Paperspine Blog


If you are in the mood to laugh and don’t mind a narcissist, then I may have something for you… by lipstickblogger
October 13, 2008, 11:40 am
Filed under: Lipstick Blogger

Narcissistic people are by definition (according to Dictionary.com anyways J) “self-centered, smug and egocentric.”  Not exactly the most fun people to be around – at least I used to feel that way until I read Jen Lancaster’s memoir, “Bitter is the New Black : Confessions of a Condescending, Egomaniacal, Self-Centered Smartass,Or, Why You Should Never Carry A Prada Bag to the Unemployment Office.”  To say that Mrs. Lancaster is a narcissist would be putting it mildly, but what made her book fun to read and had me laughing out loud at times was the fact that she knows it and she owns it.  The entire book surrounds Jen and from time to time there might be a smidge of her husband Fletch and every so often a crumb of one of the other supporting characters.

Mrs. Lancaster was once a high-powered force in the business world, earning big money and spending that big money on highlights, handbags & a ritzy apartment, she finds herself going from being untouchable to unemployed post 9/11.   The people she once loathed, she now became.  Forced to sell her prized handbag collection one by one so that her husband could afford his depression medication and so she can buy food.  Her memoir follows her from self-righteous, super-brat to a more docile, yet still narcissistic woman who finds what her real passion is in life and also learns a thing or two about how one shouldn’t blow their money entirely on indulgences.

Throughout the book I went from not liking Jen Lancaster, to hating her, feeling sorry for her and then liking her again.   I am very passive aggressive.  I hate confrontation, just ask my poor husband who is forced to listen to me complain about a beef I might have vs. being more outspoken.  In some ways Mrs. Lancaster  reminds me of one of my favorite sitcom characters of all time, Elaine Bennis from Seinfeld.  I loved Elaine’s gumption, I loved that if a bakery sold her a cake she would come back to them and say, “You sold me a hair with a cake around it.”    This straightforward, unapologetic personality is shared by Mrs. Lancaster and if you are like me, you will likely find her tales entertaining.  Now, I must throw in the caveat that you might be flipping though some chapters thinking, “Why does this woman think she is?”  Just remember, that is what keeps this book interesting!

A fun, easy read.  I hope you enjoy it!

All the best,
lipstick Lipstick Blogger

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