It was so good to hang out with you today, Lena, and I would like to thank Terry Gross for facilitating the conversation and asking most of the questions I would have asked and some I wouldn’t have thought of but was glad she asked you anyway, snorty laughter notwithstanding.
I am still dancing around in the echo of what you said about how oversharing is a “gendered term.” You said men who share about their experiences are deemed brave, but women are relegated to oversharing. I agree. I’ve sat at plenty of lunchtables with men talking perversion and misogyny and using expletives every other word and I got the impression that I was just supposed to hang. Whereas women asking for a tampon at anything above a whisper is considered gauche. I don’t know if this is a battle we will ever win, dear Lena, the war of who gets permission to share true things, but that reminds me of something else illuminating you said. You explained how Hannah, the character you play in “Girls,” is the one who feels charged with saying all the true things out loud, except she forgets that there are social constructs in place for a reason.
I feel this way.
All the time.
I live in reaction to a very private family. I think my temperament is also pretty no bologna and having spent a decade in New England, I’m wicked blunt. But to my family, I’m all, “Okay, people, I’m calling everyone onto the floor who is still wearing a scrunchie from 1994” and my family is sort of, “Anybody care for some tea?”
So what I’m saying, Lena Dunham, is that I think we get each other. Also, did I say how cute your hair is looking on your Vogue cover? Ah, and by the way, congrazzles on the rave reviews of your book. Michiko Kakutani? Girrrrl.
Full disclosure, though: I couldn’t get into “Girls” and it’s not for the lack of trying on my part or a lack of talent for writing and acting on your part. It was just one of those salt-in-the-wounds reminders of how I sort of forgot to live in New York in my twenties and how I cannot fathom how many sexually transmitted diseases would be involved if life were really like that. That’s where my brain goes. Everybody else is, Look how brave! Look how true! And I am tar-heeled paralyzed in the corner, pondering whether or not all those characters would be filling prescriptions for crabs.
Was that the sound of me oversharing again?
::presses publish because knows Lena Dunham won’t mind::