things i am watching and/or reading and/or listening to instead of doing my work
"do i really deserve to die because you hated a fictional sex scene?" edition
tiktoks of a hood goat named billy earl and his chicken friend pepper
the thing about tiktok for me is that i am wholly enraptured by every funny post shared by someone i know with good taste and excellent curation skills on instagram, but i am not adept or dedicated enough to get my for you page algorithm in order so i’m stuck relying on better (read: younger) people to show me what’s good. space babe shared this video of a goat stuck on a roof while his owner shouted “billy earl! get your dumb ass over here!” from his yard and i cried laughing then crawled out of my lurking hole to find his tiktok, which is perfect. this one made me laugh so hard i nearly aspirated a handful of terra chips.
and just like that finds the demented comedy in life’s humiliations
i have to admit that i’m a little broken. i don’t think i understood, when offered the opportunity to work on a show whose VHS tapes were my constant companion when i was 19, the enormity of what i was saying to. i obviously understood that the show had a major cultural impact and was beloved across a wide spectrum of people, but i was not ready for the magnitude of…………….discourse there would be? and that’s on me.
i took some protective measures (that some of my friends roasted me for at the time) like getting the fuck off twitter forever and unfollowing whatever pop culture shit i was scrolling past every day to shield my sensitive eyeballs from things that might wound them, but i was not prepared to receive death threats over a fictional character’s fictional relationship choices that are fictional which means not real?
i’m naive! i’ve never worked on anything this huge before! but whatever heat i got a few years ago for putting fat girls in bikinis at the pool from people who don’t wanna see thighs (i guess???) was child’s play (and not the chucky kind) compared to this current onslaught. that word reads embarrassingly dramatic to me, BUT: from the bottom of this pit that’s how it feels.
this wild reaction (by which i mean the entire internet’s collective loathing) is also disconcerting because some of it is coming directly to me from people i actually know? i promise you, someone has already sent me that nasty [tweet/article/podcast/blogpost/ransom note] that you were just about to forward to me. i’ve seen them all! they make me feel bad because this was a job i was hired to do and i didn’t take it as a joke! you think the show is stupid, i get it. i’m not mad at that, feel what you feel, it’s all valid. you hate it, i like it, we can agree to disagree. but if you think i’m in a fiery car crash you’re driving past in slow motion, you don’t have to pull your car over to ask me “hey, how do you like those flames?” (also i am truly at the bottom of the totem pole that is this gargantuan production, i have no idea why [they] would ever wear [that] in episode [who gives a shit] and you cannot possibly think that i, a person currently stinking up an ll bean jacket worn as a shirt, was in any way consulted about that???? please stop yelling at me, i am powerless over these decisions!!!!!!!!!)
“the title change signifies a show that isn’t about the big things that make life glamorous, but rather the way that life hits you — the struggle to exist and remain relevant as culture, friends, love, and life passes by. the only thing that remains constant for the show’s three heroines is an onslaught of indignities. what is and just like that if not the humiliation of life persevering?” anyway, i think this writer gets what we tried to do.
this new york times best albums of 2021 list
i like the end of the year because, and i can’t be alone in feeling like this, i simply cannot keep up with all the books i should be reading and movies/TV i should be watching and music i should be listening to and it’s nice when professionals who know what they’re talking about compile it all into neat little articles that fall from the sky throughout the month of december. i don’t have the knowledge or vocabulary to talk about music in an elevated way (me about i song i like: “idk it just sounds good or whatever”) but i love reading the words of people who do. hanif abdurraqib, an exceptional human, also posts a list at the end of every year that i pore over religiously. it feels like cheating, like someone else did the homework all year and is just sliding their paper across the desk so you can get a good grade, too. i am very grateful for people who do this work! i’m currently listening to this mustafa album because this is what jon caramanica had to say about it: “did you mourn this year? were you broken in some way that was beyond words? mustafa’s debut album was there with you, a startling, primal chronicle of relentless loss and the relentless grace required to navigate it. in moments when the ground buckled, this album was a cradle.” SEE WHAT I MEAN ABOUT EXPERTS WRITING EXPERTLY???? sheesh!
dilled white bean and grape tomato salad
-i love a room temperature salad
halloumi tacos with pineapple salsa and aji verde
-really into pineapple lately, really into halloumi always
rice cakes with peanut sauce and hoisin
-obsessed with rice cakes
“that’s right” ciara feat. lil jon
the year is 2006. i’m 26 years old, a year into a hilariously bad relationship with a med student who never calls me, in a one bedroom apartment i could barely afford, and i love the club. i go out every weekend, without fail, to creepily drink beers in the shadows while watching other people dance and have fun. I AM HAVING THE TIME OF MY LIFE. my go-to get ready song, the cd i put in my aiwa compact stereo system and broadcast on repeat out my windows down to the denizens of rogers park was ciara’s the evolution, specifically track 1. it is the perfect song for attempting, unsuccessfully, to hike low rise pants up only to then wrestle a tank top on over another shirt while trying not to tangle the mess of chunky necklaces clacking around your head. i put it on now and am instantly transported to a time when lil jon was at the height of his popularity (don’t click that, i’m mentally ill) and life was but a dream.
hot dog taste test lisa hanawalt
i needed some inspiration and lisa’s work is perfect, especially if you’re a gross pervert like me.
i howled watching the first episode. i forget about sitcoms sometimes because there are thousands of things to watch but only two cells in my lukewarm oatmeal brain, but someone posted it about it on the news (instagram stories) and i finally figured out my hulu password after three tries and it was worth the stress.
i get the print version of this, a fancy stoner magazine that’s good as hell. it makes me feel like a very chic weed connoisseur rather than…whatever it is i actually am.
