Things I Read That I Love #136: I Fell So Hard for Tomato Juice One Summer

HELLO and welcome to the 136th 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 Justin Bieber! 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 Poor Young Black Men Run From The Police (May 2014), by Alice Goffman for Vice Magazine – Alice lived in a poor black neighborhood in Philadelphia as an undergrad and grad student, and the friends she made there were “young men who were almost constantly under the threat of being arrested and jailed.” This essay is an excerpt from her new book On the Run: Fugitive Life in an American City and it’s really good.

The Cruelest Show On Earth (November 2011), by Deborah Neslon for Mother Jones – “Bullhooks. Whippings. Electric shocks. Three-day train rides without breaks. Our yearlong investigation rips the big top off how Ringling Bros. treats its elephants…”

Justin Bieber: A Case Study In Growing Up Cosseted and Feral (June 2014), by Vanessa Grigoriadis for Vulture – This is a shorter piece about a young gentleman named Justin Bieber, who you may have heard of because lesbians look like him.

I Was Sure Freezing My Eggs Would Solve Everything (June 2014), by Doree Shafrir for Buzzfeed – “What I really needed was time. Time would allow me to meet people without the added pressure of trying to figure out, within five minutes of meeting them, whether we would make a nice, normal baby. Then I saw an article about egg freezing that said it was becoming SAFER AND MORE SUCCESSFUL THAN EVER BEFORE!!!!!!!! — or at least that was what I gleaned from it — and I thought, This will give me time. I made an appointment.”

Rapture of the Deep (June 2014), by Jessica Hendry Nelson for The Rumpus – Well I just loved this. I spent the impetuousness of my twenties in love. In love with a man, sure, but also in love with a woman named Rosie who taught me how to present a bottle of wine like a boss. In love with my elderly landlords, war survivors, who showed me how loud love can be, and how to weave story out of the scraps of love. In love with a small boy I used to nanny, who was happiest with his head on my stomach and his thumb in his mouth. In love with Mara from Italy who wet her pants when she was excited and kissed me on the lips and took me to meet her cousins—brawny, tender boys with whom I also fell in love.”

Why Royal Caribbean’s Newest Ship Represents A Critical Test For The Cruise Industry, by Peter Lauria for Buzzfeed – If you’re interested in the business dealings of the cruise industry AS I AM, you will enjoy this. My only cruising experiences have been RFamily (for gay families) and Sweet (for lesbians), and I found them to be literally some of the happiest most magical experiences of my life, but often wondered what real cruises would be like.

The Crash of EgyptAir 990 (November 2001), by William Langewiesche for The Atlantic – The whole time I was reading this I thought I’d already seen a show about it ’cause I watch a lot of shows about airplane crashes and so I thought they’d figure out what happened by the end of the article but they still don’t really know as far as I can tell. It’s a tragic but compelling mystery.

Ghosts In The Land Of Plenty (June 2014), by Luis Alberto Urrea for Guernica“My book had a little trouble getting published—it took ten straight years of rejections and revisions to finally find a home. Sure, I was told by a successful New York City editor: “Nobody cares about starving Mexicans.” And yes, I was advised that nobody in America would buy a book by a person with a name as alien as my own. But really, I think the issue was that the book was steeped in a class rage so profound that I could have ended every sentence with “you bastards.” You have to learn how to use your inside voice.”

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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 3223 articles for us.


  1. sometimes I think about becoming a cruise ship librarian (to see the world!), but then I remember that the worst thing about that job isn’t norovirus, it’s hanging out with WASP retirees.

  2. “Rapture of the Deep” is so lovely and fascinating. I think I’m drawn to it because I am plodding and deliberate with my love, I don’t allow myself to be abandoned to any emotion. Maybe doing so takes a strength I don’t have, maybe it’s the only way she knows how to be and there’s no changing it.

  3. Yes “Rapture of The Deep” was absolutely amazing and beautiful and I think I’m going to have to read over and over again to be fully satisfied.

    Never before have I read anything that I’ve identified with so strongly. I’m printing this out and taping it to my wall and reading it every day before I leave the house to remind myself why life is so worth living.

  4. I was strangely fascinated by the egg freezing article. Thinking about fertility makes me feel weird.

  5. Thanks Riese.

    Ghosts in the Land of Plenty is one of those articles that makes me wish I had a printer, so I could print and file it. It also makes me wish I was the kind of person that filed things, too.

  6. Loved that EgyptAir article – all the nuances of the American/ Egyptian interactions were really fascinating.

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