Would we drink coffee with Joan Rivers?
Kristy: I’m going to cautiously say, I think so. Let’s be honest, if in real life she was much like her television persona, she wasn’t a terribly “nice” person. That said, anyone who’s read my twitter feed knows I love cattiness more than I should, and Rivers could do catty like no one else. I suspect that coffee with her would include some hysterical people watching commentary, but there’s no way I’d get out without being on the receiving end of a barb or two. So it all comes down to whether my skin is thick enough. Judge me if you must, but I watched Fashion Police on a semi-regular (emphasis on the semi) basis and enjoyed the hell out of it, both for the fashion and the snark. Rivers’s humor crossed all kinds of lines to the point it was sometimes downright offensive. I actually appreciate that she never apologized, even though there were times she offended me. Humor often pokes at sites of discomfort and social anxiety; that’s why it’s awesome–it allows us to say things we can’t say and talk about things we can’t talk about. I’d actually like to talk to her about her philosophy of humor. Wikipedia tells me she had degrees in English Lit and Anthropology, which basically makes her right next door to a folklorist, so she might actually have some knowledge of humor theory.
I think the bottom line is, that I would like to have a cup of coffee with her because while there were times I didn’t necessarily like her, I respect her. I think we’ve discussed on this blog before the fact that it’s much harder for women to be funny than for men. Rivers was very much a pioneer in that area–she was the first woman to host a late night talk show, and sadly not many have followed after her. I’d love to talk to her about her thoughts on women in comedy today. Have we made progress? How do we make more?
I’m really just afraid of what she’ll say about my hair.
Cammy: That’s simple: I’m in. That one may shock a few of you, dear readers, but I, oddly enough, have no hesitation. I know going into this that I’m toast. There really is no way I could avoid the fashion skewering, but knowing that going in, I’m okay. And yes, she’s probably going to say something offensive, but then that frees me up to do the same. Knowing she’s not “nice” and never has been, there is nothing to lose here at all. It boils down to this: she’s funny, and she’s clearly smart. And funny, smart people are exactly who you want to have at the table in the coffee shop, watching the patrons and letting the comments rip. While I wouldn’t mind listening in on Kristy getting her to talk seriously about women in comedy, I really just kind of of want to let her do her thing: make me laugh. And maybe my far more grievous fashion violations will draw away any fire about Kristy’s hair.