HELLO and welcome to the 219th 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 Norman Lear! 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.
After 20 Years, Norman Lear Has a New TV Show, by Maria Elena Fernandez for New York Magazine, January 2017
This is such an incredible interview with Norman Lear and Gloria Calderon Kellett about One Day At A Time.
Donald Trump Showed His Hand In 1999, But No One Was Looking, by Anne Helen Peterson for Buzzfeed, January 2017
THIS HAS ALL HAPPENED BEFORE, AND IT WILL ALL HAPPEN AGAIN
Most Women In Publishing Don’t Have The Luxury Of Being Unlikable, by Emily Gould for Buzzfeed, January 2017
Everything about this was everything and spoke to me personally b/c part of why I opted out of the New York publishing world was because it was so heterosexual and so male-dominated but in a weird way because also everybody was so smart? I didn’t have it in me to try so hard to be the kind of woman that I saw being successful. So I went my own way.
Being an extremely social, sociable, accessible person should not be the price of being a professional writer, but for women it almost inevitably is. No one ever explicitly says you have to send friendly notes to critics along with your galleys, maybe even on cute stationery, or bake cookies for your readings, but when you see your peers doing this and it seems to be working, it’s hard not to feel like that’s the standard we’re all being held to, unless we want to do the mysterious and uncertain work of crafting the opposite kind of unapproachable/distant persona. It’s galling how often we think of writers as people we either would or would not want to be friends with. Understandable, but still galling. I don’t want to be friends with everyone; why should everyone have to want to be friends with me?
How Backpage.com Became a Haven for Sex Trafficking … and Free Speech, by Kate Knibbs for The Ringer, December 2016
This is such a complicated issue and how this case goes down will be precedent-setting. Perhaps what sucks the most is that it sounds like Backpage could’ve taken a proactive role in helping connect police to ads that seemed to be for underage and sex trafficked women and still provided the service to sex workers who wanted to be sex workers and needed a safe place to connect with clients, but they chose not to and now they’re in jail.
A.J. Daulerio Is Ready To Tell His (Whole) Gawker Story, by Maximillian Potter for Esquire, January 2017
Listen I know a LOT about this case but this article was almost entirely brand new and really interesting information and background about the guy who ended up having to take the fall for all of it. I’m always intrigued by editors who are so confident in their own judgment even when the majority is against them and also who don’t care — or even delight in — pissing people off, including good people. But also like if you are terrified of what Donald Trump is gonna do to the press like I am, you will read this with terror b/c it was Trump’s bestie Peter Theil who ruined this guy’s life to begin with.
My Grandma the Poisoner, by John Reed for Vice Magazine, October 2014
Bless the sweet humans who recommended this to me on my recent post about poison. It is a true gem and essential reading for all.
The Dog Factory: Inside the Sickening World of Puppy Mills, by Paul Solotaroff for Rolling Stone, January 2017
Once upon a time I had a dog who was a Mom at a puppy mill and man she had been THROUGH IT. This article is horrifying, obviously.
The High-Cost, High-Risk World of Modern Pet Care, by Jason Clenfield for Bloomberg Businessweek, January 2017
ON A TOTALLY DIFFERENT NOTE. Yet another story about how the private corporatization of services (e.g., elder care, prison, dialysis) is forcing providers to maximize profit over actually caring for humans.
‘Chasing Amy’ and the Toxic “Nerd Masculinity” of the 90s, by Oliver Lee Bateman for The Paris Review, August 2016
Thank you for explaining the origin of every stupid idea I had about the stupid boys I liked in high school despite sensing that they were stupid and it was stupid to like them.
My Childhood Home, by John Waters for Lapham’s Quarterly, December 2016
This is sort of a shorter read. Maybe that’s what you need right now though, you know?