Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Bethenny Ever After: Baby Proof Baptism

We join our Hoppy family one morning while Jason is feeding Bryn and Bethenny is bouncing around complaining about what a mess the house is.

"It's hilarious when your OCD comes out."

One of the problems is that Gina has taken over the fridge with her exotic Trinidadian food in a very unorganized manner. Well, she’s part of the family, right? Bethenny keeps calling her a wolf and then they yell at her to come out of the bathroom because she’s been in there too long. Gina complains that she needs a long time to take care of business because Jason and Bethenny are too loud and she has no peace. Ugh, can you imagine having to live in someone else’s house like this? People who feel like they own you, no less? I need my own space, my own things, my own privacy, my own independence. I could never cross the work and living boundaries like this.

Gina would also like Jason and Bethenny to bring Bryn to her church so that they can give the baby a blessing. Jason tells us that they’ve discussed having Bryn baptized Catholic since that’s what Jason’s family is and Bethenny isn’t religious at all. But Gina is also arranging a special visit for Bryn to her church so that she can be welcomed there too. Gina explains that there will be drums, a red carpet and dancing in the spirit. She even demonstrates dancing in the spirit and Jason joins her. Okay, I get that Gina is the baby nurse and that they love her, but does their baby really need to participate in a religious ritual at her church? I can see visiting and introducing the baby to Gina’s church friends at a regular Sunday service, but the whole blessing thing seems a bit odd for people who aren’t members of that church. Like five steps too far in an effort to be open minded.

Next Bethenny has a baby proofing expert come over to the condo. Okay, seriously? Bethenny is so helpless! An expert!? I would venture to guess that baby proofing is 90% common sense and the rest you could probably pull up on the interwebs for free. Why pay this lady 500 bucks to come over and tell you your home is a death trap? Oh well, it’s not my life, so here is Kimberlee to set Bethenny straight. She tells her not to ever let Bryn see her unlocking baby-safe devices or climbing up on chairs to fix things. They crawl around on the floor to see the world from Bryn’s viewpoint and of course Bethenny’s whole apartment is a giant booby trap for a baby.

"In this cabinet you'll keep live mouse traps and open bleach."

It goes from silly to ridiculous when Kimberlee instructs Bethenny not to let Bryn play with pots and pans. Bethenny’s like, “What’s going to happen? I’m coming out of my bedroom and Bryn’s at the stove making conch fritters?” HA! Exactly. But Kimberlee warns that if Bryn is allowed to play with pots and pans one day then the next day she’ll pull a boiling pot from the stove thinking it’s her toy. All right. What baby doesn’t play with pots and pans? Kimberlee talks like Bethenny is going to be perpetually tied up and gagged, totally helpless to stop Bryn from touching things and unable to teach her anything. Bethenny thanks Kimberlee and tells her she’s got a great business. You know, only in New York. Well, maybe LA, too, but can you imagine a business like that making money in middle America? Only celebrities pay people for this kind of thing.

Ah, here is another helper come to assist Bethenny in completing an everyday task. Bethenny’s gay friend Jake has come to supervise Bethenny cleaning out her closet. She goes through each piece of lingerie she owns (pulling them out of their ziplock storage bags) and asks Jake if she should keep it or get rid of it. And Jake totally has an opinion about each and every piece!

Jake ponders whether he actually has use for this one.

She gives Gina all of the discarded lingerie to give to her church. I’m so confused. Who wants secondhand underwear?

So here we go to Gina’s Trinidadian conservative Baptist church. Jake has come along, so Bethenny must have thought she’d need help opening a hymn book or something. When they come in they admire the congregation in their Caribbean church clothes, which are either white or brightly colored gowns for the women and headdresses. One lady hands Bethenny some orange fabric and she and Gina help Bethenny tie it on her head so she fits in.

"Honey, I look so much better than Gina it's embarrassing."

