Happy Birthday, Riese!

Today is Riese’s birthday! Riese is Founder, Editor-in-Chief and CEO of Ideas at Autostraddle.com, the world’s most trusted queer girl automotive parts distributor since 1996.



You know, Riese! This Girl Called Automatic Win! Marie Lyn Bernard! RIESE.

The one who writes / edits everything you read here on Autostraddle dot com. The one who thinks of funny titles! The one who reads every single comment you write.



RIESE! The one who’ll dance at the foot of the bed and sing show tunes while you decide to get up. The one who bursts into gazelle runs on the streets / hallways of WHEREVER SHE FUCKING WANTS.




MARIE LYN BERNARD! The one who made this place for you. She thought you deserved it. No big deal. She thought you’d like it.




I made this Special Birthday Collage to show Riese how much I love her and also how much I love to make collages. Happy Birthday, Riese! LOVE LOVE XLXLXO!



You may be thinking, “What can I do to show Riese how much I love her?? Because I do love her! I love Autostraddle! I love sandwiches and I bet Riese does, too! I NEED TO HUG RIESE RIGHT NOW AND ALSO MAKE HER A SANDWICH. What do I do??!”


via autostraddle on tumblr

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  1. Happy birthday! May your booze run freely and all your vacations come true.

    As an aside: Grapefruit flavored vodka is teh best. You are a classy, classy gal. It is only seconded by ginger flavored vodka (with lemonade it is unstoppable).

  2. Not normally one to point this kind of thing* out cause you know BUT I do like to point out when I am on things**, and I was so on this before this post went up just saying.

    *monetary things

    *my parents had too many kids and that is why I feel the need to point it out when I am on things, too many kids not enough attention I swear to god.

  3. HAPPY BIRTHDAY RIESE! 6 years ago my life was so normal(boring!!!)until i found out autostraddle in 2009. since then everything changed. autostraddle made my life less alone and less lonely…happier. for that, i absolutely thank riese for making an effort to create a place where everyone else feels comfortable and welcome. a place where i feel i belong. we may come from different places, countries, continents, but here in autostraddle WE ARE ONE!

    AUTOSTRADDLE is my second home. i love it here, can i stay here forevs riese? i would like to be your neighbor, come on! lol!


    much love =)

  4. I can’t think of anything particularly articulate, so here’s this instead:


  5. Dear Riese,
    Happy Birthday. Thank you so much for all the love and stress and time and sleep and energy and sanity that you give or give up so that there’s somewhere that I (and probably a lot of other people) can go to not feel so alone. This site has guided me through an important period of my growing self awareness and self acceptance, as I’m sure it has for many others.
    I’m a full time uni student working a pretty simple job at a burger restaurant so I can’t give much, but I hope what I can will bring you closer to a break that you truly deserve. I personally recommend the way I celebrated my 22nd birthday only a couple of weeks ago – Roller Derby and booze. I’m not sure what the uniforms are like in the US, but in Sydney, man, some of those girls just wear singlets and underwear, and it is magical. And tattoos Riese. TATTOOS.

  6. Oh, Riese.

    You’ve already changed the world. You’ve changed it for this girl. And probably for all these other girls too.

    You probably didn’t anticipate what this would grow into when you started it. But I don’t know, maybe you did.

    Maybe you knew that your baby was not only going to become the best written, most intelligent, hilarious and clever place on the entire internet; but that it was also going to form into a family inside a house. Perhaps you knew that it was going to become a place where a whole bunch of people would come because they felt safe here, they felt loved here.

    No matter how many mushy comments I leave telling you that you’re appreciated, that you’re wonderful, they never quite feel like enough. But you are. I wish that I could do all the work for you. I wish that I could hug you so infinitely that you’d burst. But since I can’t, all that I know to do is say thank you.

    Thank you for this place you created, thank you for these people that you brought into all our lives, thank you for the words that you make that make us feel more emotion love smart respect, thank you for making us look inside ourselves to the heart of who we are, and for telling us how to be strong[er] love ourselves[more] love everyone else[more] but still get angry.

    Just… thank you.

