I was watching my favorite show, “30 Rock,” the other day, and the episode had to do with Liz Lemon, the highly successful 37-year-old single television writer, trying to impress an adoption agency so she could bring home a baby. She dresses in a terrible soccer mom outfit even Oprah would laugh at, and pleads with her staff to “act normal” while the agent comes to NBC. As she reflects on what her home says about her, she says, “I wonder if I should hide my Colin Firth movies. Maybe they would consider that pornography?’
And it hit me like a ton of bricks—I’m more like Liz Lemon than I thought. I had always looked up to her character, who gets cornflakes in her hair and passes time at galas by trying to eat as much free food as possible. But this was spooky, and I began to think—is there a Colin Firth type?
My crush on Colin Firth is a recent development; the only movies I have seen him in are “Bridget Jones’ Diary” and “Love Actually.” (Those are two fabulous romantic comedies in a genre that is usually lacking—if you were embarrassed by “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” raise your hand.) In both movies, he is supposed to be the anti-charming, awkward guy—in “Bridget Jones’ Diary,” he actually manages to scare the main character off because he’s so depressing. But it works for him well, I love actors and actresses who can make you laugh without ever cracking a smile or doing anything big and loud. Watch him bumble through the Portuguese language in “Love Actually” and tell me you’re not in love.
I like Colin Firth so much I have actually contemplated what I’d do if he ever walked into my store (at my health food store, we get a lot of celebrities). I envision that I’d ask him to sign part of my body, as if he were Derek Jeter or something, but probably I’d just stare a lot.
Firth’s life is interesting—his parents are professors, his grandparents were missionaries, and he spent part of his childhood in Nigeria. He speaks out politically for people who are being taken advantage of in third-world countries. And in an interesting gender role reversal, he’s married to an Italian film director and producer. She’s the brains and he’s the beauty.
Anyway, long story short, I think there is a Colin Firth type. Look at this picture of the actor getting coffee dumped on him. He posed for this photo to draw attention to the issue of unconscionable trade practices. But really, c'mon--it's a wet t-shirt photo, only with coffee. That's hilarious to women who grew up hanging out in coffee shops. Scroll down a little, and check out all the comments that have been posted by women, and you'll see that there is indeed a Colin Firth type. Firth is to bookish women what Princess Leia is to tech-geek men. The best thing is that none of the women seem to understand or care about the political content of the photo.
Well, how about this--if Firth shows up at my place of work, I'll tape a bag of fair-trade coffee to my body, and have him sign that?