Things I Read That I Love #125: To Understand As A Gut Reality The Phenomenon Of Rulers Setting The Ruled Against Each Other.

HELLO and welcome to the 125th 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 Gmail! 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.

How Gmail Happened: The Inside Story Of Its Launch 10 Years Ago (April 21014), by Harry McCracken for Time Magazine – Unfortunately how they decided to create G-chat was not addressed, which is something I was very curious about. I was so resistant to G-Mail at first because I couldn’t feel calm unless my emails had been neatly organized into folders, like I could do with yahoo and hotmail. But I eventually converted because the cool kids made me do it.

Fireball Whiskey: Selling A Brand, Shot By Shot (April 2014), by Devin Leonard for Bloomberg Businessweek – I have suddenly been seeing this shit everywhere and now I know why!

*Up From Radicalism (1969), by Ellen Willis for US Magazine in 1969, reprinted in Guernica – Well, I just really loved this. “For a while I feel that now I understand and love all other women. It’s a great high until I realize that it’s mostly a defense against the fear and antagonism of a lifetime, a compound of superiority (“Oh, I’d rather be friends with men, they’re much more stimulating!” Translation: I’m not like them, I’ve made it out of the ghetto) and sexual competitiveness. Revise: I’m starting to be interested in other women. To feel warmth and sympathy. To recognize a new loyalty. To realize other women are not the enemy. To understand as a gut reality the phenomenon of rulers setting the ruled against each other.”

Can Social Scientists Save Themselves? (April 2014), by Jerry Adler for PS Magazine – Seriously you guys sometimes we get press releases about studies and when I read it I’m like, are you fucking kidding me, how on earth could [that] be taken as proof of [this]. Anyhow this is about how there are a small number of social scientists who are full of shit, and how they skew their studies to prove their hypothesis even when the data doesn’t warrant it.

*MFA vs. POC (April 2014), by Junot Diaz for The New Yorker  –In my workshop what was defended was not the writing of people of color but the right of the white writer to write about people of color without considering the critiques of people of color.”

Does Political Operative Chad Griffin Deserve The Hero of the Gay Marriage Movement? (April 2014), by Benjamin Wallace-Wells for New York Magazine – This was really eye-opening. The whole thing is worth a read just to get to the last paragraph and see how you feel about that. Griffin, BTW, is the current president of the HRC.

Walking Scarred (May 2014), by Natasha Gardener for 5280 “My whole life, I just assumed I was clumsy. Then I discovered the truth.”

We Have Lots of Noise, We Need Lots of Solutions (May 2014), by Carmen Rios for Autostraddle – Through multiple interviews with students and activists, Carmen blends her own personal experience as a women’s advocate at American University with the story of what’s going on there right now after the leak of a  fraternity’s rapey emails, and why nothing ever seems to change or get better, and what needs to happen for things to get better.

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+!


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 3177 articles for us.


  1. Solid marketing gets me really excited. I hate Fireball…but I want some after that article.

  2. I was enjoying Up from Radicalism, until I came across the misuse of the word schizophrenia. The author used it to refer to contradicting thoughts she held in her mind. It’s like a straight person saying “my queer identity” referring to something like dressing as a tomboy as a kid, or a cis person talking about a time when they were trans because they tried out drag. So you can see how that was a let-down.

    • Thank you for point that out, it’s always encouraging to find other people who care about trying to reduce the stigma associated with schizophrenia.

  3. God, that Ellen Willis essay. “Women were pretty contemptible too, except those happy few of us who were really men.”

  4. Tales from feminists of the sixties invariably break my heart. I glared at every man I saw for weeks after reading The Women’s Room! I cant imagine loving and needing an agent your your oppression. Even their bodies betrayed them. If being Gay were a choice, the sixties would have been a sapphist hotbed of shared domestic duties.

  5. Can I just say that this is my favorite list post on AS? Thanks for finding worthy reads for us, Riese!

  6. Thank you for sharing the Walking Scarred article.

    My boyfriend (yes, boy) has MS and was diagnosed around the same time I realised my attraction to women. It has been a totally mindboggling time getting my head around MS, and the fact I am bisexual. Discovering Autostraddle has been hugely liberating and has helped me to come out to a number of people: a few friends, my sister, father, etc, and my lovely boyfriend. Although it has been difficult and a bit confusing coming out when you don’t have (and have never had) the luck and joy of having a girlfriend and are in a long-term relationship with a man.

    Sometimes I wonder if I will be like that father in the film Beginners.

    Sometimes I wonder how much of me I am stifling by being in a ‘straight’ relationship. I have never identified as straight, but it is only thanks to Autostraddle that I am really realising that I am identifing as bi.

    The thing is, when someone so close to you has a disease like MS I guess it changes your outlook and ups the stakes. It’s a terrifying disease as it is so unpredictable. For this reason I have decided to stay, I want to stay, even if it means I will miss out on things and on parts of myself.

    Also, and this was not covered in the article, it can change the sufferer’s emotions and personality (and I saw this with my bf before he went on treatmeant). This element is what we both find the most terrifying.

    Sometimes I feel ridiculous thinking of myself as bi despite never having slept with a women. I wonder if I’m a fraud. The problem is, the commonly held notion that being bi is not really a valid choice, that it is just curiosity is what stopped me acting further back when I was younger and single. I knew I liked sleeping with boys but was equally interested in women, but back then that kind of thing was seen as just acting bi for the boys which wasn’t me at all and I didn’t really have any idea of what my other options were. I had girl friends I had crushes on and so always held these friendships at a distance and certainly never acted on any of the feelings, which I didn’t understand. I now find this really sad.

    Anyway, thank you for sharing this article, and for this incredible website, and for allowing me this space to ramble. I have signed up with an AS login only now just to say all this, despite having read Autostraddle most days over the past year. I hope I will still be welcome here. Sometimes I feel really silly.

Comments are closed.