoming holiday weekend, not
“July 4th Rulz!” as in “ wow – it’s such an awesome holiday!” That would be an opinion and an illiterate one at that. Maybe replacing an “es” with a “z” doesn’t feel “off” to you anymore because you’ve been desensitized — Hippie-Creative Spelling-Curriculum in grade school, texting, Hip Hop but — here’s a spelling rule of thumb — most English nouns and verbs don’t end with the letter “z.” Square businezz….

So, this is not about celebrating July 4th. Oh sure, it’s great we got away from England, particularly because they’re the reason for Scotch eggs, warm beer and Camilla Parker-Bowles.  And who doesn’t rejoice in the fact that on July 4th, and the summer in general, the Hamptons serves as an Electrolux-Vacuum-for-the-Rich and Acquiring, the Juvodermed and the Laxatived, the Overly-Tanned and Vajazzled-at-all, depositing them like so much debris and dust, onto the shores of Eastern Long Island?


July 4th is a day to reflect, to count one’s blessings for the freedoms this country has afforded you. So stop the hatin’ and ask yourself, is there anything I can do to say, “I love you, America and thanks!”? I think so…

Call it what it really is – a longer weekend where you can wear white to make your tan look tanner. You’re not patriotic. You’re not celebrating the birth of this nation. You’re celebrating the fact that there’s a sale at Blue and Cream,  or the fact that the Kardashians will be “Kardashing it out of your town soon, or that Shia LeBeouf has no plans of summering in the Hamptons.  And that his last name is something you can grill.


Despite the abysmal economy, refrain, at all costs, from buying the Old Navy five-dollar July 4th t-shirt. You may as well wear a shirt that says “I Heart Cheap Polyester. That Pills. Before I Even Wash It.”

Cheap Shirt

If you are in the city, please understand that just because a patch of grass has pushed its way through some concrete, this is not an invitation to set up a hibachi, pig-roasting spit or aluminum table big enough to seat all of the original colonists.

You don’t have to eat red white and blue foods in order to demonstrate your patriotism. Those gross greasy dessert shells filled with berries and Cool Whip don’t say, “Happy July 4th.” Ditto a sheet cake with red and white frosting stripes and blueberry stars. They just say “I’m white.” I’m so, so, so white…

Blueberry and Raspberry Cake

You can’t sing “Star Spangled Banner.” You don’t know the lyrics. Even if you do, you don’t have the vocal range. And even if you do, you don’t know which war this was written during, and unless someone yells, “Play ball!” immediately after, no one, but no one wants to hear you sing this. Or anything else, probably.


I’d rather someone wish me a canker sore than “Happy Independence Day!” Did I just win Mega Millions? Is every irritating person I have to deal with going to magically be surgically removed from my life? Why are you wishing anyone “A Happy 4th?” At best it’s a 4-day weekend, at worst, it’s a traffic jam on the Jersey side of the GW Bridge. Ft. Lee’s nice – when you’re driving it through it at 50 mph.


The Uncle Sam pants and hat. Don’t. Not on a dare, not because of a threat, not if promised a handsome financial reward. Just say no.

Uncle Sam Costume

Do you like your hands? Both of them? All ten fingers? Is your last name “Grucci Brothers”? Please ask yourself these questions over again before EMT wends its way to your house, and your friend has to tell the emergency worker, “It was just some cherry bombs and I think his thumb is somewhere over by the hydrangea bushes. Ka-ka-ka-BOOM!

Kid Holding a Firework

Fireworks Hand Burn


Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

There are families, love ‘em or hate ‘em, who are celebrated because they actually accomplished something. The Wright Brothers, the Marx Brothers, the Roosevelts and jeez – even the Kennedys. Each did something and then they became famous. After. Even if what they did was become a bootlegger, womanizer, anti-Semite and get dead people in Chicago to vote for their son for president, at least that required action verbs. When your only claims to fame are:

1) Your dead dad helped get O.J. Simpson off
2) Your mom married a former Olympic medal winner who, as he ages,
looks more and more like a mom
3) Sorry. Even when we look at the action verbs – “helped get” and
“married,” note that the subjects of these actions are “your mom”
and “your dead dad.”

But kudos to you kharasmatic Kardashians – you are the human equivalent of
alchemy. Klearly you don’t mind inviting kameras and strange kameramen into your private living space to watch you do and say things that are neither worth doing nor saying , and certainly not worth watching and listening to.

Harsh. You’re thinking, “Mollie– you’re just jealous that you’re not
young and tan and part of this Turkish harem. I’ll admit, youth is cool. Not always literate, but definitely cool. Whiter-than-white teeth are – well – they’re really really white. Especially against a really, really fake tan.

