Life and Style, Bethenny Frankel

Bethenny Frankel is fighting back.

The former Real Housewives star is throwing water on a claim that her sailing mishap last month was staged for her Bravo reality show.

The man who supposedly rescued Frankel from the ordeal says they were never in any danger.


Frankel first told me that she and her hubby, Jason Hoppy, along with a few others—including her camera crew—were lost at sea in New England for about 20 hours after their boat's GPS malfunctioned.

However, Tim Russell, who says he guided the boat back to shore, insists the GPS worked just fine. He told the Jewish Journal that he was called to help them after the Coast Guard refused because the boat wasn't in danger.

Russell said when Frankel got to shore, she bent down to kiss the deck but not until the cameras began rolling. He even says he never received a $2,800 tip that Frankel told Ellen DeGeneres she gave to him.

Frankel insists the misadventure was very real.

"Fiction? For some reason the craziest things just happen to happen to me," she tells me exclusively. "Not many people have an iguana poop in their suite on their honeymoon or their baby nurse attempt to baptize their child."

Frankel didn't address Russell's specific claims but said the controversy will be "fun fodder" for her upcoming novel, Skinny Dipping, which "actually is fiction."

"I wish that boat trip were fiction rather than the nightmare it actually was," she said. "My truth is stranger than fiction."

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