Skip to content

a donut for gwyneth

I subscribe to Us Weekly; I have for years.  And it’s not, like, an ironic subscription.  Forget weekends–I look forward to Fridays mostly because that’s the day of the week that Us Weekly is delivered.  So I’m not above wallowing in a little celebrity worship.

But not for Gwyneth Paltrow.

When it comes down to it, I just find her offensive.  She makes a joke out of all us normal people who are just trying to get by.  I don’t begrudge her her wealth or her fame, although gee, it must be nice to be born to wealth and then be able to parlay your parents’ connections into an acting career.  I don’t even resent that her wealth and fame make it easy for her to do things like leisurely roast a free range chicken on a Tuesday.  What I do resent is that she is so committed to maintaining the fiction that it is easy to live a “mindful” life like hers, without ever acknowledging how much easier it is to be mindful when you have millions in the bank and an army of servants.  It’s called fronting, and given where my head is at, it’s offensive.

I get to the gym four days a week if I’m lucky, and every time I get there, it’s a miracle.  I have to run yellow lights and eat in the car and sometimes I get to the gym and I’ve forgotten my running shoes or worse, my gym pants.  And when that happens, I sit on a bench and I cry, because at moments like that, it can feel like life is just one never-ending episode of chasing a bus that’s pulling away with the bus driver smirking at you in the rearview mirror.  On the other hand, if I have the pants and I make it to Zumba, I’m feeling guilty most of the workout because I feel like I should be spending that time with my kids.  That’s the reality of my life, and maybe yours too.  So I resent it when Gwyneth says stuff like “I can eat whatever I want to” while tossing off the fact that she works out for two hours a day.  F you, Gwyneth.  First of all, who cares what you eat?  Second of all, I bet I could eat whatever I wanted too, if I had two hours a day to pump the jams with Tracy Anderson and stretch my pasty limbs on a reformer.

relax, coworkers. it’s not hemorrhoids 

The working out stuff is probably particularly annoying to me right now because I’m going to trial in two months and have been so sedentary that my doctor gave me a donut to sit on at work so my tailbone doesn’t break.  But I think GP has the potential, like head lice, to be pretty universally offensive.  What really gets me is how her comments often reflect a special mix of condescension and subtle classlessness that is unique to her.  Perhaps the best example of this is when she told a reporter that she would “rather smoke crack than eat cheese out of a tin.”  I mean, who talks like that?  I guess you might talk like that to your partner in the safety of your home after a couple beers, but who says that to a reporter??  In any event, I’m sure all the people who can’t afford any cheese but Cheez Whiz appreciate her thoughtful implication that they’re on a level below crack addicts.

I don’t get how she continues to have an audience.  When I told my friend Courtney that I was writing this post, she texted: “Plz mention how bad her veggie chili recipe is.  I got duped into giving her 4 hours of my life w that recipe.”  So I’m mentioning it.  Why does GP continue to invade my personal space at the airport by appearing on the cover of every women’s magazine?  Or in the cookbook aisle, or on Travel TV?  Mario Batali, who I already suspect to be sort of an asshole, isn’t doing himself any PR favors by associating himself with her.  WHY WON’T SHE GO AWAY??  We can make it happen, if we put our minds to it.  I remember a dark period about five years ago when it was hard to believe that there would ever come a time when Paris Hilton wouldn’t be plaguing us.  But now, she’s practically gone.

We can make it happen again.

There’s nothing admirable about superiority.  There’s nothing admirable about condescension.  Let’s sprinkle our celebrity love on someone who needs and deserves it.  Like Khloe Kardashian, who’s dealing with a lot in her life (infertility, Lamar’s iffy trade to Dallas, better looking older sisters, borderline taste) and not fronting about any of it.

Happy Us Weekly day.

48 Comments Post a comment
  1. you are amazing.

    July 5, 2012
  2. This post made me laugh out loud! I totally agree about GP. I was so ready to hate her on Glee, but then I didn’t and that was even more annoying. I look forward to reading more.

    April 2, 2012
    • oh she WAS cute on glee, damn her. i can’t knock her skills as an actress.

