Mommy Dearest is visual camp candy for the eyes. In the film, legendary actress, Joan Crawford is cool and collected for the cameras. However, behind the scenes, she turns her kids lives into a mirror image of Hansel & Gretel (a living hell), sans the oven.
On the streets of the Upper West Side, which is home to plenty of nuclear families, a bit of neurosis can be found. On a most beautifully appointed afternoon, Kelly, Alicia and I strolled Columbus Avenue. It’s the kind of street, where you could grab a coffee, dessert from Momofuku and then get accidentally plowed down by the King Kong of baby strollers.
While walking along 90th & Columbus, a svelte, blonde mom passed us. Her entourage consisted of four boys, each mirrored a miniature Dennis the menace. Two boys rode their scooters at full velocity. The other rascal cried his eyes out, as though he had just sat through “Terms of Endearment, seven times.” While, the youngest just lounged in the stroller, while mom pushed away.
Our mommy dearest looked terribly stressed. I commented to my gal pals (who also noticed the high neurosis level), “somebody give that poor lady a Xanex.” Kelly responded ” I think, she’s gonna go to the wine shop to ease her troubles.” We happened to walk behind her and the Dennis the menace clones. As her anxiety levels elevated, there was a surprise announcement.
“Okay, kiddies, mommy needs to stop by the wine shop,” she passed the “Taj Mahal of wine shops. “That day, she lucked out. They were also giving free wine samples. The three of us burst into laughter. Kelly was right.
I pictured mommy dearest, sipping wine like a coca cola and reading “Valley of the Dolls,” Jacqueline Susan’s novella/tribute to booze, pills and glamour. From that moment on, parenthood didn’t look as appealing. I know I need a husband first, but geez, I’d rather get a puppy.
After the comedy relief, we took the crosstown bus to the Upper East Side. Coincidentally, we all had a craving for wine. I wonder why? Therefore, we had our own tribute to mommy dearest and drank a few glasses of white wine on a most marvelous Second Avenue sidewalk.