After a crayayzy week in Chicago dealing with family matters, I am so happy to be back in the warm, fuzzy world of the Gasm. Not that Chicago isn’t great, I love Chicago. I had deep-dish pizza, prime rib, cheesecake, and met the Anti-Christ. No, I’m not kidding. I’m happy to tell you that the Anti-Christ is alive and well, and currently residing behind one of the luggage check-in counters in the USAIR terminal.
Surprisingly, the Anti-Christ didn’t look like this at all.
Anyhoo, this week our ladies continue to dispense with social conventions in a way that makes me long for a level of sexual repression more commonly found in Franciscan nuns. Grab some wine, some aerodynamic munchies and bolt your doors. You never know where creepy douchebag, Ryan, could be wandering.
Last week we ended with the fateful “to be continued” statement ominously superimposed over the closed bathroom door. This week we start exactly where we left off. The bathroom door is still closed and our editors are generously supplying us with subtitles for Ryan and Gretchen’s dialogue. Ryan alternately pants, weasels, and begs for a chance to stick his slimy and probably forked tongue down Gretchen’s throat. After all, this is going on TV and it’s not going to look good down at the bar if he gets shot down, and beside he’s really, really horny. Drunken Gretchen dithers back and forth between telling Ryan “No, you can’t kiss me” and reassuring him that he is really, really hot. In my mind, the last statement is either Gretchen’s drunken way of being kind to a pathetic loser, or absolute proof that her alcohol blood content is way beyond the level of legal consent. Either way, the message is a little confusing. Sort of along the lines of “Don’t. Stop.” versus “Don’t stop.” While I’m a firm believer in “No means No!”, my limited experience has led me to believe that when confronted with a loser scumbag like Ryan, it is imperative to be absolutely clear in your rejection. Ryan is not a guy who easily grasps the subtleties of romance.
Finally, after some whining most probably mingled with pathetic tears and snot, Ryan accepts his rejection and comes out to face the camera crew. It’s a toss up as to whether they were laughing their asses off or retching in disgust. I’m guessing the men were laughing and the women were retching. But I apologize if I’ve miscategorized anybody.
The next morning Lynne is feeling a little nervous. In the cold light of day, the decision to leave Gretchen at Tamra’s house in easy pawing reach of scumbag Ryan isn’t looking so good. So, she decides to make the classic morning after OMG and WTF phone call. You know, “Oh my God, I’ve been so worried” and “What the fuck happened last night?” This of course gives our editor’s ample reason to flashback to the end of the party, when Lynne and Frank are trying to drive Gretchen to safety and Gretchen declines. Then in the middle of Lynne’s flashback, Tamra appears to explain that Ryan offered to drive Gretchen home, but long acquaintance with her son caused Tamra to nix that idea.
Gretchen doesn’t answer Lynne’s call. My guess is that she was busy worshipping her porcelain goddess. Lynne, having had her own extensive experience with the morning after effects of too much alcohol, totally understands. She leaves a sweet message saying that she doubts Gretchen is feeling too good, but it’s okay because with her fiancÃ© dying, Gretchen has a great excuse for her drinking.
I can’t help thinking that if I were back in high school, I would so want Lynne to be my best friend. Then Lynne blows out a small poof of air and sighs, and for a moment I’m worried that the strain on her over-inflated lips might be too much and silicone is going to go flying out everywhere in some sort of grotesque anti-plastic surgery moment. Thank the Lord her skin handles the strain.
It turns out that mama Jeana was worrying about Gretchen as well. Jeana’s been having some tough times of her own this summer so she’s got lots of sympathy for Gretchen. Having her abusive, brain-damaged, husband sticking around the house like some gross barnacle has got to be a nightmare. But now, Matt has his own apartment and he’s finally moved out, so Jeana’s trying to move on with her life, or at least back on her treadmill. But first, she’s still got all of Matt’s things in the house to sort through and deliver to him. Honey, that’s what Hefty 39 gallon trash bags are made for. You just plunk those clothes in the bags, tie them up, and deliver them.
Jeana’s got peeps to help her get out of her depression and back on track with what she’s calling a healthy lifestyle, which translates to thin, botoxed, and orange. It seems to me that Jeana might benefit from a geographical cure. Living in a sane area of the country that doesn’t worship women who look like Bratz dolls could go a long way to improving her quality of life. Because let’s face it. Depressed or not, Jeana isn’t going to turn into one of those four hour a day middle-aged gym rats.
John Ellis, Jeana’s personal trainer, pays a visit to her house to get her motivated. And what a difference his workout regime has already made. Johnny boy’s already lost a few pounds and now that he has a firmer petite tushi that doesn’t cause his tight whiteys to ride up, he’s in a confident peaceful place. No more submissive peeing for Johnny boy, instead he’s able to patiently listen to Jeana explain her battle with depression and Matt’s unhappy influence. John nods wisely and explains that people get influences from the outside and on the inside. But, they can only get motivated when the voices on the inside are more profound than life on the outside.