Here’s what I find most disturbing – Mark Twain was dead for 100 years before his autobiography was published and that got about eleven minutes of media attention. Yet unless you are in a coma, an isolation tank, or cryonically frozen, you can’t get away from these Khardashians. They’re reality television stars, actresses, models, retailers and “authors.” (Mark Twain called – he wants his autobiography back). And oh yes – they’re perfumers. As if the French didn’t feel superior enough…

And here’s what else…

* Your parents klearly placed a higher priority on making sure all of their daughters’ names started with the same letter than they did on teaching them to maintain a scintilla of privacy, dignity and/or modesty. Clearly they thought it would be kute if all their daughters’ names, like mom’s, started with the letter “K.” Not very klassy. But if you are going to do this, at least choose names that really begin with “K.” Kelley or Kendra of Karen or Kate. Stop highjacking other letters of the alphabet! And although you, mom Kris, have as much chance of conceiving another child as Madame Curie, here are some other names you kould consider:

Kansas City, (Kansas or Missouri)
Kafka (influential German novelist)
Kanye (not-so-much)
Khartoum (place AND name of horse in The Godfather – 2 for price of one ☺)
Krypton (will kill Superman)
Kidney (will not kill Superman)
Killer (you know, as in O.J.)

* Another thing, mom Kardashian – there is nothing kool about a 50+ year old woman being friends with her kids. It’s Kreepy. Word.

* Um – not for nothing but if my dad helped acquit one of the most brutal, vile and notorious killers of the 20th century, I would stay under the very expensive rock daddy provided for me. And – if I crawled out, I wouldn’t keep throwing his easily identifiable name in the face of the civilized world.

* Bruce Jenner. Ewwww. But I will admit – the transition from Olympic triathlete to June Cleaver is positively kaptivating. Yet icky.

* Putting your daughters to work and then giving yourself the title of “business manager,” when in fact you are living off of 15% of their earnings is pretty Kalculating, Krafty and Kalifornian. Kongrats!

* More kudos, ladies, for making smart, capable, hard-working educated women feel like “what’s the point?” – fat lips, fat butt, fat wallet.

* What is the likelihood that all of your middle names begin with the letter “K”? Because that would be oh-so-offensive yet oh-so-funny and oh-so-probable, all at the same time!

* As your reality TV “cousin,” Kountess Lu Anne de Lesseps sings poorly, “Money kan’t buy you klaa-assssss.” But maybe it kould buy you the ability to be embarrassed. You kould share.

* Here’s what seems to make your family happy: the letter “K,” athlete boyfriends and black athlete boyfriends. When it comes to love it’s often hard to find the whole package but I think I’ve solved that for you – Kobe Bryant, Ken Griffey, Jr., Kareem Abdul Jabaar. Sort of like buy-one, get two for free.

* Kim Kardashian broke up with Reggie Bush and is now engaged to Kris Humphries. KRIS Humprhies. Konfidentially, kwite a koincidence…


Thursday, November 4th, 2010

This is the second, and I fear not the last time, I find it necessary to address a sub-culture of New York City – the biker rider. No, not your scary kid who spins around in endless circles on his Big Wheeler like Danny in “The Shining.” I’m talking about you, Urban Bike Rider. You are a thorn in my side, a bump in my road, a pimple that, no matter how much and how hard I squeeze, I can’t get rid of. Here are some things that might change you. Things you haven’t given much thought to. Obviously.

* I know that you feel like a better human being than me because you’re riding a bicycle and I’m driving a gas-guzzling car. And you probably think I feel bad, or at least that I should feel bad. But I don’t. Guess what else? You’re riding a paper-clip thin bike. I’m in a three-ton Audi. So when you’re making your left-hand turn from the right lane with as much entitlement as a Nightengale-Bamford sophomore who can’t believe that G-d would allow it to rain on her birthday, unless you have an Uzi in your hand or a James Bonds jetpack on your banana seat, I win. So just send me a note, after your bones have healed and settled, when you’re out of traction and doing the physical therapy thing to learn how to walk again. What feels better – moral superiority or human stupidity? You – zero. Me – one.

* No one, not Adriana Lima, not Lance Armstrong, and certainly not you, looks good in bicycle pants.

* That retro wicker basket on your fixed-gear bike. Perfect for the bargains you find at Trader Joe’s. Super to transport your bottles and cans to the recycling center. Riding your super-gifted-talented toddler or French bull dog in. But sometimes form is oh-so-more-important than function. Let me let you in on a little secret. You don’t look vintage. You look like Margaret Hamilton in “The Wizard of Oz,” after she steals Toto from Dorothy. And the Harpo Marx bulb-horn – always a nice touch. Honk.

* Nice pants clips.

* You show every sign of being in a cult. This scares me and it should scare you. You look alike, you dress alike, and we non-bicycle enthusiasts are more scared than impressed by your bike-speak: “The Alpine gearing works with the kickback hub but your indicator spindle and trigger shifter affects the torque of the high tension of the non-turn washer.” WTF? It does not elicit the “boy-I-wish-I-could-be-part-of-that-group-but-clearly-I’m-not-cool-enough-to” response you are looking for. We look at you the way we look at hoarders, cat ladies, short-wave radio enthusiasts. Only creepier.

