Was it actually from the play Ladies' Room? Was that what it was based upon? Or was it a totally different animal?
It was a different animal. The only thing that overlapped is that "Romy" and "Michele" were characters in Ladies' Room. Ladies' Room is a play that I wrote, and it had a production in Los Angeles in '88-'89 and another production in San Francisco in '92. It was Lisa Kudrow's first job. Lisa Kudrow's first audition was for me.
And "Romy" and "Michele" were minor characters in the play. The premise of the play was that it took place in a women's bathroom in a pick-up bar. I really wanted to write about how women talk when men weren't around. It was pretty filthy, but honest. And it was...I wrote how long ago was that now? I don't even want to think about it. But it was sort of like Sex and the City, Ally McBeal, but I did it twelve years ago. It all took place in this women's bathroom, and the main characters would...I decided I didn't want any blackouts other than the act break -- I don't even know why I made that decision, but I did -- so that when the main characters would exit into the pick-up bar, for something more to happen, I needed filler on the stage, and "Romy" and "Michele" were filler.
Oh, how funny!
My idea was that they would be best friends...this is what inspired me: I went one night to a bar and I went in the bathroom and there were all the toiletries, you know, when you tip the woman a dollar--
And there were these two girls in there and they were using the hair stuff and one girl goes, "Oh my god, I LOVE your hair!" And her friend goes, "My hair! Your hair! I'd kill to have your hair!" "Oh, I hate my hair!" [Note: Robin completely sounds just like Lisa Kudrow in Romy and Michele. Seriously. It's like listening to Lisa in that movie. It's pretty uncanny. Not to mention pretty damn funny.] On and on and on, talking about their hair in this really banal fashion for fifteen minutes. It was hilarious! And I loved the idea of kind of capturing that, and also the idea of two people who were really one person. And the characters were really more outrageous in the play because they were just the comic relief, and what I didn't realize I'd done -- I mean, the very first night, they got entrance applause from their costumes. One of them had that Madonna strapless crinoline thing, they were both wearing black and red and they each had one earring on. They were these idiots, but they just loved each other so much.