Ingenues We Are Not

Can we all agree that Sarah Jessica Parker is no longer an ingenue? I rented the movie New Years Eve. I know, I know. I am behind on the movie scene. Some of us are just so damn busy don’t cha know? The movie is chick flick fare featuring intertwined stories ala Crash minus any meat, drama, depth or meaning. Perfect for a chick home alone, excepting for wine, on a Saturday night.

If you haven’t seen it, Josh Duhamel, le sigh, spends the movie pining over a woman he met briefly last New Year’s Eve. One presumes her a beautiful, witty enchantress matching his qualities. The man is, after all, married to Fergie. Josh and mystery girl met fleetingly and she scrawled her number on a napkin the poor boy has carried in his wallet all year. Of course he hails from an abominably wealthy family and is being groomed to reign as king of New York society. Where are these wealthy cute guys in real life? Generally, wealthy guys are short, rounded and bald. And oblivious to the fact that their money is their attractiveness quotient. Digress. The nature of men. Women will hit the zenith of equality when our underarm jiggle can slap the face of the stranger next to us and we remain solid in our hotness. Until then, we are vain shells of human beings overly concerned with the opinions of others.

Back to the film: Josh fulfills his family obligation with an impassioned speech and, exquisitely tuxedoed with yummy white scarf, goes in search of lost love. He arrives at the restaurant to find it shuttered. He sits, glum, bemused at his luck. As he rises to leave, no less than a Central Park horse drawn carriage pulls up and out steps his lady love. ‘Cuz that’s how we roll. We view her from bejeweled shoe, up leg and onto face. Whaaaa? This man has been pining a whole year for Sarah Jessica Parker? Did anyone think this through?

Josh Duhamel is thirty-seven and looks thirty. SJP is forty-eight and looks, well, not thirty. She gets lots of breaks because she’s tiny and she did that Sex and the City thing, making her a heroette to single women everywhere. Even then she was old for the part. And, as someone who’s ventured round the journalism block, no one pays five dollars a word for a column about you and your girlfriends, especially in 1998–yes that’s when the show began my friends. Even at five dollars a word, she could have afforded neither the apartment nor the Manolos nor going out to eat nor the dresses nor the cabs in New York City. The girl did not take the subway. Lived in Manhattan and spent zero time in her office. In 1998.

Women, including myself, suspended belief as the show spoke to our inner consciousness about being single and happy and thin and exquisitely dressed members of the social glitterati despite three small, smelly children and a wardrobe of sweats. Mr. Big was not coming to rescue us. He may not even be coming home for dinner.

We loved Carrie and Big and Miranda and Samantha and Charlotte. Kind of. I was just jealous. Once a shoe whore always a shoe whore. Fast forward and although I still don’t wear Manolos, I now know it’s my choice whether to frivolously fritter away my money. When I do, and I will, I will do it with open eyes and open conscience.

What I will not do with open eyes and open conscience is believe Josh pined over SJP for a year. With Fergie at home, he arrived on set and said “Really, SJP? Do you know I’m married to Fergie and look like I’m 25?” Is it the squee? That squealy thing that SJP does when she laughs? Its kind of a cross between a squeal and a scream–does it mesmerize people into believing she’s still twenty? Lest you be swayed girlfriends, here are some reminders we no longer fit in the ingenue category. SJP evidently has forgotten, but we have not. We are not ingenues if….

One: Bra wearing is no longer a choice. Upheaval and under wire are necessities in keeping the girls mid chest where they are supposed to reside but somehow stray when left to their own devices.

Two: We know there has been no decent music since the eighties. It’s true–what is that rhymey babbling bullshit about hating women and shooting police officers anyway?

Three: When we dress to go out with our girlfriends, we recognize our daughter’s WTF face paired with one hand up waving up and down our outfit. “No, Mom, no.” It’s not like we’re rocking mom jeans and blue eye shadow. Geez.

Four: We don’t run. Ever. Because of our thighs. Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about.

Five: We stay married to the same man because it’s easier to convince him he’s responsible for our stretch marks than to risk the look on the face of a stranger when he sees the topographical map we call a tummy.

SJP can remain in a fantasy world believing she is the new ingenue and the sort over which young men pine. But at the end of the day she goes home to Matthew Broderick. Not Ferris Bueller my friends; but the modern day Matthew Broderick. And Josh goes home to Fergie. Well played Mr. Duhamel. Well played.


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