“Gleefully wacky and irreverent.”

–The New York Times

“Line by line, Mr. Rudnick may be the funniest writer for the stage in the United States today.”

–The New York Times

“Deeply funny musings and adventures elevate Paul Rudnick to the highest level of American comedy writing.”

–Steve Martin

“One of the funniest quip-meisters on the planet.”

–The New York Times

“Paul Rudnick is a champion of truth (and love and great wicked humor) whom we ignore at our peril.”

–David Sedaris

“Quips fall with the regularity of the autumn leaves.”

–Associated Press

March 13, 2014


This video is for the new Ban Bossy campaign, which is designed to encourage leadership
in girls, and to end name-calling.

While the campaign is clearly well-intended, it can seem
simplistic. It reminds me of a weekly feature in the Times
Business section, where CEOs and other corporate figures,
both male and female, are interviewed about how they run
their companies. Most of the people being interviewed come
across as tireless, confident and occasionally, well, bossy.

On 30 Rock, Tine Fey hilariously explored the difficulties
of being in charge. Her character, Liz Lemon, was the head
writer of a TV show. She struggled with having to wrangle an impossible group of
stars and staff; she wanted everyone to behave, and she
also wanted to be liked. This led to insanity.
Her boss, Alec Baldwin, loved being a leader and had no problem manipulating everyone
around him.

The celebrities in the Ban Bossy video are almost all
talented and powerful. Sheryl Sandberg, who wrote the
bestselling Lean In, has been both praised and vilified;
she’s been called every name in the book, and this hasn’t
stopped her.

As Thirty Rock proved, leaders aren’t necessarily nice

The greatest leaders I’ve met, male and female, are
driven, charismatic and most often self-made. Some of
them are also caring and compassionate, and some are
maniacs. On a certain level, being a leader means being
a star, and being comfortable with power – and that’s
exceedingly rare.

In the closing moments of the video, Beyonce announces
that, “I’m not bossy – I’m the boss.” That’s when
I wanted Sheryl Sandberg to reply, “You’re not
the boss of ME!”