As you may know, Phaedra Parks is my favorite real housewife. EVER. I can’t get enough of her REDONK vacation looks, numerous careers, her KIDS (omg her children are the most adorbs kids of all the real housewife offspring), her one-liners… she has even managed to make me like Porsha more than I used to, which is a feat in itself.
Now, this book was written back in 2013, when Phaedra was still married to Apollo. As with so many housewives, I feel like they write books about having successful relationships and then fall victim to the reality show curse. HOWEVER, I am also nervous for this book because it basically seems like the Atlanta version of the Countess’s book, which I read approximately 20 pages of and wanted to set myself on fire (check it out here). Phaedra will always be my GOAT, but preachy books from people on reality television are never very fun.
After reading the first few sections, this might actually be helpful for all of the aspiring real housewives out there- Phaedra basically lays out how to remain calm and always be collected even when surrounded by northern types (i.e. insane people). Even when shit was going completely crazy on RHOA, I don’t ever remember a time when Phaedra lost her shit. She always seems to just make that face where she purses her lips and nods slowly, with not a hair out of place, and then hits it out of the park with an interview zinger. Her advice is to do things like use vivid language as southern belles spin glorious tales that keep people interested.
Phaedra is also all about COMPLIMENTS. These are very important to a southern belle, both in giving and receiving. Also, she believes in using softening gentle language for times you have to say something harsh to a friend. Her real example: “Darling, don’t you think you are too smart and too pretty to be the town drunk?” I AM LEARNING SO MUCH ALREADY. “Tina, don’t you think you were too talented at Spanish in high school to be such a whore in your 30s?” Best. Friend. Ever. I am feeling so much classier already, y’all!
Honestly, this page alone was worth the few dollars I paid for this book:
There is a section on table manners, which just seems hilarious in light of how many casual lunches and nice dinners on RHOA ends up in the women getting kicked out for screaming at each other or grabbing a wig or two. Knowing which one is the salad fork doesn’t seem to be quite so important when a boom operator is trying to get out of the shot of your screaming match in front of a restaurant at 2 pm.
However, it’s the little things that really make a southern belle different than ladies from other parts of the US (aka HEATHENS). Always write thank you notes (texts are NOT acceptable) for any parties or events. I wonder if Cynthia wrote one to Kenya after their trip to the plastic surgeon?
It was so thoughtful of you to think of my vagina and the future men who might be lucky enough to meet it. I did not know you thought it was so old and dusty that it needed professional help, but I guess that’s why we have friends! I really appreciated that the cameras came too so all of America knows what went down in my lady parts.
Other things southern belles would never do: cross their legs at the knees- it causes varicose veins, chile! Cross at the ankles. I am literally writing this with my legs crossed at the knee with my laptop balanced on a throw pillow with Family Guy in the background, so I am failing pretty hard at this point. Also, never ever drink beer from a bottle. Also a fail. I have a feeling this Midwestern girl ain’t gonna cut it down south. Bless my heart (the southern fuck her).
Up next, how to work hard AND look pretty. I hope it involves wearing flannel pjs with dancing dogs on them or I am 0 for 3.