“…is a biannual print magazine that interrogates (and celebrates) modern motherhood through diverse and inclusive stories about art, sex, pop culture, politics, food and a few things in between.”
YOU KNOW WHAT THE FUCK BUST IS. “busty news done bust-ily” or something like that. anyway my subscription just auto-renewed, which makes me feel like a virtuous person.
a reason to live by liv stratman
i am a fan of liv’s work and liv’s instagram so duh i obviously subscribed to her newsletter about death, which is in its early stages but made my cackle nonetheless. she’s just fucking great, and this letter made me want to sit down at the computer and write, which is an actual miracle.
hung up hunter harris
“essays, interviews, recommendations, reviews, gossip, line readings, love notes, cool shit” from a very smart, extremely hilarious person.
honey stay super by kimberly harrington
i read (and maybe even linked here?) kimberly’s book of essays about divorce and i’ve subscribed to her newsletter for a long time, but her most recent letter about reading as a social media competition made me opt out of participating in another goodreads challenge i will inevitably forget to update and/or fail. also she’s got some good recs!!!
a couple books i read
the plot jean hanff korelitz
yes i figured out the twist two-thirds of the way through but that didn’t make the book any less entertaining??? which feels miraculous. the basic premise: a failed novelist steals the plot of a dead guy’s book, has massive success, then someone who knows what he did starts tweeting threats at him. as a ~writer~ i was basically on the verge of shaking and crying and throwing up every time i turned a page, and if that’s not quality storytelling idk what is.
miracle creek angie kim
another absolute banger! a hyperbaric chamber operated by korean immigrants explodes with patients inside and the fire that started it appears to have been deliberately set. and the suspect was apprehended! now we’re at the trial, and with each chapter the perspective shifts from one victim (or perpetrator…?) to another and this book is so, so good. it’s tense, it makes you feel like you know what is happening then immediately switches things up, it’s a perfect thriller.
derrick carter “about now”
like i said: i love the club. i miss the club. i miss house music in a dark, sweaty disco on a random weeknight, dancing with strangers. i’m never going to a nightclub ever again, but i just found a bunch of derrick carter’s old mixes (that i got at gramaphone when i was pretending to be cool enough to shop at a DJ spot) while cleaning out my desk the other day, and i put this one on and suddenly i was at slick’s lounge at 11pm on a tuesday, drinking stoli razberi with soda and lime (i know, i know! i was a wee child!) and hoping someone would drive me home so i wouldn’t have to spend thirty bucks on a cab. remember cabs??? (if you close your eyes while blasting this as loud as you can in your headphones in a darkened room, from 59:28 to 1:05:13 you might literally astral project. please be careful.)
did i understand what was happening or what it was about even with closed captioning on and my phone in the other room? no. does that take away the enjoyment of the movie or even matter in the first place? also no! it’s so good!!! my eyes were very pleased!!!!!!!!!! i was 19 when the original matrix movie came out, and i saw 70% of it in a theater in boulder colorado (i spent the other 30% in the bathroom, having travel diarrhea because my body is a traitor) and there is no way to overstate how much that shit blew my fucking mind. could i explain the intricacies of the plot to a layperson on the street? absolutely not. did i see the movie no fewer than nine times in the theater? ABSOLUTELY YES. the first day of work on work in progress i walked into kinowerks past a replica of a sentinel and a case with all the matrix oscars in it and despite trying to play it super cool i almost dropped dead (the red morpheus chairs were just, like, sitting in an empty office in the same building i was in!!! are you kidding me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) so, needless to say, i’m a fucking fan. also it’s a testament to the will of my deep pit of embarrassment and shame that i never asked lilly wachowski “hey babe, what does keanu smell like” even once, especially since i wanted to. i sat next to her every fucking day for two whole months and did not so much as whisper “just curious, which pill would you have taken?” and for that i deserve a prize.
“space jam dvd”
just trust me.
minutes 9:39-11:35 of j lo’s 2020 superbowl halftime performance
listen this whole thing bangs but the part where she backs it up on j balvin’s fine little ass??? that’s the closest we’ll ever get to seeing live human sex during a televised sporting event and it is exquisite. is it a coincidence that this (and my 40th birthday, do with that what you will) was the last good thing to happen before the world irrevocably turned to shit??? no! the asteroid should have obliterated us the moment the game ended.