(June 26, 2012) – I think Bravo is gunning for Ramona Singer. I predict that by the end of this season she will be destroyed by her cast mates and by the show’s editors who, no doubt, have plenty of ammunition to make this high-strung woman look like a villain.
I also suspect that if they wanted to, the producers could sew together the footage to make Ramona appear to be a even-keeled, loving altruist without a mean bone in her body. I believe they consciously decided to turn the audience against Ramona when they looked at the ladies of the new Real Housewives of New York and figured she was the best candidate to take over the public enemy #1 role that Jill Zarin left vacant.
Carole Radziwill seems nice enough to Ramona. She films with her regularly. She meets with her for meals. She claims to like her. Still she gets in giggly digs at Ramona’s expense, as she did yesterday when she met Ramona and Aviva for lunch in Ciano.
Carole knows Heather Thompson didn’t invite Ramona to join the group on the upcoming trip to London. For reasons I do not understand, Carole wants to probe Ramona on camera and get down to the nitty gritty about why she and Heather do not like each other. To bait her, Carole suggests that it may be because Heather talks too much. Ramona grabs the line like a shark and encourages Carole to expand on this subject. Carole agrees Heather does speak in monologues and clarifies that Heather talks almost as much as Ramona does.
While I think that is true – Ramona does talk more than Heather – that’s a dig. She may have been smiling and laughing when she said it, but that’s a dig and I am sure there are many more to come because Carole likes to comment on her colleagues’ behavior from a superior position as she did when she called Aviva Drescher her “superfan,” and suggested that LuAnn de Lesseps is a name dropper with “royal tourettes.” To borrow Carole’s own words, she’s also attracted to drama, “like a moth to a flame.” And Carole is no fool. She sees what Bravo sees: Ramona Singer is drama personified. I expect Carole is going to be narrating Ramona’s jacked-up personality all season long.
Uptown a bit, Sonja Morgan meets LuAnn for dinner in Side Car*. Sonja is elated to be there. She’s bubbly and sparkling and almost instantly the conversation turns to Ramona, the producers’ current obsession.
LuAnn is transparent in her attempts to turn Sonja against Ramona. She wonders aloud if Ramona has mind control over Ms. Morgan. By suggesting this she is actually challenging Sonja to rebel against her friend of 15 years. LuAnn would like Sonja to believe that she has to prove she can think for herself, even if Ramona doesn’t like it.
Of course Sonja recognizes that the “Countess” is spinning the conversation to make Ramona sound insanely jealous of their relationship. She mentions she doesn’t understand why LuAnn is so upset with Ramona, and preposterously LuAnn denies she’s upset at all.
I believe LuAnn is enraged at Ramona. She wants to see her go down. She wants to see this so badly that later when she learned that Heather refused to invite her to London, she called Heather “gangsta chic,” undoubtedly a common catch phrase in the parlance of Europe’s aristocracy.
If there were ever a chance that Heather would break down and let Ramona join the upcoming trip, it quickly evaporated when they met for drinks at T Bar. Ramona’s techniques in trying to ingratiate herself are odd to say the least. First, she’s late for their cocktail date. Second, she interrupts Heather incessantly. Third, she regurgitates all of their failed conversations in the past. Forth, she confronts Heather about not responding to an invitation to attend a dinner in Ramona’s honor. Fifth, she schools Heather in how to handle email correspondences.
Oddly Ramona tells us in her video diary that she always feels like she has to be on her best behavior around Heather. I have to say, if this is Ramona’s best behavior, I am sure there legions of people in her life who do not invite her places.
Just when I thought that had to be the most uncomfortable conversation Ramona would have last night, I quickly realized the real implosion would actually occur at the Social Life magazine party.(side note: who in the hell has ever heard of this magazine outside of Bravo shows? Never once have I run across it in Manhattan or the Hamptons!)
