Things I Read That I Love #206: At Last I Saw A Woman, Younger Than I’ve Ever Been

HELLO and welcome to the 206th 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 OJ Simpson! 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 One Accuser Who May Finally Bring Bill Cosby Down For Good, by Mark Seal for Vanity Fair, July 2016

How many articles can I read about the Bill Cosby case, you may ask? The limit does not exist. This one focuses on Andrea Constand, a lesbian basketball player who’s case against Cosby is the one that finally got the serial rapist to trial.

A Love Note to Our Folks, by Alicia Garza for n+1

Alicia Garza, one of the queer black women who founded the Black Lives Matter movement, talks about its organizing, early days and goals.

How St. George’s Atonement For Its Sex-Abuse Scandals Turned Ugly, by Benjamin Wallace for Vanity Fair, July 2016

“Yet another elite New England prep school is plagued by scandal—this time the picturesque seaside campus of St. George’s, which has only recently confronted a largely concealed, decades-long history of sexual abuse by predatory teachers, staff, and students. Benjamin Wallace interviews survivors, parents, and the headmaster to see how its search for healing brought fresh anguish.”

The Food-Sharing Economy Is Delicious And Illegal—Will It Survive?, by Sarah Kessler for Fast Company, July 2016

This start-up actually sounds pretty fantastic, as it enables home-bound humans to make extra money cooking meals for other humans who pick up the meals from the houses where they were prepared and therefore socialize and make connections and we all feel like part of this great human family. But also there are food service regulations not being met, and that means the company is in huge trouble.

Why One Woman Pretended to Be a High-School Cheerleader, by Jeff Maysh for The Atlantic, July 2016

This was a weird idea a person had.

Making Black Lives Matter in the Mall of America, by Erik Forman for The New Inquiry, June 2016

At Starbucks, it was workers of color who had the hardest time getting hired, were the most frequently fired, and the most rarely promoted. Outside our shop, it was clear from our daily experiences and the surveys our fledgling “Mallworkers Alliance” conducted that black workers were overrepresented in the Mall of America, possibly the nation’s largest concentration of awful low-wage work, and that, within the mall, they tended to have the worst of the worst jobs. No life matters in the Mall of America, but black lives mattered least of all.

The Brightest Still  Fleetest, by Lauren Groff for Oxford American, July 2016

Lauren Groff on the many lives of Miami Beach and a photographer who devoted himself to capturing two of them in particular, and ended up dead. It’s really compelling and beautiful stuff.

The Outcast, by Pat Jordan for The New Yorker, July 2001

I’ve been reading this anthology of American Crime Writing and there’s a lot of great stuff in it, including this 2001 profile of O.J. Simpson, who is a total weirdo.

One Year Out, The Washington Post, July 2016

This is a very good and important long read in which 46 nonviolent drug offenders spoke to The Post about what their lives are like a year after President Obama commuted their prison sentences. There’s so much in here about what’s possible for convicted felons upon release, and it’s also worth noting that those sentenced for life (seriously why do people get a couple years for rape or domestic violence but ENTIRE LIFE SENTENCES for “intention to distribute crack-cocaine”?)

Marie Kondo and the Ruthless War on Stuff, by Taffy Brodesser-Akner for The New York Times, July 2016

Yes I’ve had many questions about this book and why y’all are so obsessed with her methods and this answered many of those! and also alerted me to the fact that professional organizing is a legit industry.

Riese is the 37-year-old CEO, CFO and Editor-in-Chief of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, blogger, fictionist, copywriter, video-maker, low-key Jewish power lesbian and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and then headed West. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," 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. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 2744 articles for us.

6 Comments

  1. The answer to your question is the Federal Sentencing Guidelines. Although no longer mandatory, they are the only benchmark available to sentencing judges. What should scare everyone is that the group of people who hates them most is sentencing judges.

  2. I sure find a lot of the stuff written about Marie Kondo really misogynistic and racist, and this article kind of critiques that:
    ““It’s a book if you’re a 20-something Japanese girl and you live at home and you still have a bunch of your Hello Kitty toys and stuff,” another NAPO member told me, which, while not the only thing a professional organizer told me that was tinged with an aggressive xenophobia and racism, it is the only one that can run in a New York Times article.”

    But also kinda reinforces it, with cringey lines like, “When she shows pictures of herself in places she has tidied, before she starts, she looks like a lost sparrow in a tornado. On the other side, in the “after” picture, it is hard to believe that such a creature could effect such change.”

  3. I somehow read Marie Kondo’s entire book in two days. She told me I’ll eventually believe that folding socks can be fun and I’ll never read my unread books (untrue). It helped me part with a ton of stuff (I made it to the papers section), but it’s more of a take what you need kind of text. I loved the stories about the women who decided it wasn’t their stuff that made them unhappy, it was their boyfriends. “she held her boyfriend in her hands, realized he no longer sparked joy and got rid of him.” ?

  4. I’ve been an aspiring minimalist (because for me it’s a continuous process) since before Marie Kondo’s book came out. I’m glad that her book is helping so many people and that it’s taken off. While her methods may be unorthodox, IMO they are not incredibly different from other minimalist authors such as Francine Jay and Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus. There are enough minimalist authors out there for people to find one that better suits their outlook, if Kondo’s methods don’t appeal.

    It’s disappointing that people are being so racist about her. If she was white, she wouldn’t receive those kinds of comments. In fact, one of Francine Jay’s methods of ridding yourself of sentimental items in “The Joy of Less” involves you “letting go” by thanking the item before discarding it. Where have I heard that before?

  5. Thanks for alerting me to the essay on Marie Kondo! I didn’t know she studied sociology – cool. I loved The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying up and the sequel, Spark Joy (like the first book but with doodles!). The Toast has an excellent companion piece, with helpful advice such as
    “If you have ever used a lotion, even once, get rid of it. Messy applicator tips are preventing you from practicing forgiveness. From now on, the only lotion you need is total acceptance of life on life’s terms, and also a bottle of argan oil you have made yourself (you can produce argan oil by letting go of anger)”
    link: http://the-toast.net/2015/02/24/get-rid-clutter-live-abundantly/

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