I have to admit; I’ve only seen the first two or three episodes of HBO’s “Girls” starring Lena Dunham. I could not really get into the vibe of the show as it was not applicable to my own experience in my early twenties. There have been numerous articles and blog posts detailing, defending, and criticizing generation Y’s approach to life. I tend to lean more towards the criticisms as I have little tolerance for those who feel entitled to success/money without putting forth the effort. I’m sorry if a $100,000 degree in something you found interesting to study for four years did not lead to the American Dream. I know I should be a bit more empathetic given the economic environment that these college grads were exiting into, but there also needs to be some formulation of a career plan before one chooses a major and invests so much money. Even before reading these articles and posts, watching “Girls” left me with a sense of mild disgust and impatience. Therefore, I did not tend to follow much of what was going on with Lena Dunham as I did not know her in any other facet aside from this show.
Just last week, I came across a post showing a number of short clips by Lena Dunham in a series called “Ask Lena.” In them, she responded to various viewers’ questions in a sort of video advice column. I was pleasantly surprised to watch them and find that her answers were often well thought-out and strongly bolstered by a feminist undertone. Many of them were also absolutely hilarious. Her eloquence and emphasis on loving oneself really struck a cord with me; her advice seemed truly salt of the earth in quality. I realized that she actually is a great role model for women and men alike, for her outlook on life has been shaped by past mistakes and missteps, losses and wins, and deep, soul-scratching emotions, just like all of us. She has persevered through her experiences and turned the lessons she learned into a path to success. Her new book Not That Kind of Girl came out last week, and I am looking forward to reading it! Maybe I will even give “Girls” another chance.