After John’s words of wisdom, Jeana is pumped up and ready to run. Literally. She leashes up her bulldog, grabs Johnny boy, and hits the pavement ready to burn some of those ex-husband calories.
This week Tamra is taking a stab at trying to redeem her maternal image. Having recovered from her most recent bout of alcohol poisoning (nothing redundant there) she is busy hosting a “stay at home mom” pool party. This is a tranquil little affair where the children really should be bundled up in life jackets so they don’t accidentally drown because their mothers are too busy drinking and comparing boob jobs to supervise them.
Who does Tamra invite to this drunken mommy get together? Why, Gretchen of course. What could be closer to a stay at home mom than a currently-not-working, childless, real estate agent, who happens to own two dogs? Tamra shares that she thinks that Gretchen might be a little envious of where Tamra is in her life and it’s time that Gretchen stops the partying. After all, she is the hottest housewife in Orange County, so why wouldn’t Gretchen be jealous. Tamra knows this because her magic mirror keeps telling her so. Or at least it did until Gretchen arrived.
The topic of The Party comes up and Tamra explains how trashed everyone got. Somehow focusing on the fact that her kids were witness to all of the drama, which just adds a whole new layer to my loathing for these mothers, Tamra is quick to point out that her kids liked Gretchen because she was so much like Tamra. I’m thinking that the kids have already zeroed in a mommy’s pathetic Gretchen inspired midlife crisis.
To add a little humor to the situation, Gretchen’s dogs are completely outfitted in their own life jackets, and if anything she seems more concerned about their welfare than the rest of the mommies do about their own children. I would make a joke about the life jackets, but I have to admit that to my husband’s never ending embarrassment my dog has his own life jacket as well.
However, in my defense, I do walk my dog by the ocean and I have hopes that he will one day brave the waves without getting washed away. Gretchen, on the other hand, is worried that her little guys will be swept off by a stray tsunami that heads straight through the Indian ocean, wraps around Australia, continues through the Pacific ocean to launch itself straight at California. And you know what? It could happen. But Tamra isn’t impressed by Gretchen’s foresight. Apparently, she’s more of a hands off, not-to-worry kind of mom, as evidenced by her kids bobbing around in the pool. After watching Gretchen with her dogs, Tamra tells us that she’s absolutely sure that if Gretchen had kids she’d raise a couple of spoiled brats. And, if I was Gretchen, I’d be careful to heed Tamra’s words of criticism. After all Tamra has proved herself to be unequaled in the child-raising department.
It’s kind of hard not to notice that the camera has zoomed in on a pair of enlarged breasts and is lingering there. I can’t help wondering if douchebag Ryan hasn’t grabbed the camera, but it turns out that our editors were simply giving us a moment to vicariously appreciate a new and expensive purchase. Sort of like a new Mercedes or Rolex, only less expensive. The owner of the new boobs is thrilled with her purchase and happy to have the opportunity to display them for the camera.
This of course leads to an intense discussion of boobs new and old, natural and unnatural. Seriously, Tamra seems to discuss breasts more often than most adolescent boys. In the midst of all of the tightly stretched. strangely perky, mammary glands, Gretchen’s chest is kind of a relief to look at. On the other hand, from a purely practical stance, if a tsunami does hit, Tamra is more likely to survive. Which could be the reason that Tamra thinks Gretchen is suffering from “boob envy.”
Of course, date-rape-boy wannabe, Ryan, has to make an appearance. There’s booze, cameras, and a lot of Tamra’s half naked friends milling around. Who knows, maybe this time he’ll get lucky. Tamra tells us that she thinks Ryan is going to try and pick up with Gretchen where he left off at The Party. If I recall correctly, this means he’ll be picking up after being shotdown by a blackout drunk woman on national TV. I’m guessing that Ryan’s heading to the bar to drink himself into an even more deluded state. After all, if he didn’t manage to get anything off Gretchen when she was drunk, he couldn’t really be stupid enough to think that he’d get anything off her when she was sober? Could he?
And, now, for a special gift from our producers we get to watch Vicki fall on her ass.
