By Seth Rudetsky
29 May 2012
Happy unofficial start of summer! First of all, if you reading this on Tuesday, May 29, then set ye olde DVRs because I'm on "Watch What Happens LIVE" tonight at 11 PM on Bravo. I'll be promoting my new TV network and my book! If you're too lazy to tape or watch the show, then simply buy my book, and then sign up for my network at SethTV.com. Done and done.
I'm writing this surrounded by stacks of books, boxes and a general mess. No, I'm not moving again (I've literally moved three times in the last three years), I'm actually in the process of redecorating. Well, I'm not actually redecorating. I'm not allowed to. The only person allowed to make decisions is Andrea Martin. Not joking. If you don't know, James and I are not the stereotypical gay guys with amazing taste. Quite the opposite. We buy clothes every few years (I still wear the shirt Betty Buckley bought me 15 years ago) and we decorate like we're still in college. Remember the old "I can use these milk crates to hold my books" style we all had freshman year? The only thing that's changed for me from those days is that my jeans have an added elastic waistband. Andrea, on the other hand, has a stunning apartment in New York and a beautiful house in Toronto that feels so inviting as soon as you walk in. Everything is placed just right and appears casual yet perfect. She's always told me she could help my place look nice but we've both always faded out on the follow through. Cut to: She came over on Tuesday to have a "look around" at 12:30 in the afternoon. She didn't leave that day 'til 5:30. Suddenly, things I had bought with pride for the apartment were going into the trash. Actual conversation:
Andrea: No, dear.
Then on Friday, James rented a Zipcar and we drove to Ikea. She was supposed to meet us at 10 in the morning after she had a training session at the gym. She told us that she was incredibly anxious/excited the night before, and when she woke up she went right to the gym at 9 AM, paid her trainer for the session and left for our apartment at 9:01 AM. She didn't leave til 9 PM! Twelve hours of bossiness. She was in a rage that we put our TV on the wall and said we hadto get a small table for it instead. Ikea's prices are so cheap and we easily found one for $20! While we were waiting on line to check out she told me seriously that I can't keep going to secondhand furniture stores and buying crappy things. She looked at me earnestly and said, "You've come to the point in your life where you deserve nice things. Nice, well-made, high-quality objects." Then she pointed to the box on the conveyor belt. "Like this $20 table made of particle board." Busted.
I went to do my radio show for a little while and when I came back, she and James had already taken three furniture pieces to Housing Works. Then she insisted that the two of them put together the new table we got for the living room and I said I'd take down all the books in the bedroom so it could be painted. After 15 minutes, I heard her and James muttering about me and then, in what was supposed to be a lighthearted voice, Andrea called out, "How's it going in there, sweetie?" So transparent. I completely busted her for attempting a casual check-in when the simmering subtext was, "What the hell is taking you so long to empty a bookshelf?" She owned up to it immediately. But, P.S., still wanted to know what the hell was taking me so long.
After spending Friday's day and night with us, she bid us goodbye for two weeks; she had a trip planned and was leaving the next morning from JFK. Cut to: At 9:30 AM Saturday she was at our apartment, lugging her suitcases and begging to buy us some lamps before she had to go to the airport. She found something amazing at Jonathan Adler. But before she left she told me and James that we are forbidden from buying anything for our apartment until she gets back. The only thing she will allow us to purchase are (no more than) four placemats for our new table. And even that she reluctantly granted us. I have to say, though, that it already looks so much better. Turns out, if an apartment gets no sun because it's on the garden level, you shouldn't fill your living room with dark furniture that absorbs the smattering of light you get.Continued...