And on that day, next to the ocean, the great god Aeolus opened up his great bag of winds and a clutter of hissing shrieks eeked out into the Malibu night. Yes, it was another Housewives fight on the shore, and it was mythical!
We must talk about this fight because I can talk of nothing else. Not Kevin Lee, the wedding planner made entirely out of pale white orchids and given a face; not Kyle Richards and her dissing people who use "Botox and fillers" while failing to move her own forehead; not Kyle's husband MMMmmmm, who celebrated Cinco de Mayo with Carne Asada and a plate of carrots dipped in hummus, a Mexican delicacy. I can speak about none of that. It is of arms and the women, I sing. And their fights. Oh, their glorious, glorious fights. Like a pillowcase full of kittens being drowned in a bathtub, these fights.
Taylor, so loud and shaken these days that she is like the bell on an epileptic cat's collar, shows up in a limo to get Kyle to bring her to Brandi's beach party. She's already nervous and talks about her anxiety about seeing Camille after their big fight at Lisa's tea party where Camille told everyone (and by everyone we mean the camera men and the devices they were holding) that Taylor's husband beats her. To quell her nerves, Taylor is already drinking and Kyle joins her. It's going to be a long trip to Malibu for these Barbies. A long trip indeed.
On the other side of the tracks, St. Camille Grammer was in the back of her golden litter being flown to the party by a million plumb cherubs, gifts of her many acolytes, fueled by the prayers of the faithful. Camille Grammer is a golden goddess who can do no wrong, and she was ready to welcome a lost sheep back into her flock. She was ready to forgive Taylor and work to make Taylor forgive her. In the back of Camille's litter is Elizabeth, Gargamel's sister, and D.D.
Oh, wait, we need to rewind for second, back to before the chariot arrived to pick D.D. up, back to when she was lying on her bed in her robe, thinking about the party that night. Oh, her precious Camille needed a friend that day, and that's what D.D. was there for. She was always Camille's friend, the prop she talked to, the dry shoulder for her crying eyes. And when Camille would lay her head on that shoulder, D.D. would look down on her and stroke her hair and dream of the way things could be. She would dream that Camille would leave all this awfulness behind—with her husband and her shrill friends and her Hampton's house full of last season's shoes—she would dream of them at a horse farm somewhere in Virginia where the fields open up into meadows and the meadows open up into heaven. They could live there, just the two of them, with the children of course, and they would raise some horses and D.D. would set out a picnic under a tree and Camille would ride up to her and dismount, looking smashing in her black helmet and tight riding costume, fiddling with a whip in one hand and she would walk up to D.D. laying on a plaid blanket in her cotton sundress and she would kneel down under those branches that reek with the stench of sweat and summer and she would lean in close and.....BEEP!!!! The car is downstairs.
Yes, that is the state D.D. was in as they rode in St. Camille's yacht up to the party and she sharpened her knives, knowing there would be a fight with Taylor. Camille kept saying, "I don't like drama." and then D.D. would draw a long blade grating against a whetstone. "I just want to make everything better." SCRAAAPPPPPEEEEE. "I just want you guys to support me." SCRAAAAAPPPPPEEEEEEE. "I really feel bad for Taylor, and I don't want a fight." SCCCCCCCRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAPPPPPPPPPPEEEEEEEEEE.
That was the mood everyone was in when they all pulled up to a door on the ocean. It was just a facade with a door and nothing behind it and when the Housewives tumbled out of their various and assorted carriages and knocked on the door, it opened a wormhole to another universe. It was like the door to some sort of evil Narnia.
When they show up, Brandi is there with her friend Jennifer ("Oh, but everyone calls me Jenni") and Linda Thompson who is a crazy blond lady who was Elvis' girlfriend and was married once to Bruce Jenner before becoming a New Age guru. I only made up that last thing. Seriously. (Parenthetical Aside: Isn't it strange how all the women have all these strange connections to OJ Simpson and the Kardashians and Robert Kardashian who was OJ's lawyer and whatnot? It's like the whole thing is some apocryphal nexus to the greater tragedies of our day.)
Our scene is set. OH, wait. There was some sommelier there. Actually it was just some dude named Ted or something that Brandi paid $20 to stand there and pour the wine that she got at Trader Joes and then poured into fancy bottles. That's how Brandi does. She's thrifty and crafty. She is like a walking Etsy search.
