Things I Read That I Love #104: Drinking, Trucks, Girls, Hot Days, and Southern Nights

HELLO and welcome to the 104th installment of Things I Read That I Love, wherein I share with you some of the longer-form journalism/essays I’ve read recently so that you can read them too and we can all know more about The Jonas Brothers! This “column” is less feminist/queer focused than the rest of the site because when something is feminist/queer focused, I put it on the rest of the site. Here is where the other things are.

The title of this feature is inspired by the title of Emily Gould’s tumblr, Things I Ate That I Love.

Florida Georgia Line: America is Awesome, Partying is Fun (November 2013), by Kyle Kramer for Noisey – “Here’s the thing, too: They’re the perfect country stars for this particular moment. They don’t wear cowboy hats, but rather leather jewelry, wallet chains, and cutoff tees. At the Best Buy Theater show, Hubbard was dressed in a black and gold American flag shirt that looked like something A$AP Rocky might wear, but just as easily could have been from Target. Their guitarist looks like a Warped Tour vet, with a foot-high green mohawk and painfully skinny jeans. Florida Georgia Line still seem like they could probably fix your truck if it broke down, but their image is definitely at home in the suburban world where, if we’re being honest, country mostly lives.”

The Other Side of the Story (December 2013), by Jenny Kutner for The Texas Monthly – This was super-intense. “When I was fourteen, I had a relationship with my eighth grade history teacher. People called me a victim. They called him a villain. But it’s more complicated than that.”

Mysterious Death at the South Pole (December 2009), by Will Cockrell for Men’s Journal – Interesting for many reasons, including its glimpse into the unique culture developed amongst the humans who spend long winters at the South Pole completely cut off from society. “Fifty people. The most remote base on the planet. No way in or out for eight months. Then one of them dies under curious circumstances. A new look into one of Antarctica’s most enduring enigmas.”

The Big Sleep (December 2013), by Ian Parker for The New Yorker – I took ambien almost every night for about two years, which I wouldn’t necessarily recommend to anybody ever, but boy did I write some interesting blog entries and make some interesting decisions! Anyhow so I found this whole super-long article about sleep meds compelling, but there was a lot of dense sciency stuff in there that might appeal to a sciencey person more than it did to me!

Never Forget (July 2009), by Michael Paterniti for GQ – If you’ve never read about the Khmer Rouge before (I did post another article about The Killing Fields in an earlier TIRTL), just be warned that we’re talking the worst kind of violence and brutality and horror you could ever imagine inflicted on human beings by other human beings. This article is penetrating and cuts right to the heart. I still don’t know why my 8th grade teacher assigned us To Destroy You is No Lossbut needless to say it’s unfathomable at any age.

A Serial Killer in Common (May 2011), by Robert Kolker for New York MagazineFive prostitutes disappear. Bodies turn up on a beach. Now the families of the victims have formed a kind of sisterhood. They ask: Who murdered my daughter? Who was my sister—really?

Morgan: A Lyric (December 2013), by Boyer Rickel for Guernica – “Some mornings it was just the three of us: Morgan in a deep, nearly paralyzing sedation; the ICU nurse, in almost constant motion, enclosed in profound concentration, attending the countless IV lines and dispensing machines (their warning bells and buzzes), the flash of graphs and numbers on monitors, the recording of data on computer screens and in a paper log; and me, wrapped in a complex synthesis of emotions, as if love, fear, hope, determination, desire, had been atomized into a single gas, which was the air I breathed. I thought of us as a triptych by Francis Bacon, each figure within sight of the other, but alone, without privacy, framed in isolation, distorted not physically by the artist’s vision, but by our separate states of extremity.”

A Good Men’s Rights Movement is Hard to Find (October 2013), by Jaclyn Friedman for The American Prospect – MEN’S RIGHT’S HUMANS ARE THE WORST AND THEY ARE THE WORST TO WOMEN AND THEY MAKE THREATS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE ALL THE TIME

Joe Jonas: My Life As A Jonas Brother (December 2013), by Joe Jonas as told to Jennifer Vineyard for New York Magazine – I didn’t really know anything about the Jonas Brothers, just that they were some kind of punchline in general I think. This was pretty interesting, how their career evolved and the Disney machine functioned, and it also includes the gem about him smoking pot for the first time with Demi Lovato and Miley Cyrus.

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3211 articles for us.


  1. That piece on Men’s Rights Movements is chilling and I think I’m going to have nightmares tonight.

    In fact, at the moment I’d just like to go back to A-Camp and stay there forever and ever. Not that this is a bad thing. Who’s in?

  2. Fuck now I have to worry about this group too? They sound like the male equivalent of radmen/womyn movement, and they both scare me as a person plans to transition in some form. At least there is Autostraddle as a safe haven for us gentle beings. .

