Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Easing off of Bravo

I'm not a big fan of making New Years Resolutions. I feel it's just an excuse to binge your way through the holidays indulging in all your vices knowing January first is right around the corner and you can start fresh all until some other special day (Sunday Funday, Thirsty Thursday, there's always something) comes around so you can cheat and then cheating leads to the usual indulgence by Martin Luther King Day. And then your resolution has lasted a whopping three weeks, well two if you count all your cheat days. So what was the point of that unrealistic declaration?  Instead I live my life how I feel fit, enjoying things in moderation without feeling guilty for it. When I do want to start something new or make a change then I consider every day is a fresh new start to make a change. 

And so recently I've beginning to feel that it's time to review my television choices. I'll openly admit it, I'm ridiculously glued to watching all things Bravo and all things Housewives. Oh, and it doesn't end there. After watching glorified middle aged women driving Maseratis, dining at Villa Blanca, sipping on Pinot Grigio and viciously attacking one another like an illegal cockfight in the back alley of a Mexican border town I go to the reality blogs to read the mockery filled recaps and the hatred and psychoanalysis splattered across the message boards. And it still continues. I often visit the twitter pages of said celebreality stars to further peak my curiosity regarding the questioning of whether they truly are wealthy or in foreclosure and what type of evil they are spewing about their nemesis from their show. Wow, where do I get all this free time?

It all began five years ago when  a friend suggested I watch the Real Housewives of Orange County. She said it was a new show that she liked and thought I would enjoy. Not sure why she got this vibe from me. What else was I watching at the time? Hmm, reruns of Beverly Hills 90210, reruns of Sex in the City and Keeping up with the Kardashians. Ahh, now I see why. And thus the vibe. I had never heard of Bravo before, or wait, was that the channel Queer Eye for the Straight Guy was on? I may have watched that show once or twice when it was the it show. Other than that, I stuck to E! and Soapnet.
It was a Saturday afternoon and there was a marathon of The Real Housewives of OC season one showing. I may just have watched every one of the eight or so episodes that weekend and got hooked. From the visit of Slade's parents and Jo making a fool of herself  to Jeanna's children arguing over whose car is better, the Beemer or the Audi, my eyes were glued. Season two was starting that week and so too did my Bravo obsession. I watched it all and watched the reruns even after watching the first showing.

And then the spin offs started, Real Housewives of New York City, New Jersey, Atlanta, DC, Miami and Beverly Hills. Sadly, I've seen every spin off, at least the first season. Some discretion was played after that. From Bethenny debuting the Skinnygirl Margarita at a dinner date with Luann, to the Salahi's partying in Paris with the Turners, to Scottie Pippen's Kardashian wannabe wife firing her umpteeth nanny I've watched it all and quite frankly I'm embarrassed. I've kept up with all things Housewives and then Andy Cohen has to get his own talk show where he stirs the proverbial pot to entice viewers like a dealer trying to move you onto the harder stuff (Pun intended).

It's been slow in the making that I've just had enough.  It began with the Kardashians, I was just tired of the valley girl accents, the spackled on make-up and barage of sport celebrity boyfriends sprinkled across E!, E! news, and every tabloid magazine and reality website out there.

And then over the holidays my sister-in-law came back from the nail salon and said that the lady sitting next to her was on her phone the entire time analyzing the Housewives of Atlanta, acting as if these women were her actual friends. Egads! It was the epiphany heard round the world. That's me. That's totally me.

Or maybe it was just the sadness. Sadness that these Housewives were whoring their lives on television to make a buck. Seriously, these shows are beginning to play out like a Greek tragedy, Taylor has an abusive relationship with her husband with whom she files for divorce and he later commits suicide leaving her with  multiple lawsuits and empty trust. Luann is married to a Count who later leaves her for an alleged Ethiopian Princess leaving her to find solace in the French David Schwimmer, but with a bigger nose Oh, and divorce and foreclosure! Housewives is becoming synonymous with those words because if you become an official Housewife, hold on to your man and house because it's inevitable you're going to lose them and it will all be played out on camera. (Remember Lynn from the OC, her children were dealt the eviction notice!)

Watching families crumble, catty women argue all while drinking a Housewife branded cocktail at a Housewife hosted event is getting tired. I'm finding that while I watch these shows I'm usually perusing Twitter or online window shopping, never really giving it my full attention, which is another reason I was hooked to reality television (And only when the kids were asleep. Don't worry, I've never exposed them to this garbage!) With fictional shows I have to closely pay attention (Which I rarely watch), but with reality I can half ass the viewing and still get what is going on. Recently I've noticed I'm tuning out more in more with the yelling, screaming and the alleged bully labeling being all to much.

And so I have decided it's time to cut back from the Bravo. Now, I won't ever let go of Top Chef, I think of it as Bravo's caviar, it's a bit more high brow (It has won an Emmy.), but otherwise there's no need to continue with the garbage. I won't give it up cold turkey, I do enjoy watching the Hermes Bags, Maloof Hoofs (Hooves?) and Ranjana Khan jewelry, but not enough to make up for the train wreck that has become the housewives. If it only it could go back to season one of the Housewives of OC where the ladies take their daughters on a friendly diamond shopping trip, but unfortunately we are far too many divorces, face lifts, botched botoxed nightmares and foreclosures past that.

So for now, it's time to loosen those Bravo connections. Andy, so sad to have to part ways, but it's for the best.

Oh, and if you got every one of my references, it's time you too rethought your Housewives viewing.


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