The Sisterhood of the traveling pants made me love movies again. It’s a chick flick for all ages and wonderful. Was going to tell a cute anecdote about how I discovered Amber Tamblyn when she first began on General Hospital back in the days of VCR’s, and stupid cable company rules about not being able to record more than one channel. Guess I’m telling it. I was so obsessed with GH that I could only watch shows on ABC which left out most programs. Fortunately I was a one person two TV household, and could watch Melrose Place on Monday nights as my reward for leading a woman’s group that consisted of very old, slightly demented, ladies.
Never liked Luke and Laura, and that was the year of their return. Actually I have no idea why I was obsessed with GH, but Amber Tamblyn was a miracle. When she seemed to grow up over night GH didn’t try to keep her a little girl, or act too old for her age. Began liking Tony Geary when he cut his hair. Anybody who knows me will find that very strange. Stopped watching GH years ago when it became so bad faux-Sopranos
Also love The Gilmore Girls Alexis Bledel is the daughter. As Lucia says: “no real life mother and daughter ever have that fast witty repartee.” But it’s nice to watch on TV.
Forgot about America Ferrara who stole the film. She’s as good if not better than she was in Real Women Have Curves. Found myself crying at the end. Blake Lively who I’m not familiar with plays the fourth girl. Couldn’t get America Ferrara out of my mind for days. She’s an amazing actress and a role model for every girl who has hips.
They’re best friends of all different sizes but one pair of jeans fit them all. They think that the jeans are magical and will do great things for them when they’re apart for the first time one summer.
The picture I found of myself last week in a magazine is my own private traveling pants. Seeing myself reflected through a stranger’s eyes made me see myself differently. Perception is everything and I never thought of myself as particularly pretty though I knew that other people did.
When I was very young–20 or so, I walked into he-who-has-played-a-million-roles-in-my-life’s bedroom at his parents house. He was intently putting together a photo album.
“Who’s that girl?” I asked about a girl who could only be called gorgeous. You know what’s coming next but I didn’t.
“that’s you.” He answered, stunned and more than a little worried about my sanity. That last part was nothing new. Actually sometimes he still does. Tell you a secret; I really don’t care. Yes I do; some people come in and out and back into our lives for reasons that we don’t and won’t understand, maybe ever. But I made damn sure that he saw the sisterhood of the traveling picture because we both want reassurance that our youthful belief in the beauty and brilliance of the other will continue to to be confirmed.
I still don’t believe it; I have been haunted by memories of that picture most of my life. If I looked like that than I was…uh dare I say it..really pretty. So send me a copy!
I was the girl who never noticed guys looking at me. I would be told that they did. I was the girl who would cower in the corner looking for faults. All and any; larger than the Saint Andreas fault; larger than the hole in the earth that went all the way to China. Usually I wanted to fall into that hole. It wasn’t that my parents constantly criticized my looks; well my father criticized everything but that was just him. And I knew that he thought I was beautiful.
I had hips, and breasts, and a tush. In the era of Twiggy none of this was good. I spent my life dieting and trying to make my body into something that it couldn’t be. Yeah guys told me that I was beautiful but it didn’t matter. Just assumed that they were trying to pick me up because they were. I had severe problems with trusting guys; many seemed to want me, and I’m not being coy; I didn’t think that I was very special. I had too many interests; I liked learning strange things like facts about the weather.
I was caught between generations; now I would make a perfect nerd. I fit in but I never felt comfortable. When I began college, girls had curfews; many college educated girls still aspired to be secretaries or teachers just so they could have summers off, and quit before the first baby. Wendy Wasserstein is my age, and she had an entirely different experience. She went to a Seven Sister College; I started at the local loser school–where I had an incredible time and wouldn’t trade my memories for anything. I wasn’t really expected to achieve much, just get a college degree before getting married.
Again it wasn’t that my parents didn’t believe in me. I hadn’t done well in high school and there went my mom and guidance counsellor’s dream for me to go to Sarah Lawrence. My dad believed that real education took place outside of school. He wasn’t the usual suburban father though he could fake it well.
Didn’t have many girl friends then. It was the second generation of the modern women’s liberation movement; I should have been paying attention to it. But all I knew was that I was that I wasn’t as pretty as my only real girl friend, Shelby, because she had small breasts, small hips, and most importantly, small thighs.
Nobody ever said “you have big legs, but they’re toned.” Nobody ever said “stop dieting.” Well they did later but I was really underweight then. And to be truthful my mother did, but I thought that she was paid to compliment me.
A lifetime or so has passed since I was 20. My life’s been half-wonderful. I have had adventures, had incredible things happen to me that usually only happen in fiction. In the past year or so I have reached that place called content. A few things are missing but I think of them as yet to come.
I even finally believed that I was pretty; better than pretty, really. But I gained weight and it’s taken a long time to come off. Weight has always been everything to me. I measure success not in terms of what I’ve done but what size I was at the time.
When I first saw that picture last week, I thought that the woman couldn’t be me. She was too sure of herself; too young looking; too prototype Manhattan. I wanted to be her.
Yes I’m incredibly immature to think this way. But really how many people ever achieve true maturity?
I am her. I have always been her. But the sisterhood of the traveling picture affirmed me. Call it the sisterhood because it’s the bond between the people that are, really and brutally honestly, the most important people to me–my inner self and my outer self. We’re one, we’ve bonded, we understand how the world sees us.
Oh why was Twiggy the role model when I was a young teenager? America Ferrara, I’m so glad you’re here now. Wish you had been here then.