HELLO and welcome to the 165th 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 Broad City! 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.
The Broad Strokes, by Rachel Syme for Grantland, January 2015
The author goes on set and out to eat and all over New York with our favorite comedy duo and BFFs for life, Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson.
The Plath Resolution, by Carrie Frye for The Awl, December 2014
“I feel a lot of love, affection and gratitude for Plath, mixed in with the admiration for her work. I’m not sure if I’d known her if I’d have liked her. Sometimes I think “yes,” sometimes “no.” She occupies such a central place in my mind, though, that the question mostly seems beside the point, like worrying about whether the planet Jupiter is likeable or not. (“Jupiter ate all the foie-gras in Dido Merwin’s fridge and didn’t even say thank you once.”)”
The New Republic’s Legacy on Race, by Jeet Heer for The New Republic (January 2015)
If you read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ article on The New Republic’s Race Problem, as I did (and told you to!), then you will be very compelled to read The New Republic’s own accounting of its own racism. I can’t believe they literally published a cover story on “Race and IQ” in which they argued that African-Americans were genetically inferior.
How Non-Profit Hospitals Are Seizing Patient’s Wages, by Paul Keil for The Pacific Standard Magazine, January 2015
Hey have you heard the one about how health care in this country fucks over the citizens of this company on the regular? Here’s a ProPublica investigation into one of the many ways they make this happen with a specific focus on one hospital in Missouri. They also talk about other hospitals in Missouri who manage to survive without being assholes, just so everybody knows it’s possible.
Did MBTA’s Late-Night Experiment Really Work, by Nestor Ramos for The Boston Globe, January 2015
New York was the first public transportation system in a major urban center that I ever encountered, and it always surprised me to go elsewhere where the trains shut down at night. (Although so did the Metro-North, so I had that experience.) Apparently they’re trying it out in Boston, to mixed results.
The Long, Strange, Purgatory of Casey Kasem, by Amy Wallace, February 2015
I used to listen to this guy all the time! I had no idea that his wife was such an enormously terrible person, though. This is a crazy-ass story.
A Bridge Between Love and Lipstick, by Arabelle Sicardi for Buzzfeed, January 2015
“I’m not saying the makeup industry should be designated for women only. But it is troubling that beauty is equivocated to the female kingdom, and yet the queer women are left noticeably (pardon the pun) “out.” It feels strange to me that there’s so little evidence that women before me have found a bridge between love and lipstick in the same way before, and built upon it, made towers and empires of products for us to cling to. Where are their lipstick marks?”
The Gacy Files, by Tim Stelloh for Buzzfeed, January 2015
“Thirty-five years after Chicago’s infamous “killer clown” was convicted for murdering 33 men, eight of John Wayne Gacy’s victims remained unidentified. Jason Moran, Cook County’s one-man cold case unit, has made it his mission to find those names, exposing what has been called our criminal justice system’s “silent mass disaster.”
Defending Those Accused of Unthinkable Crimes, by Scott Helman for The Boston Globe, January 2014
This article is about the lawyers who take on notorious criminals and the history behind it. It looks at Judy Clarke, who defended Jared Lee Loughner, Susan Smith and Ted Kaczynki and is now Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s defense lawyer. It’s an interesting investigation of how they humanize terrible people and also the psychological strain of doing so.
I have 7836 reasons for hating Buzzfeed and over 75% are legitimate, but I am continuously bowled over by some of their incredible long form journalism. What is happening here? Are they able to use to millions of dollars they get from people clicking on bullshit lists to poach and salary some of the best investigative journalists around? I want to read the long form expose about how Buzzfeed is writing their exposes. From what I gathered in Helen Ann Peterson’s article about working for Buzzfeed for six months after leaving academia, it is clear they expect you to call EVERYONE, investigate EVERYTHING, and really make good on your leads. Which I admire. So the total things I admire about Buzzfeed is up to 2 now.
“Are they able to use to millions of dollars they get from people clicking on bullshit lists to poach and salary some of the best investigative journalists around?”
Yes, that’s exactly what they do! They’ve also been flooded with investment capital and have offices worldwide. I sort of side-eye sites that spend time writing takedowns of other sites, but you might find this compelling anyhow! (I did)
Wow, that was an interesting read and really gave context to a lot of the icky feelings I had about Buzzfeed’s new slant (esp those 3 minute videos about race and gender that have been going viral). I’m also really glad you posted that makeup article! I loved it so much yet somehow I missed it, while also having had the misfortune of reading Man Wears Makeup For a Week.
why didn’t you like the Man Wears Makeup article? I’m interested in what ppl thought of it.
the worst thing though is that their lists aren’t even clever anymore! like they have completely run out of topics and the ones that are put up appear to have been written in about 15 minutes.
10 Things About Bla Bla Disney Princess Mean Girls Pumpkin Spice Latte 90s Kid What Women Really Think About Penises Fail
i channel a lot of my homesickness for boston into intense thinking and analysis of the MBTA, so i am really gratified by this article, thank you for sharing it
I just wrote the longest comment of my life about my feelings for the T and then I got logged out and it disappeared and now I’m crying into my wine like any real adult would do.
I got so homesick reading about the existence of a late-night schedule.
I have so many fond memories of running drunk through scary as fuck T stations to catch the last train while the night was still young for people who had another way home.
That JWG article. Thumbs up.
I will read more but I had to change a nappy, receive a phone call, make a cup of tea, go to the toilet, open the cupboard doors repeatedly for my two year old who keeps locking himself out of his toy stash and do countless other things between each few paragraphs. I love long read articles but you have to schedule these bad boys in!
Sometimes I don’t read this column for a while and then I come back and wonder what is wrong with me. Such great reads Riese, thank you.
That criminal defense one touches me in all sorta ways. I read it in the afternoon, hours ago, and it’s still not finished rolling around in my brain.
I wrote a summary of all the feels it channels but I don’t want to trigger, anger or upset other humans. So I’m just going keep it to myself as if I’m not a living breathing trigger warning.
I really love the lipstick article! I think it would be so so so amazing to see a lipstick and make-up campaign featuring DMAB folks and non-binary folks and cis men. I can already picture it and it’s beautiful.
i think you are smart, well read, and very cute
The Casey Kasem story made me sad. Somehow, I didn’t know a bit of that. I still think of him as he was, as a voice on the radio.
I have an unhealthy serial killer obsession. So thank you.
I saw that Buzzfeed article (was it earlier this week? there are so many, I’m not even sure), and I’m glad you posted it here for discussion– it was pretty out-of-the-ordinary (for Buzzfeed).