I wish for all of us to feel, even if just for one fleeting moment, the way that Drew Barrymore does when she discovers a hidden window in her home.
What would it be like to have such capacity for joy and to have it so constantly bubbling so close to the surface ready to be expressed, to be experienced? Imagine what it would be like to live through everything that’s going on now if, like a spike in emotional seismic activity, even ephemeral elation managed to crack through. Hell, imagine doing home renovation and finding anything happy about it at all.
But that is the glory of Drew Barrymore. Everyone has their own spiritual journey. Me? In dark or confusing times in life, I ask myself WDBCAT: Would Drew Barrymore Cry About This?
The video in question was posted this week on the actress and talk show host’s TikTok.
Barrymore has been chronicling the renovation of her New York City apartment, which she seems to be very hands-on involved in. She gets the news that there could be a window behind some drywall. So she and the crew knock down the drywall and reveal the window. It appears to be one of the greatest moments of her life.
“It’s so hopeful,” she says. “It’s weird for something to be so covered up and dark. You can pry it open and create light.” Prior to this overwhelmed reaction, she talks about how excited she is to break down the drywall and access the window. To psych herself up, she barks and howls like a feral dog. The moment she’s able to push the window out and let the light in, she lets out a guttural, carnal cackle, as if she had, after a lifetime of exploring, just discovered the Lost City of Gold. She begins to weep.
It’s so ludicrous, and yet so lovely. On the one hand, who among us in New York City wouldn’t be moved to tears at the thought of more light in their shoebox apartments. On the other, that ain’t exactly a cramped space Barrymore is working with. Which is to say, this is all just so Drew Barrymore-y. If you’ve watched her talk show, you know that these jarring explosions of emotion over the seemingly mundane—not to mention the extreme, earnest, and utterly pure optimism—are who she is.
It can be silly. But, hey, look around. What a miracle to witness anything or anyone who just seems to be… nice. I don’t think it reflects an ignorance or delusion about the reality of the world, either. That’s what makes the video transcend cringe-inducing embarrassment and “what is wrong with this woman?” judgment to instead become something inspiring and, gauging by the reactions I’ve seen on the internet this week, celebrated.
Joel Meares said it best on Twitter: “Whenever people get on Drew about being too… much… I’m kinda like, yeah go through what she went through and come out the other end with a sliver of the joy and brightness she possesses and then get back to me.”
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