Jeana is hosting a meeting of the Coto de Caza chapter of the Le Tip network. This chapter was founded by the local crack ho Vicki. Apparently, Vicki must have noticed that the neighborhood children were running away when she approached them and adults were bolting their doors and refusing to answer their phones. It’s lonely being a scary crackhead. Being a woman of initiative, Vicki decided to address the problem head on. You’ve got to admire her for not skulking off into a dark dank basement, where her only contacts would be other addicts like herself. Instead, Vicki took it upon herself to form a networking group that would be inclusive of all kinds of people and where crack hos could be accepted with the rest of society. The thought almost brings tears to my eyes. Apparently, the members of the chapter are equally impressed, if not more. Well, probably more. I wouldn’t have thought to give Vicki an award for founding the chapter. But, the chapter members are nice enough to give her an award and Vicki goes up to accept it, graciously taking a moment to loosely quote from The Field of Dreams, “Think it, build it, and they will come.” Then, as she starts to walk away, she misses a step, and wham! She falls over like a sleeping cow that’s been pushed.
Yoohoo! Lauren, honey! Are you still reading? Because if you are, I’m about to once again prove how much better you are than me…Watching his dear old mom face plant and roll to end up on her middle-aged tuchus, Michael takes a moment out of his busy, self-serving schedule of beer guzzling to offer his mom the sage advice that she might want to work on being more graceful. You know like his OH, SO, PRETTY, waxen doll girlfriend, Lauren.
Crack ho, Vicki, is not impressed with her son’s wit. For a moment it looks as if she might actually kill him on the spot, but she thinks better of it, apparently deciding that Michael isn’t quite fat enough to slaughter and eat. Reverting to her normal pathetic neediness, Vicki demands to know if Michael’s proud of her. And there’s an awkward pause while Michael’s neurons short circuit in their attempt to produce an answer.
In case anybody else was wondering why in God’s name any halfway sane person would agree to sign on to this show, we now have a short infomercial featuring Lynne Curtin’s jewelry. Lynne tells us that when her husband had cancer she worked for a year as an aesthetician, but since then her only income is derived from her line of custom made bracelets called Cuff Love. These bracelets are retailing for $225 to $275. I was a little curious to see if the cuffs are still retailing at those prices, so I googled “Cuff Love Lynne” and the first link to come up brought me to Alt.com “Your online adult personals, BDSM, Leather & Fetish Community”. Woohoo! Lynne is way more exciting that I had hoped. But back to reality. Sadly, while I found several jewelry links, none of them mentioned Lynne Curtin.
Lynne tells us how hard she works and how hard the work is on her hands. I can totally sympathize with the hand thing. Hours a day on my laptop makes my hands sore too. But as a businesswoman, Lynne has me beat hands down. Heh-heh. (Sorry that was pretty bad.) She explains that she’s constantly going and doesn’t even watch TV hardly at all. I wonder if she’s slowed down enough to watch the train wreck that this season has become.
Once again, Gretchen somehow manages to drag herself away from her dying fiancÃ©’s bedside to be filmed having lunch with Jeana. It’s such a shame that Jeff’s illness has precluded her from getting enough camera time to take a major role this season.
Jeana wants to know how Jeff is doing. Gretchen skips over giving a report on Jeff’s health and goes straight to relating the hospital drama that occurred that morning. It seems that one of Jeff’s ex-wives had the nerve to show up at the hospital without informing Gretchen that she would be coming into town for a week. If I understand this correctly, this ex-wife is the mother of Jeff’s children, which actually makes her ex-wife #2 and #5. It seems that she and Jeff had reunited and remarried at one point. Anyhoo, Gretchen describes the scene as ugly. I’m sure that both Jeff and the hospital staff appreciated having an ugly scene played out in front of them. And, I’m equally sure Bravo is thoroughly frustrated that they weren’t allowed to bring their cameras into the hospital to film the drama. Apparently, Jeff’s former wife told Gretchen that she had flown in because her son, Jake, had told her that Jeff was alone most of the time. Well fry me like a green tomato, because I never would have seen that coming.
Gretchen is completely indignant that Jeff’s former wife would have said such a horrible thing. Of course, if she had just been more diplomatic about the whole thing, offering to help Gretchen because she understood that Gretchen was soooo busy with the whole reality show thing. Well, then that would have been entirely different.
Sadly, Jeana’s sympathy seems to be running a little low, as she listens to Gretchen indignation. But it’s kind of funny to watch Gretchen’s frustration mount as Jeana tries to gently point out slightly more appropriate responses to the situation. Unfortunately, the concept of putting your personal feelings aside to try and make a situation better for somebody else, such as your dying fiancÃ©, seems to completely elude Gretchen. Instead, Gretchen explains to us that she’s not a bitch or going to be jealous, but she’s not going to be there for Jeff if his ex-wife is there, so he’s got to choose between them. OMFG, you can’t be serious. What a wretched woman. Who gives an ultimatum to a man on his deathbed? Can’t this show produce a single blond woman who lasts more than one season and is not a complete nightmare?
