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How Does a Countess Come to Be on Reality TV?
Since the first season of The Real Housewives of New York City began to air, I have been deluged with e-mails and letters asking my advice on everything from what to wear to knowing what to say, from table manners to how to radiate self-confidence. Little did I expect the response my appearance on the show would generate. It became obvious that people are confused about what is appropriate in a world in which anything goes, and fans were turning to me for advice. People seem just as eager to know my story, especially how I became a countess, and are curious about what being an aristocrat means today. I decided to address all of the many questions I have received by combining my story, the life lessons I have learned along the way, and my distinctive advice on how to navigate our sometimes rude world with elegance, by writing Class with the Countess.
Naturally, one of the first questions people ask is why I agreed to take a role in the show.
Though you might not expect a countess to participate in a reality show, the decision to appear on Real Housewives of New York City came easily to me. I have always been daring and adventurous, as you will soon see.
When I received an e-mail from my friend Jill Zarin, offering to talk to me about appearing on a show to be calledManhattan Moms, I was definitely curious. But let me start at the beginning.
I met Jill Zarin at the after-party of a screening of Michael Moore’s movie Sicko that I had attended with my niece Coryn. At one point, I looked over to see my niece talking with an older gentleman. I joined them and learned that Bobby Zarin had invited Coryn to the Zarins’ Fourth of July party so that his son could meet her. We had a lively conversation, and Jill Zarin joined us. We really hit it off, and our paths continued to cross. That’s how it is in New York—it can feel like a small town sometimes.
My family went off to Europe for a few weeks. While our children attended camp in Switzerland, my husband and I vacationed with our friends Sebastian and Elizabeth in the South of France. The day we returned, I found the e-mail from Jill about the show. I took the leap and met with the producers.