Lessons in the ‘Girls’ Lexicon: Finale

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Syd: Well, here we are, at the end of what I consider to be one of the most unpredictable and emotionally confusing seasons of TV in my long career as a television viewer. I would absolutely love to have a face-to-face meeting with Dunham to try to figure out what the hell is going on inside of her head, but unfortunately I’m neither nearly well-connected nor cool enough. So, in place of real facts, I’ll give you my opinion (you lucky dogs!).  Season 2 didn’t necessarily suck, rather it was a huge and surprising departure from Season 1. Dunham moved away from somewhat fluffy, inoffensive “white girl problems” (i.e. Shoshanna’s virginity, Hannah being cut off from her parents, Jessa’s sexual dalliances, and Marnie’s struggle to cope with a lackluster boyfriend) and decided to use Season 2 to tackle some really complex issues. We witnessed parental abandonment, drug abuse, sexual assault, and really scary case of OCD.  Needless to say, it was a difficult season to watch—not because it was bad, but because I expected one kind of show and received something completely different. While I could use up this space to shit on all the things that went wrong in Girls Season 2, I’ve instead decided to have a discussion with Blog writer and fellow Girls enthusiast Sam Levison.

Sam: Girls‘ third episode, “All Adventurous Women Do,” concluded with a rather endearing scene. Hannah Horvath, having fully established herself as lovably awkward and aimless by this point, is listening (or jamming out, rather) to Robyn’s “Dancing on My Own.” Marnie comes home from work, giggles in the doorway and joins her in the bedroom disco. Hannah’s no longer dancing on her own—GET IT!? If Girls continued to rest solely on such “relatable” contrivances it might have made for some fleeting fun—but real life isn’t always a bad day and a rejuvenating dance party. Season 2 has expressed this notion in all its dark, cringeworthy truth. For lack of a better metaphor, one might view it as a Funny People for Season 1’s The Forty Year-Old Virgin. Here on Blog, there’s been a tendency to lament the show’s changes. I’d respectfully disagree and argue that this season, while ostensibly less funny, is a triumph (I’ll elaborate on this below).  Sure Season 2 is difficult at times, but so is life.

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Lessons in the ‘Girls’ Lexicon: Music

“On All Fours” was a weird fucking episode.  Dunham really outdid herself in finding every possible thing that could make us uncomfortable and shoving it into 30 minutes. We would venture to say we’ve never seen a more cringe-worthy episode of TV, owing to a trio of disasters.  However, “On All Fours” had one thing going for it that the rest of this season’s episodes lacked: a kickass soundtrack. Since we still can’t really figure out what happened in this week’s chapter, no less pick a word or phrase to write about, we decided to look at the music that has accompanied Season 2 so far.

One of our favorite parts about the first season of Girls was how amazing the scoring choices were and how well they interacted with the scenes and characters. From Hannah dancing to Robyn’s “Dancing on my Own” to the guests at Jessa’s wedding raging to “Pussy be Yankin’” by Lady, Girls introduced us to lots of new music to add to the soundtrack our own lives (Ed.- “Same Mistakes” by The Echo Friendly is a fantastic song).

This season, one of the most notable song choices has to be Icona Pop’s “I Love It.”  Played during the club scene in the infamous cocaine episode, this song has become the “going out” anthem for girls everywhere.  If it sounds familiar, it’s probably because you’ve heard it blasting on repeat out of girls’ windows starting at around 10pm on Friday and Saturday nights (and Wednesday and Thursday nights).  Another solid choice was Solange Knowles’ “Losing You,”  heard in the first episode of Season 2.  If you haven’t heard it or seen the music video, we suggest checking it out – it features pretty pastel outfits, Beyonce’s not-so-famous-but-still-sick little sis, and genuine members of the South African Le Sape Society (“Society for the Advancement of People of Elegance”).  These guys have moves – watch out, Jagger. Continue Reading


Lessons in the ‘Girls’ Lexicon: “Forbid”

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Forbid (v.): To command someone or oneself against the doing of something—like acting on a stupid impulse, crying into one’s beer, or drunkenly contacting an ex boyfriend/girlfriend.

How it’s used in the show: Charlie, Marnie’s incredibly good-looking ex-boyfriend, became instantly successful off a smartphone app he created and sold called “Forbid.” In his own words: “[Forbid] prevents you from calling people that you shouldn’t call – be it an unrequited love, or someone that fired you. But if you wanna call them, then you have to pay $10 to unforbid… so this app is free but breaking your word to yourself isn’t… People are really responding to software that protects them from themselves… or other people.”

