Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thank You, Janeane Garafolo, In A Few Very Long Run-On Sentences

On the long list of small kindnesses that Janeane Garafolo has bestowed upon me over the years-- the majority of which are oft-repeated quotes from The Truth About Cats And Dogs that, in 1996, probably resonated a bit too much with my woeful B-grade girl soul, comes this most recent kindness, via the hazy, dense medium of anxiety dream. Janeane starred as an RA-figure of sorts (Side note: WOULD SHE NOT BE THE GREATEST RA? Tell me a bedtime story about date rape, Janeane!) in a rodent-infested dormitory for grown-ups. You know how dreams have a sort of inviolable logic of their own that you don't think to question when you're in them? Like, say, Stalin is disguised as your brother at the dinner table, but you can't signal this to your parents because he's implanted mini-Russian poltergeists in their souls or something? So whereas in real life if you were confronted with this situation you would just be like, "Mom! That's not Danny! THAT IS STALIN, THE DEAD DICTATOR OF RUSSIA!", you can't in your dream, because he'll know about it and then kill you with his alpha-red laser eyes. So in the internal logic of this specific Janeane dream, the mice infesting the dorm loved water. Thus I was afraid to even take a shower, but at the same time, I really needed to take a shower. Janeane took me aside and told me in her totally cool, even-keeled voice, "Look, girl, there are going to be mice in the shower, and they are going to freak you out, and you are going to get so freaked out you're going to fall down on the shower floor." As I was only beginning to process the terribleness of this prediction, Janeane bent down and started painting my knee caps with this sparkly-glue like paint that smelled like My Little Ponies. Then she moved on to my elbows, and as she was painting my elbows the paint she had put on my knees was starting to dry into a sort of rubber encasement. "This is paint-on protective gear," she told me, "I invented it after I couldn't get work as an actress. This will protect you from breaking your kneecaps when you fall in the shower." In the end, even though this was an anxiety dream and I had to get in the shower with rodents, I felt a lot better about things.

So thank you Garafolo.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Senior year of college our attendance was encouraged at a black tie-mandatory Etiquette Dinner held at Brown's Faculty Club. It was hosted by an ancient lady with a Winehouse-esque beehive that probably hadn't been taken down since 1982 and was clearly mummified with toilet paper each night. She spoke with a long-lost upper-deck-Titanic affectation and over the span of three courses, she taught us how to give a toast, how to excuse oneself from the table, and all the other behavioral niceties one should know for a business dinner. During the Q & A after dessert, one student asked what she should say if a business associate had food on their face.

"There are times when I find a napkin very useful."

Friday, February 12, 2010

Adorable Letters from People Born At The Turn Of The Century Who Still Don't Quite Know What The Internet Is.

There was such a thing as an era before irony, or at least widespread, cultural mainstay irony. Nothing exemplifies this better than my Grandma's consistently hilarious use of quotation marks in her Hallmark cards. The latest, for Valentine's Day (includes a $20 bill):

Dearest Lauren,
Have a "fun" day! I miss your calls. Hope all is going well for you in New York! Share your "treat" with Joe!!


Dear Gaga,

Thank you so much for the "treat!" Joe and I shared it and while at first it was a little "uncomfortable" I definitely, DEFINITELY got used to it! We used the $20 to buy smokes and "cognac" for after!

Love you,