HELLO and welcome to the 234th 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 childcare! 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.
Why Childcare Is So Expensive, How It Got That Way, And How to Fix It, by Bryce Covert for Elle Magazine, January 2017
This is such an important issue that people don’t talk about enough. It’s absurd. It’s just going to get worse! Find out why you should be stressed out about this before it’s too late.
Queens of the Stoned Age, by Suketu Mehta for GQ, February 2017
This shit makes me so nervous! I feel like every time a story like this is told — like when New York Magazine wrote about the city’s top Escort — they end up getting busted. Anyhow! This is about The Green Angels, a very successful marijuana delivery service raking in big money in New York… by sending delivery girls who look like models and won’t arouse suspicion with the police. Sooooo I feel like there’s another article’s worth of ideas right there, but, uh, good luck, Green Angels.
A Place of Absorption, by Katherine Laidlaw for Hazlitt, March 2017
On abusive relationships.
That burst of excitement in your chest that rises like soft fireworks and sounds a little like someone whispering “maybe you can save me, maybe it’s you,” is something that, if you’re not careful, will detonate. When friends ask why it’s been so long since I’ve been in touch, I shrug. There’s been a lot going on. Someone tells me that maybe I should pray about it. Someone else says, but he never hurt you, right?
Cult Confessions: Faith and the Limits of Liberalism, by Ellen Wayland-Smith for Catapult, March 2017
In which the argument is made that the Oneida community (which eventually began making silverware) was not a religious cult but just had ideas that were antithetical to American liberalism. Interesting to think about.
Why Does Mount Rushmore Exist?, by Sam Anderson for The New York Times, February 2017
Hello, it’s me, Sam Anderson’s #1 fan forever!! Also, via this article, I found out some VERY interesting stuff about Mount Rushmore that you may or may not already know and it is gross and predictable. Also this article is great, because it’s Sam Anderson on vacation with his family in South Dakota and it’s very cold.
Why You Will Marry the Wrong Person, by Alain de Botton for The New York Times, May 2016
This isn’t super long, but it was a thing I was glad I read and maybe you will be too.
Indeed, marriage tends decisively to move us onto another, very different and more administrative plane, which perhaps unfolds in a suburban house, with a long commute and maddening children who kill the passion from which they emerged. The only ingredient in common is the partner. And that might have been the wrong ingredient to bottle.
The good news is that it doesn’t matter if we find we have married the wrong person.
Thinx Promised a Feminist Utopia to Everyone But Its Employees, by Hilary George-Parkin for Racked, March 2017
I think ~44 people sent me this article
Basing Life on What You Can Afford, by Ron Lieber for The New York Times, March 2017
I know Laneia also put this in the AAA but it’s real good y’all! They talk to a bunch of different families and humans, including a bisexual teacher in Colorado, about how they do money and how they make it work and what Trump’s proposals could mean for them.
The Epidemic of Gay Loneliness, by Michael Hobbs for The Huffington Post, February 2017
I keep thinking about this one, like maybe I’ll never stop thinking about it.
Personal Anxiety Versus the Police State, by Everett Maroon for Bitch Magazine, November 2016
I interviewed Sarah Schulman on Tuesday and this is another one of the interviews I read to prepare for that interview. This is me letting you into my process, maybe.
This heightened attack mode has become a substitute, in my view, for politics. We have a generation in which fewer queer people have direct organizing experience and skills learned from being in activist political movements, and there is some confusion, I think, about what “politics” actually is. For example, taking people down by making false or unfounded accusations is not something that moves things forward in a progressive, transformational way. It is more about projected emotional catharsis than politics. Treating non-events, or perceived minor slights, or actual differences of opinion as crimes is not progressive. It is a punitive drive towards conformity and doesn’t produce positive change.
American Isolato: The Rise of the Serial Killer as Anti-Hero, by Ginger Strand for The Believer, March 2012
On serial killer mythology.
Between the early eighties, when the nation, prompted by the FBI, panicked over its “epidemic” of serial murder, and the election of Bill Clinton in 1992, serial killers morphed in the public mind from figures of fear to figures of fascination. Murder has always interested the public, but this was a new kind of murder, and new kind of fascination. Serial killers came to be admired, not only as outlaws—we Americans have always loved our outlaws—but as icons of the nation’s newly unabashed materialism. This process began with the case of one man: Ted Bundy.
The Trouble with Innocence, by Michael Hall for Texas Monthly, April 2017
It’s interesting that part of how Kerry Max Cook ended up in prison for a crime he didn’t commit is that he was bisexual, and that was part of the “criminal profile” an FBI profiler had assembled for him. He got the death penalty after a psychologist determined he was “a “severe” psychopath and a deviant pansexual.” This is a thorough and fascinating breakdown of a wrongful conviction case (a follow-up to The Usual Suspect, from June 2016), but I’m definitely curious what role homophobia played in the jury’s willingness to convict a man with so little evidence. The DA’s office obviously was super corrupt which is how this all happened to begin with. Also, there’s a feature employed in this article where when you hover over a name, it tells you who that person is in a tiny pop-up, which is so handy! I want it.
the kiss 15 years on: meet the models and creators behind the iconic image, by Sophie Wilkinson for i-D, March 2017
I have wanted somebody to write this article for us since day one (this is the closest I got to living my dream) but I will settle for somebody writing it for somebody else. At least I still get to read it, and maybe you will too.