This article appeared in the October 31, 2002 issue of Rolling Stone.
Do you mind if I put on my pajamas?” Britney Spears asks, heading toward the bedroom of her suite at Manhattan’s Trump Plaza. It’s four o’clock in the afternoon, and her plans for the remainder of the day are limited to an evening workout and, if she’s not too pooped, a trip to the movies with her personal assistant, Felicia. These days, Britney is a woman of leisure. This summer, after her world tour ended with an aborted show in Mexico City, she revealed that she would take the next several months off. “I need Britney time,” she says, unaware of how impossibly cute she sounds. Britney is obviously a girl’s girl — warm, goofy, sentimental and yearning to be liked. Although the twenty-year-old hopes to land another movie role before the year is through, she’ll spend most of her vacation catching up with her girlfriends (“We all recently broke up with our boyfriends”) and hanging out at her new apartment in New York’s East Village, “just farting around.”
What effect do you think being a woman has had on your music?At first it was kind of hard because I think people don’t take you as seriously. And for people to take you seriously, they make you think that you have to be ballsy. But I think there’s a way to balance the two — being who you are and saying how you feel but not going over the top with it. I’m trying to be a little bit more assertive.
You don’t seem like the kind of person who is very brazen about saying what you think.
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You don’t lose that feeling a little when you get really famous?
Have you met her?
What have you learned in the past year?
Yeah. You’re sick of living in a bubble.
Where do you go?
So you’re on a break. Are people making too much of a big deal out of this?
Do you think that people wouldn’t be making such a big deal about this break if you hadn’t walked offstage in Mexico?Globe saying I’m a lesbian.
The Globe said you were a lesbian?and being a lesbian. Whatever!
You’ve said that your parents’ recent divorce was a relief. Was there a lot of tension in your household growing up?
Do they still talk to each other?
Do you have more empathy for your parents’ situation because you just went through a breakup?
What do you think their divorce taught you about your own relationships?Pauses] I’d have to meet somebody really, really cool. I just can’t see myself going there right now — with all the arguing. You know what? I’m being really selfish right now. I don’t want to have to call somebody. It’s only hard when you go places and you see couples together and you’re like, “Oh, man, I wish I had a boyfriend right now.” But I’d rather be by myself forever than be with somebody because I’m lonely.
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