Carole Radziwill Thinks Housewives Lack Self-Awareness


Carole Radziwill is shocked that titles like “old money” and “new money” still exist in today’s world. In this week’s blog she writes that self-awareness is not a valuable quality in a housewife and shares her thoughts on Ramona’s drama-filled birthday bash.

“I’m going on the record to say, I like Jules. I don’t know her well (and didn’t know about her age-shaming tourettes tic yet), but so far she seems adorbs. She is peppy and well-dressed. She is eager to please even when she is talking non-stop, enough for the whole table to share a migraine for dessert. It amused me, though, that the complaints she rattled off about Bethenny were the very same things she exhibited herself at our dinner. Fast-talking. Opinionated. Rude. Self-awareness is not a valuable quality in a Housewife. She leveled Bethanny with so many passive aggressive digs, she could have used a bulldozer if one had been parked outside her 10,000 square foot home.

Let’s see. No boyfriend. Huh? Oh, yeah, she’s rude because, she doesn’t have a boyfriend. Yeah, no.

She has a super small house. Hmm…it’s bigger than most homes in the country, and it has a guest house and pool room.

No sex for six entire months! No Sex! That must be it! Only I had sex two nights earlier, and I couldn’t get out of there quicker.

I’m old money and she’s new money. This might be my all-time favorite “what did she just say” Housewife slight. It’s the financial equivalent of the infamous hand gesture heard around the world. Season 2.

Let’s stop there for a minute. There are two universal rules about “old money.” First: you never say money. Second: You usually don’t have any. If you’re really truly old money, you mostly have a lot of Louie-Louie furniture to pass down. Think Downton Abbey.

Old Money is a term used to describe upper-class families possessing inherited wealth over many generations. That sounds cool, right? New Money, on the other hand, is a term used to describe people who work hard and reap the financial benefits of their work. The idea with new money is that a person is born into one socio-economic class and within her lifetime rises to a higher one. You know, the dream our nation was built on. This, to me, sounds cooler.

I did a spit-take when I heard Jules say this. People are still throwing around words like that? Old money? New money? And during a political year? I’m starting to think this is all part of the Donald Trump Effect. Yikes.

Like the majority of people in this country, my money is middle-aged — neither old nor new. My parents worked hard, sometimes two jobs, to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. I worked to put myself through college. I paid my own bills even when I was married and my husband could have easily paid them. I still work hard, and while I have nice things, I don’t feel the need to point them out. I am more proud of my accomplishments — as I am of the accomplishments of my parents and their parents — than I am about how many bags I own or how big my house is. I may not have inherited wealth, but I have some inherited humility. (Reality show notwithstanding. Wink. Wink.)

But aside from the fact that no one who is old money actually says they are old money, isn’t Jules the poster child for new money? She talks about money, she drives a giant car, she lives in a house ridiculously large for her small family. And later this season, when we are at a casino, she literally throws piles of one hundred dollar bills down on the table. She does, I swear.

Bethenny is the Sour Patch Kid — sweet and sour at the same time — to Jules’ 100 Grand candy bar. You know, the one with the showy slogan, “That’s Rich!” Again, self-awareness is not a popular trait in a Housewife. I have my own shortcomings, and many of you have pointed them out over the years, but being un-self-aware isn’t one of them.

Okay, now before the haters get all twitter-crazed, I am very aware that cameras are recording us. It’s a TV show. We know. So, for instance, when I say, “Can we be catty for a minute?” to Dorinda at dinner and proceed to say omg about the state of Jules’ house, I know she will hear what I am saying. But I say it because that is what feels real. You all do it. I had just met Jules, she invited me to her home which had a huge hole in the living room and construction debris everywhere. There was not a cushion in sight. She talked about picking up Mexican workers at the corner gas station. She knew inviting people over would illicit some kind of curiosity about her. She knows (I think) we’re on a TV show, too.

So, of course I tell Dorinda the minute we are “alone” that the house, at least the part I saw, seemed well…strange. Perhaps Dorinda would have some insight. That is what all of you do, too. It is what social friends do — they discuss mutual social friends when they’re alone with the hope of understanding and getting a bit of insight. Of course, I copped to it right away when Jules arrived. Does this make me a “mean girl”? Not really. This is what happens every day in every social friend group in every little neighborhood and 10,000 square foot home in the world. We talk about our mutual friends (and yes, sometimes it’s catty!) when they are not there. The people we don’t talk about? They aren’t our friends. We don’t care enough about them to ask.

Not to belabor the point but let me be-labor. Old money also lives on the Upper East Side. Where I go to meet Ramona and Jules goes to meet Dorinda. Jules and I live downtown and I agree with Jules, it’s a pain in the ass to go uptown in the middle of the day. To put it in perspective, I could drive to Hoboken, New Jersey, grab lunch, and be back in my apartment in less time then it takes me to get to the UES.