Our all girl outing for the week has Jeana, Gretchen, Vicki and Lynne going shopping at Fred Segal. Somehow Tamra seems to be missing out on this little fun loving adventure. Possibly because her husband is unemployed, her home is close to going into foreclosure, and her credit cards have been cancelled. I have no idea if there’s any truth to that, but them’s the internet rumors. However, during the limo ride over to the store, Lynne gives voice to a completely different theory; she’s wondering if Tamra’s pregnant. Vicki glances at Lynne just long enough to shoot down Lynne’s idea. Pregnant no, bloated from alcohol, sure. Lynne, of course, can totally relate to the idea of bloat. Pregnant no, bloated from malnutrition sure.
Bored by the conversation, Vicki immediately grabs her laptop and tries to “work”; obsessively googling “hot cabana boys”. Noting Vicki’s determined expression, Lynne makes a praiseworthy attempt to ingratiate herself by offering to be Vicki’s assistant. Vicki has a particularly hot half naked boy on the screen and can barely lift her eyes away long enough to snap, “I need somebody that knows how to work.”
At Fred Segal, the ladies are called over to the perfume counter where they are invited to design their own fragrances based on their personalities. I’m guessing that all of these scents are going to need a strong alcohol base. Gretchen goes for fun and flirty with a little sophistication thrown in. As evidence of this sophistication she adds that she wants the scent to drive men to the point of saying, “Oh, baby, that’s hot.” Lynne describes herself as a surfer, nature girl and is happy with a patchouli, earthy scent. Vicki somehow expects to find a scent that will reflect her as a strong determined businesswoman who knows what she wants and usually gets it. Not surprisingly, she doesn’t like any of the options the salesgirl present. Jeana describes herself simply as warm.
Bored by the perfume counter, Gretchen wanders over to the luxury toy section, otherwise known as the really expensive vibrator display. Seriously, Lynne needs to rethink the whole jewelry line concept, because these babies are retailing at $150 to $3250.
Once again acting like a beacon of class and restraint, Gretchen tells the salesgirl that her fiancÃ© is in the hospital and “a girls got to do, what a girls got to do.” On the other hand, at least she’s not talking about grabbing random hospital personnel to meet her sex needs.
Jeana is completely confused by the little pen like gadgets. At first mistaking them for fancy toothbrush holders and then wanting to know why Gretchen was sticking one in her ear. Thank God they chose to take this little shopping trip before consuming their luncheon alcohol. I’m personally grateful to be spared the site of Gretchen trying to insert a diamond encrusted vibrator into ANY of her other orifices.
After Gretchen has run up Jeff’s credit cards by purchasing a luxury toy in every conceivable color, the ladies head off to lunch, booze, and the most awkward conversation ever. Seriously, three things not to discuss with people you don’t know well, especially when you’re on camera: religion, politics, and money. More specifically, exactly how to get the dying man in the hospital to fork over his money. There is no way that this conversation is going to come off well.
As a practical woman, I have to agree in principal with Jeana and Vicki that the partner of a terminally ill patient needs to have financial issues formalized. However, there are appropriate settings for addressing these issues and offering sensitive and caring support and advice. A setting in front of a reality TV show’s cameras somehow just doesn’t constitute appropriate or sensitive.
To give her some credit, Gretchen is a little reluctant to follow Vicki’s advice to have Jeff appoint her as a beneficiary for 20% of his life insurance policy. Lynne is more than a little disgusted by the mercenary tone of the conversation around a dying man’s money. I don’t know if the diet pills that Vicki is hawking combined with the crack she’s been snorting has finally driven her off the deep end into total paranoia, but the conversation proceeds quickly from tense to bizarre. As far as I can tell, Vicki is taking Gretchen’s reluctance and Lynne’s distaste as a direct attack on her professional expertise in life insurance. Instead, of letting the conversation go until a more appropriate time, Vicki accuses Lynne of being confrontational and rude, and turning such a pleasant topic into an outright argument. Lynne tells us that Vicki seemed to take the suggestion that Gretchen loved Jeff as a personal attack on her own feelings for hubbie, Donn. You’ve got to wonder, if there isn’t some truth in that, because her highness is seriously pissed. What’s more, Vicki was still ranting about Lynne when she wrote her blog this week. I’m thinking that it might be time to make a choice between the crack or the diet pills, because crack ho’s sounding a little bit like the crayayzy women who lives at the end of my block and really, really hates all those imaginary little people running around her feet all the time. You know, the ones that are always out to get her.
Well, Gasmi, that’s it for this week. I’m so sorry the recap was late. Believe me I’ll try to avoid family crises in the future. Next week it looks like Vicki’s threatening to take her boobs out, so we’ll all need to have some anti-nausea medicine on hand. Until then, I love you guys.
***To read the next chapter in Yenta’s novel, The Traveling Prayer, click here.
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