      April 4, 2012
  3. You have all got this totally wrong! You have all got to work your asses off to get your bodies like her at the end of the day she is like the rest of Hollywood, no need to hate her specifically but it is the general idea of some people just have it easier then others! I wish I even had the money to go to the gym the four days a week that you go Yoona, I would be completely happy. Everyone needs to appreciate what they have in their lives and turn it into positivity!

    March 29, 2012
    • a great reminder to be thankful for whatever measure of luxury we have in our lives–whether that luxury is money, time, calm, whatever. thanks for the comment!

      March 29, 2012
  4. Fia #

    Oh, sorry! I didn’t mean to make you feel depressed. It was not meant to hurt, I just wanted to start a discussion. Haha! I almost think I could change my healthcare for some Hershey’s kisses. 🙂 Have a nice day!

    March 21, 2012
    • i’m not depressed anymore. cuz now i’m watching girl with the dragon tattoo and sweden looks really, really cold. 😛

      March 24, 2012
  5. Carrie North #

    you are so funny Yoona. I think GP may not have anything much to say for herself, but if she does she will publish being she is such a crafty you know what. I hear you about getting all the way to work outs and not having a necessary item. Just wanted to mention I think it is much much much worse to get to a club with suit and goggles and flip flops and products and everything I plan to use to swim but the pool schedule is 1) from outerspace 2) undecypherable or 3) changed without notice. While this won’t always prevent me from paddling around in the water, it sure makes me wish for better. I guess I appreciate a strictly enforced schedule.

    March 20, 2012
    • carrie, this is way worse than not having gym pants. because at least the gym pants are within my sole control. if i went swimming and they unexpectedly changed the pool schedule, i would go absolutely berserk. of course you appreciate a strictly enforced schedule. it’s a SCHEDULE.

      March 24, 2012
  6. hilarious! it is easy to live that lifestyle when you are rich and have lots of free time. i feel you on the gym…guiltly for leaving the kids in the playroom, too tired to workout, but force myself to anyway.i hate the idea of these “perfect” moms, especially when they are extremely privileged!

    March 19, 2012
    • it occurred to me that the guilt undercuts the full benefit of the workout, so i’ve been working on that aspect. my husband clearly does not experience the same guilt and always returns from the gym happy and zen. i find that it helps to remind myself that i have more energy for the kids on the days i workout…

      March 20, 2012
  7. Donna in Doha #

    We have free health care in Canada and Hershey’s kisses:)

    March 19, 2012
    • my best friend growing up lived in vancouver b.c. i have long been aware that canada is the promised land.

      March 19, 2012
  8. Donna in Doha #

    I just started reading “GOOP” and felt like I wanted to vomit. GP is so over-rated. I love a good bit of weekly trash, too:). Simple pleasure after a busy work week.

    March 19, 2012
    • we must experience the trash to recognize the not-trash. no?

      March 20, 2012
  9. thevirtualrealityofstaci #

    Okay I don’t know if this makes it better or worse. Did GP have a ghost writer for her cookbook? she says no

    March 18, 2012
    • i’ve read parts of her cookbook. if she has a ghostwriter, you’d think that person would have tried to humanize GP a little

      March 20, 2012
  10. If I’m honest I rarely think of Gwyneth Paltrow but the first thing that occurred to me when I read this is that she used to be friends with Madonna (at this point I admit to being a fan of Madonna but we all have our failings). So what you’ve mentioned makes me wonder if she lives in an alternate universe rather than sharing the air with me here in London (which is as capitalistic as any other big city).

    The second thing that came to mind was the recent publication of a report on British police. It disclosed that a considerable number of officers are overweight, even morbidly obese. This drew a lot of nasty comments but very few solutions to a problem caused by having to eat what’s available in a hurry while they carry out such a stressful job. I doubt if two hours in the gym would be welcomed after a long shift.

    About ten years ago I went from a UK dress size 18 to a size 6 in six months, losing ten kilos in the process, and have since realised that it wasn’t losing it that’s hard. The problem is keeping it off. Originally I had plenty of free time so could spend two hours a day working out and could afford the right food when I wanted it. Times have changed. Nothing depresses me more than people like Gwynnie who just assume weight gain is somehow a failing on anyone’s part. I would love to hear her opinion on our chubby policemen…

    March 17, 2012
    • you’ve sparked a couple thoughts. first, thank you for reminding us of the Madonna-GP nexus, which must surely produce some supremely obnoxious interactions that I wish I was privy to. second, you are absolutely correct that losing weight is nothing compared to maintaining, which requires both time and constant vigilance. for me, i have one or the other at any given moment, but never both simultaneously.

