My Gay Dad Guilty Pleasure: RHOBH

Tom Bourdon
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Let’s be honest: We all have our guilty pleasure(s).  And as a forty-something parent living in the ’burbs, I escape and live vicariously through my guilty pleasure once a week (maybe twice, if it is an extra-juicy episode): “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”  Every Tuesday night, it’s me, my 90210 girls and some Chardonnay…occasionally followed by a nightcap with “WWHL” cutie Andy Cohen.

...once the season is fully behind me, it’s back to my own reality…so much to do, especially considering neither our maid or butler have showed up recently (or ever)…

However, last Tuesday, a sudden rainstorm appeared over my favorite Southern Californian city. Bravo announced there was only one “RHOBH” episode left in season 7.  This stung more than when my husband accused me of faking illness just to get out of cleaning our house one weekend back in season 6.  (I feel ya, Yolanda.)  Why am I feeling more of a sense of loss this season?  Likely, because I was able to draw so many parallels between my reality-besties’ lives and mine.  

For instance:

  • Having pride in our children: Half the cast has kids who are gaining their own celebrity or supermodel status.  Similarly, I recently got both of my kids to smile for a Facebook post that now has 114 “likes.”
  • Getting to live out two lives: Erika Jayne is sometimes the glamorous wife of a gazillionaire and sometimes a sexually-liberated pop star.  I can relate, as someone who often alters between “dad” and “taxi driver.”  
  • Cutting back: Lisa Vanderpump’s recent $1,420 purchase at a Hong Kong boutique makes me think she’s hit hard times and is depriving herself.  This is possibly due to recently buying a house for her daughter and condo for her son.  I get it. My last two pairs of jeans came from a secondhand store and cost around $6 each. I’ve had to go this route due to the exorbitant amounts I’ve been dropping at Target every few months to make sure my own little bean sprouts have clothes that fit.
  • Having to DIY: Eileen, Eden, Kyle, Lisa R. and V. all traveled across the globe with not one person from their personal glam squads (compared to Erika and Dorit who had four, collectively).  Been there, done that! I’ve been the one to cut both my husband’s and my hair since 2004 (with the same set of clippers).

OK, fine, I admit it: “RHOBH” is over the top.  It’s superficial.  And, when it comes to unnecessary drama, these women take “making a mountain out of a molehill” to a whole new level.  And, I freakin’ love every second of it.  

Like Kyle, I want to claim I look horrible while actually “on fleek”—skin glowing and impeccable hair blowing in the wind—as I drive around in the new convertible Maserati my husband recently surprised me with.  Like Eden, I want to live the healthiest and cleanest life possible (although I, too, might add a “boost” to my shake every now and then.).  And like Lisa V., I want to get away with saying just about anything, because of my fabulous accent, and also own a castle on top of a hill that looks down on everyone else…as well as the color pink.  

Fine, it’s not everyone’s cup of shi-shi tea.  My husband just doesn’t get it.  His gay-dad guilty pleasures are more along the lines of “Judge Judy,” “Intervention” or anything murder-mystery related (which, of course, gets me worried every time he’s annoyed with me.).  But, for me, “RHOBH” is the ultimate escape from reality—it’s fun, sassy, harmless and fabulous, all rolled up into a weekly, one-hour story that keeps me wanting more.   

Big thanks to fellow fabulous gay-dad and Executive Producer Christopher Cullen (who might have the best job in the world) for another great season.  Even though it’s ending this week (finale April 4), I know he’ll still feed the fans some reunion-liciousness for at least three more weeks.  And once the season is fully behind me, it’s back to my own reality…so much to do, especially considering neither our maid or butler have showed up recently (or ever)…

(Proud gay dad & RHOBH Executive Producer Christopher Cullen with Lisa Rinna)
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