303. Attack of the five foot ten Woman
There are very few things this New Yorker loves as much as Sunday brunch. You can sleep till noon and still get eggs anywhere in the city. Alcohol is often included in the meal. And Sunday is the one day we get the single woman's sports' pages: "The New York Times" wedding section.
This is so depressing. The oldest woman on this page is 27.
I don’t wanna hear that. Now I'm depressed and I don’t even have that coffee yet.
At least you have a boyfriend.
That doesn’t mean I am getting married. It only means I'm getting laid.
On a regular basis, no less.
I'll drink to that.
Until recently, the bride, 24, worked as an account supervisor at Ogilvy & Mather. 24!
No more reading aloud.
I love how they say "until recently, the bride".
Meaning she quit her job once she found her soul mate/investment banker.
It's so retro. I've got a big rock on my finger. Now I can stop pretending to care about my career.
Until recently, the bride had a life of her own.
You know who those women marry? The Roman numeral guys.
- Charles Duffy Anderson IV. - Ding, ding, ding.
I find the higher the number, the worse the sex. I went out with someone III. He couldn’t even get it up.
Imagine how bad Henry VIII must have been!
You give him head, he cuts yours off!
This couple met on a bike tour. I can barely make it through spinning. All the men there are gay.
It's amazing how upset women can get over the marital status of strangers.
- What was that? - Nothing.
- Let me see. - Nothing to see.
You're such a bad liar.
Then there's the occasional familiar face.
Well, it's official. He's married. Where are my home fries? It's fine, all right? I was prepared for this guy. They had an engagement party at the Plaza.
- Sometimes an engagement breaks off. - This one didn’t. Let's move on.
I just don’t understand why their wedding gets to be like a short story? Why not just an announcement? What's next, a Big and Natasha movie?
It's fluff. It's PR. Anybody could be this story.
Anybody who's getting married.
This is what I hate about "The Sunday Times". This and all the country houses I can’t afford.
- You want to rent a movie or something? - It's OK. I'm not gonna slit my wrists.
I just thought you might want some company.
You know what? I think I want to be alone.
- All right. I'm just gonna take the paper. - Would you stop?
I know what you're gonna do. I mean you can not read it. You're gonna cry and it's gonna be awful. Let's read it now and get it over with.
The couple met in Paris, on the lle St-Louis.
How original, they fell in love in Paris.
"I was sitting alone at a cafe when the waiter brought over a bottle of finest Pinot Noir from a very handsome man at the bar, the bride said, her brown eyes sparkling. By the time we'd finished the wine, I knew I wanted to marry him.
You were drunk and he was rich. This is just bad journalism.
Marry they did yesterday in Southampton at the bride's parents' estate. There were only 50 guests. "We wanted to keep it intimate. She said. Just family and close friends."
- And "The New York Times". - How intimate is that?
I don’t hear Big anywhere in this article. Natasha is calling the shots and he's just along for the ride.
The bride Carried calla lilies, tied with a red ribbon.
As she walked down the aisle, a saxophone played "When a Man Loves a Woman". Well, that's tacky.
No, that's Big. What I wouldn’t give for a working fireplace.
He wasn’t the right man for you.
I know that. I know, it's not him. It's the whole wedding. And it's her...her! You know, she's just...you know, shiny hair, style section...Vera Wang. And I'm the sex column they run next to ads for penile implants.
Big wasn’t the only one taking the plunge. After more than a decade of domestic independence, Miranda had finally opened herself up to a relationship with a cleaning lady.
Good morning, Magda.
- Do you know where the coffee mugs are? - I moved them here.
- Now all glasses are together. - I guess that makes more sense.
You know what? I always drink coffee out of my law school class of '90 mug, because it's bigger, and... It's just what I always use.
I bring you nice herbal teas. Tea is better for you.
Oh, thank you very much, but I prefer coffee. Thank you. Why do I have a rolling pin?
It's for you to make pies. It's good for women to make pies.
- Do you have a rolling pin? - On me?
- In your kitchen? - Are you kidding me? I use my oven for storage.
My cleaning lady brought me a rolling pin. She couldn’t believe I didn’t have one.
I can’t believe you have a cleaning lady.
Don’t even start. I feel guilty enough. I hate being home when she is home because I feel like if I'm home, I should be cleaning or making pies because according to her, that's what women do.
Where did you find her, in a time capsule?
I know. I don’t need to make pies. I'm practically a partner in a major law firm. If I want pie, I can buy it.
I think I need this in a smaller size.
I'll get it for you, just hand it out to me, there's no need for you...
And there she was, Mrs. Big, all five foot ten of her.
Hey... Hi, Natasha. I heard...I read... Congratulations on the thing, on the wedding. This is Miranda, she's shopping with me.
- Hi. - Nice to meet you.
That looks nice, what you have on there.
I need something for this "Women in the Arts" luncheon I helped organize. I'm on the steering committee.
