Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em Podcast
Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em Podcast
122. Knives Out! The Great Personal Essay Debate

122. Knives Out! The Great Personal Essay Debate

Nancy and Sarah draw blood over two recent pieces by Brooklyn women, one exposing the dirty laundry of a marriage, the other a "Can anyone be this stupid?" con job. Plus, our pick for president 2024!

This is a hot one! Nancy and Sarah fundamentally disagree about Emily Gould’s viral essay on the lure of divorce. Nancy compares the story to the rot in France before the formation of the Vichy regime. Sarah believes personal essays like this help people feel less alone. Can she change Nancy’s mind, as Walter Kirn did on the most recent episode? (Fast-track to 33:08 for that 🔥 exchange.)

Also discussed:

  • Should we start texting our vote for president, and does that mean Taylor Swift wins?

  • The $125 divorce? It’s a thing.

  • Anti-depressant-induced hypomania. It’s a thing.

  • Eat, pray, sell: The divorce memoir industrial complex

  • Sarah is a gender essentialist on the topic of raising kids

  • Rachel Cusk’s Aftermath is not THE divorce memoir (according to Nancy)

  • FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! (30-minute mark)

  • The problem with “brave”

  • Awkward pause while Nancy searches for a passage to prove a point while Sarah claims she’s addressing a different point

  • “Maybe it was possible to be married and not married at the same time.”

  • The best essay Sarah knows about writer’s envy is by Jonathan Franzen’s girlfriend

  • The writer’s monstrous ego

  • The conflict between women as a protected class and agents of their own destiny

  • “Mr. Piss” rips that financial scam essay a new one

  • Have we ever fallen for a scam?

  • That time Sarah was robbed at gunpoint

  • That time Nancy talked herself out of getting robbed at gunpoint

  • Send us pictures of your pets!

  • Love to the family of David Frum


Plus, Sarah accidentally scams her own father, Nancy offers a public service announcement, and “Smoke ‘Em” names its 2024 presidential pick AND comes up with its campaign slogan!

AND HEY! Look at this brand spankin’ new “Smoke ‘Em” Instagram account our intern CJ built for us. COME PLAY.


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Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em Podcast
Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em Podcast
Journalistas Nancy Rommelmann and Sarah Hepola on what's burning through the culture right now. Flirtatious banter for serious times.