Find­ing my own fem­i­nism

In an ex­tract from ‘ Fem­i­nists Don’t Wear Pink ( and other lies)’, Ir­ish ac­tor Evanna Lynch pon­ders the mean­ing of be­ing a fem­i­nist

The Irish Times Magazine - - ESSAY -

I’ m sit­ting i n the of­fice of a well- re­spected cast­ing di­rec­tor in New York, mak­ing ami­able con­ver­sa­tion and des­per­ately try­ing not to bleed through to this woman’s couch. The meet­ing had swiftly taken a turn for the bet­ter when I reached for my con­ver­sa­tional jack­pot piece and struck gold – the cast­ing di­rec­tor was also a cat lady.

Her eyes light up as I men­tion how I flew my beloved side­kick, a pre­cious Per­sian by the name of Puff, across the ocean to room with me for two months in New York City. It’s a risky move, men­tion­ing a cat in this en­vi­ron­ment, when sta­tis­ti­cally, a ca­reer woman liv­ing in New York is much more likely to have a dog ( of­fice- trained, trav­els well, the size of a small bag of gro­ceries) and if she does, she will swiftly judge me and end the meet­ing sooner than an­tic­i­pated, or worse, she will feel my own ir­re­press­ible dis­dain for dog peo­ple and I’ll never hear from her again. But, oh joy, she has a cat! Two cats, in fact!

Sud­denly, we are gal- pals. Sud­denly, I feel rays of light em­a­nat­ing from my ca­reer prospects, which have just bright­ened con­sid­er­ably. We will make movies to­gether, Mrs Rep­utable New- York- City Cast­ing Lady and I! She will think of me when cast­ing her next quirky in­de­pen­dent rom- com and I’ll au­di­tion, win­ningly, and after­wards she’ll ask, “How is your sweet, sweet cat?” and I’ll say, “Great, thank you, hope one day you’ll get to meet her,” and she’ll wink and call my agent the minute I leave the room – be­cause cat ladies look out for each other.

This de­light­ful series of events and be- Mag­a­zine Oc­to­ber 6, 2018 yond whizzes through my mind as I lean for­ward, phone out­stretched, to share with her the out­takes of the lat­est most adorable series of pho­tos of Puff loung­ing in a strip of sun­light, when I feel it: that cu­ri­ous, not un­com­fort­able, stom­ach- flip­ping sen­sa­tion – whether with joy or hor­ror, it is en­tirely sit­u­a­tional – of uter­ine lin­ing un­mis­tak­ably fall­ing from some­where within your lower midriff to some­where you hope and pray, in that mo­ment of pro­longed sus­pen­sion, is gen­er­ously, glo­ri­ously padded. You may un­clench your Kegels, how­ever, dear reader, and rest as­sured that I was wear­ing those mois­ture- wick­ing, pe­riod- drink­ing, fem­i­nist won­der- panties that Face­book bul­lies peo­ple into buy­ing. Un­for­tu­nately for me, I’d cho­sen the day of an im­por­tant meet­ing to test- drive th­ese much­hyped panties and I should men­tion, dear hor­ri­fied male reader, that when you’ve been plug­ging your most vex­a­tious ori­fice sealed snug with su­per- plus tam­pons for the last 10 years of men­strual ac­tiv­ity, the dis­tinc­tive drop feel­ing can be ex­tremely jar­ring and frankly panic- at­tack in­duc­ing. I don’t know what pos­sessed me to buy them, the panties. I’m not good with bod­ily func­tions; I ghosted and even­tu­ally un­friended a girl who po­ten­tially heard me fart through a thin bath­room wall ( I hope you’re well, Vicky); I cover my ears and wail in distress when my Amer­i­can girl­friends ex­change ‘ poop’ sto­ries; I can for­give just about any bad be­hav­iour from boyfriends – mys­te­ri­ous dis­ap­pear­ances, tar­di­ness, prefers men – so long as he smells dreamy. But one evening, while brows­ing Face­book, there were the panties, again, in my face. There was Mila Ku­nis, eyes wide, i nhi­bi­tions van­ished, eu­lo­gis­ing the pe­riod panties in a short pro­mo­tional video. And even though I didn’t have a par­tic­u­larly strong affin­ity with Mila Ku­nis, and even though I hated the idea of my men­strual blood pool­ing in my knick­ers and stay­ing there de­fi­antly, and even t hough I ’ ve

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