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The Historical Feminist Roundtable, Bucket List Edition

"I once beat my husband at whist, and although he was peeved, I was very pleased.

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HYPATIA: Hi, everyone, and welcome to the Feminist Round Table, where I invite some of history’s most notable feminists to discuss an important and timely topic. I’m very excited to welcome an amazing panel of women to our show today. Everyone, please give a big round of applause to St. Joan of Arc, Abigail Adams, Louisa May Alcott, and Alanis Morissette. So, today, we’ll be talking about what should be on a woman’s bucket list. Ladies, what do you think?

LOUISA MAY ALCOTT: Living free of men.

HYPATIA: You mean, before marriage?

LOUISA MAY: Always.

ST. JOAN OF ARC: Oui. I agree with Mademoiselle Alcott. Men, they are…needy.

ABIGAIL ADAMS: Oh, but we love their foolishness so!

LOUISA MAY: Eh.

HYPATIA: OK, what else should be on the list? Alanis?

ALANIS MORISSETTE: I think all women should learn how to come.

(Abigail Adams and Louisa May Alcott titter.)

ST. JOAN: What is this?

HYPATIA: She means, you know, to orgasm.

ST. JOAN: What is this?

HYPATIA: Let’s move on. What else should be on a woman’s bucket list?

ST. JOAN: All women should know what it’s like to lead an army!

ABIGAIL: Or form a new country!

ALANIS: Or kiss Dave Coulier!

HYPATIA: Well…

ALANIS: Oh, sorry, wrong ex. I mean: kiss Ryan Reynolds!

ALL EXCEPT ST. JOAN: Ooooh, yessss….

ST. JOAN: Who is this?

HYPATIA: What about seeing the Grand Canyon? Or climbing the Eiffel Tower?

LOUISA MAY: Eh.

ABIGAIL: Paris is very pretty! Or so my husband told me. After he came back from a trip to Paris. By himself. While I stayed home. Fomenting rebellion. Ha ha ha!

ALANIS: I think all women should learn to bake something delicious! Not something for a man, but something we love to eat!

LOUISA MAY: Hear, hear!

HYPATIA: Like what?

ALANIS: Brownies!

LOUISA MAY: Roasted potatoes!

ABIGAIL: A Thanksgiving turkey!

ST. JOAN: Those little cakes of ambrosia the Virgin Mary fed me when I was in prison!

(Silence.)

HYPATIA: Thank you, ladies. Any final thoughts on what women should put on their bucket lists?

ABIGAIL: I once beat my husband at whist, and although he was peeved, I was very pleased.

ST. JOAN: I wanted to die nobly, in sacrifice to a purpose larger than myself. And oui, I did! How about putting that on the list?

HYPATIA: Um, I think these are supposed to be more, you know, happy.

ST. JOAN: Oh. Well, the potatoes thing then.

LOUISA MAY: It’s kind of fun to be the sole financial support of your entire family, if by “fun” you mean “utterly terrifying and ultimately forcing you into an early grave.”

HYPATIA: Great.

ALANIS: Kissing Ryan Reynolds is still on the list, right?

HYPATIA: Sure.

ALANIS: Also, writing a song about your ex’s many flaws that goes to No. 1 on the charts.

HYPATIA: It occurs to me that both of those things might be out of many women’s grasp.

ABIGAIL: A nice up of tea, a warm fire when you’re cold, someone to love…

HYPATIA: Those are lovely.

ABIGAIL: And being played by Laura Linney in the miniseries of your husband’s life.

ST. JOAN: Oh, oui, she is merveilleuse.

ALANIS: Mmhmmmm.

LOUISA MAY: Yes.

ABIGAIL: Bae is hawt.

HYPATIA: There you have it, ladies! The ultimate bucket list item is to have your life enacted by Laura Linney. That’s all we have time for today!

LOUISA MAY: Next time, could we talk about work-life balance?

ALANIS: Or the fragile balance of male power and female wiles upon which we’ve all built our careers?

ST. JOAN: Or how the divine feminine cries out from our souls?

HYPATIA: Sure! That or the new hairstyles for spring! See you back here soon for another Feminist Roundtable!

Shannon Reed is a playwright, essayist, and writer of fiction who lives in Pittsburgh. She writes for BuzzFeed Ideas, McSweeney's Internet Tendency and The New Yorker.

Contact Shannon Reed at .

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