Also.Also.Also: Nothing about This Kate McKinnon Tostitos Commercial Makes Sense, but I Still Laughed

I have to leave here to go get vaccinated! Let’s press publish and goooooooooooo!

Queer as in F*ck You

Trans & Menopausal (both the essay and photography here are gorgeous!)

Brandi Carlile Has Always Seen Herself Clearly. Now It’s Our Turn. From The New York Times, “In her new memoir, Broken Horses, the singer-songwriter takes a deep look at how ‘a mean, scrappy little trailer girl with the wrong clothes’ became a six-time Grammy winner.”

The Queer Diary of an Extreme Heterozygote

‘Trans Kids Are Not New’: A Historian on the Long Record of Youth Transitioning in America

Lil Nas X Continues a Tradition of Queer Blasphemy by Nicole Froio for Bitch Media. And if you read that, you should also be reading: Lil Nas X’s Dykey Aunts Are Proud of MONTERO by Shelli Nicole and Dani Janae for Autostraddle.

To REALLY honest with you, I have no idea what’s happening in this Dan Levy/ Kate McKinnon Tostitos commercial, but I laughed:

I’m a member of the National Association of Black Journalists’ LGBTQ+ Task Force that’s mentioned below, so full disclosure this is a bit of a self-plug, but I’m so proud that I hope you don’t mind. I donated yesterday in Monica Roberts’ name because I believe that Black trans and queer journalists, the guardians of our stories, deserve to be supported and protected. And I’m hoping that another cis person reading this link round up will join me and do the same: The Monica Roberts LGBTQ+ Scholarship is is a newly established fund to support Black LGBTQ+ students studying journalism, mass communications, or otherwise interested in reporting and storytelling. (If you click the link to donate, when prompted select scholarships, then select “LBGTQ+ Task Force Scholarship.”)

Saw This, Thought of You

If The Pandemic Has Made You Anxious About Returning To “Normal,” You’re Not Alone (And related: 6 Tips From a Therapist For Coping with Reopening Anxiety)

Also.Also.Also, since I’m getting my first jab in my arm as soon as I press publish on this here link roundup, wish me good luck! (I found the practical approach taken here to be very calming): What Can You Do Once You’re Vaccinated?

I Spent My Life Consenting to Touch I Didn’t Want. “A year of isolation made me consider all the casual, unwanted touch women endure — and why it’s so hard to refuse it.”

I watched the Tina Turner documentary on HBO this week, and it’s honestly all I can think about, so: Revisiting Tina Turner’s Most Fabulous Looks and The Final Word on Tina Turner by Hanna Giorgis for The Atlantic (a genuinely great read!)

This also gives me a quick opportunity to brag on my bestie a lil bit, which almost never happens here! But Dr. Elliott Hunter Powell (in addition to seeing my through my 20s) is a brilliant professor of race, gender, sexuality, and music. He recommends that if you’re going to watch the Tina documentary, you pair it with this book:

Don’t worry, I looked it up for you: Black Diamond Queens: African American Women and Rock and Roll by Dr. Maureen Mahon

Speaking of music! The Black ‘Godmother of Grunge’ Who Inspired Your Fav Bands

Not related, but also not NOT related, in a border sense, if you feel me: White People Keep Posing As People of Color for Clout

Creating Your Own Tea Ritual. “From mint to rooibos to matcha, take the time to pour into yourself.” We deserve serenity.

Political Snacks

“We know the fight against these [sweeping anti-trans] bills sounds daunting, but the discriminatory legislation doesn’t have to be inevitable. Last year, many Americans leaned into the power of political action by taking to the streets in the aftermath of George Floyd’s and Tony McDade’s police killings or by organizing voter turnout. We knew that we couldn’t rest in the fight for our rights and our lives. This is why we’re encouraging our community and allies to contact lawmakers and demand they end these assaults on trans youth.

We are at an inflection point in the fight for trans lives. We are witnessing a broad-based assault on our ability to attend school, access health care, find community, strive for our dreams, and survive. Our visibility can be a tool to build resistance and power, but we can’t win this fight without sustained action and solidarity. Join us as we defend our survival and celebrate not just being seen as trans, but also being respected as humans.”

HELLO! WHEN I SAY THIS IS YOUR MUST READ OF TODAY, I MEAN IT! Visibility Alone Will Not Keep Transgender Youth Safe by Raquel Willis (!!) and Chase Strangio (!!) for The Nation.

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!

Carmen Phillips

Carmen Phillips is Autostraddle's former editor in chief. She began at Autostraddle in 2017 as a freelance team writer and worked her way up through the company, eventually becoming the EIC from 2021-2024. A Black Puerto Rican feminist writer with a PhD in American Studies from New York University, Carmen specializes in writing about Blackness, race, queerness, politics, culture, and the many ways we find community and connection with each other.  During her time at Autostraddle, Carmen focused on pop culture, TV and film reviews, criticism, interviews, and news analysis. She claims many past homes, but left the largest parts of her heart in Detroit, Brooklyn, and Buffalo, NY. And 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. To reach out, you can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram, or her website.

Carmen has written 716 articles for us.


  1. My mother-in-law lives with us, and she seems to be determined that this last traumatic year didn’t happen once we got scheduled for our second dose. I don’t know how to get through to her that I’m not going to be okay for a long time and that I can’t be having the tons of socializing that she’s already trying to schedule.

    • THANK YOU and Carmen and the original author…going to the grocery store is traumatic enough, I hate so called loved ones trying to push too hard, soon even before the vax was in sight

  2. oh noooo that tostitos commercial reminded me of too many rehearsal rooms I’ve been in!! (I say this with affection. mostly.)

  3. I’ve been on the hunt for a solid way to support journalists of color (in addition to Autostraddle, of course!) thanks for making it easy Carmen!

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