My brush with Japanese car culture, faux Ben and Jennifer(s) drama, Glen Powell’s full Netflix dance card, Swifty burnout (or lack thereof), and defending fan-girldom.
Taylor's endurance!! Almost 4 hrs of carrying the spectacle nonstop! 3 or 4 nights in a row!! For 1.5 years?! Athlete to athlete, Travis Kelce wishes.
But it's the emotional endurance that's really the champion to me. Taylor's narrative is of reclaiming her masters and control of her catalogue, which is the economic/creative argument. But there's also the emotional abuse/control angle from executives. "You can't put out an all-pop album; we need some country to secure the base." "You have to be a size 2 in order to stay on top." "You can't have political opinions if you want your albums to sell." In a domestic relationship, we wouldn't hesitate to call it emotional abuse. You can see in earlier interviews and the narratives of her music how much her people-pleasing instincts wound her up in that web. The mental toughness it takes to emerge whole on the other side of that! So the Eras Tour is like a victory lap for being liberated from the fear they tried to use to control her. We could argue she's been following only her own instincts for the last 3 years, and she's the biggest game on the planet. People say, "how can she top this, is she retiring?" but I have no doubt that as a creative force, her best is yet to come.
I’m so thankful for this space that makes us gossip lovers and fan girls feel seen and valued!
Kathleen (re: enjoying gossip) has touched on this interesting idea of the “guilty pleasure” when actually, what’s so guilt-inducing about it? Just like enjoying pop, or being into boy bands, or smutty books, or any of the things that are typically seen as things that women enjoy, isn’t that its own kind of patriarchal oppression? To look down upon those things as trivial or frivolous? I am really impressed with the restraint from Lainey in responding to this question without pulling on the thread about wanting to teach (and successfully doing so) a university-level course about gossip and what it says about society and the way people think/communicate and culture at large. Whenever I start to think that the things I enjoy are silly I try to remember what makes these things so enjoyable and important to me or to others. Why do we like to gossip or -- really -- storytelling? What does it say about our perspectives when we think something is good or not good or noteworthy or even salacious? Sometimes I don’t even have to bring it up first. And surprisingly, men love to gossip, too! Sports gossip is also gossip! And there’s nothing I love more in a heated gossip discussion than understanding what other people gossip about, and helping them see other perspectives of the story or learning about another perspective I hadn’t considered.
I’ll leave you with this reel that had me howling and sending immediately to my husband. (I don’t recommend being completely illiterate around world issues and events, but sometimes refraining from conversation about those things can also prevent a lot of conflict and heartache, given what’s going on in the world. So take this with a grain of salt in the humor, it’s intended to relay!)
In the language-evolves-so-hopefully-we-do-too column, could we maybe retire the ableist term “lame” as an insult?
The amount of things society disparages because they are associated with or patronized by women is endless. Even hardware stores aren’t safe!
I’ve been wondering the same thing about the Ben and Jen co-parenting stories because they’ve successfully co-parented for YEARS. It’s totally a non-story without J-Lo I guess mad in the background and that does suck for Bennifer that Ben can’t just do normal things like co-parent without it putting additional pressure on his marriage.
Re: the person getting shit on for enjoying gossip. For better or worse, I don't really talk about my love of it with anyone in real life - maybe it is age dependent but most people I know consider think that celebrity gossip = the covers of magazines and tabloids in the grocery aisle.
My beautiful little nephew who at 10 already looks like he should be in the movies said something about wanting to be famous when he grew up. And I said, “Ew, being famous is the WORST. Everyone thinks they know you, you can’t go anywhere without getting mobbed and people are always up in your business. It sounds like misery to me.” Mainly I was trying to get him to stop thinking that being famous is some kind of end-all be-all goal in life but also, I stand by what I said! It sounds like hell (aside from the money and houses and free sh*t). Some people adapt well to it, sure, but it sounds like a nightmare to me. So yeah, to a large degree I have empathy for that for sure. Which is why when I meet or have met famous people I treat them like anyone else and generally try to leave them alone. We are just way too parasocial these days (but celebs have a big hand in that too, soooo chicken/egg).
I loved reading about the experience you and Jacek had with the 911, Lainey! I can’t put anything into wise or interesting words right now but there is something so beautiful to me about being around people who are really into “something” even when I don’t know much or anything about the “something”... (obviously unless it’s hurtful and awful and cruel, etc) I am so happy that this experience happened for you both.
I don’t have any idea what Ben Affleck is like in real life but I’m starting to get the impression that maybe he’s a grump? Maybe sober Ben is a grump. I’ve seen footage of him looking miserable with Jennifer Lopez or seemingly snapping at her, huffing closing a car door....but I don’t think we have any context. Maybe they are having problems....or maybe he’s just a huffy grump half the time.
Catching up this morning, but as a gearhead and someone who used to build engines for a living, I literally cannot stop laughing about Lainey calling “understeering” niche jargon.
Lainey, thank you for sharing your trip a bit. I hope you and Jacek are having a blast!!! One day I will visit Japan.
As for the pop culture associated with Japan, I was an early FF follower. In the early days of FF, when it was about Brian O'Conner working undercover I was one of the feel women in the cinema surrounded by attractive guys ;)
Funny enough, I refused to watch Tokyo drift (hello Sung Kang and Lucas Black!) for years because Paul Walker was not in it. By the time I finally got around to watch the third installement of the franchise, I loved it!
Lainey, the clips and pics of you guys going through those mountains in that itty bitty car were so great to see! Pretty sure I would be white knuckling the whole time as well, but it sounds like an amazing experience. Btw this jumpsuit is excellent - looks just as fantastically slouchy and comfy as the one Jodie TS had on a few weeks ago.
Re: Ben and his Jen’s. I always feel a bit bad about how his every expression (the man’s face shows his boredom/tiredness/annoyance/etc. very well) turns into constant poking at his marriage. It doesn’t help Jen G, and it certainly doesn’t help JLo. And yes yes, they have their many millions to soothe them, but it has to be so frustrating to have people always for reasons your marriage is a failure.
And finally, booo to people who are still shitting on fangirls! It’s such a boring take in 2023.
@Sarah the passive aggressive tactic in Our Flag Means Death 💀😆😆😆😆😆😆 (thank you for pumping this show I am so glad I finally watched it)