How Muppets Do Money: Prairie Dawn

Prairie Dawn has overdraft protection but never needs to use it. She’ll nurse a single vodka and cranberry all night rather than buy two. She chooses her clothes, very carefully, from consignment stores. Her pink furry fingers push the hangers back one by one, looking for tags.

Prairie Dawn spent one year after college working for a theater collective that liked to re-imagine Shakespeare, because it was free. The tickets were also free. Even Prairie Dawn’s labor was free, and after staging a performance of Titus Andronicus where all the characters were farm animals (because meat is murder), she gave up on her dream of becoming a theater director and followed the money straight into New Media.

There isn’t a lot of money in New Media, but there’s much more than there ever was in theater. Prairie Dawn is both a writer and an editor, and she spends her afternoons optimizing headlines for clicks and SEO. Sometimes they do video posts, and that’s when Prairie Dawn feels most at home, standing in front of the camera and closing with “This is Prairie Dawn for ViralZazzle, saying don’t forget to share!

She’s got a few roommates at the end of a long metro ride, and her life is technically fine. She makes spaghetti and cleans the kitchen and watches Orange is the New Black with her roommates while they drink bottom-shelf wine. She used to balance her checkbook until online banking made that unnecessary, and she always has money left over at the end of the month, even if it is only $100.

On her days off, Prairie Dawn works on a YouTube series that she’s trying to get off the ground. There are two episodes online already, and she’s thinking about doing a Kickstarter to fund the rest of the season. It’s an Anna Karenina retelling where Anna and Kitty send vlogs to each other, and Prairie Dawn plays Anna and her friend Betty Lou plays Kitty. If they had some more funding they could do casting for Levin and Vronsky. It happened for The Lizzie Bennet Diaries — why not them?

Why not me, Prairie Dawn wonders, even though she knows that her life is basically fine and all she has to do is keep working at her job and slowly paying down her student loans until she figures out what to do next. She’s in her 30s now. This might be her real life. Compared to a lot of people she knows, she’s really, really lucky.

Previously in How Muppets Do Money: Grover

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