In a way, I kind of feel bad for last night’s episode of Real Housewives of New York. It was the first Housewives episode to follow the epic Monday night christening smackdown that was Real Housewives of New Jersey, and it was never going to measure up in any way, no matter what.

Perhaps Bravo planned a boring episode on purpose so as to not waste a good one in RHNJ’s wake, and it looks as though the next three weeks of the Great Moroccan Adventure are going to be Scary Island Part Deux, so we’ll let this week’s ho-hum show slide. But not slide entirely – the recap is after the jump, as always.

We started with LuAnn and Sonja, who were at lunch to discuss how hard their lives are and how much they need a break. They didn’t say exactly what they wanted to take a break from, and as far as I can tell, neither of them have jobs, so I’m not sure what would stress them out so badly. Hell, LuAnn only sees her kids on the weekends and spends the rest of the week pretending she’s a singer and swanning around New York with her European boyfriend. Sonja spends her time hitting on her unpaid houseboys and throwing away her underwear. Obviously, all of that requires a trip to Morocco. Also, LuAnn may or may not realize that Morocco is a country and not a city, I’m not entirely clear on that. What I AM clear on, however, is that it’s a country.

They both immediately set about inviting the other girls on their little Sex and the City jaunt, and even though Ramona seemed to be under the impression that Morocco is similar to Afghanistan, she agreed to go for the camera time. Alex agreed to go so that she can eat cous cous. Jill agreed to go because she already missed two episodes and can’t bear to miss any more. Kelly is going to think about it, because she’s fairly sure that Ramona is going to stab her and leave her body in the desert if she decides to go. And, in fairness to Kelly, she might.

In further lunch meetings, Ramona and LuAnn got together to talk about the conflict with Jill, with LuAnn functioning as Jill’s representative, naturally. She’s been bucking for the spot as Bethenny’s replacement since last season, but if last week’s trip to the dentist was any indication, she might have to push Cindy into the East River to eliminate the competition. LuAnn generally made an ass of herself by jumping into a bunch of drama where she’s not actually needed, and all the while, Ramona sat there and gently mocked her right to her face. LuAnn didn’t seem to notice. Occasionally, I like my Ramona performance art a tad subtle.

Later, it became clear that Sonja is still trying to make the whole silly toaster over cookbook happen because she had a photographer come over to shoot her for the book, plus the old hair stylist from the Rosie O’Donnell show (I loved that show) to style her. And when you think toaster oven cookbook, you think recently divorced, bankrupt, aging society matron in an evening gown splayed out on her dining room table, right? That has TOASTER OVEN written all over it. Just like it totally made sense that Kelly showed up wearing a Catholic school girl costume and then Sonja flashed her ladyparts at her. Surprise, no underpants. Except that’s actually not a surprise; the real surprise would have been if she had lifted up her dress and had a pair of running shorts on under there, just for extra coverage.

Next up was a vacation before the big vacation – Kelly, LuAnn, Cindy and Jill headed up to Canyon Ranch for the night to gossip and have spa treatments and wear matching monogrammed robes. On the way there, though, we actually had a moment of seriousness – Kelly confessed to LuAnn that a previous boyfriend had slapped her. And that’s terrible, and maybe I’m definitely going to hell for saying this, but I was kind of disappointed that Kelly’s big revelation wasn’t about the fact that she seems so sane this season because she finally got on a good cocktail of meds for her crazy. JUST SAY IT, KELLY. WE ALL KNOW IT’S TRUE.

We then had a brief interlude for African drumming, during which the group had confession time and LuAnn and Jill had the least confessional confessions ever. Shockers, you guys: LuAnn likes big jewelry and Jill’s hair isn’t really red. I have some confessions of my own, since we’re on the subject: I like big jewelry too but have far better taste than LuAnn, and my hair isn’t really black and purple. It’s brown under there somewhere. Well, except the purple part. I’m pretty sure that part is irreversibly bleached. I hope that doesn’t come as a shock to anyone. I apologize for my deception.

The ladies then sat down for dinner with glasses of non-alcohol cider and tried to talk about menopause in a sober and reasonable way, but that only lasted for about 30 seconds because Cindy piped up to ask everyone if they had seen “The Vagina Monocles.” Obviously she meant “The Vagina Monologues,” but it got me thinking about vagina outfits and how mine would be dressed, were it to go out in public. We know that Sonja’s is a nudist, Kelly’s would likely be covered in a steel chastity belt, and LuAnn’s would likely be adorned with eight different pieces of turquoise jewelry, because even her VAGINA is a quarter Native American, you got that, ladies? As for Jill, if her appearance on Watch What Happens Live was any indication, her vagina would be wearing obvious hair extensions and an age-inappropriate outfit.

As you might have noticed, Ramona, Sonja and Alex weren’t included in the spa night and they chose to use that time to go to the plastic surgeon’s office instead. We heard that Alex was plowing through a bottle of makeup in a week (WHAT?) and then got a completely unnecessary close-up of a blemish on her face (ladies, if you ever hear that I’m signing up for a reality show, grab me by the ponytail and yank me back.) Sonja, for her part, reminded us all that she’s an extremely poor man’s Mae West by making jokes about banging the entirety of the Miami Heat while having some sort of hocus pocus light gun aimed at her stomach.

Later, at some sort of charity function that Jill was throwing for reasons that I don’t entirely remember, LuAnn showed up and mowed down the entire group. Ramona was ripe to play the villainess, what with her demands for her pinot grigio to the cater waiters and her drinking of the booze that the event was supposed to auction off for charity, but LuAnn practically demanded that she be allowed to be the worst person at the entire party.

In the process of castigating Ramona for telling David Meister to not give LuAnn the same clothes that he gives her (whatever happened to buying clothes?), LuAnn told her that they’d never look the same in a dress and then, out of nowhere, announced that half the cast didn’t want to go to Morocco because she was going. And even if that’s true, which it very well might be, it didn’t have anything to do with what they were talking about and was clearly meant to deflect attention from the real subject of the conversation, which was LuAnn’s indignation over some free dresses.

All of the sniping and bickering and wild wine-glass gesticulating was interrupted by a brief fashion show and then a speech by Jill’s stepdaughter, who has both a birthmark and tumor on her face but is also in possession of a remarkably good attitude about life. That didn’t stop Ramona from continuing to vie for the title of Most Awful Person on Earth by calling her face deformed and then insisting that the hosting designer’s daughter clear a table of some empty glasses, despite the fact that she was not a cater water or a bus boy. You didn’t think that Ramona would relinquish her title without a fight, did you? That’s not our Ramona. If need be, I’m sure she would have broken a wine bottle and shivved LuAnn with it. After it was empty, of course. No need to waste good Ramona Pinot Grigio.

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