    Happy birthday, Riese. <3

  7. Happy Birthday! After all these years reading about your life (from the L word, to your personal blog, to this amazing site that is Auto-Fabulous) as a quiet intruder, I believe today is my sign I was waiting for: tomorrow is my birthday too! Is it true we are both cusp babies? This all makes so much sense to me, and it doesn’t to you, but I’m sure this happens often. I’m ok with this. I’ll be that girl. I rarely comment, but today that will change, and maybe I’ll grow some ovaries and write a piece to submit one day. I mean shit, I’m in an MFA program for ^%$#’s sake!
    Enough about me, today is about you.
    Drink your wine, feel mighty fine, happy day of birth.

  8. riese, everything i have to say is sappy and stuff because i just want to hug you but i’ll just say “thanks” because everything everywhere is better because of you.

  9. Revoking my status as a lurker to say thanks, because you’ve not only made my life better with this site, you’ve helped so many others. The world needs more people like you in it.

  10. Happy Birthday!!!!!! It was my 21st yesterday :)
    We totes have birthdays in the coolest month EVAR haha.

  11. Happy Birthday!!! Have a ton of fun today! You’re awesome, you deserve it! :3
    *\o/* <– confetti or what have you

  12. Riese! Happy birthday. This place is amazing and it is wonderful what you do. Thank you for all of it and very much enjoy your day.

  13. Happy birthday Riese and thank you! Thank you for creating my favorite online place and for raising important issues and questions (how do lesbians have sex??!?). I agree with everything Rachel B said so I can stop writing now. I really wish you all the best!

  14. Happy Birthday Riese! I have found so much happiness and lol’s and reassurances and solidarity in these pages, thank you for making that happen!
    Have fun in San Francisco!

  15. Seeing as it’s Guinness day here at home, (no I swear, it’s actually a thing-http://www.guinness.com/en-ie/arthursday/index.html) then I will have a Guinness in your honor! It’s weird, so many people have their birthdays in September, about 8 mates of mine in the last two weeks and mine was last week too, lots of sex happening in Jan apparently, not that I want to think of such things! And well done with the whole AS thing, it’s cheered me up when im having a bad day lots of times. Have a completely savage day for yourself.

  16. Happy Birthday Riese!

    I think you just make every fucking lesbians day, of that you should be proud of. :) Thanks for making such orgasmic articles, edits, etc. for my eyes to feast on and my brain to engulf. Hope you have a great day and you enjoy all the great comments you’ll be receiving. Tah tah!

  17. happy birthday Riese!
    Not only have you given us autostraddle, but also a reason to get drunk tonight! (not that I really needed one, it was gonna happen either way)
    Also, you make words sound good.

  18. before I go off to my third-grade cousin’s big fat straight catholic wedding:
    you are awesome.

  19. Happy birthday! I usually make people mixtapes for such occasions. Yours would be all Taylor Swift. I think I remember an essay a while back about how much you like her. Since I can’t give you a mixtape, I guess I’ll have to donate instead. If only I could find a convenient little button to click on to do that.

    Seriously, though… I love you! You’ve done so much for so many people. Thank you for making us a home. Happy birthday! Muah!

  20. Happy Birthday!

    may your vodka tumbler overflow,
    may you be surrounded by your friends and people you love
    thank you for all the wonderful things that you do to make this awesome place happen.

  21. Happiest B-day wishes, Riese, and congrats on the mention in Curve. I opened up my copy and OMG there you were! Yay!

  22. Happy Birthday, Riese! Many people have already mentioned this, but you really have taken the world by storm and changed so many lives (for the better, just to be clear). This site is amazing. It makes me happy. When I come here, I feel loved and accepted and reassured. AS reminds me that sanity does exist and things just might be okay. Thanks for making that happen and being amazing in general.

    Also, kudos for drinking Absolut. That stuff is the shit. I’d send you a bottle, but since I can’t, I’ll have to click that donate button if I ever make anymore money. Happy Birthday.

    • yes. this. Happy Birthday Riese. Enjoy every second of it. Can’t wait to see what amazing things you’ll do in this next year.

  23. Happy Birthday Riese! I’ve been sitting here trying to think of something nice/clever/funny/smart/amazing to say, but I guess that is why you do what you do while I sit on my couch and become riveted by your every word. Just know that you are appreciated and that this baby of yours is what keeps me sane in this fucked up world. Thank you.

  24. I’m donating and if every penny of this doesn’t go towards getting you smashed, so help my bleeding gay heart and Biebish good looks.