Brandi thinks she knows the formula for a successful Housewives gathering: ply them with wine, get them to do something vaguely sexual, and try to stay out of the way should sparks fly. Brandi accomplishes almost all of these. She gets her fair share of sparks, but they're all thanks to Kyle. I love a Kyle Richards, but she is giving Brandi the same treatment this year that she gave to Camille last year. Last year it's like Kyle made up her mind that she didn't like Camille and would try to play nice and be friends with her but as soon as she was out of earshot she was undermining and whispering about her, trying to cast little spells with her coven to make Camille fuck up and fall over and humiliate herself. Granted this was before St. Camille's redemption, so she made it easy. But Brandi isn't nearly as awful as Camille was last year. Sure Brandi is as classy as a leopard print thong on the sidewalk, but she's nice enough. She's a sweet girl with her head screwed on right who just doesn't know how to react with a room full of harpies or have the money to play along with them. That's not her own fault.
Kyle starts in on Brandi right away, cackling with everyone about how she's not wearing a bra and showing off her tits. Oh, ha ha fucking ha. I normally hate when people say, "This is just like high school," because it's an easy and often inaccurate comparison, but shaming a girl for having a different or more developed body than the rest is totally high school. Then Kyle starts pointing a laser pointer on Brandi's boobs right to her face. What the fuck, Kyle? You're going to make fun of her to her face and not in a cute teasing way, in an awful silly mean way, and then get all angry when she's upset at you and blame it on her? That's what you're going to do? I do not like this pattern, Kyle. I do not like it one bit.
Their fight really didn't get started though until Taylor went off the deep end. OK, no. It was D.D. Smitten lovestruck D.D., silenced in the corner. Relegated to a boozy corner of the party with Gargamel's sister, Linda Thompson the New Age guru, Jenni, and everyone else who isn't holding a diamond in the opening credits. She's over there drinking and stewing, staring at the light reflecting off of Camille's hair—her very rich hair—and glowing out into the night. She watched as they arrived and Camille hugged Taylor tight and close, with their bodies touching but their faces looking away, a hug that was excruciating to watch, mostly because you couldn't tell if Camille wasn't letting to go to try to make it better or if Taylor was still clutching on because she hasn't had warm human contact in so long. It wasn't an embrace, it was a fugue made of bodies, a black hole of flesh and bone and crackling ligaments.
D.D. was off in her corner, nursing her 312th glass of Two Buck Chuck and getting pissy. She wanted to make her Camille feel better about this whole Taylor situation. She wanted to solve it and make Camille happy so she would would hug her close and say, "Thank you, D.D. I love you." and those are the words D.D. wants to hear, preferably when their breasts are rubbing together through their garments. That's when she stood up and walked over to Taylor.
"Be her friend," she slurred at Taylor. "Be her friend. You have to forgive her. She loves you. She is everything. She is light and joy and happiness. Let that into your life." Well, that's what D.D. thought she said. What she really said was, "Beees her fren." Taylor was like, "Huh?" But Taylor was also a little drunk, so she heard, "Forgive Camille for letting Russell beat you. Tell Camille it's OK that you might get hurt at home and that your daughter might get hurt." That's what she heard, and then she said, "You don't know what she did. You don't know the danger I'm in, the danger my daughter is in." What everyone in the audience heard, at least I hope they heard was, "Camille told the cameras that my husband beats me. When he finds out, he is going to beat me and my daughter and I can't figure out how to fix it."
Oh, the whole thing was very sad. Taylor was like a bunch of fireflies on LSD collected in a jar and skittering about with their glowing asses blurting out SOS codes to no one. She was just a total mess (like that last simile!) and rightfully so. She talked eloquently about it on Andy Cohen's Half Hour Make Me Famous Hour after the show and said that the reason she was upset is that she was still afraid of Russell. We were all thinking, "If you're in danger, get out!" and she did. She finally did, and then there was tragedy.
Considering the tragedy, it wasn't funny watching Taylor joke about throwing herself over the railing, but for a minute she thought it was the answer, hurling herself off the balcony and just welcoming death in that cold and choppy water below, it erasing everything, easing her into darkness. There she was, outside in the night.
That is how the fight started. That's the silly thing, is that this fight wasn't about any of these issues. The fight was because Taylor said to Camille, "Can we speak for a minute outside? I'd like to resolve this." But she was drunk and crazy so all she really said was, "You. Outside!" and pointed at Camille. And Camille went along, but D.D., her sharpened knife behind her back would not let Taylor speak to Camille like that, and that is when the fight happened. The fight wasn't about Camille talking about Russell beating Taylor, it was over a simple point of procedure. What is this? Congress? Everyone started yelling and Adrienne tried to put her hand over Taylor's mouth (ew, she touched the lips!) which wasn't cool and they were all shouting but saying nothing and showing everyone how drunk they were.
