There was a point at the end of this week’s episode — after the indignity of hungover yoga at 9 a.m., when Sonja Morgan’s face looked like someone poured spackle into a kitchen sponge, after Carole and Countess Crackerjacks talked about how great it is to give candles as a gift, after Sonja put out place cards for a business meeting and she put hearts at the top of the Is — that Ramona said that she doesn’t think she can be called a monster. Seriously? Does she look at Twitter? Does she read these recaps? Does she realize that she says this during a conversation where she apologizes to Kristen with a bouquet of yellow flowers and then goes on to blithely disregard her feelings? Sounds a little monstrous to me!
Last night was sort of all about monsters attacking Kristen and her behaving poorly in the face of those attacks. Maybe it was the mountain air of the Berkshires (are they still on this damn trip?) or maybe it was the noxious wine farts that Sonja was letting slip out during warrior pose. Maybe it was just because everyone treats her so damn shabbily. Who knows?
At first Kristen tells Heather when they meet in the park (and Heather eats some of Kristen’s son’s ice cream cone because she doesn’t believe in cooties) that she can’t face Ramona, and I don’t blame her. The last Kristen saw Ramona, she had someone made herself into a victim of throwing a glass at Kristen’s face. Did anyone consider how this made Ramona feel? Huh?
And Kristen is right. What do these women hope to accomplish by confronting Ramona at dinner? It’s sort of like standing on the sidewalk and telling the wind not to blow. Not only are you going to fail to alter its behavior, it can’t even hear you at all. It makes no impact, the vibrations of your voice just sucked out and dissipated out into the universe, slaughtered by so many gaseous molecules. Heather says that she hopes that Ramona will have a good reaction to this confrontation. What is your damage, Heather? Do you know Ramona at all?
The thing about the big “intervention” with Ramona is that I can’t say anyone really behaved well. Okay, Countess Crackerjacks sort of made a brilliant move by blocking Ramona in the booth, knowing that when they all came down on her, she would try to flee. At least there was one woman in attendance who knows her behavioral patterns. Sonja probably knows how she would act too, but she was still trying to figure out what would happen if she let a wine fart slip in her denim jumpsuit. She is no expert in fart science, our Sonja.
Was everyone right to make Ramona sit there and listen to them all tell her that she had pre-planned her escape to the Hamptons from Heather’s house in the Berkshires? Yes. Was Heather right to express how Ramona’s exit made her feel? Yes. Did Ramona, railing against them screaming at her and balling her face and fists and holding them next to her screwed-up rictus, look like a 4-year-old about to pee her pants? Yes. It was just all rather unpleasant. But thanks to the Countess blocking her exit, Ramona was finally forced to sit there and listen and resign herself to the criticism that was all around her.
But I have to say that I agree with Ramona, who, when in her bedroom talking to Mario, said that they were all trying to get her to admit to something that she wasn’t ready to admit. They all say that she planned her escape to Molly’s Sims’s party (and Ramona has never said anything more true than “Who gives a shit about Molly Sims?”), but she says that she didn’t. No matter how many times they point their manicured fingers and say “Admit it. Admit it!” she is not going to change her tune. That’s not how Ramona works.
Again, it seems like the real issue here got lost in the shuffle. The women are all mad that Ramona lied to them about going to the Hamptons, but what they really should have been confronting her about is that she threw a glass in Kristen’s face. They should be reminding her that glasses in the face are never a good idea, no matter what sort of PTSD brought the attack on. They do make her feel bad about Kristen, but only to aid their argument about Ramona being #TheWorst. But maybe her treatment of Kristen was the reason she escaped in the first place? Maybe she was so embarrassed by her behavior and subsequent yelling at Kristen that she didn’t orchestrate her escape to go to Molly Sims’s party, maybe she did it so she wouldn’t have to face how poorly she behaved. That seems a lot more like something Ramona would do than skip out to go to some stupid shindig with a C-lister. Actually it seems like she would do both, but I’m giving her the benefit of the doubt.
Now we have to talk about her reconciliation lunch with Kristen, which was as awkward as a slow dance at the Mormon prom. Strangely enough, it wasn’t entirely Ramona’s fault. Yes, she might have bungled with the flowers (Yellow roses, Ro? Really?) and seemed overly gushy, but at least she was finally doing the real work of saying that she’s sorry. She told us that she felt horrible about it, and I believe her, but she was finally trying to make amends.
