Monday April 10, 2017

Why Catherine Reitman eats lunch alone

Reitman co-created Working Moms, a CBC-TV comedy series about the ups and downs of balancing work and motherhood that she writes, produces and stars in.

Reitman co-created Working Moms, a CBC-TV comedy series about the ups and downs of balancing work and motherhood that she writes, produces and stars in. (CBC/Gallery Books)

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In the CBC-TV sitcom Workin' Moms, Catherine Reitman​ plays an advertising executive who juggles life as a working mother after her maternity leave. Reitman drew on her personal experiences to co-create, write and produce the relatable comedy series with her husband. Looking for a light, funny read to entertain her on her down time, Reitman started reading Amy Schumer's The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo.

It's kind of a cool book. It definitely doesn't put me to sleep. She's really funny and honest and brave in it. She talks about a lot of things that I really connected to, whether it be lust versus love or what it's like when you experience your parents disappointing you and seeing that they're human and three-dimensional people. But hugely, the hard takeaway for me was she talks about being a comedian and the expectations on that, that people expect you to be "on" all the time and how we're actually incapable of doing that. Even if you are an extrovert, you have to have moments to yourself, moments of quiet to recharge, to be a human being. She takes lunch alone in her trailer when she's shooting, when she's working. If she's in the office, she'll find a room to eat alone. High school style, go and eat in the bathroom stall — just to sort of take some time, take note, digest everything that's happening in her world. I started doing that halfway through this season of shooting, just as an experiment. And it works. There's something very meditative about it.

Catherine Reitman's comments have been edited and condensed.