Really? I'm a member. You know, I write, so I am a woman in the arts. I go to that lunch every year…in clothes.
- So, you're going then? - Yeah, I'm going.
- Great, I'll see you there. - All right.
Oh, my God.
- Now, I can’t find the invitation. - Why did you tell her you'd go?
Because I have a deficit now. I've talked to her twice. Once I was in a cowboy hat, and once I was in my bra. Like freakin' Annie-get-your-clothes-on. I would just like her to see me looking normal.
I would prefer to look amazing. Not like I'm trying, just effortlessly striking.
I see. And will Big be at this event?
It's a "Women in the Arts" luncheon. It's not about Big, it's about Natasha.
It seems to be like a lot of trouble to go for a woman.
Can you just help me find out when and where the stupid thing is?
I can do better than that, I'm coming with you.
So, you support women in the arts?
I support you, and these bitches need to be put in their places.
That night I modeled my wardrobe in my head and vetoed everything. Why did I care so much? What was it about Natasha that always made me feel like the charity case? Was it just that she had Big, or was this bigger than Big? I started to wonder. Are there women in New York who were just there to make us feel bad about ourselves? For Miranda, that woman was a certain Ukrainian housekeeper.
- You're early. - Yes, good morning.
- Did you bring me this? - It's gift, to make nicer your bathroom.
Thanks. Did you move my hairdryer? It used to be under the sink.
In the middle drawer. Last week I organize for you.
No, that drawer doesn’t need organizing.
Magda had discovered Miranda's "goodie-drawer".
I have a boyfriend, so it's not like I'm sleeping with a bunch of different men. There was one guy. And for a long time there was no guy and that's why I have the other thing. OK?
- You like this boyfriend? - Yes.
- You want to marry this man? - I don’t know.
Everybody wants to get married. I am married 28 years.
Well, we'll see. I don’t know if I want to get married.
God bless you.
I don’t need you to bless me. I don’t need God to bless me. I'm perfectly fine with my life as it is. It's like I hired my mother.
Luckily Manhattan has spas, where a woman can pay to feel good about herself.
I just can’t believe she opened your goodie-drawer. Everybody knows the night-stand is private.
- What do you have in there? - The usual, condoms, vibrator...
- Massage oil, cigarettes. - Nipple clamps.
- Really? - Not for me, for them.
What's in your goodie-drawer, Robert's "Rules of Order"?
- I don’t have a goodie-drawer. - Everybody has a goodie-drawer.
- I've got a goodie-closet. - I don’t need to know what's in your goodie-closet.
Ditto. Nipple clamps will suffice for today.
I'm not in the mood for steam, it's too hot.
Then take off your towel, relax.
I don’t feel like being relaxed in here.
There goes a woman who desperately needs a goodie-drawer.
- Charlotte? What's wrong? – Nothing. I was just hot.
- OK, and... - And...I'm just not comfortable being naked in public.
- This isn’t really public, it's a ladies' locker-room. - I didn’t grow up in a naked house.
- I didn’t either. - I bet she grew up in a naked house.
She might still live in a naked house. Sweetie, who cares how you look to other women.
You don’t care because you have a perfect body.
You're deluded. Charlotte, you have a beautiful figure.
- Really? - Yes!
Why was that woman in the steam room looking at me like my thighs were too big?
Samantha always felt good about herself. But after her 80-minute massage, she felt even better.
I just had the most intense massage. Kevin goes down on you.
Samantha's was good, but not that good.
- Are you serious? - He's incredible. You should try him.
Samantha smiled politely, but a woman with a goodie-closet doesn’t need to pay for head.
- Celia! Forgot your key. - Thanks, Kevin.
Then again, you can never have too many massages. Samantha immediately got on the wait list for Kevin's next available appointment. That night, Steve wasn’t available either. So Miranda decided to do the next best thing. Apparently Magda was not only cleaning, she was performing an exorcism.
Later that week, I had a religious experience at Manolo Blahnik.
I need your honest opinion.
You can’t afford them?
Can I get you something?
I'll have that incredibly rich-looking, flourless chocolate thing. And a cafe au lait.
I'll have a fruit cup.
- Now you're making me feel bad. - No, get what you want.
This place has the best desserts in New York. The whole point of coming here is to splurge.
That was a splurge. Fruit has a lot of carbs.
Is there a new "Zone" book out or something?
I hate my thighs.
The problem is not your thighs. The problem is your head. Now... About the shoes. Hold on... I need these for the WlTA luncheon. The heels are almost high enough to put me face to face with Natasha if Natasha wears flats. But why would she wear flats? Do you think they make the right statement?
What statement do you want them to make?
I am beautiful, powerful and I don’t care you're only 25, and married my ex.
I thought you didn’t have a complex about how your look to other women.
It's not a complex. It's a Natasha specific obsession which will be over as soon as she sees me, at the benefit, looking fabulous in these shoes and a dress I saw from Bergdorf's that'll cost a month's rent.
