Lisa Birnbach's "True Prep"

October 6, 2010 (NEWS RELEASE)

With her first book, Birnbach explained preppies to the larger world. The book sold more than two million copies and stayed perched atop best-seller lists across the country for well over a year. With True Prep Birnbach has teamed up with designer Chip Kidd to take a look at everything preppy in the 21st century--updating time-honored traditions and acknowledging changed customs, allowing for new technologies and cultural changes that have swept in since the publication of the first book.

True Prep sheds new light on attitudes towards money, schools, work, sports, pets, wardrobe, decoration, and food and drink. But it also looks at the Internet, political correctness, reality TV, even scandal--including rehab and prison.

Time has marched on, thus even preppies must embrace change, Birnbach says. "True Prep will tell you everything you need to know to be truly, madly, deeply preppy." She cites some examples of how things have changed:

Shetland sweaters
Dynasty and Dallas
Happy Hour
Electric typewriters
Cassette tapes
Drinking Tab
80s music
Martha Stewart weddings
Jobs with benefits
Smoking sections
Range Rovers

Cashmere sweaters
30 Rock and 24
Cocktails anytime
Laptops and iPads
Purloined tunes
Wearing polar fleece
made from Tab bottles
80s music
Gay and lesbian weddings
Friends with benefits
Non-smoking sections

After graduating from Brown University, Lisa Birnbach worked at The Village Voice, where she co–wrote the ''Scenes'' column. Her first book, The Official Preppy Handbook, became a runaway bestseller (38 weeks at #1 on the NYT bestseller list!) and a tongue–in–cheek reference guide for a generation. Birnbach quickly became a media darling, and numerous television and radio appearances followed. She began writing for such high–profile publications as Glamour, TV Guide and Rolling Stone. She also went on a college lecture tour and put her vast knowledge of college life to use when she wrote Lisa Birnbach's College Book, offering the inside scoop on campuses around the country. She has since been the writer and co-writer of 20 books and has written for Parade, New York, the New Yorker, the New York Times, and Travel & Leisure.

Lisa has been a Dewar's profile ("Last book read: The Harrad Experiment"), been serenaded by John Denver (in a limousine), Meat Loaf (on a tour bus), Penn Jillette (in the Salt Lake City airport), and Wayne Newton.. She has been a guest at the Playboy Mansion. She was Las Vegas bureau chief of Spy magazine and starred in a TV commercial for Western Bell.

Birnbach has appeared on many national television shows including the Today Show, Oprah, Late Night with David Letterman, Conan O'Brien, Charlie Rose, Good Morning America, The Early Show, Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, and many others. She has been a guest on "All Things Considered," "Fresh Air," and "The Leonard Lopate Show." Lisa was hired by director Peter Weir to be a consultant on his film Dead Poets Society. From 1999- 2002 Lisa was a correspondent on The Early Show, with a weekly segment called, "Yikes! I'm a Grownup!" Until 2007, she hosted the syndicated radio program, ''The Lisa Birnbach Show,'' which won the 2007 Gracie awards for ''Outstanding Talk Show'' and ''Outstanding Comedy Show.''

Lisa is the mother of three children who live with her in New York.

Meet Lisa Birnbach Today (Oct. 6, 2010)

12 noon: University Club of Chicago
76 E. Monroe

7 pm: Book Stall at Chestnut Court
811 Elm St, Winnetka.

Copyright © 2023 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.