    • Okay, so I had some free time at work an started to read the comments section of for the prospect article. I am left a bit confused as to what is the real story and what isn’t, but mostly with a headache with what people are saying. Oiy vey.

      • I haven’t read the comments because I don’t have the emotional capacity, but that article is in line with everything else I’ve ever witnessed or seen about the MRAs

        • Well two of the comments(made by the same person) are very good, while the rest are either suspect, or make me sick. And one of them is a gay male who is an MRA support, which seems a bit odd, cause based on what I am reading MRA is ciseixt(but not transphobic somehow) and pro heteronormative(but not homophobic). He gets into an argument with a gay male feminist, needless to say the MRA supporter made the MRA sound like lazy group of males looking for an easy handout.

  3. I always love this column but I think today’s especially good, these are all amazing articles. The Other Side of the Story chilled me to the bone. The MRA article fills me with rage (and ugh I shouldn’t have read the comments on that article).

  4. I have not read any of these yet but I am so excited for all of them! Excellent choosing this week, Riese.

  5. It is unfathomable at any age and that’s absolutely true. I was in Phnom Penh earlier this year and headed out to one of the Killing Fields and it is absolutely heartbreaking just being there.

  6. “Mens Rights” activists are seriously like overgrown children. I have never encountered a one of them that wasn’t like a teenager in a 40 year old man’s body.

    • Are they that much different than the radfems? They both hate, trans* humans, they both think the world is out the get them, they both are in some ways promoting violence thought they may not be directly saying it, and it seems like they both have too much time on their hands.

  7. “In its best moments, it captures the ineffable concept of “summer” perfectly—the magic of driving down a country road in the golden light of the late afternoon, the stupid thrill of gathering at bonfires or bars and drinking until you want to hug everyone there, the sensation of time slowing in a way that makes you feel invincible, eternal, and nostalgic all at once.”

    Are you really a country/FGL fan Riese? Because this line describes it perfectly. I think it’s awesome how country music has grown to be so popular in NY and especially on LI. “Round Here” is a great song, it also has Fireball.

    • I’d actually never heard of them until I read that article! I just thought it was a really fantastic article. It also made me nostalgic for the midwest, oddly? It’s unusual for music critics to write respectfully and compellingly about places other than cities as valid sources of arts/culture, so I really loved it for that reason. I do like some country music though! I’ll check out “Round Here.”

  8. That Florida Georgia Line article is making me have ALL THE FEELINGS. Country music is always playing at my barn and so their songs make me remember summer at the barn, going down trail with my friends and stopping at first field and letting the horses graze, and one of the older girls who was leaving for college in the fall saying that this must be what Heaven is like.

  9. Is it strange that reading “Mysterious Death at the South Pole” made me want to work there? BRB searching for food prep jobs in Antarctica…

  10. I’m really excited to read all these articles but can I just say that according to your bio REISE your next article is going to be 1600 for all of us????? It should be something super indulgent and/or the article you alwasy wanted to post but never did or something like that! Thank you SO much for all your words & time &love & sweat & BEING HERE and MAKING THIS for us & you & the WORLD.

    • awwww thank YOU for thanking me!! tbh I’ve written probs 100+ other posts that just aren’t under the name “riese” BUT also i fear my 1600th official post will be… A GLEE RECAP! unfortunately as i really feel a top ten list of my favorite family restaurant franchises would be a more accurate reflection of my true self. anyhow your comment is so lovely, so thank you!

  11. Jesus. Following the links in that article on misandry leads to some terrifying terrifying manifestos.

  12. Just want to say that Riese is so awesome as a writer – I aspire to be as great of a writer as she is.

  13. Thanks for the link to Friedman’s article. Someone posted a link to the RoK site on my Facebook feed yesterday, which wasn’t a good thing, a) because everything on there is disturbing, and b) it gives them more site traffic and probably ad revenue too. And it was good to get more context on this “manosphere” thing.

  14. Wow, ‘The Other Side of the Story’ reminds me of when I was 13 and sexually assaulted by a college boy but had convinced myself that I wasn’t a victim either.

  15. Okay, seeing articles that I’ve already read in TIRTIL makes me feel SO INSANELY COOL AND SMART AND WORLDLY. Because I am such a hipster and I love the feeling of being able to say “hey! I knew about that before you!”

    Also, the Men’s Right’s article and the Joe Jonas article are suuuuper interesting (from someone who also knew nothing about the Jonas Brothers before reading said article) and ya’ll should check them out ASAP because Riese has great taste, since she obviously reads the same things I do :)

  16. Oh my God. That piece about MRAs was horrible. MRAs are horrible and it makes ne nauseous to think that people like that exist and now I want to cry.

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