Feb 17 2014
Backstage at the Bill Maher show.
I was on “Real Time with Bill Maher” last Friday, Valentine’s Day. Here are the highlights:
I like Bill Maher quite a bit. So being a guest on his show was extra pressure because I like him and respect him and didn’t want to come off like a dolt.
2. The Other Dudes.
Um. Jeremy Scahill? You are seriously smart. Like really smart. You remind me of my UCLA Marxism professor I had a huge crush on because he was super duper serious and cerebral and you didn’t know if he ever laughed but you wanted to be the girl who made him laugh. Never mind. I have issues. Anyway. Jeremy Scahill and Eric Klinenberg and Dylan Ratigan? You’re all super smart. Bill Nye the Science Guy as the first guest? Super duper smart and eloquent. Didn’t want to come off like a dolt in front of these men.
3. A Natural Woman.
I am very sensitive to situations where I feel so… female. Like on the Bill Maher show. I was especially nervous about coming off like a dolt because then people might say, “Oh, that woman said something dumb.” Read the rest of this entry →
Jan 9 2014
As many of you know, a fashion-y photo shoot recently came out in Regard Magazine (it begins on page 110). I’ve never done a shoot like this before and, who knows, I may never do one like this again. In all seriousness, my shoot with Regard Magazine was very efficient (we did about 15 looks in under three hours).
For many reasons which I won’t go into, this is not the kind of shoot I’m normally asked to do, and I would definitely file this one under “outside of my comfort zone.” The stylist did a great job finding fairly modest dresses, and with the exception of a few hemlines and a few adjustments of slits, I’m pretty pleased with the amount of skin covered up. Here are the things that every model knows, which I didn’t know, but learned during my shoot.
1. Suck in your gut at all times.
Without exception, the photographer reminded me every two clicks of the camera to suck in my stomach. Apparently the goal is to make people think you’re skinnier than you even are. Read the rest of this entry →
Sep 25 2013
I have written a lot about Jewish women and feminism and what it means to both advocate for women in a patriarchal society as well as advocate for women who appreciate halakhic structure in their lives. I consider myself both a feminist in the classical sense and a woman who appreciates halakhic Judaism in the classical sense. Sure, it’s an unusual mix, but you know what? There are no rules about how any of us “should” be.
I don’t shave my legs and never have but I also like covering my head in synagogue and praying separately from men by a mehitzah (divider). I hate misogyny and patriarchy and feel oppressed by it daily, but I also celebrate the distinctions of sexuality and modesty that Judaism lays out for men and women. I love Hilary Clinton and Gloria Steinem but I also love Maimonides and all of the Sages of Judaism who lived in times when women had no voices. Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 29 2013
Me in my modest bathing suit.
You know how before you have kids, you’re an expert on kids and parenting and what everyone should or shouldn’t be doing with their kids? Well, in the same vein, I have two boys and so I think I am in the perfect position to discuss what to do with female children. In particular, female children who want to wear bikinis, as Rebecca Schorr’s recent post on Kveller discussed.
Rabbi Schorr explains that one aspect of her “no bikini” rule derives from Judaism’s concept of tznius, or modesty. As I have discussed at length in my posts about why I choose to embrace certain aspects of tznius, when we guard what parts of ourselves we show, we leave a lot to the imagination of others in a safe way and we learn to develop aspects of ourself that are often not encouraged to develop when people are busy looking at our outsides. “The glory of the King’s daughter is inside” is the pasuk (verse) that is often quoted in this context, but it goes for men as well as women. And as a person who spends much of my life as a public person being observed, judged, and picked apart for how I look, I have come more and more to appreciate the healthy sense of protection that tznius provides me. Read the rest of this entry →
Mar 4 2013
Many of you may have seen The Big Bang Theory Super Bowl promo that our cast participated in. I believe it aired in the first 10 minutes or so of play in this year’s Super Bowl. The promo featured the entire cast of The Big Bang Theory swaggering down a smokey hallway, all decked out in football gear. The punchline was that Leonard was wearing his pads and jockstrap on the outside of his uniform. Read the rest of this entry →
Jan 10 2013
Here’s my Top 7 Moments from last night’s People’s Choice Awards.
1. Dress Snafu. As I mentioned in my last post, the dress I was supposed to wear to the People’s Choice Awards last night was pulled at the last minute for reasons only my stylist and the makers of the dress can tussle over. It was not a good thing, but since I am so “whatever,” I reassured stylist Ali that I had faith that we’d figure something out and I reminded her that I never freak out about stuff like this, thanks to my deep religious sensibility that everything is exactly how it should be in God’s world and there’s nothing urgent or life-threatening except things that are urgent or life-threatening. (That’s not sarcasm, I really mean it.)
Read the rest of this entry →
Jan 9 2013
As we all know, it’s officially the month of awards! Maybe you didn’t know; I forget every darn January. I’ll get you up to date:
The People’s Choice Awards are tonight (we are nominated for best show), the Golden Globe Awards are Sunday (we are nominated for best show), and the Screen Actors Guild Awards are in two Sundays (we are nominated for best show). There are no Supporting Actress categories at any of these awards shows so sadly, I’m not nominated. But it’s okay. With how stressful it was for me at the last Emmys, maybe it’s best I get a break this month…
Read the rest of this entry →
Sep 10 2012
The search for this year’s Emmy dress is already going much smoother than last year’s search.
One reason is that I have a stylist named Ali who I really like, who understands me and my fashion needs, and who isn’t afraid to be honest with me. She’s also not freaked out by all of my weird Jewish modesty clothing issues. As I described in my last post about the search for my Emmy dress, I sent my stylist some images of classic Hollywood dresses, classic paintings depicting dresses I like, and pictures of Hollywood actresses in dresses I like. Then, I waited.
Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 29 2012
Inspiration for my dress: John Singer Sargent's Lady Agnew
After the initial hysteria about my Emmy nomination abated and after my parents stopped crying with joy and after I returned from Atlanta, which is where I was when I found out I got nominated, my thoughts turned to the practicalities of Emmy night. Namely, what was I going to wear?
Last year I wrote a very in depth four-part series entitled Operation Hot and Holy, detailing my search for a tznius (modest) Emmy dress. When all was said and done, I ended up with a dress that I loved last year, but as my set of essays described, the journey there was long, complicated, and full of dresses that revealed more of me than I prefer to.
This year, I have a stylist I love, a nomination to my name, and hopefully the search will be easier. Here’s where we’re at dress-wise. Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 22 2012
You can win one of these suits too! Check out our contest.
After my first son was born, I started studying Jewishly (with what’s called a chevrusa) through Partners in Torah. PIT sets you up (for free!) with a study partner matched to your interest and experience and together, you and your chevrusa decide what you want to study.
My chevrusa (Jewinthecity.com is her online personality; celebrity chevrusa, right!?) and I decided to systematically tackle every misconception I had about Orthodoxy. Meaning: she asked me what I disliked, felt weird about, or just plain didn’t understand or thought was crazy/primitive/wacky about Orthodoxy and then we studied the basis for the thing, uncovering what was halakha (Jewish law) and what was custom, what was fact and what was myth. Read the rest of this entry →