But I go to the UES because if anyone deserves a big birthday celebration this year it’s Ramona. And speaking of celebrating, is everyone as sick of all this talk about John as I am? Give that man an apple! Bethenny and Ramona talk about him. Bethenny talks to Dorinda. John talks to Bethenny. Dorinda talks to Ramona. Then Dorinda tells Luann and Sonja that Bethenny and Ramona are talking about him. And it doesn’t stop anytime soon.

In “All About John,” our own version of All About Eve, Dorinda makes a star turn playing the iconic Bette Davis role, aging movie star Margo Channing. The ingénue, Eve Harrington, is played by John and like Eve, John insinuates himself into this group of women, ultimately threatening Dorinda’s career and her personal relationships.

Now that I think of it, doesn’t Dorinda makes a great Bette Davis? Bette Davis was the bomb! Dorinda may have been Bette Davis in a past life. Find out next week when I invite a past-life psychic to my (very small) home to uncover all our secrets!”

Photo Credit: Bravo


19 Replies to “Carole Radziwill Thinks Housewives Lack Self-Awareness”

  1. Can’t wait. Carole is the voice of sanity amongst a lot of crazy. I wish more of the housewives were as introspective.

    Unfortunately, I think I see the John story as trending for the season. Ugh.

    1. Maybe know-it-alls are highly educated and do know a lot. I don’t believe in dumbing down for the people around you. I don’t see her as insecure at all. I see a strong woman who doesn’t stoop to the level of some of those around her.

      Of all the HW shows, I think the women on NYC are the most educated and street-smart. That’s a pretty powerful combination.

    2. I totally agree with you Jenna. She is queen of the clueless and has just as many blind spots in her awareness as all of the others…..and she’s so busy ass kissing Bethanny like she probably did to her husband to get the Radziwell name. Bethanny is posing wearing her toddlers pajamas and Carole is dating a boy 30 years younger than she is. These two have some issues that need their serious and full attention before they start analyzing everyone else’s “disorders.”

      1. Have you ever read the book, ‘What Remains’ I don’t think she kissed his ass in any way! He was obviously the love of her life and she was his carer towards the end. She is 23 years older than her current boyfriend not thirty. Although I don’t like the way she is leeching onto Bethenny now she is a very bright woman and good luck to her in her relationship. If they are happy for a few years great! Good for them they aren’t hurting anyone else!

      2. Absolutely! Carole has more blind spots than any of these women except her new BFF Bethenny that wanted to bring Aviva back. Does Carole know about that? Carole over-reacts to any criticism of her, making her look extremely insecure. Plus, that FaceTime w/Adam was cringe-worthy. He practically hung up on her. Now, who is the one that lacks awareness?

  2. Sorry Carole. There is still such a thing as old money and new money. Just because you don’t like it, doesn’t mean it has to stop being said. Typical liberal thinking. Now go facebook your boytoy and squeal with delight when he answers.

    1. Exactly Gigi.. The majority of them are basically tacky trash. And this year I really really dislike Bethany. Nothing positive ever comes out of her mouth and that’s all she does is degrade others. She is a sick miserable person with an eating disorder herself so she has no room to talk . And the way she was talking to Jules and her husband about their house under construction was terrible. Miss Little know it all acts like the redneck trash she is. She actually makes Ramona look good the way she is acting this season

    2. Carole didn’t say old money and new money don’t exist. She’s shocked that those terms are still used. And the first rule of old money is you don’t talk about it. Kinda like Fight Club.

      Carole’s late husband’s “old money” is likely centuries older than Jules could claim.

    3. Yes, the term “new money” usually refers to someone flaunting money without class. Carole is trying to justify being a mean girl. She and Bethany are just awful! I think I am going to have to fast-forward when they come on screen.

    4. I’ll try again, I have just replied and chrome crashed! Living in UK this even more pronounced. Very few OM families would let NM in. Some of the OM who are nearly broke, just living on their titles and a run down country estate will but that’s about it. The wealthy OM families very rarely speak about it but the NM do! It’s just life and I don’t think it will ever change!
      When is your dads next chemo? Mine is Tuesday I wondered if we were the same day again! So it’s ACDC for two hours, I think I will google to see if there is another as well!

  3. And Carole is unaware that she also lacks self awareness. She seems unaware that there is no excuse to justify their behavior at that brunch…and she says she “likes” Jules…but she then spends 11 paragraphs telling us why she doesn’t like Jules…and since she took the kitchen out when she renovated her apartment, (and then started dating a chef…kind of ironic, huh?) I don’t think I consider her an expert on real estate renovations….and I think Jules and Michael may just finish renovating their house before Bethenny finalizes her divorce.

    1. Very concise and spot on Apple. Well said. She is pretty contradictory anymore. She started out intelligent, independent, and non catty. Now she acts like a teenager with her new boyfriend, and a lawyer for Bethanny’s bitchiness. I actually admire Bethanny more because she puts her head on the chopping block when she is cutting and honest, and Carole seems to be riding the coat tails behind her this season.

  4. I think they have a lot in common, both being self made, successful women. They actually hit it off last season, including when there was turmoil between Bethenny and Heather. Carole stayed neutral and kept both friendships. It makes sense to me that since Heather is not on the show, she would film more with Bethenny.

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