* The chains you wear around your waist in order to lock your bike around a sign pole as you dash into Whole Foods for sockeye salmon and organic beets are not a good look. Especially around your emaciated waist or worse, worn “Bandito-style” across your body. And, if you have spent any appreciable amount of time in New York City, you should know that chaining your bike to a pole will get the same results as a neon sign flashing, “Someone – Please Steal This Bike. Now.”

* This isn’t Amsterdam where, perhaps, one could argue, that the population is too stoned to be annoyed by more bike riders per kilometer than wheels of Gouda cheese in the market. This isn’t China, where the population is so massive that for every bike rider that goes down, there are a billion more. This is New York City. Everyone is stressed. Everyone is ready for an argument. People are walking into other people because someone couldn’t walk down Broadway without sketching The Vitruvian Man on his IPad. Do you want to add to the street traffic? Do you think you are going to make more friends, be more popular, by riding your Schwinn Le Tour Sport on streets people can’t find the room to walk on?

* What’s with the pathetic little blinking light on your handlebars? Is that supposed to tell the big, bad automobiles and mean, awful trucks and cabs, before they flatten you like a rolling pin over pie dough that – blink! blink! –you’re coming?

* The city has closed down perfectly good traffic lanes to create “bicycle” lanes. Unless you are Stevie Wonder, it is hard to miss these lanes, particularly because the city has taken away an entire car lane to give you self-righteous peddlers a lane of your own. These lanes are wide and even have the universal symbol for “bicycle” painted in white on these lanes. On the other hand, the “bus” lanes actually say the word “bus.” So unless you are the product of an education that included “creative spelling,” (“just spell it the way it sounds”), one assumes you can read. Get out of the bus lanes. Get out of the bike lanes. Get off the sidewalk. Better yet, stay home and ride a “virtual” bicycle or go to the gym and ride a stationary one. That way, the only people you’ll be annoying are gerbil-like treadmill addicts – a most worthy recipient of all your pent-up ire.

* Only messengers get special dispensation because at least they are trying to earn a living. They are also more adept at “slaloming through traffic than you with your Sobe Pomegranate Cherry Water clipped to the top tube of your mountain bike. P.S. – Madison Avenue is not a mountain.


Tuesday, August 31st, 2010


It always takes someone like me – okay, it takes me – to cut through the swaths of illusion and delusion and point out what some of you may be thinking; what others of you know but are too polite to say. That’s okay. I’ll take the fall.

Bethenny Frankel, ye of too many words and too many products to endorse, here’s the skinny – (pun intended) – you are not a real New York housewife. You are as much a “real” housewife of New York City as I am a “real” astronaut of NASA. In fact, up until you got knocked up and married after-the-fact, you weren’t a “housewife” at all. Three seasons of “The Real Housewives of New York City,” and no one noticed this. Except me. Actually, when you look at the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of “housewife” – a married woman in charge of a household – the only actual real housewife on that show was Countess Lu Ann de Lesseps’ Hispanic maid, Rosie. Props, Rosie. Remember when you went on vacation and “the Countess” was so proud that she actually mopped a floor, all by herself?

So Bethenny Frankel, I feel you owe us. Big time. And not with bullshit Skinny Girl Margaritas. For some of us, at least, tequila and lime juice are not the fifth food group. For some of us, there are evening activities other than cocktail parties, faux-book signings, and standing in front of “signage,” (my new favorite word), on a well-worn red carpet, having our photos taken by paparazzi Kathy Griffin wouldn’t pose for.

For some of us, the Upper East Side is not the “capital” of New York City. And then, lucky for the Upper East Side, as your popularity grew, you moved “downtown” and helped to further pollute lower Manhattan. Once an area that was home to artists and immigrants, now home to investment bankers, sons and daughters of investment bankers, some of who now define themselves as “artists,” but would sooner cut off an ear than not live within walking distance to Food Emporium. But, it’s not too late, Bethenny – you can still become a bona fide, authentic, real housewife of New York City. Here’s what you will need and/or need to do:

Buy a shopping cart. This is not unlike a McLaren stroller but for groceries and such, instead of babies whose mommies gained less weight during 9 months of pregnancy than a goldfish does on flake-food. The shopping cart is something one uses when one does one’s own food shopping, by walking up and down aisles in actual supermarkets in New York City. Unlike your index fingers, which work so well when it comes to punching in your Fresh Direct order online, or that clothy-hempy reusable, sustainable, bag that you proudly take out at Whole Foods and hold up like an obstetrician who’s just delivered a baby to let everyone know that you’re “green,” a shopping cart is the real housewife of New York City’s SUV.

Get a MetroCard – No, this is not an admission ticket to the Temple of Dendur Rhinoplasty Fundraiser at the Metropolitan Museum. It’s a plastic card but – wait! – don’t get too excited. You can’t really charge anything on it. You can’t run a tab at Avenue or Provocateur. You can’t get a facial at Bliss and they don’t take “the Metrocard” at Bendel’s. It’s a card that you use to ride the buses and subways of New York. You remember buses and subways, don’t you, Bethenny? They came right before taxi cabs and car services, and way before personal drivers and Escalade limos.

