One should never turn down an open bar for a good cause. On Friday, fixtures on the New York social scene turned out to the Chelsea Art Museum to celebrate Spring for a Cure, a philanthropic event benefiting the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation. Gossip Girl cast members Connor Paolo and Yin Chang fraternized with host and Real Housewife of New York City Bethenny Frankel and cancer survivor Joey Smith (who delivered a moving speech about his battle with the disease). We didn’t only talk to attendees with their own TV shows, but check out conversations with Bethenny and Yin after the jump.
Bethenny talked to us about her new book, Naturally Thin: Unleash Your SkinnyGirl and Free Yourself from a Lifetime of Dieting, and shared some words of wisdom of making it in the Big Apple and surviving the dating scene:
Is the book a huge success? The book was launched six weeks ago, and it’s been on the New York Times bestseller list every week. Skinny Girl Margaritas, mentioned in the book, are launching in June in stores. I’ve already finished the second book, so I have three more to do for the moment. The second book will also be in the weight loss section, but it’s more recipes, and more of a cookbook. I thought about the way that you go into your closet and you think that you have nothing to wear, and this is what to do in your refrigerator and your pantry and how to build a kitchen, like you build a wardrobe. Most recipe books give your unrealistic recipes like coq au vin, or something that you’ll never want to cook. It’s really healthy, classic recipes, like lasagna, baked ziti, turkey for Thanksgiving. There are really basic steps, and they’re really accessible so anyone could do it.
What’s one piece of advice you could give to young, working women in the big city? You don’t have to know what your destination is as long as you keep moving forward. So you’re on the road, and it’s about the journey, not the destination. I didn’t know that this was going to be my life, by any stretch of the imagination. It all evolved, and I’m still in the journey.
What’s going on with you personally? I’ve been dating a lot. If I only focused as much on my personal life as I do on my professional life, I would be in love and have a child. It took awhile for me to get to a point where I was independent, and I couldn’t pay my rent two years ago. Now that’s all taken care of, I need to focus on my personal life. I have my press tour now, and I’m still traveling around the country for the book and the Skinny Girl Margaritas, so once one thing stops, the next thing picks up. The one thing I’m hoping for is to try to find some balance and perspective.
One piece of advice about dating in New York? The least interested party always wins. You have to be able to walk away from the deal. In business, you always have to be able to walk away from the deal, and it’s the same thing with dating in New York. And then you win.
Despite our attempts, Yin Chang (who plays Blair Waldorf’s underling Nelly Yuki on Gossip Girl) kept her lips sealed on the arsenal of GG gossip:
What qualities do you share with the adorable Nelly Yuki? When I was in middle school, I looked like Nelly Yuki. I had braces and glasses in eighth grade. Nelly is meant to show that you can still be cool and stylish and have glasses. There are those stereotypes about if you have glasses, you’re a nerd. Thanks to Gossip Girl and costume designer Eric Damon, he made the nerd look in. There are a lot of people now with big glasses.
Tell us about your favorite outfit on the show. We just finished filming the finale and the prom episode, and I love my prom dress. It’s apricot dress. Leighton Meister wears this beautiful one-of-a-kind black gown that I just loved. I also love the schoolgirl outfits, and how he adds color subtly.
Do you hang out with the cast? We hang out and go to parties together … we get ready at each other’s places. We have an amazing cast and an amazing crew, and we’re all like a second family.
Who’s the cutest boy on Gossip Girl? They’re all cute. I can’t choose. Penn is very sweet, as is Chase. He has this macho attitude, but he’s very sweet inside. Connor is so wonderful, and he’s the youngest guy. He’s cute in that little kid way. But I guess I look at all of them like brothers.
How do you deal with Blair the Viper? Leighton is an amazing actress, and as soon as they call cut, boom, all the jokes start. There’s no animosity whatsoever.
Do we ever find out the identity of Gossip Girl? That’s a little surprise in the season finale, but I can’t tell you if we do or we don’t yet.
Anyone you hope will make a cameo on the show? I’d love to have Sigourney Weaver on the show. She’s such a solid actress.