So tonight is the second episode in the epic fourth season of Real Housewives of New Jersey. While the filming took place months ago, the ladies have still not recovered from slights, bruised egos, and cookbook insults. #OliveGardenGate2012. Let’s make this a thing on Twitter, people!

Apparently, all the drama,  which has been dangling like a sequined bikini in front of her Jersey-loving noses, has paid off big-time in the form of ratings. Last week’s RHONJ season premiere was the highest rated premiere in Bravo history with over 3 million viewers tuning into watch the ‘when you’re here you’re family fest.’ In fact, last Sunday was Bravo’s best-rated night in network history, according to TV By The Numbers, with the network ranking as the highest watched channel in the 18-49 age range. Wow!

I guess no matter how much complaining I do about the trashiness overtaking the shows, it’s not gonna change because people are watching—big time!

Proving that the drama will continue, the ladies of NJ took to their Bravo blogs to talk last Sunday’s episode and do what they do best—complain about each other! Gotta love public venting!


First up is Caroline Manzo, who, yet again, claims her annoyance with Teresa Giudice has very little to do with the cookbook comments!

“I want you all to think; do I strike you as the type of person that would end a relationship over a shallow comment in a cookbook? The answer is no, I’m not. The cookbook was the tangible piece of evidence I needed to state my case regarding all the rumors I had been hearing for months. A rumor is a rumor, nothing more, but when you see something written in black and white, there’s no denying the truth.

The worst part is when the opportunity arose to discuss the comment, I was looked right in the face and lied to. No accountability, no remorse. That was my ah-hah moment — the truth was revealed and I made a decision, end of story.

I’m aware that some of you won’t agree with my decision, and quite frankly that’s fine. This is how I feel, and I’m standing by it. Let me know in September if you agree with me. By then you will have had a pretty good idea of where I’m coming from.”

Also, discussing her frustration with a certain family member by marriage, is Melissa Gorga. Melissa was surprised that things were still so unpleasant between Teresa and herself given that they had agreed to forgive and forget—or so she thought!

“I was done with all the petty games and nonsense, and Teresa said she was too. So with that in mind, yes, I was a little confused when the book came out and she threw a dig at me,” Melissa writes. “Once we started filming Season 4 the book came out and there was the dig. I was a little taken aback, because I thought we decided not to go down that road, but I decided to let this pass and not make a big deal of it.”

“I didn’t tell my husband because everyone was starting to come together and I didn’t want to take a chance and ruin it. It just seemed a little petty and childish. Was I aggravated? YES! Was I going to do anything about it? NO! At Kathy [Wakile]’s BBQ they start talking about the book and it cuts to Kathy saying, ‘Teresa always says family is everything, Prove it.’ It just gets you thinking and wondering why Teresa would even go there.”

“The last time we left off everything was moving in the right direction. It does make me think maybe Teresa had no intention of moving on and was just being nice for the cameras.”

And Melissa is adamant that Teresa’s comments about her being a gold-digger are nothing but malicious!

Joe [Gorga] tells me his sister said to him that, ‘I would leave him for a richer man.’ I wish he never told me. Why would she ever say something like that, it’s another dig, but to him this time. What is she trying to say, I only love him for the money? Oh, because he’s not handsome, charming, or sexy? He’s not an amazing husband and father? Money is all he has going for him? I don’t think so.

I have been married for almost eight years now, I have three beautiful children with this man. I’ve never heard her say anything like this until we joined this show. It’s almost like she is planting a seed for everyone to believe. Or even for her brother to believe. She knows Joe and I have had times when we couldn’t even buy diapers, and that’s when I stood by him stronger than ever.

What if Joe listened to her and came home yelling and arguing with me in front of my kids, is that what she wanted? Leave him for a richer man? Really? Come on, evidently I have no idea what I was dealing with here, but I do think it’s very clear to everyone what she is trying to do, so I’m not going to get into it that much. I think watching me and Joe it’s quite obvious how we feel about each other.”

Teresa, herself, has plenty to say about the drama. Teresa starts out by explaining that she chooses to stay positive and there’s nothing that can be done to change the past. Truer words…

“While I was going through a very difficult period in my life last year, we filmed Seasons 3 and 4 back-to-back. It was rough, and looking back, there are definitely situations that I would have handled differently. All I can do is apologize, learn from them, and move on, ” she explains.

“I have personally and sincerely apologized to everyone on the show more times than I can count. I would love to resolve any of the outstanding issues from last year with my family and friends because I do love them all, but it just takes time. I do and have always wished them all the best.”

Finally, she confronts the ever-lasting cookbook drama. Remember: #OliveGardenGate2012! “I really don’t want to go over old wounds, but when it comes to my cookbook, I do have to set the record straight, because you’re only seeing things taken out of context. This is my livelihood, and like any other businesswoman, I have to defend it. (Mr. Trump taught me well!).” She continues:

“As I explained in both books, my “family” recipes are my mother’s and her grandmother’s (who raised my mom and I was named after) and Joe [Giudice]‘s mother’s. I’m my mom’s only daughter and I’ve been cooking with her since I could walk. She passed down her recipes to me, and we created new ones together over the years.

I’m sure Melissa and Kathy’s moms (who are not related to my mom) have great recipes too, and maybe one day we’ll all do an extended-family-and-cousins-and-in-laws cookbook together, but for now, my mama and I are enjoying preserving our recipes for my daughters.

“As for the jokes in my cookbooks… I’ve always had them in all of my books. Funny books sell better. Bethenny [Frankel]‘s humor helped her books sell, the Skinny Bitch authors’ jokes helped their books sell, and I think one of the reasons Skinny Italian was so successful is because I put my personality in it. I joke about myself A LOT and I joked about my life, which includes my friends and family. I joked about Dina [Manzo]‘s insane love of meat.

I joked about how where Caroline grew up in Brooklyn, they pronounced herb as “hoib.” I joked about the O.C. Housewives, Atlanta Housewives, Andy Cohen, US Weekly, America’s Next Top Model, and a million other things. My cookbooks are not for 5-star chefs. They’re for my fans and regular housewives, who I happen to think are pretty hilarious themselves. I wanted my books to read like a fun novel, not a boring cookbook.

I dedicated it to my brother and his family, and I included beautiful pictures of all my in-laws and nieces and nephews, including Melissa and Joey and their kids. I never mentioned Melissa by name in any jokes; I actually have three younger sister-in-laws. It’s a generic joke: little sisters copy big sisters. Big sisters don’t always love it. I never mentioned Kathy or Richie [Wakile] by name, I have lots of cousins and most of them do tell bad jokes. I don’t know why they assumed I was talking about them.”

Whew—quite the drama over a little Olive Garden joke. If I were Caroline I would use it to my advantage and try to get an OG endorsement deal! Manzo Meatballs on the menu, anyone?

Speaking of Manzos, Dina was recently honored with the prestigious Dean McNulty Women of The Year award for her work with childhood cancer through Project Ladybug. Dina received the coveted award at St. John’s Cathedral on Saturday night. Congratulations Dina—that’s quite an accomplishment! A photo of Dina receiving her award is below!

Finally, tonight is an all-new episode of RHONJ and the unrest continues. Melissa releases her newest song – a ballad dedicated to husband Joe called “How Many Times”. For those who enjoy inner ear trauma, it’s available on iTunes. Jacqueline kicks Ashlee out, but it’s easier said than done. And Jacqueline hosts a poker night which descends into a brawl when Teresa tries to apologize for #OliveGardenGate 2012! Oh brotha…  A preview of the outrageous episode is below!


Dina receiving her award! [Photo Credit: RSP Photos]

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