Kristen, however, was not having it. At least she wasn’t letting Ramona off the hook so easily. Yes, Kristen ruined her amazing white dress with the snake-print inserts and an expert blowout by continuing to hector Ramona after her take-these-flowers-and-shut-up apology. That’s really not what Kristen should have done. She kept after Ramona like she was trying to get her to admit to something else, like trying to wring some last drop of remorse out of her. You can’t get blood from a stone, and you can’t get any real true empathy out of Ramona Singer.
I totally understand why Ramona got annoyed. She apologized for what she did, she explained why it happened, she made a gesture of reconciliation. Other than offering to buy her a new lip, she couldn’t have done anything else. Kristen wanted more, though, so Ramona had to sit through a lecture. Sure, it’s a small price to pay for having cut someone’s face with a glass, but I probably would have been annoyed, too. But then Kristen was right again when Ramona tried to skip out on their lunch early, using her daughter as an excuse, like somehow Ramona’s life is more important than Kirsten’s.
God, they’re all right. They’re all wrong. I don’t know anymore. It’s like we live in some sort of morally relative universe where nothing makes sense anymore. In the immortal words of Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson, they’re hot then they’re cold, they’re yes then they’re no, they’re in then they’re out, they’re up then they’re down. I can’t even make sense of it anymore. Let’s just forget the whole thing. Let’s just shut them up in an abandoned mall and unleash a pack of zombies on them and call it the end. Tell them the apocalypse came early, but only for them. I don’t know what else I can do?
But if there is one thing that I know for certain, it is that I hate Josh, a game of beer pong that somehow became a person. God, how awful is Josh? Josh is real awful. That is the only answer. Josh is as bad as a paper cut on your genitals or a broken iPhone screen, that is how awful Josh is.
The worst thing about Josh, a lacrosse stick that one day grew legs, is that he doesn’t know he’s walking into a trap. When Kristen forces him to come to his daughter’s therapy, she knows that he is going to be found lacking. She knows that he won’t be able to tear himself away from his job and pay attention to his family and that she is then going to use that to yell at him. She knows that he is a person who would rather be at a business meeting than at home helping to care for his developmentally challenged daughter, and she’s going to make him prove it once again.
There is nothing wrong with having challenges in your relationship, which these two have in spades. Kristen’s needs clearly aren’t being met, and she is isolated at home with the two kids, without any adult contact except for the awful rage monsters that she’s forced to go on trips with, where they throw glasses in her face. She seems to be expressing that in ways explicit and otherwise, and Josh seems to do little to help her fix it. That’s why Josh is the problem here. Kristen seems to be telegraphing her needs, and he seems to not care at all.
Also, Josh, a Dave Matthews live set that gave birth to a human, is a dick. He can’t listen to Kristen or try to find a mature way to work out their differences or find a balance between his work life and home life. “When you start an emerging business, you’ll have a better sense of this,” he tells her. What (17 question marks and 27 billion exclamation points and 24 poop emoji). That is the most condescending thing that I think I have ever heard.
Let’s unpack that statement for a minute. It assumes that Kristen doesn’t know anything about business because she works as a mother. It assumes that only people who create businesses, like him, are valuable. It assumes that Kristen will or wants to start a business, but that assumption is undercut with the ironic assumption that she never will or want to start such a business. It assumes the only way Kristen will understand is if starts a business, but since it assumes that she might want to and never will, that she will never know anything. Basically what he really said is, “You are a stupid failure and raising my children is not a real job.” That is what Josh, a crusty sock a teenage boy left on his floor for someone else to pick up, said with his mouth to his wife.
Then, when she asks him to be around more, he says, “Maybe if you put a meal on the table a couple of nights a week, I’d want to come home.” Blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink blink. Zoinks. Oh, Josh. Oh, Josh.
We can’t end with Josh, a pair of square-toed loafers from Aldo, can we? No. Let’s end with Carole and her date with Nick Gregory, a man who was built to play Brian Williams in the TV movie about his life. First of all, for some reason, getting Countess Crackerjacks to set you up on a date just seems like a bad idea, like letting Uncle Fester give you barber recommendations.
But Carole doesn’t help any. She fusses and fidgets and she talks about him to her girlfriend even while he is sitting right there next to her. This date did not go well. You know it’s bad when he would rather talk to Balki Bartockomous across the table than a pretty, age-appropriate lady. I love Carole, but she let the nerves get the best of her. She let being out of the dating game throw her for a loop. But he seemed into it. He seemed into it enough for a second date. I don’t think either of them were taking a cab ride staring out the rain-glazed window into the lights of New York thinking that they had found the one. No. Carole probably rode home thinking about what an idiot she had been in front of a cute guy. That’s the difference between Carole and the rest of these monsters. When she acts like an ass, she actually knows it.