      March 18, 2012
  11. Courtney #

    I think all that bitching and moaning by you was justified and well supported, especially the part about her crappy veggie chili. Good job!

    March 17, 2012
  12. gulgun #

    Yoona — My comments are always short — reflecting my limited mental energy post-lawyering and parenting — but I really enjoy your posts and the comments! Ginger’s perspective is particularly enjoyable and inspiring. Take good care.

    March 17, 2012
    • hi gulgun. the discussions that get sparked in the comments have become the most unexpectedly fun and rewarding part of blogging. i appreciate that busy folks like you take the time to read, and to engage…

      March 18, 2012
  13. Ginger #

    Yes, GP is vapid, vacuous and permanently on vacation. I think “Goop” refers to the stuff you have to clean up off the floor (otherwise known as ‘vomit’) after reading her blog. But enough of this celebrity worship. What I loved about your blog, Yoona, is your refreshingly honest description of how hard it is to be a Mom with a job and fitting in all the other stuff we need, and want, to do.

    I understand how hard it is to get to zumba. Leaving work mid-day, racing to the club, sometimes I almost give up in the parking garage – only to arrive with no socks! But the other day there was this fabulous moment in class – you and Monica were on the stage leading us all in a fabulous, heated frenzy of booty-shaking, while laughing and having a great time. That moment stuck with me. Two young, strikingly beautiful & fit working Moms up there doing what makes them happy & feel good – moving & shaking in ways that their sons need not know about yet. It was fabulous. I turned to my daughter who is on the threshold of marriage & family, and said, “remember this – this is what it’s all about!”. So GP eat your heart out – she could never get close to understanding the beauty and honesty in that moment!

    March 17, 2012
    • hey ginger, thank you for this lovely comment (and for the perspective). means a lot coming from someone who has gone through it and has supported so many working moms.

      March 17, 2012
  14. The comments! They’re almost as great as the post. But just almost. Makes me want to start reading tabloids so I can jump in on the conversation.

    March 16, 2012
    • ah the zeitgeist is passing you by! and how awesome that US Weekly constitutes a reflection of our times’ zeitgeist. sigh.

      March 17, 2012
  15. Grayson Dempsey #

    So funny. I actually like GP but was just bitching TODAY about a snide comment she made about how she looks so great because she actually works for it and how f’ing annoying that was. Sarah Jessica Parker, on the other hand, won awesome points with me when she made the point in a interview that she looked so great after her baby because she had a personal trainer, chef, and nanny – as well as millions of dollars in incentive – to look that way. So yeah, fuck you Gwyneth.

    You know who else offends everyone every time she opens her mouth? Gisele Bundchen. Write your next blog post about her. Kisses to you 🙂

    March 16, 2012
    • i loved gisele’s profound and well-thought out commentary on how it should be illegal to not breastfeed your children. as someone who practically lived at the lactation clinic the first three months of both my babies’ lives struggling to nurse, i really appreciated her insights. kisses back.

      March 17, 2012
  16. Kim #

    I find her truly truly bland. I would never bother to read an article about her, but this was fun.

    March 16, 2012
  17. Erin #

    I find it hilarious how much you hate GP. I have to say – I don’t mind her all that much – mostly because all celebrity moms are like this. I mean, Jessica Alba with her “Honest Baby” company that is all about a toxin free home for kids. As if everyone could afford to order organic diapers – with little adorable prints on them. She drives me nuts. And Tracy Anderson can bite me. Have you seen those workouts? They are ridiculous.

    March 16, 2012
    • in the end, i find it hilarious too how much i hate GP. but she just does it for me. at least jessica alba is a really serious actress.

      March 16, 2012
  18. thevirtualrealityofstaci #

    ahh Never been a big fan of hers. Probably since the time she lived in London and said some pretty snotty things about the US. How the film industry isn’t all ‘hollywood’ and London is less capitalistic than the US is blah blah blah…… Oh and her fashion choices do not get me started. I am pretty sure she thinks/thought she looked hip but NO NO NO….To be honest I don’t think she has ever had an original thought ever.

