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'The City': The strange socialite thing

November 4, 2009 |  7:03 am
WHITNEY & FREDDIE 1 When I interviewed Roxy Olin of “The City,” we began talking about New York socialites. “They all know each other,” Roxy said. “And they all deal with each other on this really weird level. When I’m around all that, they have a whole different language going on and I feel really weird. It’s wild.” Having grown up in California and having also lived in New York City myself, I knew what she was talking about.

New York socialites are unique animals. Sure, we have similar species here in Los Angeles, but they’re nowhere near as insular as New York’s. In college, I saw how, even at an awkward age, young socialites knew that rules didn’t apply to them. Money and connections could get them out of situations that would have gotten any other person expelled. It was a unique lesson for me. One in which I realized that it didn’t matter that I was sitting next to them in class or across from them at work; I would never be allowed entry into their world of private schools and university legacies or have the safety net of a job at your family’s company or a trust fund that you earned for simply staying alive past 24.

This week’s episode reminded me of that very lesson. Whitney, Sami and Roxy joined the Fackelmayer brothers at their parents' place in the Hamptons, the most moneyed area in the otherwise typically suburban Long Island. Of course, everything started out as it should. Nice sunny day. Tanned Freddie meets the gals at the door. Harry, Freddie’s mini-me, emerges from the pool glistening. It's an ideal start to a Hamptons weekend. Later, they all go out to a club. This is where it gets all screwed up.

It was obvious from the moment they met at the book event that Harry was attracted to Whitney. I knew there must have been some resentment on his part that Freddie swooped in on her as he did. At the club, though, Harry took every chance he could to swoop right back in. At one point, he even kissed her and told her, “I love you.” I may be wrong, but I’m going to chalk that up to “liquid courage,” if you catch my drift. Fine, the boy drank too much. Freddie fumed for a while and finally told his mini-me to back off “his girl.” In response, Harry stepped up his flirtation and finally let it slip: Freddie has a girlfriend. Dazed and confused, Whitney and the other girls leave.

The next morning, they meet up with the guys at the pool...

HARRY & FREDDIE 1 The funny thing is that the guys are just horsing around as if nothing was wrong. I’m pretty sure if Roxy didn’t start into Freddie when she did, they would have had to clean parts of her off the ground from her implosion. Thankfully, she let Freddie know that he can’t claim Whitney as his own if he already had a girlfriend in the wings. Here’s where the strange socialite thing comes into play. Freddie doesn’t seem to understand what he did wrong. I guess he thought, “If Freddie like girl. He get girl.” Fackelmayer, please. You can’t get everything you want just because you have a pearly white smile, Kennedy hair and a Hamptons house at your disposal. Whitney is an L.A. girl, and L.A. girls only require that a guy be faithful and have some kind of transportation and some aspiration of being rich someday. High five! I’m sure Whitney would have said all that if she wasn’t so busy looking overwhelmed. Thankfully, Sami announced it was time to get out of there. Is it strange that compared with Freddie, Jay looks like a family man at this point?

Back in the city, another Cali girl was dealing with a different bratty socialite. Joe Zee tasked Erin and Olivia with a photo shoot centered around the top fashion bloggers on the Web. He asked Olivia to interview the women so informative Q&A’s can be included alongside the photos in Elle. By now, it isn’t a surprise that Olivia took the assignment way too lightly, despite Joe’s long-winded explanation of how important it was that Olivia ask every question possible. Instead, Olivia sped through the blogger interviews without really listening to their answers and following up on them. Erin rolled her eyes and pursed her lips frantically as she eavesdropped on the interviews. With a normal person, Erin may have taken the chance to correct Olivia in the moment. Instead, she either knew from experience that Olivia is immune to being trained or she had already resolved that she would just perform her own interviews once Olivia had left. So once again, Olivia did the bare minimum and then sped away as quickly as she could.

Later, in a meeting with Joe, Erin let Olivia hang herself as he pummeled her with questions about what she got out of her interviews with the bloggers. It was clear that although Olivia covered up the fact that she didn’t ask many of the questions Joe was looking for, he could see that she didn’t do the assignment as he asked. Erin then took the opportunity to let Joe know that she had performed interviews as well, and that she did ask the questions they needed. Some may see what Erin did as sabotage. I call it managing socialites.

-- Jethro Nededog (Follow me on Twitter @TheRealJethro)

Roxy Olin goes off on Freddie, Olivia and keepin’ it real in ‘The City’
Exclusive first look: Will ‘The City’ bring the drama to the Hamptons?
Full ‘The City’ coverage on Show Tracker

Top photo: Whitney Port has no words for Freddie Fackelmayer on "The City." Credit: MTV

Lower photo: The brothers Fackelmayer. Credit: MTV