Become more self-reliant. Real houswives don’t have nannies and personal assistants and assistants to personal assistants. Real housewives don’t have doggie psychologists. Pet “psychologists, along with “personal shoppers” and “frogurt” are three compelling reasons for Third World countries to hate us.

Find friends with normal names. “Bethenny” is pushing the envelope, but real New York housewives do not have friends named “The Countess,” or D-list couple friends who make one name out of two. “Bennifer” was nauseating, as is “Brangelina.” “Silex” is just desperate. Real New York housewives have friends named “Debbie” and “Leslie” and “Fran.” Yes, they could have a friend named, “Jill.” But, all things considered, they’d probably rather not…

Get a reality check. Real New York housewives, particularly those over the age of 19 and certainly those within 5 years of peri-menopause, do not refer to their friends as “the girls.” “The girls” are the ones who go to grammar school, who shop for school supplies every September, who have playdates and sleep-overs.

Stop with the tantrums. Before you were a household name, when you were still doing anything to become famous, (yes, I remember you as the also-ran on Martha Stewart’s version of Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice), you probably had a better tolerance level for some of the “little problems” we all must face in our everyday lives. Real housewives, even before they become real “housewives,” do not get as upset at the thought of possibly not being able to wed at the Four Seasons restaurant as a Hurricane Katrina victim might have watching his house float away. You are not a “celebrity” because you get married at The Four Seasons. Especially with those in-laws. You are not a “celebrity” because you are on a first-name basis with the manager of The Four Seasons. I am sure that the seafood and steaks and chops purveyors are also on a first-name basis with the manager of The Four Seasons. Stop acting like a spoiled baby when you have better things to do. Like raise a spoiled baby.

Accept. Real New York housewives accept the fact that, if they aren’t gifted actors or painters or musicians or writers or directors, then perhaps they just aren’t going to be celebrities. You are not a bestselling author. Charles Dickens wrote. Ernest Hemingway wrote. Emily Dickinson wrote. Eventually, after millions of people read and cherished their work, they became “bestselling” authors. Do not, even if “The Skinny Girl’s Guide to the Galaxy and Beyond,” stays on the New York Times bestseller list for a century, think for even one nano-second, of yourself as an author. You are a car wreck that everyone turned around to watch and now that they know your name, they will buy your luggage tags. This does not make you a writer. This makes you a novelty. And yes, the word “novelty” contains the word “novel,” which is a book, which is probably why you are confused and think of yourself as an “author.” Think of yourself as a novelty act. Think of other novelty acts – ventriloquists, fire-eaters, plate spinners. There’s a reason Saul Bellow was never on The Ed Sullivan Show.

Stop the “shtick.” Real New York City housewives don’t do “shtick.” They are too busy working and raising families and doing laundry and picking up their own dry-cleaning and having mammograms and paying minimum balances on their Visa cards to have more one-liners than a Comedy Central Roast. It’s only a matter of time before, “I just flew in from East Hampton and boy, are my tanned arms tired,” or “Take my husband. Please.” No thanks. I’d rather my last name be “Goebbels” than “Hoppy.”

Stop spinning off. Real housewives don’t spin off everything they do into another half-hour of garbage to show in between commercials. And, if you must, which is pretty apparent, at least come up with a better name for your next spin-off. Or at least a grammatically correct one. “Bettheny Getting Married?” Why was that a question? As the entire season centered on such self-indulgent crap as you meeting your in-laws, you shopping for a wedding gown, you shopping for wedding bands, you hiring a wedding planner, you whining about wedding guests and centerpieces and venues, clearly this was a declarative statement. “Bettheny Getting Married.” Maybe even, “Bettheny Getting Married and Spending More on Flower Arrangements Than the People of Appalachia Earn in a Decade.” Exclamation point. And look – yet another opportunity to expand your brand – Skinny Girl Moonshine. I’m sure someone will drink to that.


Saturday, August 14th, 2010

You live in New York. You work in New York. In order to get from one to the other and then back again safely, you must spend some time on the streets of New York. Songwriters and poets have romanticized these streets, television and film have made them as familiar to the world as their own backyards. And yet, unless you traverse these mean streets, you just don’t know what’s out there. For shizzy…

When they said “go big or go home,” they were not referring to the size of the giant clear blue jug sitting on your bridge table in the middle of the sidewalk. You are not collecting money to save the world’s children. You are not even collecting money for your own children. I’d feel more inclined to throw a rolled-up buck into that plastic jug if you hollered, “Gimme my crack allowance, biatch!”

When I’m walking on the street, I am coming from someplace, which means I could be tired, or I am walking toward somewhere, which means I’m in a rush. Don’t approach me. Not for any reason. Not if my leg is on fire, there’s a French bulldog on the corner shooting craps. I don’t want to “check it out,” buy your crappy bootleg and/or more probably blank CDs, and don’t shove a Walgreen’s flyer in my face unless you want me to shove my fist in yours. If you see someone who refuses to make eye contact with you and walks so far away from you that she’s practically walking in the windows of the storefronts, take a hint. You’re not that interesting. You’re not that compelling. You are probably the short balding guy from high school who always asked out the statuesque model-type and were shocked when she spit on your head before laughing in your face. Yes there is a time and a place to give up. The time is now and the place is anywhere you see me.

