Friends, it breaks my heart to tell you that this week will be my last No Filter. After many years of working a very time-consuming full time job in the live music business and squeezing extra Vapid Fluff hours into my already overstuffed schedule, I have finally hit a breaking point and had to make some seriously overdue investments (financial and otherwise) in my long-term mental health. I will be retiring from the Vapid Fluff department for the foreseeable future while I lean into my other career, which mainly involves telling much more successful musicians what to do.
I did not come by this decision easily, but it has been a long time coming. I have been with Autostraddle since before there was an Autostraddle, and this beat was not something that existed before we started this website — I literally could not have dreamed of it. You guys (and I include every queer celebrity I’ve ever gossiped about under the “you guys” umbrella) helped make queer celebrity gossip into an an actual viable thing! I will never stop caring about what Kristen Stewart ate for lunch and neither should you.
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Today, @akilahh reminded me this old photo exists. What an insane murderers’ row of talent. I love all of us and everyone is fucking dominating at what they do. Fuck. A blessed picture for your feed. [ID: A photo from 2016 maybe of Gaby, Akilah Hughes, Ari Fitz, Dodie, Hannah Witton, Lizzo, Chesca Leigh, and Mara Wilson dressed up at the Streamy Awards.]
Not that it does anyone any good to hear this TODAY but I am 100% committed to reposting any content with Lizzo in it. Also, look at all these babes!
This is such a mood.
I am delighted that Mara got an Instagram just to flood the internet with videos of her cats dancing. This is Basil, pronounced like the herb, and he is very talented.
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Celebrating one year dry as of Sept. 1st. Many changes have come with that, both good and bad. Have lost about 25lbs. Have lost a couple good friends. Asserted my independence. Affirmed in who I am. Haven’t yet lost my mind. Slowly healing my heart. Feeling really clear headed and focused on making a better future for me and my kid. Thankful to be present and in the place that I am in.
A year of sobriety (from alcohol) has made Laura Jane Grace…somehow even more attractive? I didn’t even know this was possible but apparently the sky’s the fucking limit.
Look I came here looking for foster dog content but I’m not upset with these glamour shots either.
This guy’s really just out here trying every weird item on every menu in all of Europe.
Samira Wiley wears bowties to express her awareness of significant events, and makes cute lil faces to express the fact that her face just looks like this.
Whoever keeps making those life-sized cardboard cutouts at A-Camp, I have a suggestion for you.
Those better all be thumbprint bruises from Charlotte Hale.
This is how I leave you.
Thank you guys for so many years of reading my inane thoughts about celebrities’ social lives! It’s been a pleasure and a privilege.
So sorry to see you go, this place won’t be the same without you. I’m gonna miss your writing, your talent and your sense of humor.
I wish you the best of luck with your future endeavors and Thank you for your service!
thank YOU carmen sandiego, for always being so supportive! i hope this is not forever but it does have to be for now. <3
1) that photo of Laura Jane Grace made me feel A Way when I saw it in my insta feed and it made me feel A Way when I saw it now for which I thank you <3
2) Wishing you peace happiness and success as you focus on your music career! Vapid Fluff has been my favorite feature (which I mention to say THANK YOU!!! not make you feel bad for leaving!)
3) Will another writer be continuing some form of this coverage??
thank you so much! i don’t know what the plan is specifically but yes autostraddle will keep covering important celebrity bullshit.
THANK YOU for everything Stef!
I wish you the best telling much more successful musicians what to do.
<3 <3 <3
Thank you and Good luck Stef! This has definitely been one of my favorite weekly articles.
thank YOU so much!
So sorry to see this column go, but I know how important prioritizing mental health can be! Thank you for No Filter–it convinced me to get Instagram, hone my skills as a Vapid Fluff sleuth, and actually find a form of social media that didn’t make me want to curl into a ball and never talk to anyone again.
You made me care about Kristin Stewart! That in itself is a landmark Gothip Girl achievement.
i have never actually prioritized mental health like this before so i am hopeful for a long term payoff. also that is AMAZING about instagram and kristen stewart, that made my whole day. thank you!
Aw you’re welcome, it has been a fun journey!
For me, deciding to prioritize mental health has in itself felt stabilizing, because I’m treating it like any other health issue worthy of time and attention, however nebulous a problem it may seem to me. Then I can feel more comfortable tackling it in my everyday life. Hopefully it’ll be a good new/continued path for you too :)
Thank you very much for every Vapid Fluff!
An era has ended.
Does this mean Stef is now eligible to be featured on No Filter
Just get someone else to do the articles, so these can continue? Seems like a good idea
Snaelle’s people responding here, to suggest your people could write your comments instead?
My people think all your people should get on this stat
HAPPY RETIREMENT STEF can i still @ you when cara delevigne and ashley benson pack more giant sex accessories into their home
(<3 <3 <3)
please never stop
THANK YOU STEF for prioritizing yourself! This column will be missed!!
Stef: the Scorpio who brought the Scorchio
You are going to be MISSED.
Health and happiness to you…and I’m looking forward to updates in other columns along the lines of “Noted bisexual musician Stef Shwartz was seen consorting with gal pals in a coffee shop…”
putting that on my business card
Ugh sorry for the name fail, I meant Schwartz!
This is what happens when I type through bleary eyes after not enough sleep. Which has obviously never happened to you in that sane world of music with its regular hours.
Thank you for no filter and the gossip and your writing and your wit.
Go be healthy and produce some amazing live music!
love you, stef. thank you all of your work for autostraddle for the past decade+ (!!!) and thank you for being patient when i didn’t know who 95% of the people featured in this column were or what they did! excited for your future plans whatever they may be. <3
Dude, I still don’t know who 75% of the people featured here are. But that never got in the way of my enjoyment of this column
oh no i thought i was giving the people what they want! WHAT IF I DIDN’T KNOW EITHER?!?!?
