Below are some rough ideas on womanhood. My mind has been racing lately and I don’t know how to slow it down all the time so in the meantime I’m just going to take notes. I’ve been told by a few of you that this newsletter has not been funny lately. And I resent that. Because to me there’s nothing funnier than a woman going through it.
I can’t stop thinking about how women are defined by their relationships to others. She’s a mother, a sister, a daughter, a tennis partner. Women are often described by what they do for others and the roles they fill, and not always by what they’re like and what they care about. We were taught from a young age that Stacy’s mom has got it going on, but what books does she like to read? What’s her signature spin on the Aperol Spritz? Where was she on 9/11?
I want to take a moment to check in with you guys that I am writing this from my desk in my home. For the first time since freshman year of college, I have a desk in my room and I’m using it for more than just piling shirts and cerave face cream. I’m not going to compare myself writing at a desk to Carrie Bradshaw. Do you know how many twenty something wannabe writers think they’re Carrie? I’m not a Carrie, I’m a Steve. I’m short and cute and reliable. This desk is where I will write my memoir about the one time I lost my family on a cruise ship during the fire drill on the first day. Cruise ships should be illegal but I don’t have time to get into that because my desk chair has wheels on the bottom and my floor on this side of the room is ever so slanted and i m roll i ng a w ay from the d e s k.
Where were we? Yes, women. Traditional lady roles are usually caretaker, cook, storyteller, gatherer, girlboss, etc. Women can do anything we set our minds to. I for one like to subvert the stereotype that women belong in the kitchen. I started a “grease fire” on my stove last week making a Melissa Clark recipe from the New York Times. I don’t have a fire extinguisher yet even though my dad told me to get one and I don’t have a smoke alarm even though my mom told me to replace the batteries. So I turned off the stove and cracked a window like a good prairie wife. And nobody died.
Women don’t belong in the kitchen, they belong in other people’s business. That’s why magazines and park benches were invented. If a woman cannot overhear, she cannot be. Most advice I’ve learned in my life has been from eavesdropping in a bathroom. And my life is perfect, no notes.
Women spend a lot of time comparing. I for one have spent so much time looking at Barbara Streisand’s nose to determine if mine is cutely Jewish like hers or too big. The answer is that I can never get a nose job anyway because I’m afraid of the concept of anesthesia.
Have you ever compared yourself to your ex’s new girlfriend? Wife? Don’t lie. It’s really easy and fun. Women sometimes find ourselves knee deep in LinkedIn to see if she has some Microsoft certifications that I don’t. And she never does. She’s just another girl, like you, looking for love in a lonely world.
Women are pit against each other and it sucks because women are all the same. We all just want to be described in detail and we want to be able to walk home at night with headphones in. I’m just like you. I twirl my shoulder length once-but-never-again balayaged hair into my claw clip one swoop at a time. And when I get my period I dance around on a tennis court in a white dress. Because I don’t know the rules.
Stacy’s mom did go on a business trip, now that I think of it. We need more multifaceted women like her in the media. And we need more movies filmed in abandoned shopping malls. This has been my platform, I’m running to be the girl of your dreams.