I’m an old-fashioned kind of gal. I like to buy my books in bookstores, not off of some busted-up picnic table. When Barnes and Noble is charging $27.95 for the new E.L. Doctorow novel and you’re selling it for six bucks – well – what’s wrong with this picture? First, I feel like I need a shower just looking at you. Next I’m not used to buying serious literature when it’s stacked up against “Dora the Explorer” bath books, sports socks and vinyl placemats in the shape of the United States. Finally, purchasing literature from someone who doesn’t seem to have read a book since “The Berenstain Bears Get Their First Haircut!” just feels wrong.

For a smell to stand out among all the smells that permeate the crowded streets of New York, well, that’s impressive. An impossible feat? Close your eyes. Think of a smell just made for the Food Court in Hell. Bourbon Chicken from Ragin’ Cajun? Close. Just worse. Sweeter than cotton candy wrapped in cotton candy dunked in corn syrup, a smell that makes diabetics say, “I have diabetes – yay!” Sugar-coated cashew nuts. I have been on many streets in many neighborhoods at various times of the day and night and have yet to see anyone actually buy these. In fact, I have seen more people buying weed in the middle of the day in mid-town in full view of police officers. A summons and posting a bond vs. a lifetime of ridicule – is there really even a decision involved here?

“Hi – do you like children?” Hmmmm. I’m going to tell you what other people are really thinking but would never say out loud. “I love my own. Those Gap kids can be kind of cute. Ditto those Benneton babies. Oh… you mean starving children? You mean starving third-world children? Like starving third-world children with huge eyes and swollen bellies? And flies flitting about their heads? Sure. They’re fine. I’d like to like them but I don’t really know them. You want me to help them? Those children? Do I look like the type of person who’d give up my Chai Soy Mochachino for a three-year-old Somalian orphan? I mean, I hope I do look like that because I like to appear caring without having to do anything. I have to go now. If you come any closer, I will press charges. I’m – I’m not kidding. So go away. Now.”

You are a white rich college kid who perhaps feels guilty that your parents can send you to a $60,000-a-year college and it’s your first time living in New York and you’re young and idealistic and you want to give back. You can’t. Accept that. What’s that? You can’t? You’re young and idealistic and you know you can make a difference? No you can’t. And here’s why: 1) You can’t “give back” when you’ve pretty much just “taken” your whole life. 2) Harassing me by shouting carbon footprint facts and figures at me is not going to get me to give to Greenpeace and I’m betting that, without glancing down at that smug little clipboard of yours, you don’t even know if it’s Green Peace or Greenpeace or Green Piece and 3) Is that a World Wildlife Federation tote bag on your shoulder? Oh. No. No it’s not. It looks like – why, its a Balenciaga hobo bag, which looks really good with your Marc Jacobs cropped blazer and Christian Louboutin platform pumps. Sell a shoe. Save a whale. Now, don’t you feel better?

Incense sellers – even if you were in a store, with doors and display windows and security detectors, I’d wonder what you were a front for. You are a picnic table laden with stinky oils and incense sticks, and there aren’t enough people on earth who can stand the smell of patchouli oil for you to make a living. NEWS FLASH: It’s not the 1960s and most parents can’t be tricked with the “I’m only burning incense, Ma” line to conceal the fact that they’re sucking down blunts in their bedroom because their parents invented that scam decades ago. Today, most people today can’t make a living with a real job – no way you’re paying rent and a Con Ed bill selling sandalwood and jasmine stink-sticks. How much patchouli oil do you have to sell to buy a limitless MetroCard? When you do, use it and please get on the next available subway car. To Hell. Make that Smelly-Hell.

Don’t ask me for the time, spare change or an “extra” cigarette. I don’t wear a watch, “spare change” is oxymoronic and unless things changed since I stopped smoking years ago, there’s no such thing as an “extra” cigarette. The pack comes with 20. It’s not like the mutant peanut you get once in a while with three nuts in the shell, or “Buy 20 – Get One Free.” No extras. No kidding. No smoke for you.

Mr. Fruit and Vegetable guy – Glad I can buy fresh produce from a cart, but the filth under your fingernails makes me think that either you harvested the crops with your bare hands, or your hands have been places whose natives would never get past U.S. Customs without a full body-cavity search.


Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

Dear Mel,

Let me start by telling you that I am an old Jewish woman
, writing to you from my huge estate outside Berlin, where my family has lived and prospered for over a century.  Yes, of course Mel – can I call you bubella? – I still have all of our property – candlesticks, valuable paintings, silverware, gold teeth.  As you know, all of us Jews are extremely wealthy and crafty.  On behalf of all of the Chosen People, may I say thank you for the blood of all those Christian children – an important ingredient when preparing our Passover Matzo.   In the words of your very white and  pre-Vatican II Catholic father with two last names and no first name, Hutton Gibson, may I say, “What Holocaust?”

