Also.Also.Also: This One Goes Out to the Nerds Who Learned to Masturbate From Books!

Well friends! This Thursday feels like a Friday and I need a nap!!

Queer as in F*ck You

Playboy Mexico Puts First Transgender Model on the Cover. She’s Beauty influencer Victoria Volkova.

Samantha Irby on Her Upcoming Books and the Election Apocalypse That Hasn’t Happened (Yet!)

Congress Will Have Record Number of LGBTQ Lawmakers Next Session. So glad to always circle back to Autostraddle’s comprehensive roundup of every LGBT woman and non-binary person who won their race: Lesbian, Bisexual, Queer, and Trans Candidates Won Big Again in State Elections This Year by Natalie

Saw This, Thought of You

Britney Spears Loses Court Bid to Remove Father’s Control Over Estate. The pop star is “afraid” of her father, and won’t perform as long as he controls her affairs, her lawyer says. I hate this! And what a timely moment to bring back one of my favorite pieces of writing from Autostraddle’s CEO Riese Bernard, dating all the way back to nearly a full decade ago: It’s Not Britney, Bitch!

“If only the outrage over a rehabilitated 29-year-old woman (who lost it for a few years but had been way too sexy before that, so clearly she required containment) becoming the personal and financial property of a man she never even liked was half as loud as the chorus that once proclaimed her sexual ‘antics’ as degrading to women.

Britney Spears’ has spent most of her career and the entirety of her breakdown begging everyone to just let her be herself or find out who that is, but it’s out of her hands now. America’s not into freedom for freedom’s sake right now anyhow.”

The Rare Authority of Alex Trebek 😭

I Am Proud to Say That I Learned How to Masturbate From a Book. From Rachel Bloom for The Cut. (Technically this one is a few weeks old, but I just discovered it, ok? And now you can, too!)


100 Ways to Support — And Not Appropriate From — Native People

Black Lives Matter activist, nurse, and newly elected Congressional Representative from Ferguson, MO Cori Bush Said Shopping for Congress Is Too Expensive. Members of ‘the Squad’ Had Tips. And this small moment of women of color supporting each other was easily my brightest joy this week!

Political Snacks

“Do we care to match the reality of America to its ideals? If so, do we really believe that our notions of self-government and individual freedom, equality of opportunity and equality before the law, apply to everybody? Or are we instead committed, in practice if not in statute, to reserving those things for a privileged few?

I recognize that there are those who believe that it’s time to discard the myth—that an examination of America’s past and an even cursory glance at today’s headlines show that this nation’s ideals have always been secondary to conquest and subjugation, a racial caste system and rapacious capitalism, and that to pretend otherwise is to be complicit in a game that was rigged from the start….

I don’t know. What I can say for certain is that I’m not yet ready to abandon the possibility of America.” — President Barack Obama

The most thoughtful piece of political writing you’ll probably read today is an excerpt from Volume One President Obama’s upcoming memoirs, A Promised Land, which releases on Tuesday. To be honest, having just read it, I don’t know if I loved it or felt… frustrated? Incomplete? I’m sure that some of those feelings are because an excerpt by definition is unfinished. I think part of it is because President Obama, even in small form, requires more than one read to fully absorb impact.

But whatever my reservations, much like Obama, I’m also not ready to “abandon the possibility of America.” And for today, that’s enough.

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Carmen Phillips

Carmen is Autostraddle's Editor-in-Chief and a Black Puerto Rican femme/inist writer. She claims many past homes, but left the largest parts of her heart in Detroit, Brooklyn, and Buffalo, NY. There were several years in her early 20s when she earnestly slept with a copy of James Baldwin’s “Fire Next Time” under her pillow. You can find her on twitter, @carmencitaloves.

Carmen has written 698 articles for us.


  1. I also learned how to masturbate from a book!

    I was 19, it was 1989 and the book was published in 1975 (For Yourself by Lonnie Garfield Barbach). A therapist I saw briefly recommended it. The book was very 70s with references to orgasm self-help groups and other things that had very little to do with my experience as an 80s teen. But I wanted to experience an orgasm and so I slowly worked through the exercises my junior year of college. Amazingly enough, I actually learned how to orgasm and to really love masturbation.

    A couple friends at college also borrowed the book, although I don’t remember how that came up in conversation.

  2. The title reminds me of a book I read as a teen, a Christian purity culture book aimed at teen boys in which the authors talked about how sinful masturbation was, then described exactly how to masturbate and even described the pornographic images they thought about when they masturbated as teens. To this day it astounds me how ill-conceived that was. Did it really not occur to them that their readership might get ideas from that?

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