This week, we see that Hannah thinks she’s too special to have to endure a day job, and that Ray and Shosh just might be made for each other.
Hannah tells Ray she’s quitting the coffee shop. “I’m so sorry you won’t be gracing us with your presence anymore. And I’ll see you in about a week when you quit whatever bs gig you’re leaving for and come back begging for your old job back.”
Hannah: I’m sure it must hurt to see some leave ‘all this,’ but it’s really not a b.s. job.
She tells him she has a gig at GQ magazine. He asks her if they need someone for a before picture in a makeover article. She tells him no, it’s a writing job. They saw one of her pieces online and she’s going to be writing for a new section “Field Guide to the Urban Man.” He asks who is the “sponsor.” He says there’s no way GQ hired her to be a staff writer, so it’s obviously “one of those advertorials.” He tells her that kind of work is both morally and creatively bankrupt. He repeats, “Who’s the sponsor?” Hannah admits, “Neiman Marcus.” Ray laughs.
Hannah: Do you think I’m excited, Ray? Do you think that I think that this is the best use of my literary voice and my myriad talents?”
Shosh is strolling along the park in an up- do and Jackie O glasses (and very expensive looking coat, I must add). She spots Ray playing basketball. They exchange a look.
Hannah arrives at her cubicle. It’s gray and plain and grim.
Ray is in his office and gives Marnie a call. She is cool to him: “How can I help you?” He says he’s just calling to “check in” and that he enjoyed spending time with her. He says lets not let this affect our friendship.
Marnie: “But we’re not even friends.”
Ray: “Look, I’m trying here. I’m trying to follow the protocols of a gentleman and a squire.”
She says she’s busy watching TV.
Hannah meets Joe her new co-worker. She introduces herself and he says he knows all about her — read her piece online about (whisper) cocaine. “It was very funny.”
Hannah: “I feel that wasn’t as re-Tweeted as it should have been, so I appreciate the support.”
Joe advises her not to go around saying that she writes for GQ — that the real writers are very snobby about editorial versus advertorial. He shows her to the snack room. She’s shocked it’s free: Hannah: “Even the lox? Which is disgusting…but it’s very expensive.”
She grabs piles of food and carries them to their meeting where she dumps it on the conference table.
Jessa is working at a children’s boutique and listening to Shosh talking about Ray — that he’s on the rise and her life is falling apart. Her evidence? His coffee shop is mentioned in Time Out New York.
Shosh: “Ray is being written about in popular service publications, and my life is a mess.”
She decides its time for her to get back into a mature, committed relationship. Maybe with “Parker.”
Shosh: “He’s just so stupid that I worry our children wouldn’t get into pre-school.”
Hannah is in her meeting, where she is joined by Janice, her trendy chic boss (great cameo by J. Crew creative director Jenna Lyons) joins for brainstorming session for types of men for their: Field Guide for the Urban Male. Hannah dominates in the meeting, throwing out idea after idea, steamrolling over Kevin one of the other guys at the table.
Ray shows up at Marnie’s. Brings her vegan muffins. She asks him to take his shoes off in the entrance.
Ray: “Wouldn’t want to scuff this pristine linoleum you’ve got here.”
He tells her he brought vegan muffins.
Marnie: “Wow. Muffins from the place you run. What an extravagant gesture.”
He suggests they watch TV together “you can introduce me to your telenova sensibilities.”
Marnie: “Have you ever seen reality television before?”
Ray: I’ve seen Ken Burns’ jazz documentary seventeen times. Does that count?
Hannah comes home and Adam hugs and kisses her. She tells him work was amazing. She dumps snacks out of her bag. He tells her he had an audition. He says he walked out indignant that they asked him to smile on command.
Cut to: Ray and Marnie having awkward sex.
At work the next day, Hannah tries to talk to Kevin, the guy she made look bad in the meeting. He says he doesn’t like her “I don’t like your face. It annoys me.”
Her colleague Karen tells her she’s doing a “dope” job and is really going to make a name for herself there. Hannah says thanks, but she doesn’t want to make a name for herself. “I just kind of want to get in, and get out.” She says she’s a writer. They inform her they are all writers, and she is humbled to find her advertorial colleagues are even more legit than she is — published in The New Yorker, another won Yale poetry prize, one published in N+1. Now they are just happy to have dental insurance and a corporate gym membership. They’ve been there for years. She sees her future. Hannah goes to the bathroom and runs her head under the faucet.
Shosh is in library with Parker, her boyfriend candidate. He says their friend Caitlin says she said he is “literally the dumbest person she ever met.” She tells him she has no time to waste on frivolities. Is he or isn’t he ready for a serious relationship?
Parker: “I’m down for whatever.”
Hannah, her hair still wet from the sink, goes to see her boss Janice, who tells her she’s been doing a great job. “You remind me a lot of myself ten years ago.” Hannah sys she doesn’t want to be there in ten years. Janice says there are a lot of other people who would love to have her job. “‘That’s it?” Hannah walks away and comes back and says ok she’ll keep her job.
Ray and Marnie are on the street and duck when they see a couple they think are Adam and Hannah. He uses the word “doppelganger” and she doesn’t know what it means. They go for Chinese food. It’s clear he’s intellectual so superior to her. He tells she’s dumb. After it gets really heated he asks her to please sit back down and she does and they finish lunch.
Hannah is weeping in her cubicle. Joe calls her from the phone in his cubicle, and tells her she can still be a writer and do this job — she just has to be focused and write at night and on weekends.
Shosh is having sex with Parker in her apartment. And she is very busy talking: “Now that we are officially a couple, we should have no less than four hang nights a week.” “Cool,” he says, bending her over the couch. She keeps negotiating their coupledom, and he asks if they can maybe talk about this stuff later. “Honesty about your core needs is the cornerstone to any healthy relationship.” She says maybe he’s not ready for this.
Parker: “Do you want me to stop?”
Shosh: No! There’s not need to terminate sex just because we’re not meant for each other. You’re so dumb, Parker. Can you pull my hair harder?
Hannah comes home holding her laptop. Adam got a call-back! She tells him she’s so excited for him — but she has to write now for three hours. She promptly falls asleep on the couch.
I love the parallel between Ray trying to connect with Marnie but absolutely missing because of their intellectual disparity, and the way Shosh is looking for a boyfriend but finds her latest hookup “stupid.” We’re finally given an episode that gives us something to root for, which is to see these two back together.