Although inherently likable in a crazy semi-drunken auntie kind of way, Sonja Morgan is quickly heading into Kim Richards territory with her constant “Don’t ask me about my businesses! My businesses are FINE! I am not struggling with my businesses!!” Hmmm…we thinketh the lady doth protest too much, no? In her Bravo blog, Lady Morgan attempts yet again to set the record straight about her many business ventures, her relationships with the other Real Housewives of New York ladies, and why she thinks Bethenny Frankel has ulterior motives. Putting Bethenny (the only person willing to enter into Sonja’s delusions to ‘help’ her at this point) on blast right away, Sonja opens her blog by saying, “I don’t feel like Bethenny is really able to understand my businesses and my situation enough to ask some of the driving questions at this point. Especially after the briefing she got from the other girls who pretend I haven’t been working my tail off and don’t know how to run a business.” She adds that Bethenny’s
realistic and savvy inappropriate questions darn near give her the vapors! “Bethenny can get a person flustered, though. Like when we were talking about how I had to file the Chapter 11. Bethenny has never had to do that before that I know of and really doesn’t understand the process. Believe me, no one knows until they live it,” says Sonja.
Backtracking a bit, Sonja adds, “I didn’t mean to come off as ungrateful to the process of reorganization when I said that there would be fumes left if I sold the house. I was just caught off guard, because Bethenny has a habit of cutting people off and throwing her generalized opinions so freely.” As for her explanation of how the real estate market works, well, let’s just read it straight from the
intern’s mind of Sonja: “I definitely have been blessed to have the opportunity to sell off assets to pay the judgment. Very! It’s enabled me to keep my house, my asset, and stability for my young daughter. Sorry, Bethenny, selling real estate and scaling down is not good business. Only sell to go bigger, leverage, and take tax advantages. That is if you can. I have owned my real estate for 18 years; it would be a shame to take a hit with that kind of appreciation.” She will not be scaled down, people! Her yacht may have sailed, but her dinghy is comin’ on in!
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Moving on to the full on zone defense of her “BRAND,” Sonja explains, “I know my brand because my brand is ME,” adding, “After Heather [Thomson] helped me with the toaster oven shoot to make a box, I got a lot of information from the luxury department store executives that told me I needed guidance from a real branding expert. They were impressed I didn’t come in empty handed (I designed and built a fabulous toaster oven), but they pointed out that I was a fashion brand at heart and center.” Not just the star of her own toaster oven box anymore, Sonja says her brand is “an international brand in image. Starting with toasters was not a good idea. Down the road. Not first. So I took the advice and started my jewelry, fashion, and perfume ventures based on a solid business plan. It takes years to build a fashion collection. I have been involved and hands on every step of the way from design to marketing. My investors are the distribution experts. They have done it for decades.”
Speaking of experts, Sonja goes on to explain how the United Colors of Benetton, her “team” as it were, handled the pressure from Bethenny’s “tough” questions during the meeting: “I also thought that the meeting she sat in on was uncomfortable. Again, Bethenny was being Bethenny, and she was cutting everyone off. My team was amazing under this pressure in front of the whole world, and I give them kudos for not sweating it.” Sonja’s amazing team, she adds, were taken aback (dare we say humiliated?) at Bethenny’s confrontational style. (Usually “extra” actors gigs do not require this sort of commitment!) “We handled this situation very well, but my team was just shocked at how forward Bethenny was when she didn’t really know the situation, know the brand, or the fashion industry like they do. She doesn’t know them. There is so much we cannot share early on. We all ended up looking like a deer in the headlights, because she was being so aggressive.” Like Kim Richards’ super secret sobriety, Sonja’s super secret fashion line is to be accepted without question.
Sonja defends her fashion credentials next by claiming, “Bethenny has made a wonderful name for herself in the alcohol industry and now with all her new licensing deals, but she doesn’t reeeeally know fashion. I went to The Fashion Institute of Technology for my bachelor’s degree in marketing, have been ensconced in the fashion world inside and out my whole life.” Whether the FIT degree is real on paper or real in Sonja’s head remains to be seen, but she continues
embellishing building her resume by adding, “As a young model, I lived in Paris and Milan. My brand is an international lifestyle brand, because there are international influences in my designs, and because you can’t have Sonja Morgan without having international.” And you can’t have the drink without the straw that stirs it. But you can have a 5,000 square foot Manhattan townhouse without hot water.
But what Sonja says she really doesn’t need now is not sound, realistic advice. She just needs friends to nod along in agreement with her as she titters on about her many ill-conceived ventures: “I think that Bethenny really does mean well trying to help me with my brand, but I think sometimes I just need a friend to believe in me and my efforts and to help combat the stress that the other girls are projecting on me. I need sensitivity around me and what I am working toward.” And she must protect her “team” at all costs: “I have my team to protect. My designers, pattern makers, fit technician, marketing director, creative director, and my investors all believe in Sonja Brands. No one has time to waste or cash to burn. I think discretion is important when you talk about someone else’s business.”
After singing the praises of new castmate Dorinda Medley, Sonja discusses Carole Radziwill’s confession to Luann de Lesseps about dating her niece’s ex boyfriend, Luann’s young chef. Not one to miss an opportunity to make someone else’s situation all about herself Sonja says, “Keeping secrets from friends is never good, and those things always end up coming out anyway. Look what happened to Lu and I last year when she hid the fact she and Jacques were having trouble. I didn’t realize she was sensitive and going through the trauma of separation. I felt terrible about being left out but even more terrible for Lu. I knew that day was coming and warned her, but it doesn’t take away the pain.” Okay. In the next breath, Sonja says she’s happy she gets to be “there to support Ramona, so I’m happy to plan a trip for her birthday. I’m glad that she finally admitted that the other women pick on me about my businesses!” But, of course, the broken record that is Sonja must question ONE MORE TIME, “Why can’t everyone just stop getting involved in my business and focus on their own,” adding about Dorinda Medley’s party later, “I wish, though, that these girls would get some new material. Honestly, Luann and Heather, you wish that I would have invited you to see my designs boards? I thought that you both washed your hands of all of my business deals? That’s what you said!” Enough already!
Ending with more defensiveness, this time about “not saying hi” to Ramona Singer at Dorinda’s party, Sonja explains, “I wish that Ramona had not made that hello such a big deal! I would never mean to snub Ramona. I just honestly did not see her. But I know that she’s going through an emotional time, so I’ll give her a pass. She sees me coming off of my speed bump and may feel I will leave her. Never! If nothing else good came of that night, at least Ramona and Kristen [Taekman] were around wine glasses and none were thrown! That’s progress with those two.”
Oh, dear readers, are you #wornout yet? I am.
TELL US: SHOULD SONJA KEEP DEFENDING HER BUSINESSES? IS HER TAKE ON BETHENNY’S MOTIVES CORRECT?
Photo Credit: Photo by: Mathieu Young/Bravo)