okay so i tried to do a tinyletter a few months ago. but when i sent the first one out a bunch of people complained that they hadn’t received it, then more people complained that they hadn’t received it, and listen: do i look like a have a degree in computers? i don’t know how to do tech support! so now i’m doing this over here, and i’m sure it will work and be perfect and everyone will be happy. anyway, hi it’s sam, this is my news.
what i’m actually reading right now:
the nickel boys by colson whitehead. it’s so good, man. so so fucking good. believe the hype. i’m a quarter of the way through and i don’t want to put it down for literally any reason. it’s almost infuriating when people are screaming about how good a book is and then it turns out to be even better than you expected.
i post a lot of books on instagram and when i do i inevitably i get hit with one of the following responses:
1 bitch did you actually read that
2 bitch did you actually like that
3 if you did actually read it and did actually like it, how do you have so much time to read YOU BITCH?
-guys, i don’t have a job. (i saw a tweet the other day where someone speculated that i’m rich and lmao let’s talk about that.) i used to read books and write about them in a magazine, but i don’t have that marie claire book column anymore. i think because my contract ended? but i’m honestly not sure because i found out when the magazine came to my crib and someone else had written the books section. it’s all good, man. trying to come up with new ways to describe books is the most exhausting shit i have ever done.
-last summer i worked on a tv show in los angeles. i wasn’t asked back for the second season, which is a thing that happens to people all the time and it’s fine. i have a pilot in development, but that process takes months or maybe years (we are 3 years in at this point, i think?) and you don’t get paid to have an idea for a show! i am neither a rich nor a powerful hollywood person, i am a dog with a blog in southwest michigan who is married to a social worker and got to work on a tv show one time, at the lowest paid tier. don’t feel bad for me, it was cool and i did a really good fucking job.
-i wrote another book of essays, and my editor is currently trying to make sense of the 90,000 nonsense words i turned in the day before it was due. sometime this fall she’ll give it back to me covered in red ink and question marks, i will fix it while crying a river of humiliated tears, then it will be out in the world on april 7.
-i do some freelance writing occasionally, which pays, and now and again i’ll go someplace cool and talk to people and a university (usually) will cut me a check for whatever they can spare which is very cool considering i only completed 1/4 of my community college credits and don’t even know how to make a power point.
ALL THAT TO SAY: yeah, i probably read it. i obviously have time. and even if i didn’t read shit, what does it hurt to amplify someone else’s work? it costs me literally nothing!! and maybe results in a sale, or someone getting their library to order a book they otherwise might not! here are some books i’ve posted on instagram recently that you should probably buy/preorder, which i may or may not have read and/or enjoyed:
good talk mira jacob
permanent record mary hk choi
trick mirror jia tolentino
false bingo jac jemc
i’m telling the truth but i’m lying bassey ikpi
the new me halle butler
training school for negro girls camille acker
i know i don’t update my blog enough but hear me out here: my life is boring and i’m not doing enough bonkers shit worth writing about, especially when i can save the good stuff for a book that i can hopefully get paid for. and no one wants to buy a book of longform nonsense they can read on the internet for free! that’s a terrible business model! and i love my blog (i still write it sometimes!) but i was like “how can i pivot to a new thing that i update regularly without looking like a moron?” so i settled on “write a newsletter about the only things i feel comfortable pretending to know a little bit about: books and foods and face cleansers and/or milf porn.”
it’s hot out and cooking is a fucking drag but eating out all the time is expensive and you have to wear pants and honestly to hell with that? i eat this chicken larb (from epicurious) all the time because there’s no good thai food to be found in any of the orchards or cornfields surrounding our crumbling farmhouse, also it’s quick and easy to make and it’s good as hell.
2/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup fish sauce (nam pla)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons thai roasted chili paste in oil or chili-garlic sauce
3/4 cup canned low-salt chicken broth
1 1/2 pounds ground chicken
1 cup thinly sliced green onions
3/4 cup thinly sliced shallots
3 tablespoons minced fresh lemongrass
1 tablespoon thinly sliced thai chilies or serrano chilies
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
a head of boston lettuce, which you are supposed to gently tear apart so you can make lettuce wraps, but that’s too much work so i just chop it into salad-sized pieces and put the meat on top because i hate feeling like an animal with juices and shit dripping down my arms because i have yet to figure out a graceful way to eat with my hands.
to make it:
whisk the first 4 ingredients in bowl to blend them then set it aside. bring the broth to a simmer in giant heavy skillet over medium heat, add the ground chicken. simmer until cooked through, breaking up the meat with a spoon, about 7-8 minutes? idk chicken cooks fast. add the green onions plus the next 3 ingredients. stir until vegetables are tender and most of liquid has evaporated, about 4 minutes. remove from the heat and stir in your sauce, cilantro, and mint. season with salt and pepper. serve it up however you like it.
-i’ma just use this space for whatever doesn’t fit into the previous two categories, like to gush about how superfit hero leggings are my new favorite thing to wear because if you pee a little in them, which i do because i am nearly forty and don’t have as much sweet sweet bladder control as i used to, no one will be the wiser.
-i also just got a case of this flow water that i read about on goop dot com (shut the fuck up) and i’m not sure if alkaline water is a scam BUT if there’s any way for me to both 1 feel fancy and 2 get minerals without having to remember to take seven squishy horse pills before bed every night i’m in.
-i am super late to the succession game, and holy fucking shit is that a good show. billions ended and there was a giant paul giamatti-shaped hole in my desiccated heart, into which i have awkwardly shoved bryan cox. i was also late to pose but have remedied that by bingeing the entire first season in a night and then catching up on all the episodes from this season that i’d apparently set to record in some kind of fugue state. hallelujah for past me, i guess. the music is insanely good (i spiraled into a days-long kate bush vortex for many days after watching the first episode) and i am obsessed with elektra, to whom i pledge my undying devotion by referring to everyone around me as either “BRICK” or “HAG.”
okay that’s it for now. if you subscribe i’ll be in your inbox every other week or so? which feels frequent enough for this to be a real thing, yet not so frequent that you don’t have time to wonder what the cats and i are up to.