spiraling into hell with @manicpixiememequeen
Welcome to mixed feelings’ Hyper-Specific, a new profile series of increasingly intimate questions in which we ask our favorite artists, scientists, musicians, and the like to unveil their innermost selves — their weird existential musings.
A prestige meme account admin is essentially the beat poet of our generation, as in, a cool and counter-cultural profession I wish I had. Cori Amato Hartwig, also known as @manicpixiememequeen, is one of these internet scions making existentially-tinged gold out of everything — from nihilistic Bratz dolls to The Cranberries’ lyrics. Her memes will help you convey to your fans that while you are H.O.T., you are also troubled ✌️. Read on for Cori’s (she/her) precious takes on Seinfeld salads, “Gilmore Girls,” and more.
Something you’re always hoping people bring up in conversation when you first meet. Astrology — but not just sun-sign astrology from like, horoscope-dot-com, I’m talking pulling out birth certificates…I don’t even need the other person to necessarily be into advanced astrology; I just need them to be open to hearing about it and to be curious about learning about themselves or the world at large.
One destructive trait you know you possess and wish you didn’t. Being so insecure with a perfectionist streak — the perfect recipe for a disastrous case of imposter syndrome. I self-sabotage opportunities or procrastinate goals instead of trying to attempt them. Before I’ve even started, I’ve convinced myself that I have already failed — so why try?…I’m trying to work on it, though. I remind myself of all of the average to below-average men who are successful simply because they approach things with nothing but a delusional level of self-confidence.
If a bodega were to name a dish after you, what would it be? (Be specific.) An Elaine from Seinfeld-esque big salad — lots of mixed greens, a little arugula, quinoa, Persian cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, kalamata olives, feta cheese fresh from the block, pumpkin seeds, hummus, and a vinaigrette dressing made with good extra virgin olive oil. The hummus and the dressing have to be on the side, though, to ensure that the salad stays fresh.
One song that makes you feel understood. “Alone” by The Pretenders.
Something you think is wildly underrated. A natural yard. Not only are traditional grass lawns high-maintenance and horrible for the environment, they look so boring! Stop spraying your lawns with pesticides just for the worst aesthetic choice of all-time! Our pollinators are dying!
A movie you watch when you want to self-soothe. When Harry Met Sally. That’s a perfect movie. Every time I watch a bad movie, I’m like, “Why did I watch that when I could have just rewatched WHMS instead?” One night I watched it, it ended, and I didn’t feel like that sufficed, so I replayed it and watched it again.
Your problematic fave artist/actor/musician (and why). Morrissey. He’s most well-known for being the lead singer of the Smiths, and I’d say that he’s secondly most known for his horrible and gross opinions. I love the Smiths. I don’t have a “skip” track on any of their albums; every album is great front-to-back. I don’t think I’ll ever grow out of my sad-boy Smiths phase, so I have to separate the art from the artist. Fortunately, I don’t really like a lot of Morrissey’s solo stuff, so it’s easier to listen to the Smiths knowing that there are three other talented artists involved.
A line from a TV show/film that plays on a loop in your head. It’s Deena saying, “Get the frig outta here, ya crazy!” from the intro to Jersey Shore. I actively have to stop myself from captioning my selfies on Instagram with this line.
One time you laughed so hard you cried. When I was watching Gilmore Girls with my mom and she turned to me, and in all-seriousness said, “You know, I felt like a teen mom.” My mom was thirty-three (and married) when she had me, her oldest child. But honestly, facts.
One time you cried so hard you laughed. I was trying to take my own headshot for a feature that was coming out about me. There was a deadline rapidly approaching and I had recently broken out with hormonal acne that I hadn’t had since high school. It felt like karmic punishment. Every photo I took of myself I absolutely hated, and I started spiraling into body-dysmorphic hell. I was overheating and having an anxiety attack, and with every picture it just got worse, so I started to cry, and I gave up on the task because my makeup was totally ruined from sobbing. To calm myself down, I went to shower and remove my makeup. As I was showering, still crying, it dawned on me how self-critical and dramatic I was being, and I started laughing hysterically. Because at least I was self-aware enough to know that I was being absolutely nutso-bonkers-insane.
What’s an anecdote you usually tell to describe how you were as a kid? When I was in second grade I replied to a prompt in my Junie B. Jones journal that asked, “What is your least favorite thing about your family?” with “I’m not the boss of them.”
What is your low-key hell and actual heaven? My low-key hell is shopping for jeans in bad lighting. My actual heaven is an afternoon on the porch in the sun, 74 degrees out, drinking prosecco and/or an Aperol spritz, wearing a comfortable dress, listening to an elaborately curated playlist, and talking to my mom or one of my friends for hours.
Share a quote of one of the most meaningful things someone has ever said to you, context optional. I used to dress very odd for 2011 standards, and I had braces and a horrible pixie cut that made me look awkward. So my AP World History teacher walks up to fifteen-year-old Cori’s desk, slams her hand on the desktop, looks me dead in the eye and says, “Cori, never lose your spunk and vitality”…It stuck with me because I realized that people notice when you’re being yourself and they admire authenticity. It reminds me to have the nerve to be myself.
How you exit a party. Scrambling! I never learned how to drive, so most of the time I’m catching a ride with friends or family, and I never know that everyone is leaving until they’re outside in the car waiting for me to get the memo.
How you wanna go (either un-seriously or seriously). I would be living Golden Girls style with all of my unmarried or widowed friends in a really cute house, and then we would have a nice dinner with wine and small plates of various appetizers. After, I’d go to bed feeling all happy and grateful for my life, and sleep without waking up. However, I prefer that my house wasn’t in Florida.