This cover is cute, first off. I like how spare it is — now that Glamour has gone digital and doesn’t need to scream at us from the newsstand to get us to pick them up (which still bums me out), the covers have benefitted from being so much more straightforward. Mindy is adorable, and she looks very chic in that white blazer, and also I enjoy that her body language looks like she’s showing us her super cute earring. (If you click through and read the piece, you’ll see they’ve also made a gif of the cover, with a bunch of potential other cover photos; it’s clever.) It also reminds me of Mindy’s old blog. Four hundred years ago when she was on The Office, she had a random blog — like, seriously just a WordPress blog she set up herself, not some kind of Blake Lively’s Preserve situation — called Things I Bought That I Love. IT WAS GREAT. I read it all the time at my office, as I’m sure she was writing it at her office (and also The Office). It’s not exactly on the internet anymore, but it is on her Tumblr, which hasn’t been updated since 2012, and all her images are broken, but it’s still very funny. A sample:
I have a complicated relationship with body shimmer on adult women. Part of me thinks this is only for strippers or pop hip-hop stars playing Madison Square Garden; no real woman should wear body shimmer, that’s cheesy. But then I tried this Givency powder on at Sephora and I basically doused my décolletage with it. The quality of the glitter is very high. It’s a very fine glitter, not that bachelorette party kind. It makes you look like a sophisticated kaleidoscope. A great gift because a woman might not buy this for herself, because it’s so fun and frivolous.
IT’S ALL TRUE. Anyway! What was I talking about? Oh, yes. If Mindy would like to start a blog where she talks about her cute earrings or whatever again, in all her free copious time, I’m sure we’d all be delighted. As far as Glamour goes, though, the interview is very good! Mindy is being interviewed by a friend…but her friend is also Jessica Radloff, who is a professional journalist, so it’s not all, “why are you so pretty?” The questions are good, and Mindy gives thoughtful, honest answers that are interesting and tell you more about her as a person. Like this is really insightful about herself:
I think the stigma with hard work is that it’s often at the expense of people thinking you’re an artist. I resent when the characterization of me is that “she’s only gotten this far from hard work”—the implication being that if you’re truly talented, you don’t have to work so hard. That’s not true. I think there’s been a tendency for people to conflate my characters with my personality. The fact of the matter is, I wrote 24 episodes of The Office. That’s more than any other person on The Office, but no one can really picture me sitting and doing the hard work of writing the episodes. It’s like it doesn’t compute to people because I can wear all pink and re-create Beyoncé videos. Do you know what I mean? There’s an outdated version of what some people think of me because of the characters I’ve played. That isn’t consistent with who I actually am. I find that a little disappointing.
And this feels substantive:
You and I are 39. As you enter your forties, do you think the work changes?
How do I say this? Because I never had a career based on my physical beauty, I’m approaching aging without much dread. I was never the person who was, like, Mindy “The Body” Kaling. [Laughs.] Isn’t that Elle Macpherson’s nickname? The Body? It’s so much harder to control that as we age than our mind or creative ideas. As a young person in Hollywood, I wasn’t skinny, and that made my twenties so unnecessarily difficult. It was such an emotional roller coaster, sometimes, of how I looked onscreen compared with what other people looked like. Especially when you are a dark-skinned Indian woman who’s not even traditionally beautiful for Indian people, like the Bollywood stars who are fair with long hair and light green eyes or whatever. Even though I was on a show like The Office, where that’s not something you needed to be or look like, [it was hard]. The upside of having that difficult time in my twenties is that now I approach my forties without this huge expectation that I need to maintain some sense of beauty. I was never put on a pedestal because of my looks. As far as the work, does it change what I want to write about?
It’s just a good article. I could have picked a bunch of other quotes, too — she talks about her parents, and her daughter, it’s just very substantial. I like reading about you, Mindy. And I like your cute earring.