Do you have an ex? A not-so-secret crush or obsession? A penchant for drunk texting and/or dialing your employer? Then, like us, you probably wish “Forbid” existed in the real world. There’s nothing worse than waking up after a big night out with your ex’s name in “recent calls.” Worse (or better?), “drunk you” protects “sober you” from embarrassment and regret by deleting all texts and calls before sobriety hits. You have no solid evidence to beat yourself up about the next day, but you’ll also spend a good chunk of time wondering what the hell you said. We’ve all tried the “delete his/her number” technique, but let’s be real, that lasts for three days tops. Willpower alone just ain’t gonna cut it once the alcohol hits your bloodstream.

While we sadly don’t have access to “Forbid,” we’ve done some research to find some cool apps that actually exist in its place: Continue Reading


Lessons in the ‘Girls’ Lexicon: “Cushion”

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Cushion (n.): The person who is (knowingly or unknowingly) brought along to make a stressful situation less tense and awkward with their presence alone.

How it’s used in the show: Jessa brings Hannah with her to visit her estranged dad and his girlfriend, Petula. Upon arriving, Petula says to Hannah, “I was so nervous about seeing Jessa because I know she hates me, and she hasn’t seen her dad in so long.  So I prayed, and here I manifested the solution – you. You’re the cushion.” To this, Hannah replies, “Are you sure I’m the cushion? I’ve never done it before but I’m definitely up for it.” Although the interactions between Jessa and her father are already tense in the episode, Hannah provided some relief for Jessa and divided her attention effectively.

Most of us are guilty of subjecting our friends to the role of cushion at some point or another, whether we do it consciously or not. After watching this week’s episode of Girls, we found ourselves wondering: just how kosher is a cushion? Is it okay to rely on a third party to ease social tensions, or is that considered immature? Maybe cushions are okay in particular situations, but best used sparingly. As the case of Girls shows, the cushion is a godsend. There are certain times when we wish the cushion gods would answer our prayers, and there are others when we really shouldn’t be praying at all.

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Lessons in the ‘Girls’ Lexicon: Brand of difficult / Breakup dog / Vomiting in public

girls pic1We’re gonna be honest with y’all: this week’s episode of Girls was a little strange.  Besides the always-awesome one-liners from our girl Shosh, this episode (aptly named “Boys”) aired on the side of serious, focusing primarily on Ray’s life crisis and Adam’s breakup recovery. We struggled to find one particular idea/word to write about this week, so here are some brief thoughts on three subjects covered in last Sunday’s episode:

Brands of difficult (n.)
How it’s used in the show: Adam: “I’m a difficult person, everyone’s a difficult person.  [Hannah] was accepting of my brand of difficult, she was okay with it.”

Let’s briefly address a thought that Adam (of all people, right?) proposed: the idea that we all have our own “brands of difficult.”  Maybe our goal in life shouldn’t be to find the least difficult people to surround ourselves with, but to find those who accept our personal brand of difficult, and whose brand of difficult we can also handle.  We all have our flaws—Tyra Banks would tell us these make us “flawesome” but, like, there’s nothing flawesome about the fact that we constantly leave our shoes directly in your walking path / leave dirty dishes in the sink / obsess over The Wire. The friends you make and keep are going to be the ones who will celebrate you at your best and stand by you at your worst. Continue Reading


Lessons in the ‘Girls’ Lexicon: “Sexit”

sexit Sexit (n.): Well, in Hannah’s words: “To leave a party or another event to go have sex.” Depending on circumstances, this can either be an exhilarating covert operation filled with seductive hiding and passionate whispering, or the most awkward situation imaginable.

How it’s used in the show: The episode opens with Hannah basking in her own genius over the creation of a phrase she believes could go as “completely viral” as the term bootycall: Sexit. Lena really handed this one to us on a silver platter, which she probably stole from Patrick Wilson’s super awesome Greenpoint townhouse. Although Ray shoots her “brilliance” down with a quick Urban Dictionary search on his phone (why does Ray have a smartphone?), Hannah brings up a very interesting point: What’s the best way to bail on a social situation to bang, specifically in our own Brunonian world?

Place: Whisco
Time: 12:00 a.m.
Discreet sexit feasibility: EASY

Here’s an example of entry-level sexiting. At this point in the night, you and your desired sexual partner have probably ditched your respective group of friends, and are either aggressively making out on the dance floor or secluded in a corner of the patio. Leaving da club discreetly should not be that hard. If you’re worried about ditching your friends without saying bye (which honestly defeats the purpose of a sexit), shoot them a text once you’ve already left. Nothing puts the kibosh on a sexit like your belligerent roommate begging you not to leave without her. Continue Reading