Primates of Park Avenue

primatesA friend told me about the show of the same name last year.  I was new to the area and learning a whole new world of the 1%.

A year later I was at a book sale (in a town that is thoroughly 1%) and saw this book, so I picked it up.

It’s an interesting mix of gossip column (with no names) and anthropology.  A comparison of the habits, rituals, and behaviors of the women of NYC’s Upper East Side with those of various primates which the author had studied.  The primal habits coming out in those who appear to be the most evolved.

I read the book with a certain degree of disgust at the ‘mean girls’ making the author miserable.  And then at the author who slowly became one of them.

What was the point of the book?  To show that resistance is futile?  To justify the behavior, since the author slowly came around to the necessity of a Berkin bag?

And then the last section came.  I don’t want to give too much away, but through a personal tragedy in the author’s life, she came to see the women of the Upper East Side as more than wine swilling, Berkin carrying, Soulcycle practicing Mean Girls.

In the end, I found the book an interesting and insightful look into another world.  I think I’m happy to be part of the 99%.


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