And the drums start. Bethenny wonders which of the ladies is wearing her old lingerie underneath her gown. The minister begins and asks Bethenny and Jason to come to the front with Bryn. A woman is reading from scriptures about baptizing the child with water and Jason and Bethenny give each other worried looks. While Gina assures them that it’s not a baptism the minister comes and takes Bryn from Bethenny, dabs her with water, then hands her to someone else, who eventually hands her to someone else. There is loud singing and the drums are going and a stranger is bouncing Bryn around while she cries and Bethenny freaks out. She tells Gina she wants her baby back right now. So the ceremony is interrupted and the lady hands Bryn back to Bethenny and Bethenny walks straight out of the church and onto the street. Needle scratch!

Jake feels very strongly that Bryn should go back and finish what she started.

Outside she’s near tears saying she didn’t like how that felt. She doesn’t want to be disrespectful, but she couldn’t stand by while that was going on. Jake reassures her that it’s okay and it’s her mother instinct. Then Jason and Gina come outside and Jason’s trying to explain that it looked too much like a baptism and Gina is insisting that it wasn’t a baptism. Jason and Bethenny are both all worked up and Gina is totally embarrassed. Jason tells us he feels like he let his family down. Okay I have a couple of questions. The first one is a repeat of what I said before: Why volunteer Bryn to participate in a religious ritual that is not their own? AND, if they’re going to, why didn’t they ask for details about what would take place in said ritual? Finally, why didn’t Gina, for heaven’s sake, explain to them what was going to happen? She just said there would be drums and dancing. She should have explained exactly how the procedure was going to happen so that they wouldn’t be taken off guard. ESPECIALLY since it involved a lot of strangers passing their baby around. This whole incident seems so unnecessary. It didn’t need to happen at all, and it certainly didn’t need to erupt into a crisis. I don’t know, what do you guys think?

Safe at home, Jason goes on about how helpless he felt and how badly he feels for not taking action like Bethenny did. Bethenny says that they’re learning that the baby is more important than anyone’s feelings. Bethenny says her main problem was feeling so out of control and that Jason will have to sometimes not be the nice guy for the sake of their child. And now Bethenny says she won’t mind having Bryn baptized Catholic in a calm chapel with a small group of people. So they need to choose godparents. I’m guessing in a Catholic baptism the baby won’t be swooped up and passed around. But Jason and Bethenny should probably make an effort to find out for sure.

To get their minds off the trauma of the near-baptism, Jason and Bethenny go shopping for Halloween costumes. Aw, I love doing this. It’s so much fun! First they try on clown costumes. They look really cute, but clowns are kind of creepy.

"We better hire someone to show us what clowns do."

And Bethenny has it in her mind that they’re going to be a family of pandas, so they try on panda suits next. And they settle on pandas because it’s more Bryn/Cookie friendly.

Later Bethenny and Jason sit down with Gina to clear the air. Jason explains that they didn’t want to disrespect Gina’s friends, who were so sweet to them, but that the whole thing was eerily similar to a baptism and they were very upset with how the baby was passed around.

"So as punishment, Gina, you get rocks for dinner."

Gina gives her sincerest apology and explains that it was not a baptism and what happened was a tradition in her religion. They tell Gina she doesn’t need to apologize, but they got uncomfortable. They want to put this behind them with no hard feelings and go on happily. Gina seems drained by the whole thing but she hugs them and I guess all is well again.

Oh goody we have a session with Dr. Amador. Bethenny explains about the baptism-gone-wrong. Her story gets more elaborate and horrifying with each telling. This time the baby was torn out of her arms while her back was turned and then various people took turns shaking Bryn. Dr. Amador reiterates that Bethenny feels very protective of Bryn and wants to know if she ever felt protected by her own mother. I have to ask here: Why? What difference does it make now? Obviously her childhood did not demolish her maternal instinct, so why not focus on going forward? Of course Bethenny never felt protected by her mother, glad we got that cleared up. She knows she will be different with Bryn.

And Jason and Bethenny make a trip to a small Catholic chapel to meet with a priest about Bryn’s legitimate baptism. Father Daly meets them and jokes that perhaps God is calling when Bethenny’s phone rings. He seems very sweet and keeps up with all of Bethenny’s jokes.

"Tell God I'll have to call him back."

