[Memoir Chapter] Why Do I Like Jesse Eisenberg?

Geesh, that title sounds like it’s more common to unlike him. That is probably not the case, speaking from personal experience most people don’t even know who he is by name when I mention him. I have to list characters in movies he’s portrayed, and sometimes (more often than I’d like to admit) I have to correct them when they confuse him for Michael Cera. Which brings up a valid question: If most people I’ve talked to about Jesse Eisenberg can’t tell him and Michael Cera apart, why do I find that comparison an annoyance and why do I have little to no interest in Michael Cera’s endeavours?

My boyfriend says he knows why I like him. He also relentlessly harasses me for my intrigue into him, which I don’t think peaks his jealousy as much as his confusion as to why it’s Jesse Eisenberg. At dinner the other night, upon realizing that Jesse has written plays and has a new book coming out this week and I was very excited to check them out, my boyfriend said some smart-ass quip and I was quick to point a finger at him from across the table and boldly state (without so much of a raised voice, but a very deep stare) that Jesse was now considered holy terrain in our relationship and he was now required to “back off” of teasing me about him. Not because I feel like Jesse would be offended or anything, but because I was thoroughly annoyed with people, especially someone I love dearly and respect, not seeing what I see. My boyfriend says I like Jesse because he plays characters I relate to, and that his nervous qualities reflect my own traits of anxiety. This is what triggered my post. Is that why I like Jesse? Because I narcissistically see myself in him?

Granted, there’s not much comparison between us. If you out the two of us together and had our resumes out, I assure you it would take a good few minutes to find one thing you could see in common. I don’t dream of a world where I marry him. I don’t even know the guy. I met him once during a promotional event in San Francisco where he and Aziz Ansari served us pizza. I took a photo with him and I think I nervously held his hand, which is kind of embarrassing as I’m sure no person wants to hold hands with some blue-haired girl they just met as part of their media tour. Anyway, I never met him again after that, so I don’t really have much of an opinion of him other than movies I’ve seen. I don’t really pay attention to his interviews. I did see what he said about San Diego Comic ConĀ and how turned off by it he was. As a frequent attendee of the event, I know exactly what he’s talking about. My friend Skylar titled SDCC “Self-Entitled and Privileged Con” after his first visit this year, and I can’t say he’s wrong to describe it that way.

Honestly, I think the reason I like Jesse is because I enjoy watching him. I enjoy his facial expressions, his voice, his acting. He seems like a normal guy that has stories to tell. Stories that I’m interested in hearing. Maybe that is because I see myself in parts of him, because often I’ve found that the things that interest us can sometimes be a sort of mirror into ourselves. I’m a nervous mumbler and a fast talker that tilts my head and purses my lips in confusion or in contemplative moments. I guess that’s the one thing we have in common. Oh, and I also think you have to be crazy to be comfortable at SDCC.

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