Why Life Still Sucks for the Second Sex

santo domingo derek blasberg chloe sevigny Why Life Still Sucks for the Second SexBeing a broad has never been tougher. Small wonder that Chas Bono has decided to become a bloke. In this crazy day and age, it’s easier to live with an artificial, inflatable willy than it is to go on living as a woman.

No, seriously. Has it ever been more mind-numbingly confusing/complicated to be a goil than it is right now? And I fear the situation may be getting worse. While men sit around farting and twiddling their BlackBerrys, the chicks writhe in agony under the increasing pressure to optimize every aspect of their lives, and everyone else’s. They are expected to look like Angelina Jolie; be as nurturing and upbeat as Maria Von Trapp; be as decisive and reassuring as Winston Churchill; and be as tigress-y and protective as Gloria Allred. The pressure to be perfect, self-imposed and otherwise is, like, totally off the chizzies. 
This past week, I was forced to confront, in no uncertain terms, the epic scale of the challenges that dog the glamour-pusses and socialites of N.Y.C. on a daily basis.

TUESDAY, APRIL 6: An amazingly good-looking group of chicks—Lauren Santo Domingo, Chloë Sevigny and Dasha Zhukova, amongst others—all showed up at Barneys for the launch of scribe-socialite Derek Blasberg’s hilarious new etiquette manual, titled Classy. Derek’s book directly addresses one of the biggest challenges facing women today: How to project the ludicrous degree of sizzling hotness that our culture demands of every female, without turning into a skank. Classy’s tips are broad-ranging and include a vital and cautionary note about the fad for Japanese tattoos: ‘You might think you got “goddess” on your hip bone, but it could very likely be “toilet seat.”

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 7: The Women in Need gala at the Waldorf—my Jonny and I were there to cheer our honoree pal, Glamour magazine editrix Cindi Lieve—was full of women who clearly were in need of very little, except maybe a respite from the burden of looking totally perfect every time they appear in public. The standards of flawless coiffure and couture for the prominent New York gal have become sadistically high. Unfortunately, it is no longer considered cool to show up with fag burns in your miniskirt, à la Edie Sedgwick. FYI, girls: I hate to sound smug, but it took Jonny and me about two minutes to get dressed that night.

THURSDAY, APRIL 8: I flew to Scottsdale, Ariz., with Ashley Olsen. Actually, she was in first class and I was back by the turlets. But that’s O.K. I’m not bitter. I would rather be an F-list celebrity man, back by the turlets, than face the kind of fan onslaught to which Ms. Olsen and her twin sister were subsequently subjected.

We were headed to the new Barneys store to stage a fall fashion show of the Olsen clothing line, The Row. After the flawless defile, out came the phone cameras, flashing away. Mary Kate and Ashley were impressively tolerant of this insanely intrusive ritual. The horrifyingly naff mania for documenting social events with phone pics now includes all generations. This gruesome substitute for human interaction is assault—packaged as homage, making it impossible to remonstrate with the amateur paparazzi. Women seem to be the primary target. They are also the primary perpetrators.

FRIDAY, APRIL 9: Back to N.Y.C. at the crack of ass. If further proof is needed that being a woman is fraught with complexity, then I certainly get it on this particular morning. While I breeze through security, my colleague Delphine—a new mom with a hungry lad named Hugo waiting at home—is forced to unpack and repack a breast pump AND a massive quilted nylon bag filled with gallons of BREAST MILK!!! While I loll in the lounge reading US Weekly, Delphine has to wait for hours while her copious lactations are tested for traces of explosives.

Cheers, Hugo! Drink up and celebrate the fact that you were born a carefree little bloke!

sdoonan@observer.com