Contest and a Confession

June 23rd, 2009

Tonight is part one of the Real Housewives of New Jersey reunion, and I. Cannot. Wait!

Why do we (okay, I) care about these people? Why do I care about Bethenny and Jill Zarin and Susan Boyle and her cat Pebbles and Jon and Kate and their divorce?

Because watching them battle with their problems takes us, just for a little while, away from our own problems. Duh!

We all have problems, right? Maybe our problems aren’t as serious as Danielle’s (former “prostitution whore”) or Theresa’s (allowing her children to leave the house in matching elastic floral headbands).

But many of us have problems that are way more serious. In which case, thank goodness we have Danielle and Theresa.

Because it’s very soothing to leave our problems behind for a little while in order to watch a skinny little Italian lady flip a table over in a nice restaurant while screaming obscenities. You could almost even call it cathartic. Face it, who hasn’t wanted to flip a table over from time to time?

This is why shows like the Real Housewives andThe Closer (so good! I actually had to give my old cat Jenny intravenous fluids, too. Except one time I forgot and left the needle in for like an hour and the whole bag went in and Jenny swelled up like a little watermelon and was walking around like a basketball with legs. But she was fine! Really) and Weeds and Nurse Jackie are so great.

Just like a great book, these shows take us on a little vacation away from our own lives and problems.

And the better and more engrossing the book or show, the more thoroughly we forget our own problems, just for that little while.

Of course, in the case of reality shows, it’s a fine line…Jon and Kate are not exactly going through their problems for our entertainment.

However, if they stopped filming now, that would spoil the day so many of us are looking forward to: Mady’s eventual graduation from Yale law school, when she’ll turn around and sue both Jon and Kate for exploitation (of course as a responsible sibling, she’ll split the bounty with those of her brothers and sisters who haven’t yet become drug addicts and appeared on Intervention).

Anyway, one of the many problems I have that I’m trying to avoid is that I have way too many copies of my own books. I even had to start renting an office space to store them all in (on the bright side, now there’s room for the scanner for when we want to show you fun foreign covers).

So in order to make some space, we’ve decided to donate a bunch of them to the International Book Project (where hopefully some will make their way to Pakistan, where the Taliban just blew up another girls’ school. Do you think the Taliban know everyone thinks of them as the new Nazis? Or maybe they’d think that was a compliment?) and a few other literacy projects.

We also want to give some to you, because I know YOU have problems, too (you write to me all the time, telling me about them. I DO read my mail, even if I don’t always have time to write back), and I want to make sure you have a little something to help you escape from them for a little while.

But! Because you most likely aren’t being menaced by the Taliban, we’re going to make you work for your free copies a little.

Don’t worry though, it’s going to be fun work!

If you’d like a free book (the books we’re giving away—while supplies last—are: US paperback copies of Jinx; UK and US copies of Airhead; UK and US copies of Being Nikki, as well as paperback copies of Queen of Babble Gets Hitched) just do the following:

Sorry! As of 6/27, this contest is over! Winners will be notified in the next ten days.

Contest ends when we run out of books.

If you don’t want your photo posted on this blog if you win, please specify. This won’t exclude you from winning a book.

This idea is based on Teen Vogue’s Girl of the Week, where they pick a snap of a girl (there’s actually also a boy of the week) and then ask what she’s wearing and what her inspiration for it was. Sort of like this:


“Oh, hi, yeah, that’s me, Meg. I’m sitting at the airport with my cat. I’m wearing an old pair of leggings I found in my sock drawer, a sleeveless dress I just bought on sale from Anthropologie, and a long blazer because it can get cold on airplanes. I have on my favorite comfy flats, and those are my reading glasses (the novel is by Dennis Lehane) and my 100% polyester Stella McCartney bag. My inspiration for this outfit was style and yet comfort because I knew traveling with my cat was going to be difficult.”

Or this:


“Oh, right, see here I’m in another sundress from Anthropologie and I’m putting on Band-Aids because it’s not really a good idea to go on a long walk in brand new Havianas.”

Or this:

Here’s my neighbor Emily who is NYC for the summer attending a program at NYU:

Emily is in Converse; A Big Sweater; A Top; Cut Offs; and she has her hands in Rob Pattinson’s hair. Emily and Rob have been very close ever since she found out he’s filming a movie right around the corner from where she’s staying in NYC. As you can see, Rob really likes her back, although it turns out he’s much larger than any of us knew. What a surprise! Sometimes he puts her in his shirt pocket and they go out to lunch.

You see how easy it is? Fashion is fun!

Now you try! Have fun with it! Do a good enough job, and you can win a book!

Don’t forget to follow the rules (above) though!

(This should be obvious, but I’m going to say it anyway: While Emily’s photo, above, is all right, because SHE is in it, please do NOT send pictures of models, celebrities, or photos from other sites, and try to pass them off as YOU. This isn’t fun, and will disqualify you from the contest. The fun of this contest is seeing what kind of creative outfits and poses YOU can come up with. IT IS NOT A BEAUTY CONTEST. It’s about having fun with fashion while putting together outfits from YOUR closet. CREATIVITY, not beauty or name-brand designers, IS WHAT COUNTS.)

Okay, now go raid your closets!

More later.

Much love,

Meg