Don’t Call me Zooey: My Life as Zooey Deschanel (Sort Of)

Zooey Deschanel vs. "Not Zooey Deschanel" | Photo of Zooey Deschanel courtesy of Wikimedia Commons user RanZag and other photo by Christine DeLuna

Hello. My name is Christine DeLuna or, to others, “The Girl that Kind of Looks like Zooey Deschanel.” I prefer Christine.

When I cut my bangs two years ago, I wanted a “hip” change. I’ll be vintage, I thought. Not the case. For two years now it’s been a daily stream of “you look like that girl from New Girl” or “you look like that girl from 500 Days of Summer.” I’m always polite. I smile and say, “Yeah, I get that a lot” like the movies tell you to do.  But on the inside, I’m cringing.

It’s not that I hate Zooey Deschanel, because I don’t. It’s more that I get mixed reactions. Usually when people ask if I know I look like her they’re nice about it. But, there are times when it gets uncomfortable.

I can’t even count the amount of times guys have used “my alter ego” to pick me up. Gentlemen, do not use the “You look like Zooey Deschanel. She’s hot” line anymore. Besides the fact that I have no idea how to handle someone hitting on me in general, it just makes me think you’re into me because I fulfill some creepy fantasy involving her, her glasses and sex in a library. Next time, you’re better off asking my sign.

I’ve had people start out polite and then go into a rant about how annoying Zooey is. I’m not Zooey so don’t use me as a means to vent your frustrations with her. On the flip side, there’s no need to get creepy fan-like with me. Again, I’m not Zooey; I’m at the grocery store. You don’t need to tell me how awesome she is like I’m about to sign your New Girl season 1 DVD.

People tell me it’s not just the hair. They say I dress and act like her too. I see it, but I don’t need you to point it out to me.

Zooey does not own the rights to cardigans, high-wasted shorts, and flowery dresses. I’m free to wear as many cardigans as I please…in the summer…or at a club. She’s not the only one that’s allowed to make up songs about what she’s doing. I’ve been singing, “Come here bus; come here bus. Don’t forget about us” since I was seven. Maybe my friends should stop and consider that maybe Zooey Deschanel is copying me and not the other way around. You never know.

I’m still not fully over how annoying it can be, but I’ve learned to laugh off the Zooey stuff more. I’m not going to stop dressing as I do or change my hair completely. (Maybe I’ll stop the singing in public; it makes people uncomfortable.) I’m not trying to make this about personal identity, but I guess it is. So here’s the advice from someone whose friends and family consider her Zooey Deschanel reincarnate–before cutting your bangs, seriously consider the repercussions.


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