The Internet collectively freaked out yesterday after news broke that the dashing actor Ryan Gosling prevented a woman from stepping in front of a cab in New York City. And while Gosling’s near-heroics have been rightly praised, it now appears the woman in question is just awful. (RELATED: Have no fear, Ryan Gosling is here)
Laurie Penny, a British journalist, tweeted about the incident after it happened (“I literally, LITERALLY just got saved from a car by Ryan Gosling. Literally. That actually just happened”) and posted several follow-ups about how annoyed she was that people were talking about how Ryan Gosling is some kind of a hero.
She tweeted Wednesday: “EVERYBODY NEEDS TO CALM DOWN ABOUT RYAN GOSLING NOW” and “This whole experience is teaching me a great deal about American cultural production. This place is insane.”
The event itself isn’t necessarily newsworthy because a man stopped a woman from stepping into oncoming traffic — because this happens every day, as Penny points out — but because that man happened to be Ryan Gosling, who by all accounts is far above the Hollywood standard of decency and seems to be an all-around nice person.
Plus, he is is super dreamy.
Now, Penny has penned a lengthy, smug and anti-American explanation of her thoughts about the incident and the subsequent media meltdown over at Gawker. If the first two paragraphs alone don’t make you want to throw up in your mouth, we don’t know what will:
Everybody needs to calm down about Ryan Gosling saving me from a speeding car.
It was a curious thing that happened to me on the way to somewhere else. I had just bought a nice pink wig to wear to a friend’s party. I was thinking about an article I’m writing about birth control and the importance of reproductive freedom to women’s rights, and I didn’t remember to look the right way. An actor happened to be passing and stopped me from getting run over by a car. I said “thank you.” And that was that.
So basically, she nearly got hit by a cab because she was thinking about Super Important issues that the rest of us aren’t aware of. Penny then turns the fascination with the fact that Ryan Gosling kind-of-sort-of saved her life into an intolerable piece about feminism and how this exemplifies everything that is wrong with American culture.
The last paragraph is perhaps the most cringeworthy:
But as a feminist, a writer, and a gentlewoman of fortune, I refuse to be cast in any sort of boring supporting female role, even though I have occasional trouble crossing the road, and even though I did swoon the teeniest tiniest bit when I realized it was him. I think that’s lazy storytelling, and I’m sure Ryan Gosling would agree with me.
Even oft-insufferable New York Magazine columnist Jonathan Chait writes that Penny is “one of those leftie-types so sanctimonious they make you want to vote Republican out of sheer spite.” He follows Penny’s logic and takes to it to its natural conclusion:
[There should be] No stories about celebrities saving people from speeding cars, at least not until we have conquered racism, inequality and violence! Of course, if we follow this strict logic of moral utility to its conclusion, maybe we should be scolding Gosling for saving Laurie Penny rather than shoving her in front of the car, harvesting her organs and donating them to terminally ill children in Bangladesh.
Hey, girl. Chill out. Let us believe that Ryan Gosling is a hero.