He goes over the baptismal ceremony in great detail and explains what each step means. See, this is what they needed for the last incident. They both feel good about moving forward with the baptism, even though Bethenny isn’t religious at all. Sidenote: I believe at one point the priest referred to Bryn as Bryn Casey. Then I saw a pillow in Bryn’s nursery that was embroidered with BCH. Middle name?

Aw look, Julie has come over to the condo to work. She sits down with a notepad while Bethenny says they need to plan out everything for the christening. She lists everything they need to decide - a dress for Bryn, a restaurant for after, and godparents. What does Julie think it means to be a godparent? Julie says it means someone who wants to be there for the child and be a part of her life. Like an aunt or an uncle. Bethenny says she wants Julie to be Bryn’s godmother and Julie bursts into tears, saying it’s the biggest honor ever.

"Does this mean another raise? It's quite a time commitment."

That’s sweet, but I do find it ever-so-slightly sad that the closest person in Bryn’s life is her mother’s paid assistant. I hope eventually Julie can break away and have her own separate life but still stay good friends with the Hoppys. That would speak volumes for this relationship.

It’s Halloween! The Hoppys have loaded up into the Skinny Girl wrapped car and are headed out into the suburbs to spend Halloween with friends who have a neighborhood to trick-or-treat in.

Family of Furries.

Even Cookie is dressed as a panda. Their friends are dressed as Pauly D and Snooki, which is freaking awesome. The first thing Cookie does is attack the dog who lives here and tries to rip its costume off. Bethenny tells us that it doesn’t matter where they take Cookie, she always acts like that. Good call taking her places then. The mom friend asks if Jason and Bethenny will be moving to the suburbs now that they have Bryn, but Bethenny says if anything they’ll move to LA. These friends have a couple of teenage daughters who come trick-or-treating with them. One of the girls sees a couple of cute boys and makes a beeline over to them, so Jason and Bethenny freak out about what they’re going to do when Bryn gets older. Bethenny suggests a convent. Just don’t let her wind up on 16 and Pregnant, ok guys?

Time for Bryn’s baptism! Jason has enlisted some guy named Opie to be Bryn’s godfather and Gina has even come along to watch. Jason’s parents are here, the beaming grandparents. Father Daly begins by asking what name Brittany has chosen for her baby. Bethenny goes, “I’m Bethenny.” He keeps calling her Brittany anyway. This time Bryn gets to stay safely in Bethenny’s arms for the entire thing. And after she’s baptised she gets to come out in a pretty white dress.

That dress must taste good, too.

It’s all very calm and sweet and everyone is happy. Then later at the restaurant Bryn falls asleep while Julie holds her and Grandma Hoppy tries to fix her dress while Grandpa Hoppy tells her to leave the baby alone and Bethenny does a very long, elongated shoosh to the whole table. No talking at this restaurant! Jason tells a funny story, which is that Bethenny will shoosh everyone so that Bryn can sleep and then she gets right up in Bryn’s face saying, “Now go ahead, Bryn. Go ahead and sleep, go ahead.” Ha ha! That sounds just like her. Jason is very grateful to Bethenny for holding this ceremony for Bryn because it shows how important he is to her. Awwww.

Next week! Bethenny is turning 40 and Buster Bluth is back to help her plan a party! Also Skating with the Stars comes a-knocking. I never watched that, so I’m curious to see how it all went.

So what did you guys think of this episode? The near-baptism, the baptism, the interesting dynamic with Gina... anything else?

Thanks for reading!
-Honey Gangsta


Ashlee said...

Bwahahaha! He's TOTALLY Buster Bleuth!!

Bea from NJ (@sweeetbea on Twitter) said...

Hi Honey Gangta!

So 'Hoppy' I found your blog. I love our girl Bethenny but do cringe at many things that come out of her mouth.

Look forward to reading more on future episodes.

Are you on twitter at all?

Bethany said...

Her name is Bryn Casey, Bethenny explained it last season when she was born.

Honey Gangsta said...

Hey Guys,
Thanks so much for reading the blog!

Bea - I AM on Twitter, @HoneyGangsta

Bethany - So glad we're TV soul sisters! I don't know how I missed the explanation of Bryn's name. I'm glad someone was paying attention!