Mel Gibson’s father says Holocaust exaggerated

So, Mel, maybe it’s just the “yenta” in me, but Vos iz mit dir? No, that is not Aramaic, my little Meshugener Max – it is Yiddish for “What’s wrong with you?”  How did everything go so wrong for such a handsome, winsome, fun-loving Aryan like you?  I know, technically, that as a Catholic, not a Protestant, if there was a Hitler, which there wasn’t because there was no Holocaust which is why I still live in such opulence in the Motherland, that your family might have also perished because those silly enough to think that the Holocaust actually happened – lol – also believe that not only 6,000,000 Jewish people were killed by those nasty Nazis that never existed also purportedly, allegedly for those who believe in fairy tales, tall tales, but that 5,000,000 others including Catholics and gypsies and those people to whom you told the Spanish newspaper El Pais “They take it up the ass. [laughs, stands up, bends over, points to anus] This is only for taking a shit.” Remember that, Mel, bubbee?  The homosexual community was not too happy with you when you said that.  But you probably don’t believe they exist anyway.

For a long time, Mel, you were more fun than Oktoberfest in Alexanderplatz.  You were the nutty cop in those silly Lethal Weapon movies, and the nutsy-kooko paranoid cab driver in “Conspiracy Theory.”   You were quite the maverick in ‘Maverick,” and could there be a “madder” Max than you?  I don’t think so.  Not beyond Thunderdome.  Not beyond Theresienstadt.  What’s that?  No of course, there were no concentration camps in Europe during World War II.  I know that, Mel.  They were summer camps.  Concentration camp. Summer camp.  You can see how anyone could confuse the two.  War? What war?  Maybe Color War, some Arts and Crafts, a bisel bug juice.

Remember what your Revisionist History Papa Hutton Gibson said right before your film  “The Passion of the Christ,” opened?  By the way, and I’m certain most Jews feel the same way – who could be offended by the way you presented Jesus as having been relentlessly pursued by an evil cabal of Jews, headed by the high priest Caiaphas, who finally blackmailed a weak-kneed Pilate into putting Jesus to death?  Anyway, remember when your papa said,  “the Holocaust was fabricated and mostly fictional,” and that we Jews “had simply emigrated to other countries rather than having been killed.”  Emigrated, shmemigrated.  We never left. What Holocaust?

By the way, why was it called “The Passion of the Christ”? The title bothered me almost as much as the movie.  “The Passion of the Christ”? It’s like that cartoon show,The Batman.” When did “Batman” become “the” Batman?  It’s like “The Cher” or The Brangelina.” Maybe you had a few dozen Long Island Iced Teas when you were making up the title?  I mean, before you became a little – you know – maybe unhinged – you didn’t have this problem.  You didn’t make “The Braveheart.”  Am I right, bubella?  I’m right.

I am not familiar with the American idiom, “sugar tits,” but I think that maybe it’s not such a nice term to say.  I don’t even know what it means.  Sugar donuts?   Sure.  Sugar-coated?  Yum! Sugar Magnolia?  Why not?  But “sugar tits”?  Is that some sort of Aussie idiom?  A side-note, Mel, bubbee, – my niece wanted me to ask you:  how are you Australian if you were born in Peekskill, New York?  I guess that’s like asking a short, angry, badly coiffed, mustachioed Austrian who bore as much resemblance to the “Aryan race” as Mel Brooks, “How are you Aryan?”

Map Of PeekskillA Map of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands

And so now, Mr. Big Shot – your William Morris-Endeavor agency, an agency founded by at least a few people who wouldn’t feel out of place at a Passover Seder, who did not drop you as a client during the whole anti-Semitic rant of a couple of years ago, and a few people who would not feel out of place at the Pines in Fire Island who also did not drop you after your homosexual slurs and insults, have now decided you’re not good for their business.  And when a talent agency drops a client who can bring in billions of dollars well, that just doesn’t happen.  We’re talking about a profession with an ethical compass which would let them sleep at night after making a book/mini-series deal for Bernie Madoff, a group of people who’d still rep Jeffrey Dahmer had he not had the life shanked out of him in gen-pop.  It’s a long, slow fall, Mellela….  So here you are, with your Russian-sort-of-Mail Order Bride, and those tapes where you insulted and demeaned just about everyone except pre-Vatican II Roman Catholics, you just might have finally cooked your goose.  Not kosher, never touch it.  Feh!

Where did it all go wrong, Melvin?  Not so cute when you’re a Melvin.  Not a cute name.  Well, first – you left your wife for someone named “Oksana” who is not an Olympic gold medal winner.  Perhaps an Olympic gold digger winner if such an event was to make it to the games.  Who knows – Ping Pong and ribbon gymnastics did.   Next, you had baby with her.  You already have seven children.  Why one more?  Perhaps you wanted to do TV reality show, “Mel and Oksana + Eight”?




