It’s not easy being pregnant in New York. No one offers you a seat on the subway. Everything smells terrible. It’s normal to walk twenty blocks through rain and heat and snow, just like a postman, except nonunion and with the mail sack tied to your abdomen. There’s remarkable pressure to look stylish and put together even when your ankles have swollen up to the size of Murray’s bagels.
Which is why there was something perversely inspiring about the way that, one week before giving birth to Archie Arnett, Saturday Night Live’s Amy Poehler went out there swinging, her immense belly swaying over the “Weekend Update” desk, performing a wild, aggressive Sarah Palin rap—effortlessly shooting down both a dancing moose and the actual Sarah Palin. Anchor Campbell Brown savaged spin doctors throughout her first trimester, sharpened by fuzz-head hormones that fell other women. Saint Angelina alighted here for a while; even Ashlee Simpson named her son Bronx Mowgli, which is a lousy name, but let’s take it as a compliment.
But maybe it’s the ordinary pregnant woman in New York who should get our salute. Here’s to you, belly-first lady striding through the heat ripples of August! Try and ignore it when people scream “You’re huge” or “I can tell you’re having a girl, they steal the mother’s beauty.” Take it easy walking down the broken stairs to the F train, and here, have a seat. Just don’t name your child “Roosevelt Island.”