In the movie “Say Anything,” there’s a character played byLili Taylor named Corey Flood. She’s a talented singer/songwriter who is in love with a shallow guy named Joe, and even though their relationship is fail, she writes excellent songs about him.
Now, Corey is not the star of this movie. She’s a supporting actress, and she’s comic relief. A lot of times, I feel like that girl. Maybe I’m not in bad company, really. Because Billie Holiday was that girl, and Janis Joplin was that girl. Girls like that usually die of a drug overdose and a broken heart, but I’ve stubbornly insisted on continuing to live.
And I can be very happy at times. I’m happy most of the time.
But there’s always someone around who can’t let that happen. There’s always someone who feels a deep seated urge to let you know that you’re really not pretty enough to be allowed to play the romantic lead in your own life. You’re too fat – or maybe you’re too skinny. Perhaps you’re too short, or too tall. You might be too nerdy. Maybe you’re too ethnic. Maybe you wear glasses. Maybe you’re to serious. Maybe you’re not serious enough.
But whatever it is, you’re not good enough.
Your love is not real. Real love occurs between two pretty people in a Hollywood movie. You’re not Ione Skye. You’re a character actress. Character actors may be able to “pull that off” but come on now… you’re not a man. You can’t do what Dustin Hoffman or Peter Dinklage can do.
You’re the comic relief, Corey. You’re the comic relief, Rizzo. If this is Stella Got Her Groove Back, you’re whoever the hell Whoopi Goldberg is playing. And anyway, you’re not a real person. You’re a body.
A not pretty enough body.
Oh, but I am so angry, and I am so over you, Joe. I’ll be writing fictional stories to my imaginary lover, because I’m in too much pain to imagine ever having anything that’s real.