Easily one of the more detested characters in the web series “Orange is the New Black” is lead character Piper Chapman’s fiance Larry Bloom, who is played by Jason Biggs. I admit I hate TV!Larry too (because: REASONS, and yes, Alex Vause.) but reading Larry Smith‘s essay over at Medium about his life with the real Piper, his wife Piper Kerman — man, what an amazing guy. Also, a damn good writer. (And! Cofounder of Smith Mag. I’m a fan.)
Via Medium: My Life with Piper: From Big House to Small Screen, The other true story behind ‘Orange Is the New Black’
I have a soft spot for this paragraph:
Piper was the ultimate platonic playmate: We drank bourbon, ogled girls, shot pool in lesbian bars, and walked on weekends to all parts of the city, stopping to catch a church gospel service or grabbing a Bloody Mary. Best of all, no one gave me better advice on women, holding nothing back and offering a few pointers. If you’re a straight, single guy, I cannot recommend a no-bullshit lesbian bestie highly enough.
(Haha. Brings to mind a really drunken (and heartbroken) college party all of ten years ago, during which I actually sprained myself because of bad life decisions and I was assisted home by two fantastic guys. We all promptly collapsed in a heap of exhausted intoxication upon getting to my apartment. Bros for life.)
Seriously though: I love this paragraph because they were friends, first and foremost, and the other night I was re-watching that broken laundry machine scene from Season 1 where Alex goes, “We were never friends, not for one second. I loved you.” And I was like: Hm. So anong mas okay, yung friends kayo dati tas magbebreak kayo and then you also lose a friend OR yung hindi kayo friends to begin with para kung nagbreak kayo… oh fuck it. Does it make things any less damaging? All break-ups are damaging anyway? Haha.
(But then, this brings us back to that room in Paris: Alex’s mom had just died, and Piper was still decided on leaving her, saying, I can’t be your girlfriend anymore. And Alex goes, And apparently, you can’t even be my friend. So maybe that’s why ten years later, stuck in that dryer, Alex says with ridiculous certainty: We were never friends.
Tangina nag-o-overanalyze na naman ako ng show.)
Anyway, back to Larry Smith: He also wrote this Modern Love piece for NYT in 2004: Hear That Wedding March Often Enough, You Fall in Step:
Slow as ever, yet indeed as sure as it gets, it dawned on me: She wants to get married. And if that’s true, then I want to get married. To her. This is perhaps the least original idea I’ve had in a long time, but I needed to get here myself, on my own terms. And after all these years one thing I actually had going for me was the element of surprise.
So what the hell, let’s do it. I still don’t believe marriage is the only path to happiness or completeness as a person, but it’s the right thing for us. So I asked her. Or, more accurately, what I said, sitting next to her on that silly island in a scene straight out of Bride’s magazine, was something about love and commitment and not going anywhere and here’s these rings I got you, and if you want actually to make it official, that’s cool, and if you don’t, that’s cool, too. And if you want to have a wedding, I’m into it, and if you don’t, who needs it. She’s still unclear what it was I was asking, exactly, but when she got done laughing, she said yes. And then she threw off her clothes and jumped in the water.
This guy is a good guy.