Two actual discussions from my life recently:
“My Bitch Magazine article came out.”
“What? I have a subscription.”
“Yeah. It’s not Hustler.”
“Do you know what Bitch Magazine is?”
“Then why are you surprised? It’s a feminist magazine.”
“I know that. I just don’t see you as a feminist.”
“Are you KIDDING? What are you talking about? I’m totally girl-power.”
“Yeah, but you’re not a feminist. You’re girly-centric.”
“Paris Hilton is girly-centric. I’m pro-girl.”
“You’re way too nice to be a feminist.”
“I cannot believe you are saying those words! It’s not a bad word, ‘Feminist.’ I can hear the Texas in you, calling me a Feminazi.”
“But you aren’t all militant.”
“I will be if we keep getting paid seventy-five cents to the dollar of our male counterparts. I’m fixin’ to be seriously militant.”
“I just don’t see you as a feminist.”
“I wrote a book for women! For girls! I try to be a good role model!”
“You’re a role model?”
“I get young girls writing me all the time for advice. Women too. Men, even!”
“Advice for real things, or like, ‘Pam, what movie should I see tomorrow?’”
“I can’t believe I’m still talking to you.”
“Being girly isn’t the same as being a feminist.”
“I can’t believe you think feminism is a bad thing. How can you think that?”
“Whatever. You’re not a feminist.”
And I know she’s reading this, the person I had this conversation with. And I’d like her to read the always-wise words of Sarah. (You read them too, if you haven’t yet.) Live them. Love them. Sorry to break it to you, but you’re a feminist, too.
And the other conversation I had:
“Mom. I’m going to quickly tell you the name of the magazine I’m in, and you can’t make that tsking sound that you make.”
“What is it?”
“It’s called Bitch Magazine–”
“–and apparently there’s a really long interview with me in it.”
“Many pages? About my baby?”
“And it’s in the store? I assume not at Barnes and Noble.”
“I think, actually, you can get it at Barnes and Noble. But not Katy Budget Books. It’s not dirty.”
“Of course you’re in a magazine called Bitch. Your entire acting career, you’ve always played the bitch.”
“No. Sometimes I was the slut.”
Saw Homebody/Kabul last night at the Mark Taper Forum (Thanks, Goldstar Events, for being so affordable!). It opens with an hour-long monologue. And as an actor, I kept interrupting the performance to wonder how she went about memorizing that thing, how the director would work with a piece that large, and why they decided to have her sit still the entire time. I wondered why nobody asked Kushner to trim it down a bit, and how he can write a four-hour play and people come just the same. I wondered why so many elderly people wear digital watches, and if they have had them since the Eighties, when I think was the only time people made and sold digital watches, or if they wear them to remember to take medicine. I thought about how most places don’t include “digital watches” in that opening “Please turn off your…” speech, but here they mentioned them, which means that digital watches are a problem at the Mark Taper Forum, and I would say we heard about twenty of them go off during the four-hour show. Then I started thinking about how this play was written before September 11th (There’s a line something like, “They will be coming for the United States, with missiles. Don’t think they won’t.”), and I wondered how different it would be if it was written after that, after we supposedly eliminated the Taliban. It’s easy to see that Kushner thought we’d be completely unfamiliar with Kabul and its inhabitants. I really liked Angels in America, and I’m looking forward to the HBO show this December.
Basically, an hour-long monologue becomes mental therapy for me.
I did enjoy the play, and on the ride home I found myself defending it to my friends.
“I just didn’t learn anything about Afghanistan that I didn’t already know,” one said.
“I thought it showed why people stay in a place that’s seemingly without hope, and why people are drawn to somewhere many feel is hell on Earth,” I said.
“Like Los Angeles,” another realized.
- Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right. Al Franken uses a lot of exclamation points.
- Diary. In like, a second. Then I read Mean Season, by H.K. Cochran, which will be out next fall.
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