The girl can't help it
Laura Kipnis takes on postfeminist culture in her latest
The Female Thing:
Dirt, Sex, Envy, Vulnerability
by Laura Kipnis
$24.00 List Price
"I was talking with my therapist today," my girlfriend tells me. "I deny myself pleasure," she says, with wistful resignation.
Midforties, attractive, relationships but never the white dress ("divorces without the wedding," she calls them), my girlfriend has enticing men circling the nest—the Elvis look-alike Yugoslavian sailor, the Richard Gere look-alike Italian ("former") porn star. Doesn't she sleep with them? Or at least masturbate?
"So," I venture innocently, "like, er, what would be an example of depriving yourself of pleasure?"
"Well," she says, "like the other day, I was in the supermarket and I bought
the $2.19 toilet cleaner instead of the $2.99 one that I really like that smells like lavender." After making a quick mental note of the name of the good stuff, I offer my sympathies.
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