"So, like, the magic happens outside your comfort zone?"
Well, not quite—not according to Sunday night's episode of GIRLS. Or, perhaps I need to be clearer: the kind of magic equated with inspiration (desired for Hannah's literary efforts) does not necessarily derive from outside one's comfort zone. The kind of magic synonymous with sensationalism, however, does.
Hannah is asked to step outside her comfort zone for her new freelance assignment for Jazzhate, an online magazine (said to be a parody of XOJane), for which she'll be paid $200 a pop (which, I should note, is an extraordinary amount). The Editor-in-Chief, "Jamie-just-Jaaam," suggests either a threesome with some people off Craigslist or doing "a bunch of coke" and "just writ[ing] about it."
Since Hannah finds it difficult to focus on "even one person during sex," she opts for the latter adventure, and, after purchasing some coke through the downstairs ex-junkie neighbor, Laird, she and her gay ex-bf slash current roommate Elijah determine that 4pm is not terribly inapropos to begin to let the magic happen...because Hannah "cannot wait to write the fuck out of [her] column."
Oh, and does the magic happen.
Magic revelation one: even though she is critical of the marriage industrialization complex, dammit, marriage is precisely what Hannah wants—from the veil to the cake-testing (at least 12 must be tasted), she wants it all. The revelation is a wonderful critique of queer ideology, which teaches us that marriage is a horrendous tool of patriarchy and that no intelligent person should ever-ever want it—especially a culturally savvy Brooklyn hipster, and double-especially if she's queer. Sometimes it's just so fucking tedious and difficult to follow the norm...the queer norm, that is. In this instance, the coke-induced magic reveals not only how comfortable we are in our comfort zones, but that our comfort zones have layers and that we can confuse which one we find the most comforting. Superficially they are socialy-constructed, but underneath the superficial level there lies a more intimate idea of what makes one comfortable. The tendency to confuse what we want is a part of living—what do we want, when social and cultural strictures are stripped away? No desired object (be it even institutionalized marriage) is inherently a "bad" thing (because nothing is inherently "bad"). Wanting what we know we "shouldn't" want—Lauren Berlant's "cruel optimism" as "politically depressing," magnified.
After making permanent (at least