Here's what I learned at lunch from the Real Housewives:
There's a qualitative difference between the ladies of New Jersey and their NYC counterparts. Basically, it comes down to aspiration. New York is a city that requires you to define yourself: Where are you going? What are your dreams? So even if you're not quite sure of the answers, it's pretty easy to find yourself making it up as you go along. Which is insanity-provoking...and the genesis of most creative greatness.
New Jersey (at least the corner we see on the show) is a different kind of place. The boundaries are clearer: you're either in or out of various groups, and once that is established, everyone is free to relax, make sauce, and talk about the state of their "chuckies." You can kind of just BE, because your eyes aren't always fixed on the next rung up on the social or artistic ladder. (Unless you're frantically shoving your children in front of talent scouts and pageant judges...that's a different post).
Now I don't mean to romanticize either perspective. But I wonder if I don't secretly long for a bit of both in my life? I'd never be happy just making sauce (okay, I'm not sure I'd ever be happy spending a whole day in the garage sorting & grinding tomatoes. Prego is fine by me...) but I love the idea that we can both strive AND relax--that life is big enough to encompass both.
My other take home from the Real Housewives? BLING IS BACK!!! I totally love the glitzy, over the top sparkly jewelry (and shoes...and tops...and children) they flash around. Oh the outfit possibilities I'd find for a lunch with these girls!
So now I'm dreaming of a day at the bead store with Dina (my fav housewife), Caroline, and Teresa. Let the sparkle and candid girl talk roll :)