    For someone I have never met, you’ve had this wonderful impact on my life. Yeahyeah mush, but fersrzly. You should know this:
    I appreciate you. :)

  25. Happy Birthday Riese! Thank you for what you do and who you are! We’re going to miss you so much when you move.

  26. Happy Birthday.

    It’s like this. Before I found you guys I would use AfterEllen.

    Thank you so much.


  28. Happy birthday, Riese. I like reading the things you write more than I like looking at puppies.

    I’m pretty sure I have “looking at puppies” listed as a facebook interest. So that’s pretty serious.

    Anyway, you’re wonderful and I hope your birthday is as wonderful as you are.

  29. Happy Birthday Riese! I am too addicted to this website (to the point where I check hourly for new posts) so I’m going to donate because you’re brain is awesome.

  30. Happy birthday Riese! Like everyone else, I love your brain and everything you’ve done, and thank you, and I’ll help your present because I just got some student loan because I decided to go to school because of you anyway.


  31. I promise you… We are Marching On!!! Dont know if my other post went through, but we Bruins (UCLA) r having a shin dig n we’d like to with you a happy Bday. We love u n ur advice. Lots of love. M.E. :))) #Bornthisway

  32. I always knew this was going to be the best website of all time. A lot of people are surprised by its increasing success but I tell ya, the best is yet to come!

    Having said this, I apologize because I cannot donate now as I am also moving to another city and will be spending a lot of money for a few months (because I basically will be having two homes and will need to travel a lot inbetween them).

    But I really hope you’ll keep having the energy you now have for a long time and will keep pouring it on this precious gem of a website.

    A big hug and a lot of thanks thanks thanks, have a good birthday

  33. Happy Birthday!

    This was a great (and subtle!) reminder of all the good reasons to support the site financially.

    I read a lot of blog content every day but this site always has excellent, funny and thought-provoking writing that makes it one of the first I visit. I am always trying to think of a way to work an ad buy into an upcoming media strategy ;)

  34. Happy birthday! :D

    (question: that comic in the first collage, about working on something you love but if you don’t like it anymore it’s a disservice – where from?)

  35. Riese. Have the happiest of birthdays! Look how many people love you, even people you don’t even know, like me! Look what you’ve done for the internet! Thanks for making things that are somehow smart and funny and so super super super honest all at once. Really, I haven’t felt this way about the internet since I discovered the internet in middle school in the first place. I read this whole darn site practically, I’ve read some of your wonderful work on Autowin, and the other day I even started a blog of my own largely because writers like you make it seem like a thing that could be worth doing.

    In conclusion, I will give you some money and also (coincidentally??) drink vodka with friends this evening.

  36. Happy birthday rockstar
    I want to donate but I am also moving & unemployed
    I will donate as a belated birthday present once I have moved & am employed

    I want to reiterate everything everyone said about you changing the world/the merit of vodka/etc etc
    I think I’ll just say that you’re still amazing! and I have been reading you since like 2005!

  37. Happy birthday Riese!

    Thank you so much for all your amazing writing. You’ve helped me so much with figuring out my (potential) transness, and have put me on the road to becoming a radical lesbian feminist, even if I turn out to not be a lesbian after all. So thank you! And have a wonderful day/year/life!

  38. Happy Birthday Riese!
    I have a feeling that a couple of birthdays from now I’m gonna be talking to friends discussing the movers and the shakers. Your name is gonna come up and I’m going to be like, oh yeah I “knew” her back when she was pouring her heart and soul into this brainchild called Autostraddle.
    Thank you so much. You don’t even know. Have a good one.


    you rock. thanks for urrthang.

    also laneia rocks for having effy in that collage

  40. autostraddle made me gay. true fact. (well 15% autostraddle, 10% shane, 35% tegan and sara, 40% wanting to put my hand up another lady’s vag.)

    but what i really want to say is that you’re amazing and an awesome role model. deal with it. you’ve made a place on the internet where there’s girls that i want to be friends with and spoon with and whisper all my secrets to. that might not be my real life yet, but at least i have here. and i’m grateful.

    happy birthday.

    ps i get a little aggressive when i’m being nice. sorry bout that.

