Back when I started The Jersey Girl blog, it felt like if and when people had heard of New Jersey, they thought of us only in terms of The Sopranos and the lesser-attractive stretches of the NJ Turnpike. When people talked of New Jersey, they liked to make fun of us.
I set out to dispel those stereotypes and show the world a broader and more beautiful picture of New Jersey. Now, with tons of Jersey-based reality TV (and you know exactly which shows I’m talking about) there are more stereotypes circulating and gaining momentum than ever.
The thing is, that the stereotypes, or exaggerations, had to get their start from somewhere. They really are a part (and I stress the word “part” here) of New Jersey – either from our past, and thanks to the power of the media, our present. However, to really love New Jersey (as I whole-heartedly do) you have to be able to love all of it.
Jersey Girls – The Fierce and the Fabulous is a book written by two Jersey girls, Marie Moss and Barri Leiner Grant; organized in a fun scrapbook style, it depicts the multi-faceted lives of Jersey girls through our history and cleverly takes ownership of many common Jersey stereotypes and exaggerations as well as some of the other Jersey girls traits that don’t often get picked up by the media.
The first section of the book is a glossary of terms that you might hear a Jersey girl use, like “the diner” or “jughandle.” (Truthfully, those words just don’t mean quite the same thing if you aren’t from or haven’t lived in New Jersey.) Other sections of the book are dedicated to fashion, food, and of course – the shore. Scattered through the book, and in a section at the end, are photographs and short interviews with notable Jersey girls reflecting upon their most significant New Jersey memories and what being from New Jersey means to them.
The book is a fun and energetic read, and it nicely represents the juxtaposition of contradictions that all add up to what it means to be a true Jersey girl.
After reading the book, it’s easy for anyone to see – no matter where you’re from – that while someone else might be making fun of a Jersey girl, the bottom line is that the Jersey girl is the one who’s having fun. And really, at the end of the day, who would you rather be?
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=FFFFFF&IS2=1&npa=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=notonthestaof-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&asins=0762441313 (Get your copy today!)
The Jersey Girl