A Guide to Living (As Told by #RHONJ)

Ladies, the jig is up. As much as we hate to admit it, and no matter how many times we deny (deny, deny), we all have one or two guilty pleasures that we’d prefer the world didn’t know about (i.e., the half-eaten Twix bar stashed in the back of the freezer, or blasting Mirrors by Justin Timberlake at least once per day). I indulge, you indulge, so to hell with the judgers (because even they indulge).

As a matter of fact, one of my guiltiest (and perhaps, most shameful) pleasures re-entered my life. Yes, you guessed it, The Real Housewives of New Jersey premiered last night on Bravo TV. The ad campaigns and trailers leading up to the Season 5 premiere were, for lack of better phrasing, cheesy as all hell. The “digging up dirt and replanting flowers” theme was purely random, the background music mimicked that of a 1998 dramatic thriller, and the housewives exchanged snarky glances that had viewers thinking, “Is that a body you’re digging up?” Basically, the whole concept was fake and forced. And judging from the first episode of the season, they pretty much hit the nail on the head.

Between the scripted acting (I mean, did they really think we’d buy the whole ‘Milania and Antonia brought our families back together’ plot?) and the cheesy one-liners (“Sexy life, loyal wife; take a page out of my book”), it appears that Season 5 is chock-full of anything but reality. But even amidst the narrated interactions and fake smiles, the housewives still managed to delve out some helpful advice.

Do
-Monitor (with Hitler-esque tactics) how a pair of four-year-old girls assemble charm bracelets (first the sparkly diamond one, then five pink hearts, then another diamond…like, duh!).
-Acknowledge the creepy disadvantages of blind dating (Rosie + overweight blondes = disaster).
-Encourage your preteen (11, to be exact) to offer bold opinions on adult matters while flaunting her assets (or just her ass) in a spandex skirt because “a boy likes her, and she likes him.”

Don’t
-Act fake around family with whom you’re feuding (except when the cameras are around).
-Follow your own advice and stay out of family controversy that doesn’t involve you….or your family.
-Prohibit your toddler from running around in five-inch heels, further increasing her chances of breaking one or both ankles.

Compared to the past four semi-successful, plenty-scandalous seasons, it deeply saddens me to report that I don’t have much faith in the future of RHONJ. I hope I’m wrong. I hope last night’s episode was a poorly executed indication of things to come. I hope there are wild accusations, table-flipping, and shocking guest appearances (Danielle Staub, anyone?). I just hope the housewives make all of my reality TV dreams come true.

And if not, I’ll have no other option but to turn to those whiny, spoiled princesses roaming all of Long Island. And no judging; a girl’s entitled to a guilty pleasure every now and again.

Kristina Cappuccilli

20-something creative writer turned corporate, armed with big ideas and even bigger dreams. Avid reader, lover of all things musical, incessant blogger. Sucker for movie quotes, feature writing, and a good book. To inspire and be inspired.

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