Tuesday, February 15, 2005

My Perogative, Or How I Gave Up an SSRI and Learned to Love Britney

So I’m obsessed by Britney Spears. How dumb is that?

It all started innocently enough: I started reading Go Fug Yourself (www.gofugyourself.typepad.com) and they did a really good Britney imitation, while they lambasted her clothing. I'm all "hey, lovin' the ya'll-ness of it all and yeah, her thong is totally showing and she hasn't washed her hair in weeks and I'm kind of intrigued." Then my friend Debs complains that Jennifer Garner's i-tunes list is insipid--it's all work out music and her accompanying narrative shows a real struggle with language. So I have to go look at it, right? And she lists a Britney song, (or maybe a Justin Timberlake song and I got sidetracked onto Britney through the i-tunes network) and I'm thinking that I want to look like Jennifer Garner (only with a waist and a face that has character) so I'll listen to the songs she listens to.

And then I found out that it wasn't just that I had outgrown yet another pair of pants. In the last two years of not weighing myself because that's so non-feminist, to place emphasis on a body whose rightness or wrongess is dictated by consumerism and a general hatred of women's bodies, when really it's my politics and my heart and my personality that counts, I had gained THIRTY pounds. That's right, not ten, not fifteen, not even twenty, but thirty. And so I went off my meds (which is a story I might have written about, had I not rehearsed it everywhere for the last few weeks, making me a very lucky girl to have any friends left) and started working out like a maniac, because we all know you only lose weight when the calories spent in a day exceeds the calories taken in. And that's where Britney came in. It started out innocently: I was having major lexapro withdrawals (headaches, nausea, dizziness, brain zaps, crying jags, rage) and Toxic became my mantra. It's not that I'm a freak, it's that there's a toxin in my system. But then I moved on to My Perogative and then Crazy and then some ridiculous remix of every song she ever kind-of-sang at once and then Oops I did it Again which makes me a little embarassed every time I work out to it. I'm rowing away and then that dialogue comes on and my first thought is "oh, this is kind of funny; she's talking about titanic" immediately followed by shame. It's not funny, it's stupid and it's overplayed and over. Even my eight year old neice is totally over that joke. But today it went from secretly shameful to downright ugly when I modified my cardio playlist to play ONLY Britney songs for the first half hour of my work out.

Okay, whatever. Here's how it works: all of the above is totally manufactured shame. I'm listening to Hit Me Baby One More Time right now, and it's making me happy and making me excited for the moment when I plop onto the rowing maching and cue her up again. And soon I won't be able to listen to it anymore and soon I'll have a new obsession and a new song consuming my thoughts and maybe it will be equally shameful and maybe it will be the coolest thing I've ever done--like the time I got totally obsessed with Dusty in Memphis and it allowed me to access the me that wrote my dissertation.

I've also been listening to Lil' Kim's Crush on You a lot. She's pretty hot when she says "unhh huh."
Remind me to write about what's really been going on in my life: abject poverty, drug withdrawals, job frustration, renewed contact with a part of my family I've spent most of my life avoiding, and, always, crazy love.

3 Comments:

Blogger New Kid on the Hallway said...

Hysterical post. Saw your comments over at Dr. Crazy's (great comments, too!) and just stopped by to say hi. Your points about the students in women's studies are really good ones.

So, um, hi. :-)

9:23 AM  
Blogger Margo, darling said...

Thanks so much. I'm so stoked on getting a comment--this community is just amazing. Hi back.

12:39 PM  
Blogger rotatingmass said...

Hi Margo, I love your blog. I don't want to make you jealous but I live just down the road a piece from Britney's hometown. I work with people who know her,her family, and her first husband. Bizarro mundo

7:43 PM  

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