By Sophia Kercher
Last night during Carrie Fisher's Wishful Drinking reading at Book Soup, an employee ducked down to connect a wire to the podium and nearly went in-between a lady's legs. “Oh! You almost went where no ones touched in years,” she cooed, tossing her short, smart haircut. The crowd of humorous, middle-aged folks anxiously awaited Fisher's appearance and the chance to get their books signed. Fisher is, of course, renowned for stealing her way into the hearts — and bedroom fantasies — of nearly every teenage boy as Star Wars' gold bikini-clad Princess Leia. Still, the entrance to the bookstore clearly, if not ominously, marked “no memorabilia will be signed.”
Over the past decade, Fisher has also garnered respect for her outspokenness about her battle with depression, a topic covered at length in Wishful Drinking, her first-ever memoir. After a shuffle of digital cameras and cool-weather scarves, Fisher appeared at the podium. At first glance Fisher was startling; there's a good chance you wouldn't recognize the starlet walking down the street. She looked more like a frumpy stage mother with her dramatic gestures and glitter-coated eyelids than a Star Wars heroine, but the infamous brunette's sharp wit made up for her appearance. Fisher was as chock-full of one-liners as Yoda:
Carrie Fisher on…
Sex: “You can sleep with someone else, and have the cigarette with me.”
Love: “Heartbreak is life's way of teaching you things — that was in a movie, I didn't make that up.”
Religion: “If you can get a priest in your circle of friends — do it! That and ECT, and have porn star friends.”
Being an icon: “What, am I supposed to still be wearing a metal bikini to these things?”
And what seemed to ring most true, Fisher on honesty: “My theory is that if you declare something it's not true; So that's why I tell everyone everything.”
Yes, at times her zingers sounded as pre- planned as the pun for the title of her memoir, but she was engaging and friendly. Fisher fans hung on every eyelash bat asking, “How's it going with your daughter? How's your mother?”
Mid tete-a-tete the ubiquitous Star Wars fan emerged. Obviously he didn't take note of the “no memorabilia” warning at the door; he held a bag of figurines in hand while asking Fisher's opinion on George Lucas' regrettable Star Wars Holiday Special.
Fisher handled him with gentle irony, “Well, you must be a Star Wars fan.” She appeared to have forgotten all about the TV special, clearly more comfortable chatting about her more recent years' work. After all, this era of Carrie Fisher offers something more real than Jabba the Huts and Ewoks. Fisher's battle with alcohol, drugs and love (which she so frankly harps on) has shaped her into a heroine of honesty — something which we all, if not need to get better at, desire.