On the Rachel Zoe project last week and now this week, part of the focus has been on the fact that Rachel was unable to take both Taylor and Brad to Paris Fashion Week – something they were both desperate to attend. Rachel screwed up royally by being afraid to make the decision about who should go. She first tried to pseudo-guilt Brad into volunteering to stay behind since Taylor has seniority; and then when that did not work she screwed it up a second time by putting Taylor in charge of the decision of who should go. Taylor surprised the hell out of me by saying that she thought Brad should go, and then Brad surprised the hell out of me by saying “Thanks. I’ll go. See ya!”
A single episode of reality television is rarely so shocking to me.
At the end of the day, I was impressed by Taylor’s uncharacteristic selflessness and totally bummed out by Brad’s opportunistic behavior. I’m sure anyone that’s good at career advancement (not me) would say that Brad made the right decision. That he wanted to go and so when presented with the opportunity he took it. He knew it would be an amazing experience, one that he might never get to duplicate and that he would meet incredibly powerful people and possibly make important networking contacts. But he kinda screwed over his friend, a friend that pretty surprisingly tried to put him first.
Had they had equal time at Zoe’s office, then I would have looked a little more kindly on Brad’s acceptance of the offer from Taylor, but Brad knew she was offering only to be nice, and that she desperately wanted to go, and that quite frankly she had earned it in ways that he has not (and because Brad is Brad and Taylor is Taylor he maybe never will). Brad makes for brilliant television (I love him) and he’s a great playmate for Rachel, he’s also wonderful at networking and going to fabulous parties, and I think he’ll probably be a great stylist in his own right someday. Taylor only likes the occasional party and is usually more interested in getting the work done than having a fabulous time. Taylor is the workhorse that keeps that entire operation running and she deserved the trip. And maybe she should have grabbed it with both hands when it was offered to her as Brad did…maybe this will make her less successful in business…but her strength of character impressed me. Without Taylor I’m not sure there is a successful Rachel Zoe. Sure, eventually Zoe could get it back together, but considering her health issues while she still actually HAS Taylor doing all the heavy lifting, her business would suffer a huge hit…maybe one that’s not recoverable.
I guess my point is, that in watching the episode, I just didn’t feel this was about business, it was about friendship, and Taylor was trying to be a good friend in offering Brad the opportunity…and I’m sure part of her perhaps passive aggressively hoped he’d return the favor and say “No, Taylor, I appreciate the offer, but you have seniority and you’ve earned it, if only one of us can go, you should go. I’ll go next time.” I know that’s what I was expecting him to say. And I was disappointed he didn’t. That kind of behavior will probably make him more successful in his career…but I doubt it will make him any great and lasting friends.
Totally unrelated Rachel Zoe sidenote: Rachel! You must stop using the word literally. By using it in EVERY sentence you make the word meaningless. Please stop.