When I first thought that my musings might be good fodder for a column, if nothing else than to serve as a public forum for my self-obsession, I immediately began worrying that people would think I was trying to emulate the very successful Candace Bushnell and her "Sex & The City" legacy, or at least trying to cash in on a rich development deal. While at first glance, this column may appear to be a designer knockoff—it is. However, I fully admit it's a very poor relation—sort of like shopping in the Back Room at Loehmann's and buying a Calvin Klein suit from two seasons ago that's marked "irregular" because it's an inch too short on the right pant leg. Therefore, I would like to go on record as to why Ms. Bushnell and HBO have no reason to worry about little old me usurping their territory. While I live in a city; I'm single; and I do have sex (albeit infrequently), my life doesn't much look like Sarah Jessica Parker's.
First, to give this article credence, I will admit there are some similarities.
1. We're both blonde.
2. We both like very expensive shoes.
However, the differences are vast. Here's just a smattering:
1. If I were participating in musical beds as much as the Sex & The City (hereupon to be known as SATC) women, I would definitely have a better complexion and would not need to get on the treadmill on such a regular basis.
2. In order to keep myself in my Manolo Blahniks, I must go to an office on a daily basis rather than spend my days with my three best friends (who also have pretty flexible office hours) at a diner talking about last night's conquest over French fries, followed by a quick stop at Bergdorf's for more Manolos, before going home to dress for dinner at the hip restaurant of the moment where I never have any trouble securing a reservation. My penchant for designer clothes and shoes makes me a prime candidate for Debtor's Anonymous and have resulted in many instances of staring at the ceiling at three o'clock in the midst of an anxiety attack, followed by jumping out of bed and whipping out my checkbook and calculator to see if I can do some creative juggling to pay this month's Amex bill, something I've never seen Sarah Jessica Parker do.
3. No matter how often I do pilates, I will never have abs like Sarah Jessica Parker.
4. I've never been able to keep a running flirtation with a Mr. Big-type guy going—the closest I get to have a relationship with someone as handsome or rich as Chris Noth is when I'm getting up from my chair at Barney Greengrass and have to say "Excuse me" as I inadvertently bump into him as I make my way to the ladies' room.
5. The odds of three of my girlfriends and me all having sex on a regular basis at the same time with something that doesn't require batteries is slim-to-none.
6. The odds of me meeting a good-looking man who is a) not a struggling writer/actor/director, b)not married or c)not currently struggling with his sexual predilection is slim-to-none.
7. I do not run in the circles of the tres upwardly mobile and wealthy that Ms. Bushnell is fond of writing about. If I do manage to get invited to a soiree where not only are invitations sent out, but certain attire is suggested and expected, it's always by a friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend and I spend most of the evening driving around in circles as I consistently miss the hidden entrance because it's so well hidden. When I do finally arrive, I spend approximately forty-five minutes at the actual party (fifteen of those minutes waiting to use the bathroom), where the odds of me actually talking to anyone other than the friend that I've dragged along or moving more than two feet away from the buffet table is slim-to-none.
8. Even though Los Angeles is the type of city where anything goes in the fashion department, I would probably be committed to the Cedars Sinai lock down ward if I attempted to wear some of the outfits that Sarah Jessica Parker not only gets away with, but actually looks incredible in.
9. Ex-boyfriends have never taken me back as quickly as Aidan/John Corbett took Sarah Jessica Parker back. Furthermore, my ex-boyfriends look nothing like John Corbett. And if they did, I would do everything in my power to make sure they never achieved "ex" status.
10. A half hour series chronicling my life at the moment would probably only be successful as a non-narcotic sleep aid and therefore not garner many Emmy nominations because no one in the TV academy would stay awake long enough to watch an entire episode.
All that said, I must admit that I am as a big of a fan of the show as anyone and I feel that the SATC backlash is unwarranted. Much has been written criticizing SATC as a gay man's romanticized vision of single women in today's urban society. Whether or not that's the case is a moot point.
Television (including HBO, even though they purport not to be television but rather HBO—whatever the hell that means) affords us the opportunity to not only be informed but also to relax and escape our hectic and/or mundane lives. If for a half-hour each week I can sit down and be entertained and believe that somewhere, somehow women are at ease with their sexuality and not being labeled for it and that they look good doing it, then that's my prerogative. No one is saying that Carrie Bradshaw and friends are role models, but they sure as hell are a breath of fresh air.
And I would love a nameplate necklace with "Robin" spelled out in rhinestones.