The Equal Sign

TLC Drops Jon Gosselin, Relaunches as 'Kate Plus 8'

Or,  because Oksana is dead ringer for Octomom,  you  thought you were dating Octomom and when you realized you weren’t, you were a little fuzzy from maybe too much Planter’s Punch and Dewar’s so at that point even this is making sense to you, Mr. Devout Christian-Who-Hates-Jews-and-Blacks-and-Hispanics-and-Homosexuals and stop me if I left anyone out… And that’s a pretty ridiculous theory.  But even that makes more sense than your father.

Oksana Grigorieva and Octomom Nadya Suleman

What is next for you, Mel Gibson?  Will you go back to Australia and then say you are really Peekskillian?  Will you reunite with your first wife, Robyn?  Or maybe you will just kick back the Foster’s Lager, throw a bunch of shrimp on the barbie and make some obscure Gillian Armstrong movie?   You could shear sheep and watch “The Thornbirds” over and over again.  Here are some career moves that would not be so wise, Melvin….

1)    Borscht Belt Comedian
2)    Social Director on Rosie O’Donnell’s next Rosie’s Family Cruise
3)    Cantor
4)    Orthodontist
5)    Broadway gypsy
6)    Gypsy-gypsy
7)    Fifty-Cent

And yet, all is not lost, bubella.  Here are some great career choices for you:

1)    Admissions Director – Seventh Ring of Hell
2)    World’s Greatest Holocaust Denier Dad T-Shirt Manufacturer
3)    Take-A-Drunk-to-Work Drunk
4)    Southern Border Patrol Guard
5)    Cinco De Mayo Denier
6)    (Hitler) Youth leader
7)    Rosetta Stone Aramaic for Beginners Pitchman

So all is not lost.  There are still many good years ahead of you.  And now before I go, because it is time to count all of my money and valuable paintings and polish all my precious jewels, I leave you with a question:  when you watch your career go down the drain down under, does it go counter-clockwise?

Gai kaken oifen yam!


Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

New Yorkers, despite our reputation for being cold and uncaring, can be pretty outgoing.  As a lifelong resident of this city, I have noticed that the extrovert in the New Yorker rears its head at particular times.  For example, if you board a bus and then realize you don’t have a MetroCard and ask, “Does anyone have change for a dollar?”, other passengers will do anything, even attempt to follow “The Talk of the Town” column in The New Yorker, to avoid making eye contact with you.  Yet, if you are walking down the street, minding your own business, people are somehow compelled to get into yours.

I have put up with decades of perfect strangers talking to me, asking me inane questions, commenting on the weather, asking for directions, the time, spare change.  Here’s my rule of thumb – unless you want to give me your winning Power Ball ticket, or my kidney is hanging out of my back and I haven’t noticed, chances are I don’t want to talk to you.  If I do, I will initiate the conversation.  I’m not smiling, I’m not making eye contact and I always hope that my aloof attitude and consistently cold shoulder will invite you to not approach me.

This seemed to work pretty well. Until I got a pug.  A chubby pug.  A chubby, happy, beautiful pug who, despite strangers’ unsolicited theories, is not overfed, gets plenty of exercise and is quite healthy. He is who he is.  He’s a big boy.  But for some reason, you cannot leave us alone.  You are compelled to tell us things either I know or he doesn’t understand.  He doesn’t know he’s a dog.  He knows he likes rolling in the fall leaves, peeing in the snow and “America’s Next Top Model” marathons. He’s just happy he’s not a person, I’m sure.

And yet, like some small-town anchor person or town crier or big-mouth yenta, you must stop us, take us out of our moment of bliss to say:

“Your dog is fat.

“Wow – I bet he’s a good eater!

“He’s panting.  Maybe if you cut down on the dog biscuits, he’d breathe better.”

“I’ve never seen such a fat pug.”

“He’s like Frank in “Men in Black.”  Only fat.”

So here’s the deal – Johnny is getting pretty pissed. He can’t talk like that formaldehyde-filled, stupid stuffed  cat on “Sabrina the Teenage Witch.”  But like most dogs and the people who love them, we communicate. I know what he’s thinking. He’s tired of hearing your unsolicited comments. Really. Both Johnny and I know that if we don’t have anything nice to say, we shouldn’t say anything.  But you started…

*      You’re old and skinny and I could hang a backpack on your dowager’s hump.

*      The only people who think a bald-headed guy with a ponytail looks hot are bald-headed guys with ponytails.

*     You’re 45 and you’re wearing a “BeBe” t-shirt that says “BeBe.” In silver glitter.

*    That’s  malt liquor  in your brown bag and you’re missing your eye-teeth.

*    Nice rollers.

*  You do know that t-shirt you’re wearing says, “New  York Mets”?

* Are those coffee stains or bleach stains on your coat?* I know what you’re thinking.  You’re thinking, “I’m thin and that dog is fat.”  Here’s what I’m thinking: “You’re a size double-zero and that means you don’t exist.  Twice.”

* You are carrying a “WordSearch” puzzle book.

* I got this fat by eating the thighs of people who   tell my mommy, “your dog is fat.”

