The Real Beverly Hills

Since I had Wednesday off in Los Angeles I decided to take my wife out for lunch at a restaurant of her choosing. Being a fan of the Real Housewives and most Bravo reality programmingshe asked if we could go to Villa Blanca: the Italian-themed eatery owned by Beverly Hills housewife Lisa Vanderpump (also the setting for her spin-off Vanderpump Rules). Neither of us expected anything out of the ordinary. As two people who regularly watch the show, we just wanted to get a sense of the atmosphere and do a bit of people-watching near Rodeo. The setting did not disappoint. The table of women next to us were decked out in classic housewife garb, celebrating a birthday with Champagne and cocktails. We were having a ball just eavesdropping on them and watching the people stroll by through the window.

When Lisa's husband Ken Todd walked in, however, things started to get a little nuts. The ladies wanted to take a picture with him and Ken was more than happy to oblige. I was impressed by how polite he was. He didn't mind if any of us took photos as he came over to talk with the crowd.

Halfway through our meal when I saw a camera crew beginning to set up, I knew the shit was really going down. "They're about to tape in here," I told my wife. "Let's eat a little slower and see what happens." Sure enough, in walked Lisa herself a few minutes later to film a scene in the restaurant's dining room. I heard a producer say to her, "This will be a great way to begin Season 6." It looked like we were catching the initial filming for a new season of the housewives.

We stuck around for a cup of coffee, watched the crowd gather a bit, then decided to head out and go for an afternoon stroll in the neighborhood. What we didn't realize, however, was what had been staged outside the restaurant while we had been eating. As we turned to make our way down the street we walked right into a camera crew filming the arrival of Lisa's co-star Kyle Richards. When I realized my faux pas, I backed up against the wall of the nearby storefront and let the entourage pass by. Kyle smiled at my politeness and gave me a nod, as the camera crew kept taping.

I just kind of stood there awkwardly, and said, "Hey Kyle."

"How's it going?" she answered with a grin. 

-David Driscoll

David Driscoll