Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Entry: Lynda Barry

I like to think that TILfW is generally a merry little blog, hewn from the sturdy wood of open-source encyclopedia articles and varnished with my weak attempts at humor. Its very concept is propelled by the sense of nerdish glee felt upon learning something interesting, and the resulting questions that crop up from wondering about said interesting fact.

Sometimes, however; sometimes learning can be a painful experience.

I had recently been rereading Lynda Barry's autobiographical graphic novel One! Hundred! Demons!, which I highly recommend if you're into that sort of thing, and went on the Wik' to find out more about her.

Apparently she and Ira Glass were a couple at one time. Initially kinda interesting, but then I found this in one of the footnotes, a quote from an article from some journal that doesn't change what it says according to the whims of random yahoos with a wifi signal (ie. a "reliable" source):

Barry does not remember the relationship fondly. The louse in her excellent One! Hundred! Demons! story "Head Lice and My Worst Boyfriend" has been identified as Ira Glass. She is quoted in a 1998 Chicago Reader article as saying of Glass, "I went out with him. It was the worst thing I ever did. When we broke up he gave me a watch and said I was boring and shallow, and I wasn't enough in the moment for him, and it was over." Glass confirms, "Anything bad she says about me I can confirm."

My reality was shattered. Okay, not shattered, but the world seemed a little sadder and duller upon this discovery.

See, I'm sort of in love with him. Googling "crush on Ira Glass" yields 2,170 hits, which makes me feel less alone. He does appeal to the nerdy girl's sensibilities: smart, articulate, quirky, good listener, works for a nonprofit, wears funny glasses. I listen to the This American Life podcast every week, of course. I imagine Ira and I drinking chai lattes and browsing through flea markets, while he regales me with interesting stories unified around a theme; sometimes our friends David Sedaris and Sarah Vowell would be there too, and coincidentally have their own anecdotes to contribute. But this is apparently never going to happen (besides the fact that he's significantly older than me and lives halfway across the country and is married and probably not into girls who live with their parents) because he is a jerk. Or at least he was a jerk in the Eighties.

I'm too heartbroken to pick on the article author for his or her awkward use of "confirm."


StefRobrts said...

You know, even if he was a jerk in the 80s, I'd still like to have a latte with him, though I'd like Mike Birbiglia at the table too.

sarah22277 said...

See, now I respect him even more for refusing to be ugly about their history- he admits he was a jerk. *Sigh* Geek dreams...

Regina said...

@Stef: Oh yes, Mike Birbiglia is one of my geek crushes too. ^__^

@Sarah: That's true, he does redeem himself to an extent by his honesty; on his Wiki article, there's a quote from him where he completely admits to being a complete ass during his and Lynda Barry's relationship. Still, he is such a complete douchebag in One Hundred Demons that I'm surprised she didn't draw "Summer's Eve" on his forehead. Even if I forgive him, his knight in shining tweed image is forever tarnished in my mind.