Today's guest: Caitlin Moran Why we love her: She's been called the UK version of Tina Fey and we couldn't agree more. So, what's not to love?
Her latest: How to Be a Woman
The scoop on it: Though they have the vote and the Pill and haven't been burned as witches since 1727, life isn't exactly a stroll down the catwalk for modern women. They are beset by uncertainties and questions: Why are they supposed to get Brazilians? Why do bras hurt? Why the incessant talk about babies? And do men secretly hate them?
Caitlin Moran interweaves provocative observations on women's lives with laugh-out-loud funny scenes from her own, from the riot of adolescence to her development as a writer, wife, and mother. With rapier wit, Moran slices right to the truth—whether it's about the workplace, strip clubs, love, fat, abortion, popular entertainment, or children—to jump-start a new conversation about feminism.
With humor, insight, and verve, How To Be a Woman lays bare the reasons why female rights and empowerment are essential issues not only for women today but also for society itself.
Our thoughts: Witty and funny, it's a book for every woman!
Giveaway: FIVE copies! Leave a comment and be entered to win. We'll select the winners after 3pm on Monday, August 27, 2012.
Fun Fact: She's the oldest of eight children!
CHICK LIT IS NOT DEAD PRESENTS...AN EXCERPT FROM HOW TO BE A WOMAN
I have no idea what to wear to a strip club. It’s one of the biggest wardrobe crises of my life.
“What are you wearing?” I ask Vicky on the phone.
“Skirt. Cardigan,” Vicky says, lighting a fag.
“Boots. Low heel.”
“Oh, I was going to wear boots, low heel, too,” I say. “We can both wear boots, low heel. That’s good. We’ll be matchy.” Then a bad thought occurs to me. “Actually, maybe we shouldn’t both wear boots, low heel,” I say. “If we look too matchy, people might think we’re an act. You know. Like a lesbian act. And try and touch us.”
“No one would believe you’re a lesbian,” Vicky sighs. “You’d make a terrible lesbian.”
“I wouldn’t!” I say indignantly. This offends my can-do nature.
“If I wanted, I could be a great lesbian!”
“No, you couldn’t,” Vicky says. “You’re offensively heterosexual. You fancy Father Christmas. By no stretch of the imagination could Father Christmas be construed to have Sapphic androgyny. He wears Wellington boots indoors.”
I can’t believe Vicky is doubting my ability to be a lesbian, if I really wanted to be. She’s seen how versatile I can be on a night out. Once, when we went to Bournemouth, we blagged our way backstage of a theater and convinced the star of the show—a legendary sitcom actor—that we were prostitutes, just to see his reaction. He said, “Blimey!” in a very edifying manner. My capabilities are endless. She doesn’t know what she’s talking about.
“Maybe I’ll wear sneakers, instead,” I say.
Vicky has asked me if I want to join her for a night out at Spearmint Rhino, on Tottenham Court Road. It’s the year 2000, and strip clubs—for so long regarded as the holding pen for the last few sad, sweaty fucks on earth—have become acceptable again.
In Britain, the mid-nineties have been all about the rediscovery of the British working class’s monochrome tropes—pubs, greyhound racing, anoraks, football in the park, bacon sandwiches, “birds”—and strip clubs come under this heading. “Ladettes” now enjoy a night out in the classier strip clubs of the metropolis. Various Spice Girls have been pictured in strip clubs, smoking cigars and cheering the acts on. Titty-bars are being marketed as an exciting, marginally loucher version of the Groucho Club—just somewhere for anyone who liked to start a night out at 1 a.m.
Partly out of journalistic hunger to cover the phenomenon, and partly because newspaper editors are invariably excited by pictures of female hacks in a strip club, the Evening Standard has asked Vicky to go spend an evening in the Rhino in order to see what all the fuss is about.
“It’s against every single one of my feminist principles. These are arenas of abuse,” I said when she called.
“The manager is giving us complimentary champagne all night,” Vicky said.
“I will meet you there at 9 p.m.,” I said, with all the dignity I could muster.
Liz & Lisa