  41. Riese – Autowin, Autostraddle, and the vlogs have been/are so important to me and so many other people I know – I thought I’d take this opportunity to thank you! Have the happiest of birthdays.

  42. HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I hope you’re consuming vodka as we speak. Also, I hope someone bakes you a citric-acid-free dessert of your choice. Thank you for creating my favoritest place on the internet. Really, we all know Riese’s birthday should be a lesbian holiday.

  43. Happy Birthday, Riese! You’re amazing and inspiring, and you deserve the best birthday ever. I hope it’s been wonderful!

  44. Happy birthday Riese! You are amazing and I hope you get to take some time for yourself and seriously de-stress.

  45. HAPPY BIRTHDAY RIESE!!!! I hope you have an amazing time celebrating with vodka. Thank you so much for this website, which was the only place I could show my gay for the longest time.

  46. You’re the greatest. I got drunk and my excuse is that it’s your birthday, so happy birthday!

    But seriously, you’re pretty freaking awesome. I love this place.

  47. happy day after your birthday, riese.
    I can’t imagine how different my life would be if I hadn’t stumbled upon you via blogarrhea. It’s been such a privilege to grow up from a collegebean to an adultbean in the autouniverse.
    Here’s hoping this marvelous thing you’ve made (this vast improvement to the desert of the internet) can take wing and fly even further this year, while you get a much needed break. Thank you and ilu.

  48. THANK YOU THANK YOU EVERYONE! Thank you for saying all of these wonderful things and making my birthday so lovely and for so many of you that gave me what i wanted for my birthday! This almost tops getting that Samantha doll when I was 8. It’s taking forever to write this comment because I want to write something self-deprecating every ten seconds and I keep having to delete it.

    So thank you. I didn’t do much yesterday for my birthday but I stayed happy all day because you kept saying nice things and also putting money in the cookie jar so that I can go run around in the sunshine or the rain depending on the weather.

    Thank you thank you thank you. You’re magical and I’m soooooooo lucky to have you all. You don’t even know. Thank you to all the lurkers who emerged to say something and thank you to all the people who’ve been here and supported me since day one and thank you to everyone, all of you, even StareClips, thank you. Thank youuuuuu.

  49. Hello, Riese:

    I think it was back in 2007 when I — terrified about the new realization of my own gayness and horrified by the shocking lack of a queer community that existed in my hometown — started looking around for queer-girl blogs to which I could relate.

    I found your blog, and read it, and was exhilarated to know that there was a person Out There who was, to some extent, kinda like me! Someone who had dealt with and was dealing with issues that were similar to those with which I was dealing. Someone who seemed to care about life and others. Someone who was brave enough to write about things.

    When I was a lonely and confused just-coming-out baby gay who was looking for community and resources, your blog was there for me.

    Thank you! You’ve helped me out so much!

    And I love the Autostraddle project very dearly.

    Here’s wishing you the best in this new year of your life, eh, Riese?

    Bicycles and roses,


  50. C’mere, hot stuff. We will give the fun! We will give it to you and you will have to fan yourself or us or maybe we’ll just pay a hot cabana boy/boi (or both) to fan us because drinking + fanning is hard.


    Love it here and love all that you do/are! XO!

  51. HAPPY BIRTHDAY RIESE!!!!!!!!!!!! I only recently discovered this amazing website but it has changed my life more than you could ever know. It helped me come to terms with who I truly am and gain the courage to come out to my family and friends. Thank you so, so, so much for everyday filling my life with intelligent and unbelievably hilarious articles and videos. HOPE ITS A GREAT ONE!!!!!

  52. Happy Birthday Riese! Thank you so much for this amazing site, you have no idea just how wonderful it is for us gay girls to have such a great place to come and laugh/ think / be/ learn. You are AS. Hence you have changed the world. Happy Birthday :)

  53. Happy Belated Birthday,
    I Hope all Your Dreams Came True
    Thanks for Creating Autostraddle,
    And for EVERYTHING You Tirelessly Do!

    My sincere apologies for the lateness of b’day wishes!! Hope you had a super day filled with everything and everyone you love!

  54. Riese, I was going to drink a beer in the shower for you; but all I have is Jagermeister, red bull, weed brownies and choc chip cookies. I hope you accept this donation of the 20AUD I found in my pocket this morning in lieu of anything worthwhile. I’m sorry.

Comments are closed.