Take care of yourself. I’ve always liked this look at celebrity gossip, even when I don’t really know who the celebrities are. :)
I fully expect to see your face in this column when Drinking with Evan Rachel Wood: Part Deux happens. Take care of yourself (drinking with ERWB counts as self care, yeah?). <3
truly the best self care there ever was
I was just typing a comment with this same joke! Stef spending her retirement drinking with noted bisexuals – give the people what they want! :)
Thank you, noted body language expert Stef Schwartz, for your many years on this beat. You made Vapid Fluff into the better, queerer, thirstier version of People Magazine. I will never forget the time you drew those cartoons in order to report on Paris Jackson without reprinting the sleazy tabloid pics.
Hope this change gives you more time and space to focus on your own mental health (and also more time and space for additional drinks with Evan Rachel Wood, Bisexual).
bless you, i appreciate you. <3
Stef, you will be missed but I’m glad you’re taking the time to care for yourself. Best of luck and hope to see you around the comments section!
Thanks to No Filter I didn’t have to get Insta. My favorite column here, love your writing style, Stef! And I’m a big fan (and afraid) of Scorpios … Take good care and hopefully auf Wiedersehen.
This column is what finally got me to join Instagram purely so I could thirst follow Samira Wiley and Teddy Geiger! No Filter brings such joy to my Wednesdays, you will be missed Stef!
You made Wendsdays less boring for me, thank you for that!
Congrats to Laura on her Sobriety. Going to be interesting now that Spotify tells me Against Me is on tour again, which possibly means new album? That would make it two Laura Jane Grace albums in year, a nice win!
So long and thanks for all the fluff, bon voyage Stef.
Thank you Stef for bringing me so much joy! <3 take care
This column was the only thing that made me relate to my grandma’s old gossip rags about the royal families!
I mean this in the best way possible!
How else would I know who Kristen Stewart even IS?
‘Tis alright. I’ll venture out into the unknown and stalk the QOIs (Queers of Interest) on my own, henceforth. Now, only to figure out how this “Instagram” works 🤔
Rock on, Stef, and thank you so.much for the years of updates and fun!
I’ll never forget those days of yore when KStew was gal palling around on the beach in my exact red boxer briefs that the gay sales person at American Apparel winked at me so hard over I thought he had Tourette’s.
I laughed tears over that Daily mail article.
I hope life holds a lot of treasures for you, even outside of this column and I’m certain you’ll make a very special and brief reappearance when it’s time for the royal celesbian dream wedding and its no filter coverage.
So long, Stef! Thank you for many years of joyous celesbian gossip!
Good for you Stef! This is one of my favorite columns on AS – I love how each week is a little emotional journey. All the best to you.
Vapid Fluff has been a joy from the beginning, but these past few years it’s been one of the few places I could turn when I needed to feel better about the world. Thanks for doing the good work as long as you did. I hope you’ve got your own happy place (maybe queer celebrity gossip with no deadline or assignment attached?) when you need it.
This column has been responsible for 100% of the social occasions in which I just happen to be in the loop on celebrity gossip
Thank you for bringing No Filter and so much more to Autostraddle, Stef. I am glad you are acknowledging you need to step away but I will be sad to see you go. This column is my favorite on Autostraddle and I make an effort to read every week. Maybe I’ll occasionally use Instagram now. Maybe.
Also, Laura Jane Grace. 😍
I will miss VF with my whole heart ❤️
Thank you Stef! You will be so very missed!
I’ll miss you so much Stef, you’re a brilliant and hilarious writer and I’ll miss your contributions to the Insider and round tables as well as the awesomeness of No Filter. Thank you so much for everything you’ve given to this community, I’m gonna miss you and I really hope you come back after you’ve taken some time out to take care of yourself (well done for knowing you needed to do that).
There are so many extremely funny writers on Autostraddle but for me you’re the funniest.
STEF I LOVE YOU and will miss your column. No Filter was my gateway column into the rest of Autostraddle, to be honest, even though I haven’t heard of at least half of the people regularly covered here; I stay for the witty commentary. Take care of yourself!
Well Call me F*ckin’ Cleopatra !
I’ve been in denial since yesterday, and will be in deeper denial tomorrow.
Stef!!!! You’ve been a part of this website for as long as I’ve known and loved it, and it will not be the same without you. Also sad that now it’ll be harder to be like “Oh, I know” whenever a well meaning straight friend sends me gay gossip! Good luck on your mental health journey! Thank you <3
I’m a bit late to the party, but I had to add in my well wishes and appreciation for all that you’ve contributed here – back in the day, your article on “Coming Out as an Amorphous Weirdo” was one of the most important things I read that helped me shape my own baby queer identity, and I will be forever grateful for that.
While Teddy Geiger’s thirst traps won’t be the same without your commentary, and I kinda can’t believe we’ll have to endure the L Word reboot without your coverage of the actors’ inevitable Insta-shenanigans, I wish you the very best in your life’s next chapter.
<3 I've enjoyed reading Vapid Fluff throughout the years, for your wit and dark sense of humor as much as the gossip itself. I love it when people are unapologetic about what they enjoy and you've certainly shown us how to do that.
Good luck and godspeed!
Good luck with everything though <3
I just logged in for the first time in a veeerrrrry long time to say happy AS retirement, old friend! And S says ‘baby baby baby’ because it’s one of the only things she can say and she would like me to pay attention to her and not the internet thankyouverymuch.
Your writing has brought me such Joy, best luck in your future projects.
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