Lindy West Talks Trolls On This American Life

Every writer has a writer's crush—a person they both want to hang out with and be; someone who, if they were to ever meet them in person, would render them blustering, blathering fan-girls, as if that writer were Angelina Jolie, or Justin Bieber, or Gandhi risen from the dead.

For me, that writer is Lindy West.

The Stranger, Jezebel, Guardian, and GQ denizen has everything I look for in my writerly The One: honesty, incisiveness, thoughtfulness, hilarity. Oh so much hilarity.

So it was with great interest that I learned, from a colleague and fellow fan-girl, that Dame West had a segment on one of my favorite nerdy NPR podcasts, This American Life.

My expectations were high, even ludicrously so. But West delivered harder than I could ever have hoped for.

In the segment, West talks about online trolling, a subject that's been discussed ad nauseam—but which, in her hands, becomes nothing short of revelatory. Let's just say there's a point at which she says, "I think this may be the first time this has ever happened." And I think she's right. Also, amid the dark comedy of her shrewd troll-culture analysis, she somehow manages to sneak in a poignant rumination on death and family and the very nature of humanity.

And the end? Well . . .

You'll just have to listen.

Just please give me back my crush when you're done.



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