* Nice Botox.  We can rent you out at Surprise  Birthday parties.

* Your hand is not a handkerchief.

* You’re 68.  Real tan or spray tan – same level of hideousity.

* You have two moles and five hairs growing out of  each of them.* The 1980s called.  They want their floral leggings back.

* If G-d meant for them to be worn on the street, He wouldn’t have called them “housecoats.”

* Awww — you were just a condom away from not having ugly children.

* Why would you smoke a cigarette and wear a flammable  jacket at the same time?

*Crocs.  That’s all.  Crocs.

So the next time you see Johnny and me walking down the street, in the park, by the river, you don’t have to say hello or even smile. In fact, we’d prefer if you just keep walking. But if you insist on stopping, don’t give us that “look,” because now you know that we are looking right back at you and, more often than not, it isn’t pretty.  It isn’t even presentable.


Monday, June 28th, 2010


The Internet?  Sliced bread?  Air conditioning
?  Movable type?  There are many contenders for “best invention of all time.”  Oh – I’m sorry.  Did I leave out the wheel?  Not an oversight.  Read, weep and understand why, on behalf of all New Yorkers I say, “Thanks a bunch, Mesopotamians.”



It’s so great that the city is thinking “green”!  Bike-riding’s great exercise and there are bike lanes everywhere!


There are bike lanes everywhere
.  Except on the sidewalk.  Please note the word “walk” in the word “sidewalk.”  Oh – I’m sorry, you’re pedaling too fast to read or to get the fact that sneaking up behind me in stealth-like fashion on your Fuji Crosstown Mountain Bike scares the bejeebers out of me.  And you’re always yelling at those mean, bad cars when all they want you to do is follow traffic laws instead of giving them the finger as you swoosh by them.  Or – I don’t know – actually stop at red lights or refrain from making sudden right-hand turns from the left lane.  Here comes a huge “TomKat” catering truck – aw, you’re wearing your EarBuds and you didn’t hear me.  THWACK!  You’re a bug on a windshield.  Oh well. One less skinny guy in black Latex Capri pants. All In all, a pretty good day.


Skateboards are so
sleek.  Skateboarders are so rad.


Vans are so nineties.  Shower.  Clean your filthy nails. Get a haircut.  Billabong this.



So ecologically sensible
and you can park it almost anywhere.

Try parking it in Bedrock because that’s the only place no one is going to make fun of you.



It’s portable, it helps you
get around town – don’t have to  chain it to a pole like a bicycle, don’t have to feed a meter or pay a garage.


Are you nine?  If you are, then you are just merely annoying.  Are you 39?  Because then you are a smorgasbord of annoyance –  and I don’t know where to focus my attention – on the baseball cap hiding your bald spot, your High-Top Chuck Taylor Converse sneakers that make you feel urban yet retro, that smug look on your face, like you thought of a method of transportation that no other adult knows about.  We know about it.  We’re pissed when a grade schooler zips around us like a mosquito on crack. We just can’t believe you’re riding one.  You’re “scooting.”   You vote, you drink vodka, you have a job and a place to live and you’re on a scooter.  What’s wrong with this picture?  You.  If it were made of actual razors then perhaps you could justify that smug and manly look you have on your face as you fold it up and slip it under your arm as you ride the escalator in Macy’s.  Until then, thanks for putting the “W” into “Wuss.”  Wuss.



So fast.  So retro and yet so futuristic.





Ciao, baby!  You are
so European!  You are so – come se dice –  sexy, yes?  Romantic and daring, si?


You are a twenty-something who spent
a semester abroad in Madrid or Florence or Paris and now you think you ARE Jean Pierre or Francesco.  The name “Jason Bel Mondo” carries no street cred. Not even in Tenafly.  It barely carries cul de sac cred.



Sleek.  Unobtrusive. No more strained back.  It’s modern!  Contemporary!  It’s travel today!


Your hernia or my wrath – you choose
.  In an airport, I am clearly outnumbered so I will just grit my teeth and deal with the fact that the same species that built the Colossus of Rhodes, the Eiffel Tower, the Mandalay Bay Las Vegas,  can no longer lift and carry a garment bag from a taxi to an airline check-in counter.  If you are, however, schlepping one of these down Lexington Avenue, particularly if you are not selling swag out of it, if you are walking in front of me, obstructing my pathway,  cutting a wide swath so that I can neither pass you nor walk at a pace faster than a sloth, I will get you.  It will be in stealth-like fashion.  It might be today, it might be next April but as you walk with your 29” wheeled duffle bag  rolling behind you, be scared.  Be very scared for I have many tricks behind your back.  If it’s soft luggage, maybe I’ll pour my Latte or Diet Dr. Pepper on it, or tag it with a can of Krylon royal blue spray paint.  If it’s polycarbonate, maybe I’ll trip over it and sue you or jump on it and let you pull your luggage and me down the avenue.  You don’t know what I look like.  I might be behind you right now.  I’m betting that overnight bag with no wheels is starting to look pretty good.  Pretty, pretty good…