Careful followers of my internet presence will remember in 2011, I posted a Vampire Weekend cover of the Bruce Springsteen’s song “Going Down” to my Facebook wall with the disclaimer, “Who’s the whitest person you know? Me? Great. Now that that is settled, I really enjoy this cover.”
Fittingly enough, this song played over the credits of the season two premier of Girls. What can I say? I like Girls, I like Vampire Weekend. I am of my demographic.
Along with re-endorsing “Going Down,” I also endorse Shoshanna’s speech to Ray in the middle of the season two premier. For all of Shoshanna’s innocence, she is the only character on the show—and perhaps the only female character on television—who knows what she wants and thinks those wants are valid.
After being dumped by Ray between seasons, Shoshanna is hurt, but won’t pretend that being friends, in Facebook or real life, was ever part of the deal: “You don’t want to date me, that’s fine, because I don’t want to date you either, because I only want to date people who want to date me, because that is called self-respect, but I do not have to like you. Ok? You were never my friend, you were only my lover, and that is now over.”
A major, absurd plot point of Sex and the City was Carrie’s need to stay friends with Big after they dated. It has also been a major, absurd plot point in my life and my friends’ lives. But here are the facts as Shoshanna offers them: it’s ok to be hurt by being dumped, but there’s no sense in acting as if less than what you wanted is enough. There’s a lot of talk about courtship ending, but the only way a woman can go on a 10:30 group date offered at 10:15 is to show up. As Shoshanna’s self-help books will tell you, it takes two people to make you feel bad about yourself.