Listen to you. You don’t have to prove anything. You are stunning, intelligent and funny. And what is she? Married, that's all. You could go to that luncheon, wearing what you are wearing right now and still be the most incredible woman in the room.
Wow! Why can’t you do that for yourself?
That afternoon, Charlotte faced her fear.
I'd kill for your breasts.
Meanwhile, Samantha had spent the last half hour face-down, picturing Kevin's face down on her.
- Is this pressure OK? - Oh, yes. That is just fine.
- Ready to turn over now? - I most certainly am.
- Is this OK? - Yes.
- Is this OK? - Yes.
- Is this OK? - Yes.
Since they were running out of time, Samantha decided to take the matter in her own hands.
Is this OK?
Apparently, it wasn’t.
What kind of person does such a thing? To molest a trained professional while he is trying to do his job. Helena Rubinstein is a civilized place, for civilized people. I'm sorry, I can’t allow you to come back here. I have to protect my staff.
Clearly, she meant Kevin's staff.
This isn’t my fault. I know for fact that Kevin went down on another customer and that's why I booked the appointment.
The following Monday, Samantha and I were the definition of civilized. We officially became ladies who luncheon.
I am telling you it was entrapment, false advertising and blatant discrimination. You can’t just randomly go down on one and not on the other. I paid good money, expecting to be eaten out.
This is not the conversation I wish to have as my most amazing self.
- Do you see her? - No. But I do see Wendy Wasserstein and Gloria Steinem.
- Believe me, you look absolutely stunning. - You know what? I believe you.
Hello Mimi, Ms Carrie Bradshaw, and Ms Samantha Jones. I'm a member, I just haven’t been to an event, ever. It's Bradshaw.
Here you are. Please wear your name tags. Last year we had an unfortunate incident with Joyce Carol Oates.
I'm not sure the "Hello, my name is" goes with the ensemble.
Hello, my name is Fabulous.
Oh, Natasha's not here yet.
- Natasha's not coming. - What?
She's got a terrible cold, poor thing, and she didn’t want to get everybody sick. Here are your drink tickets.
I can’t believe that bitch is a no-show.
I'm the one who's sick. Charged another outfit I can’t afford. Probably bounced a cheque to charity, just to prove I'm amazing. I've never felt less so. Let's just go.
I've paid $85, we're having our two drinks. What do you feel like?
- Loser on the rocks? - Give me those tickets.
- Who is this and what's she doing in my bedroom? - She is Virgin Mary.
- And where's my other thing? - What thing?
You know, the thing. Don’t make me say it. The thing you moved and replaced with this lady.
Bathroom, middle drawer. Next to hairdryer.
No man will marry you if that is by your bed. It means you don’t need him.
What I don’t need is another mother. I have one in Philadelphia, and that's close enough. I need a housekeeper, who will clean my apartment and stop judging me because I'm a 34 year old, single woman living in New York. I drink coffee, have sex, buy pies and enjoy battery-operated devices. If you can’t deal with that, I will find another housekeeper who can.
I also head the committee to match mentors with underprivileged children. It'd be wonderful if you'd be willing to work with some of our kids who want to write.
I write about sex. Is that something they'd like to learn, these kids, writing about blow jobs and stuff?
Or we can always use help in fundraising.
Carrie, this is Jenna.
- Hi, Jenna. - Nice to meet you.
Jenna went to college with Natasha. Go ahead, tell her what you told me.
OK, well, Natasha lived in my dorm, freshmen year at Tulane. Once, she showered with a guy in the community bathroom.
And she gained like ten pounds, sophomore year.
Ten pounds. Thanks, Jenna.
That's supposed to make me feel better? Six years ago she was a cheer leader with a weight problem?
You had to love her for trying. Samantha thought the woman could make me feel good by making Natasha sound bad, but it only made me feel worse.
- Another drink? - Another one and I'll be the lady who loses her lunch.
When you get home tonight you'll smile because she was a porker in college.
Ten pounds does not a porker make.
- You're Samantha Jones. - Yes. We met at Helena Rubinstein.
Katy, Leisle, look who's here. This is the woman who got Kevin fired.
- Thanks a lot! - Yeah, thanks.
- Who's gonna fuck me now? - Kevin fucked you?
Turns out I wasn’t the kind of member those women in the arts needed.
That night, in her spotless apartment, Miranda knew she'd done the right thing, taking a stand because of her night-stand. Magda realized that while single women in New York never make pies, but they sometimes make guys.
A couple of weeks later, I got something in the mail from Women in the Arts. It was a "Thank you for attending", signed by Natasha. Game over. I had to accept the fact that in life, some women are simply better. No amount of shoes, or lack of pastry or making of pies will change that. I will never be the woman with the perfect hair, who can wear white and not spill on it. And chair committees, and write thank you notes. And I can’t feel bad about that.
"Sorry I couldn’t be their." T-H-E-l-R.
But I could feel good about this.
Miranda, it's good thing she got married. The woman's an idiot.