Why I Want to be Leslie Knope When I Grow Up (and Really Why We Should ALL Want to be Leslie Knope)

Laura Dupuis

Recently my husband and I started watching Parks & Rec together in the evenings. He’d never seen any of it and I had only seen the first few seasons so it was a natural progression when we finished The Office. While watching, I actually had a small conversation in my head with myself about running for city council in my city because Amy Poehler is that convincing and damnit, I too want to make my city better! In reality Calgary is rated pretty high on the livability scale (fourth in the world according to an article by Independent, a UK magazine) so it’s not like I would be battling a candy manufacturing corporation. Also I would actually probably hate it so instead I focused on what aspects of Leslie I admire and made a little list.

1. Her intense loyalty

Be it to her friends, husband (spoilers but it’s been off the air for nearly four years so #sorrynotsorry), city, or waffles; if she loves it she will love it fiercely. As a Hufflepuff I am also very loyal but I can always strive to love deeper and Leslie has shown me that.

2. Desire to help people

Time and time again you see her fighting the good fight for her city. From turning the pit into a park, to adding a sugar tax to combat Pawnee’s obesity and diabetes issue; Leslie is all about fighting for the good of the people. Even when she gets booted from city council for helping Eagleton, she doesn’t give up.

3. Creativity and crafting skills

I know it’s completely unrealistic to be able to needlepoint someone's face onto a pillow in one night, but it’s the idea behind it that makes me want to expand my craft skills. I currently knit a lot - like sell patterns amount of knitting - I learned to crochet (scrunchies, nothing fancy) last year, and have an embroidery kit for a TARDIS that I’m working on but I can always get better at those things. I’m also working on creating my own colouring book....okay I guess I have the crafting thing on lock.

4. Convictions

Even when she isn’t keeping a cool head because she’s so angry, she can usually hold her end of a discussion (thanks to the magic of television!) and I am the complete opposite. I get flustered, forget how to be anything but angry and usually end up crying because I’m just so mad and I can’t get the words out. So watching Leslie get frustrated and angry but manage to put complete sentences together for the most part is something I can work towards. Even if it’s not real life.

Finally I know Leslie is fictional but the writers did a damn good job creating a character that makes me even remotely consider public office and Amy Poehler is the only person that could have brought her to life in such a perfect way.