It started off just as happily as these Housewives soirées always do. Everyone is aglitter. Sonja is elated to be honored as the cover girl and center of attention. The group is endlessly air kissing each other. Sure LuAnn manages to get in a dig about how Ramona is at fault for only pecking one of Jacques cheeks, but that’s to be expected.
After all she is a “countess,” and she wrote an etiquette book. It’s practically her job to point out Ramona’s every misstep. The way this season is shaping up, I suspect she’s going to need an assistant to properly catalog all of Ramona’s faux pas because Mrs. Singer seems to be coming unhinged. All as a result of being excluded from this group’s fun and by the new girl, too!
This was not supposed to happen. Historically it’s just not done. Last season when Cindy Barshop failed to kiss Ramona’s ring, Sonja gave her a good talking to for not recognizing Ramona Singer is a star. Oh but not this season. This season Ramona is being treated like a nobody. And she is enraged about it and flits from person to person, telling the entire cast that Heather is being a mean girl. I truly feel sorry for her because she is positively desperate to go on this trip.
Aviva suggests that she just ask Heather why she wasn’t invited. Ramona doesn’t seem capable of asking that question and I cannot figure out why. Ramona prides herself on being blunt. I wonder why on this one occasion she simply cannot pose a direct question. Not that I agree with her even slightly, but given Ramona’s personality, I definitely understand why she is hurt and explosively enraged when she learns Sonja will travel with the rest of the cast. Ramona truly believes Sonja is her bodyguard, her protector, the person who helps keep her detractors in line.
So what does she do, now that she’s feeling hurt? Taking a page straight out of the Teresa Giudice Survival Guide, she verbally attacks Sonja in the middle of her party and storms out, dragging her husband Mario with her and leaving in their wakes the impression that Ramona is a drunken, petty mess of a woman who will throw a temper tantrum if she doesn’t get her way.
It is clear by the end of this episode that Ramona is off the rails. I predict it is just a matter of time before Bravo’s locomotive runs her down and casts this histrionic woman aside as they have so many others before her.
To add insult to injury on the Bravo website today, they’re showing a Ramona Retrospective with photographs from her five loyal seasons of service to Andy Cohen and his wily editors. To me it looks like one of those career-ending greatest hits albums that a record company releases when it’s given up on getting anything worthwhile from one of their artists.
* For whatever reason, I must mention something about Side Car, the restaurant where Sonja and LuAnn had dinner. It is about 5 years old, though it is attached to and run by one of New York City’s oldest saloons, PJ Clarke’s. It is not exclusive. It’s not a club. It’s actually never really that busy. And that is precisely why I like it. You can dash up there, have a bite and a quiet conversation. I used to live mere feet from the place. It was never, ever busy during any one of the dozens of times I’ve been there. Still it serves very fresh, simple American food because the bar beneath it is packed nearly 24 hours a day which keeps their pantry constantly replenished with fresh ingredients. I cannot imagine why Sonja is raving about its exclusivity. She sounded like a paid spokesperson. And I cannot imagine who all those people are in the background during this scene. I’d be willing to bet my house that they are all plants that the restaurant invited to make the place buzz on camera. And I applaud the owner for doing it. He’s a smart guy to create this illusion.
The only restaurant in New York that I think is truly exclusive is Rao’s, which oddly enough is in Spanish Harlem. Things may have changed because I see they have a reservation number on their website, but 10 years ago you simply could not get a table there under any circumstances unless you know the guy who has booked in advance for every last day of his life. I’ve been there twice, both times as someone’s guest. The food is mediocre at best.
All photos are courtesy of BravoTV.com, unless otherwise indicated.
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I am a New York City publicist who specializes in promoting luxury products and experiences and occasionally moonlight as a journalist.
Relatively new to the world of blogging, I have watched and enjoyed Bravo’s Housewives shows since the first season of the Real Housewives of Orange County. I created this blog over the 4th of July holiday of 2011 because I enjoy writing and love to figure out how to blend images and words to create something that is both visually compelling and interesting to read.