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Failed Celebrity Encounters #10: Janeane Garofalo Gives Me The Finger

Sometime in the middle of Eugene Mirman‘s comedy night down in the East Village I realize a particularly forceful laugh coming from a back corner is Janeane Garofalo. I knew she was there. I knew she was probably going to be doing some standup that night, but I’m still not prepared when I make the inevitable pass by her as we exit the theater at the end of the show after she’s done her routine and the show is over. I grin haplessly and think about how she is so totally short and beautiful and how I was going to say something about how she’s my favorite thing since sliced bread and I loved her in Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion especially, but all that comes out is more grin and I think I’m starting to drool, maybe. Perhaps thinking I am hungry, she comes up with an open Tupperware container.

“Would you like a cookie?” she says, and puts the box under my nose like a feedbag. I can’t see the cookies well. They look folded, or made out of strips of something yellow. I say something to the effect of “How very strange!” and feel dumb.

“They’re fingers,” she says. I take one. It is in fact a crone-finger-shaped almond cookie and the almond is the fingernail. I have vague intimations that either she is Martha-Stewart-like evil genius of cookies or else brilliant silly ideas still occur to her the way they used to when we are all teenagers, and then I am smitten with the migraine feeling that I am reading too much into five seconds of interaction because I have been encouraged by filmmakers to read a lot into things when I have seen Janeane Garofalo before, you know, on the movie screen.

Did I save the cookie? No, I ate the goddamn cookie! What am I going to do, let it fossilize on my shelf? Sell it on EBay? I had a moment of hesitation, because there used to be days when I wouldn’t eat even my own genius decorated Christmas cookies and even when the plates of them went stale I insisted my mother photograph them before she threw them out, but I ate this cookie. It was a good cookie. Janeane wasn’t skimping on the almonds.

* * *

Yeah, so I took the site down the other day, it’s not Josh Crawford’s fault. I had this moment of paranoia that it may have led to a serious setback in my employment situation. I mean, it could, at any time. I’ve been getting more questions lately about how I work up the cajones to put such personal stuff on the site, and the’ve been asked in a worried tone, not an awe-filled one. It’s not a matter of balls… really, it’s a lack of self-preservation instinct.

I don’t have anything to write about anymore, anyway, now that I’m not getting arrested or taunted by small children on a regular basis. I’m pretty unhappy with the amount of navel-gazing I’ve been doing here lately. Like with the essay about community and romantic relationships, I feel like it’s some big topic I just have to have understood about myself, and then it isn’t. The stuff that garners the best comments and discussion is the stuff that isn’t about me anyway. Somewhere along the line I’d started living for the comments.

I had this idea a while back that I’d start using my blog for rigorous public self-criticism. In addition to cutting the self-important bullshit it felt like it might be a nice parody of most blogs. Maybe I’ll still do that. I have one or two archival pieces in the wings that should do the trick.

Also been thinking I want to do a blog that just rips the ad industry trade rags to shreds on a regular basis. Now that I’m out of my last job I don’t have access to a subscription anymore, and I don’t have the cash to spring for a subscription to Ad Age or Creative… If anyone wants to subsidize this project, my PayPal account is under my (initials and entering year) Hampshire address…


  1. kellan wrote:

    I hate to break it to you, but rigorous public self-criticism is just as indulgent, and a whole lot less attractive then public self-adulation, or self importance.

    Friday, November 1, 2002 at 3:00 pm | Permalink
  2. gus wrote:

    actually, I think I just meant “making myself look bad.” which I’m doing anyway. just thought I’d take it to its logical hyperbolic conclusion.

    Saturday, November 2, 2002 at 6:29 pm | Permalink
  3. kermix wrote:

    If I miss the Clash of the Titans I think I will be very sad. I have to check the ticket office now because TicketMeister only had what I call “ghost tickets” (they’re there, but they can’t sell them to me… thanks, guys!).

    Thursday, November 7, 2002 at 5:41 pm | Permalink
  4. kermix wrote:


    Thursday, November 7, 2002 at 5:42 pm | Permalink
  5. Heather wrote:

    Good design! |

    Monday, November 13, 2006 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

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