This is what the fight sounded like: "Wine wine wine wine." "Wine wine wine wine wine." "No! Wine!" "Wine wine wiggity wine." "Don't you see the ocean with it's great waves. It is larger than us, deeper than us. Look out at it and let it calm you. Let it show your soul to peace." "WWWWWIIIIIINNNNNEEEEEE." "Wine Wine D.D. Stop. Wine wine wine." "Get out." "Wine wine wine wine wine."
All any of them could say was wine! Man, it is a hell of a drug. The fight took a crazy turn when Brandi, wanting to diffuse the situation to prevent further embarrassment on this side of the wormhole, asked Taylor to leave. The problem with Brandi isn't what she does, it's how she does it. She should have said, "Taylor, why don't we get you out of her so we can calm you down and get the situation under control. I'm worried about you." But no, she said, "Go. Wine!" Actually, she said, "Taylor, I have to ask you to leave," like she's some sort of bouncer. Well, considering that is the only way that Brandi has ever been thrown out of someplace, that is what she is used to, so that is all she knows. Still, right sentiment, wrong execution.
Taylor snaps back with "Fuck you, Brandi" and Kyle says something similar and makes a swipe for Brandi. Now it is getting real. They rush off to their cars in the night, the whole bomb exploded. Trust me, the only one who is going to suffer fallout from this is Brandi, and all she tried to do was throw a nice party with some wine and belly dancing and not have someone be thrown off the balcony at her friend's beach house.
They all left in their various limos. Taylor was with Kyle, clamoring for a cigarette or a lighter or a treehouse or a mule or something. She was just babbling, and the chauffeur came and lit her cigarette and she pretended to puff on it. Camille rode home with Gargamel's sister and D.D. who was so sad and crying, tears just streaming down her face, leaving little lines and rivulets in her makeup. "I told you I don't like drama, D.D." St. Camille gently scolded and D.D. just cried harder because now her love would never be realized. "Oh, dear. Come here," Camille said, patting her lap, and D.D. laid across the limo and put her head there on her skirt, being the comforted for a change. It was a switch in the dynamic, but when Camille touched her red hair and flattened it against her scalp, electricity ran through her body like a jolt, and her flesh awoke and took notice. It was magical. She might have to sharpen her knives more often.
Brandi, was still at the house, and she collapsed into Jenni crying. "I just wanted to throw a fun party. I just wanted to fit in." Oh, it was such a Carrie moment for Brandi. Just when she thought everyone was having fun and bonding with her, Taylor went and smeared her with pigs blood. She wasn't used to this. She was used to being the fun, pretty girl at the party who everyone wanted to be friends with until these bitches came along and ruined it, with their wedges and their "wine parties" and their fancy ways and their own beach houses which they actually own.
Everyone was all awful and sad and tear-stained. They were all just the crumpled Kleenex in your wastebasket (after a breakup, not after something else) and it was awful. But one of them was left unscathed. Kim. Kim Richards, the girl who never missed a party, was at home alone. She was at home alone doing laundry. She was at home alone doing laundry eating Cheetos. She was at home alone doing laundry eating Cheetos she put on the good china so that she could be fancy. That is what Kim was doing. She was sitting on the counter in her laundry room watching the dryer go round and round, spinning with its rustles and thumps, exuding just enough warmth to make the air in her Sad Vally Ranch nice and comfortable. She fell into a trance watching that wheel. She thought about being simple and being happy, her boyfriend with the rock face plopped down in the next room waiting for her to come in with an arm full of warm sheets that he would help her fold. Well, he would watch, because stones aren't that good at folding, really. But he would be there, and she would be happy. She is so happy she's not at the party.
From her trance she thinks about where all her friends are and what they're doing in Malibu. She thinks about the sound of music escaping into the star-filled night. She thinks about a blonde woman at the railing looking out into the Pacific in the direction of the Valley in a trance of their own. Their minds meet for a minute and Kim sees just a pair of eyes floating above the ocean. "There is something bigger than us out there. There is something other than parties. You need to live in the moment. You need to do what is best for you. We are an evolved species and you must realize your potential." That's what it told her, and Kim thought it was a message from God. Or an alien. Or Witch Mountain. But back in Malibu, Linda Thompson smiled and turned back around to the house and walked in through the French door, the curtains flitting out in great white waves behind her.