An open love letter to Amy Poehler

Dear Amy,

Recently, I’ve been listening to your audiobook here and there during downtime with my family, and I’ve come to rely on your voice and your words for comfort when I’m having a bad day. I wanted to write to you and thank you for being a human being that has made mistakes and good choices, and has been gracious enough to share them with the rest of the world for their betterment (or entertainment).

I loved you on SNL and hated when you left. You were in so many sketches I love (many that you’ve mentioned in your book), especially the one where you danced your hugely pregnant self up on someone (I don’t remember who, unfortunately). You didn’t hide behind props, you just showed pregnancy to the whole world. The world needs to see more women unabashedly BEING. Being pregnant, being doctors, being engineers and lawyers and scientists and writers and educators and leaders. Being all of those things AND being pregnant. Earlier today, Sigot was reading a post about advertisements for women in the ‘50s and most of the products these women “needed” was because the men just couldn’t handle whatever “unsightly” problem the woman had, like dishpan hands and a small gap in her clothes. Get those men to the fainting couch and let us get on with our lives. Besides, it’s your fault she has dishpan hands, assface.

But I digress.

I love you. You are shiny and energetic and funny and smart and I feel like you don’t take shit from people, or you are at least working on not taking shit from people. You have flaws but don’t use them as excuses. You have opened your heart to love again. You and Tina Fey opened so many doors for women comedians and I hope the lie that women aren’t funny is never heard from again.

I’ll be honest. I didn’t start watching Parks and Rec until last year. 2014 last year. I don’t remember the exact time we started watching the show but Sigot and I were both hooked immediately. It replaced The Office as the Show We Always Have On because the humor wasn’t as mean. All in all, Parks & Rec is a lighter, more enjoyable show for us. I watch it constantly. You might think that’s an exaggeration but it isn’t. I’ll finish the series on Netflix and then start it over from the beginning. It’s mostly on when I’m sleeping or when the silence is too loud and I need something else in the background. I had it on in the background all day New Year’s Eve while I worked a shift alone in my office.

Over the summer in 2014, I got really sick with something called achalasia. You can Google it but basically, my esophagus became useless. The only things I could successfully ingest were small sips of water, pureed food, and milkshakes. Of which I had many. While I waited for surgery, I had a lot of downtime because I couldn’t work and I filled that time with Parks and Rec. All day long. It comforted me when I was sad. I felt like I was checking in with friends every time I put it on. Is it cheesy or creepy to tell you that your voice has the same comforting, soothing effect on me that my mom’s voice or Sigot’s voice has on me? Everything in my brain quiets down when I’m watching Parks & Rec or listening to the audiobook. You’re like my therapist without the awkward face-to-face discussions and fees I can’t afford. I feel that in the future, I will turn to the audiobook as a companion when I am freaking my shit about an angry client or the medicine I forgot to take or any number of other things that pop up in life.

So this letter isn’t particularly poignant or long, but the intention behind it is full of perfect phrases and delightful anecdotes that will make you think I am neat, or at least a little bit not uncool.

Sincerely,

Rhonda

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