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Mindy Kaling

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Mindy Kaling Carvey—kinda has a nice ring, doesn't it?

The Mindy Project star, 36, is in no way romantically linked to Dana Carvey, 60, but as she writes in an essay for Seventeen's Sept. 2015 issue, she "had a massive crush" on the Saturday Night Live alum when she was in high school!

"I thought we would get married and, because he was so talented, my parents would have been fine with my underage relationship with a 40-year-old comedian," she recalls.

Really, though, it wasn't just much older guys that Mindy had the hots for in her high school days. She "had plenty of crushes" on "handsome, popular guys' at school," she writes, but she "never had a boyfriend or anything."

Instead of worrying about dating, though, Mindy channeled all her youthful energy into becoming a performer.  "I tried out for every play but never got cast in any big part," she recalls. "They cast the same popular, pretty people over and over while I played a hobo or a homeless woman for, like, nine consecutive productions. That was really hard. I had such an inherent trust in adults that all I could think was: This must mean I'm actually really bad at this."

High school Mindy also struggled to find an audience for her comedy. As she explains it in her Seventeen piece, back then, "funny was for boys," and, "Everyone acted like it was inappropriate for a girl to be funny, as if I was there to be an audience for the guys, not to be providing comedy myself."

Mindy acknowledges this was "unfair," but eventually, it was kind of a good thing. All that time spent watching and listening from the sidelines "makes you more perceptive, more sensitive to how people really work," she writes. "So when you finally take your place in the spotlight....you can put all those stored-up goodies to work. And you'll be so brilliant that no one will be able to look away."

For more advice from Mindy and much more, check out her Seventeen essay.