    March 16, 2012
    • it must be difficult to annoy on two continents…but she’s GP. she’s up to the challenge.

      March 16, 2012
  19. I’ve always liked GP, but mostly because she’s so ethereal looking (which I will never be). I don’t follow her, don’t read her blog, don’t watch her movies, know nothing about her, so my superficial attraction is based on nothing more than she’s the thin blonde angel I always wanted to be.

    This reminds me of a conversation I had yesterday with a new friend who said I would never be invited to her home because she has young kids and it’s always a wreck. It made me sad and I said so. My home is as tidy as they get (and my new friend has seen it), but only because my husband stays home and my kids are beyond the ages of making messes. I assured my friend I knew all about being a mother of children at that age. I also told her I shared her same anxieties at that messy stage in my life and I wish someone would have told me that I would reach a day, sooner than I expected, when my home will be neat and I can purchase a white sofa, which I recently did. I wish I would have embraced the mess, the frantic running, all of the disheveled glory that is early motherhood instead of feeling bad about it. Trust me, Yoona, you will reach the “serene” stage sooner than you know and — with the gift of hindsight — it’s not Nirvana. It’s just different, tinged with longing for what has passed.

    March 16, 2012
    • hard to imagine, but i am trusting you on this one, joan. when i reach that serenity i promise to think of you.

      March 16, 2012
  20. Happy Friday indeed! Can I tell you how much I can’t stand Gwyneth Paltrow? I like most people and stars and can find something redeeming or at least mildly entertaining about them, including Micky Rourke, Martha Stewart and even Snookie for gods sake. But you’re right. There’s something so patronizing, and unreal about GP. It’s not enough that she fell into making some not-horrible movies and took that blessing as she could, but now she’s decided she’s a major singer. On Glee, on the Grammys–where she tried to outshine CeLoo wearing a bird outfit–whenever she’s within spitting distance of a camera and a mic. Ugh. Also, can you believe she beat Cate Blanchete who starred in Elizabeth, the year she won the Oscar for Shakespeare in Love? Really, Academy? But her whole faux, it’s so easy to do everything I do, b/c I’m simply so awesome schtick is ah-noy-hing! Yoona, you rock! P.S. The NYTimes had an article about ghost cookbook writers, and Gwyneth has been outed as having one!

    March 16, 2012
    • oh i read that cookbook article!! it was fascinating.

      March 16, 2012
  21. Oh yes. Right on, sister. I wish I had written this. 🙂

    March 16, 2012
  22. Love the rant! Don’t read Goop or you’ll be ranting some more – totally agree with you on the lifestyle issue – she and many others in that situation simply have no idea – Oprah had a decorating special on her show once – she was showing all of America how you could decorate on a budget – everything – furniture etc was from walmart – she showed a side table that cost $50.00 and then stated $50.00 for a table – come on everyone can afford that – I seriously wanted to go through the tv and choke her – she’s forgotten her roots – because there are many people in America that need the $50.00 to put food on the table! Gap between rich and poor is getting bigger and the rich seem to be showing more ignorance.

    March 16, 2012
    • you can buy three Ikea Lack coffee tables for $50! i wouldn’t put anything on them, but there you go. totally agree about the gap becoming wider.

      March 16, 2012
      • Fia #

        The gaps become wider because you lack a fair tax system (in my opinion). Not saying that Sweden is the ultimate country, but all education is free (even university). All healthcare is free until you turn 20. After 20, all serious stuff is still free. Like surgeries. You don’t need a stupid insurance to get proper care when you get ill. There are gaps, but everybody still has the same opportunities. The more money you have, the more taxes you pay. Education and health care is a human right and nothing to make money from. Schools and hospitals should be “owned” by the people paying taxes. Not controlled by someone that just focus on the profit.

        March 16, 2012
      • fia, I couldn’t respond to your comment right away because it honestly made me really depressed. surely Scandinavians have a problem or two?? Oh wait–you have universal healthcare, but you don’t have Hershey’s kisses.

        March 18, 2012

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. olympic me | yoonanimous

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: