EXCERPT: Lisa Birnbach's 'True Prep'

Read an excerpt from the book by the expert on preppy style.

ByABC News
September 09, 2010, 3:49 PM

Sept. 10, 2010— -- The guru of prep is back. Lisa Birnbach, the author of the international best-seller, "The Official Preppy Handbook," offers a whole new take on the preppy world in a book she wrote with designer Chip Kidd called "True Prep."

Read an excerpt of the book below.

About The Book

"True Prep" is a contemporary look at how the old guard of natural-fiber-loving, dog-worshipping, G&T-soaked preppies adapt to the new order of things. Birnbach considers the prep attitude towards money (ambivalent), schools (good investment), wardrobe (now your clothes fit), work (some careers will never be prep), decorating (ask mummy), scandal (including rehab and prison), and food and drink (with some classic recipes for both). She also looks at weekends (and what to do to get asked back), entertaining, sports (including sailing and shopping), weddings, etiquette, the Internet and electronic gadgetry, political correctness, reality TV, and ... polar fleece. And last but not least: a do-it-yourself eulogy.

With more than 200 original illustrations and photographs, "True Prep" promises to be a whole new, old sensation.

An Excerpt: Our Book Club

We start a book club because we feel intellectually thwarted by the endless devotion to our children: making their lunches; buying them miniature cashmere sweaters, which they keep losing; packing for camp; and the relentless torment of carpooling.

We remember how our intelligence was once piqued long ago in that class we took. Was it at Deerfield or at Pomona? How could we have forgotten? What was that class? The role of gender in the works of Manet and Dickens? Who taught it?

Anyway, it doesn't matter anymore. What matters is that you and Tricia and Weesa, Luce, Bead, Steen, Bimmie, Mimo and probably someone else we can't remember right now have our mornings free (after Pilates and yoga, that is) and could use the brain stimulation.

Who wants to host the first one? Should it be Thursday at eleven? And then break for lunch? Perfect. Once a month? Perfect. The first Thursday of the month? Oh the second? Excellent. That'll give us time to read the damn books.

What should we serve? Tea sandwiches and coffee and wine and cookies? We have to have a salad? Oh, just skip the sandwiches and the cookies and the salad.

Bimmie, you're so bad!

Okay, everyone just serve what you want to serve. Luce and Mimo never eat, anyway. But what should we read? Something cozy and familiar? Or something new and harder?

Didn't we always promise ourselves we would read Camus or Proust? Whatever.

What kind of wine will be served?

We join a book club because we need to find meaning and sisterhood and community. That's why we're rereading that book by what's-his-name? McGowan? The guy? That prize?

We join it because now we only read "Vogue" and "Us" and look at the cartoons in "The New Yorker" and feel like our minds are turning to oatmeal.

Because it would be fun to carry a big book like Infinite Jest when we're getting our pedicures.(And then we can still read "People" and "Star" and "OK!").

We join book clubs because we crave discipline and routine. And Cal's hardly ever home anymore, anyway. You know, we're never going to get through a single book, with the Dohertys' divorce and Lila's affair...

Why don't we make this a magazine club?

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