Natasha Lyonne Interview

I recently watched “Orange is the New Black” on Netflix, and I highly recommend it to anyone reading this.  One of the actresses on it is Natasha Lyonne, and a few weeks ago I listened to an interview she did with this comedian Marc Maron on his “WTF?” podcast.  I also highly recommend listening to his podcasts.  They mostly involve him talking to other comedians/actors about their career and upbringing.  Since he is Jewish and is also in recovery from drugs and alcohol, he often talks about those topics with guests who are Jewish and/or have a drug use history, and his interview with Natasha Lyonne is no exception.
Here is a link to the podcast:
The actual interview starts around 12:20. The whole interview is worth listening to, but here are the parts that really stood out to me:
1) Around minute 37 she starts talking about how she admires people who can just be in the moment without trying to interpret every action/thought or overthinking “is this right? Why? What if it’s wrong?”  If you go back a few minutes she talks about how some of that questioning is related to her Jewish religious education, which is based around questioning and interpreting religious texts.  I have blogged previously about my tremendous problems making decisions and overanalyzing things, so I could really relate to this.
2) Around 1:02:30 her and Marc maron talk about how hard it is to stay clean. She talks about how she wasn’t really interested in getting clean at first, but after awhile she got more into it. This part really resonated with me because I still often struggle with being “interested” in treatment.  I want to have a life, but eating still feels like such a chore that most days I just not interested in doing it.  However, I am hoping that with time I will get more into it.  Marc Maron then talks (around 1:05:20) about how for him the urge to use subsided with time, and also the competition factor – how after having a streak of clean days he is motivated to stay clean because he doesn’t want to start back over at zero.  The urge thing really resonated for me with regards to purging, and I like the idea of using “I don’t want to start back over at zero days” as motivation if the urge gets strong.
3) He then talks about how moved he is by peoples’ stories with regards to addiction and recovery, and how people who have not struggled with something like this don’t understand that it’s not that easy to just stop (1:06:10). He says they don’t get that you are “fighting with a monster.”

4) Natasha then talks at 1:07:00 about hating herself, and they move on to talk about this idea that you are never quite good enough.  I also struggle with having ridiculous expectations for myself, as discussed here and here.  I’m lucky that my parents never pushed me like hers did, but I  do it to myself.  As she says, it’s the idea that “if you’re not exceptional, you are basically a waste of space.”  (just to clarify – I don’t think this about other people, just myself, and my parents never told me that, I just told it to myself).  Damn double standards.  Because I set that standard for myself I don’t relate to what she talks about next, which is how she rebelled against that idea, but it’s still interesting to listen to.

Happy Listening!


3 thoughts on “Natasha Lyonne Interview

  1. This interview meant so much to me. I’ve enjoyed many a WTF, but sometimes you hear what you need to hear. It was somewhat disheartening, but also somewhat validating that it took Natasha years of sobriety before it really clicking. I just wish I knew how to make that leap of faith to get the time under my belt. (That’s not entirely true–I’ve done it before, but it’s like each time gets harder because what’s the point.)

    • I really enjoy the WTF podcasts. It was definitely validating to hear that with regards to her, and also that it took him several times too. I also wish I knew how to take that leap of faith. It’s hard because no one can tell you when it will get easier or when that leap of faith will pay off. It’s not like pulling a few all-nighters for a test that you know will be over on a certain date. For this, you don’t know when the payoff will be. There is a point though. There has to be, right?

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