Posts Tagged: Meghan Daum
By forcing blue-state liberal types to reckon with a demographic they had long dismissed as a punch line—low-income, uneducated whites in economically depleted regions—he [Donald Trump] awakened them to the fact that the groovy progressive social values they had assumed were a national fait accompli were actually only half the story.
Books make being an editorial assistant seem pretty glamorous. Meghan Daum discusses the unromantic realities of being an editorial assistant in book publishing, in an excerpt from the new reprint of her essay collection My Misspent Youth:
To the dewy eye of the editorial assistant, there is something about this mythos — the stiff patent leathers tromping around Madison Square, the particular literary drunkenness that seemed obtainable only from the taps of the White Horse Tavern, where Dylan Thomas met the shot glass that killed him — that feels lost, abandoned in nostalgia’s inevitable recycling bin…Nonetheless we persevere, dreaming of the day when we’ll become an assistant editor, and wondering how we’ll survive the ensuing years until that fabled associate editor position is dangled before our eyes.
If you’re a woman over the age of 25, you are familiar with the pressure to procreate. The parental inquiries of when you’ll be settling down, when you’ll give them grandkids. The friends on Facebook popping out babies like clockwork. And if you’re married, the judgment-loaded questions from anyone you’ve barely met: Do you have kids?...more
I’ve always been a late bloomer in some ways, and extremely precocious in other ways. When I was twenty I was living in New York and working a job and could barely bother to be a college student and had my own apartment, but I couldn’t possibly get married before I was thirty-nine.
I think what tends to be truly unspeakable in our current culture is not when someone is honest about her mistakes or struggles, but rather when she fails to learn from them, fails to transform on some level.
Just to throw out a few other Daum-isms—here’s her description of Anthropologie: “A twirling motion in the form of an international brand”. Of Los Angeles: “a place where wildness and domestication are forever running into each other.” Of Nicole Kidman: “a walking Vermeer.” She’s pithy like a newspaper columnist needs to be, but she doesn’t gloss over life’s uncertainties and regrets.
You probably knew that Lena Dunham wrote a memoir (if you didn’t, she has), but she’d love to remind you why she’s qualified. Meghan Daum elaborates for the New York Times Magazine:
To suggest that Dunham is too young, too privileged, too entitled, too narcissistic, neurotic and provincial (in that rarefied Manhattan-raised way) to be dispensing advice to anyone is to add very little to the ever-expanding, very much already-in-progress conversation about her place in the culture and her overall right to exist.
She compares the unfavorable reaction to a somewhat naïve piece she wrote about safe sex in the ’90s to the daily attacks she now receives on her “looks, marital or reproductive status, and standing on the bitch-o-meter”—and then considers the verbal skirmishes of the Founding Fathers....more