Things I Read That I Love #282: A Couple of Misfit Queer Kids in Matching Black Leather Biker Jackets

HELLO and welcome to the 282nd 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 sunscreen! 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.

‘Nobody Is Going to Believe You’, by Alex French and Maximillion Potter for The Atlantic, March 2019

I watched this film last year called An Open Secret that was … incredibly disturbing. Singer wasn’t the focus of that story, but he was on the periphery of it. He is the focus of this story — about the sexual abuse allegations that are clearly true and have dogged him for years — and it’s about time.

Is Sunscreen the New Margarine?, by Rowan Johnson for Outside Magazine, January 2019

Guidelines for sun exposure and the risks incurred therein have possibly been misrepresented and a lot of the science around sun exposure is possibly also racist, according to many scientists and new research! I am not a scientist so don’t @ me, but you know, here’s a take for you.

Who Was Lil Tay?, by Lauren Levy for The Cut, January 2019

What would i ever know about “living memes” and viral instagram stars and an app allegedly called “Vine” if not for the adults who write articles about them for prestige publications? Bless us all.

How SoundCloud Rap Took Over Everything, by Carrie Battan for GQ, January 2019

This is a nice companion piece, I’ll tell you what! I feel like I understand this all so much better now. Also am disturbed by 10-year-old young white boys with dreadlocks becoming hip-hop stars?

Everybody Knows, by Elizabeth Schambelan for n+1, Winter 2019

This is a literary essay about gang rape — perpetrated by jocks or frat brothers, on the whole — in high school and in colleges. The story begins with the Glen Ridge story and then travels around a lot, getting into the evolution of awareness around the epidemic, studies on it, and landing eventually at Kavanaugh and the “credibility economy.” It’s so good, all the things she brings up, more than I can touch on here! It’s also… very graphic, so be warned. (Also sometimes I google these things so I can see the faces of the people in question and the Glen Ridge google lead me to a film called “Our Guys,” in which Heather Matarazzo played the intellectually disabled girl who was gang-raped by the men in question and Ally Sheedy was somebody determined to bring them to justice?)

Why Do the Oscars Keep Falling for Racial Reconciliation Fantasies?, by Wesley Morris for The New York Times, January 2019

This is a question that we have been asking each other ever since the first “Green Book” billboard went up in West Hollywood! Wesley Morris answers it for all of us here.

Everything You’ve Always Wanted to Ask Christopher Pike, by Sarah Stankorb for Electric Lit, January 2019

Wow! An interview with the man himself!

My adolescence was the standard tragi-teen state, but it was illuminated by the neon splash of Christopher Pike titles. Death hung over those books, like a Ouija board at a drinking party, a mashup of teen mortality and fun. At school, they sat atop my Trapper Keeper and then accompanied me to bed each night, a reminder that ghosts, gods, and monsters lurked outside my door.

The Tell-Tale Fan: A Tale of Everyday Heroism, in Five Acts, by Sarah Miller for Popula, January 2019

THIS IS A LOVELY AND NEUROTIC STORY ABOUT A WOMAN DETERMINED TO SOLVE A PROBLEM. It was exactly what I needed to read today even though it did nothing to make me a better or more educated person. Do yourself this small favor! At the end of the story it said “This story was originally published in 2014, and disappeared from the internet. We have revived it. It will live forever, thanks to being archived with blockchain technology.” So there you go, for every problem: a solution!

Elegy in Times Square, by Lily Burana for Longreads, January 2019

Wow this reminded me of a lot of what I talked about here. Also Lily Burana is generally great.

Customers grabbed whatever they could, based on whatever you were willing to endure. We coped the best we knew how, and what I couldn’t handle has bubbled up, decades later. Just because money makes you say Yes doesn’t mean the body doesn’t store No in its memory — as sorrow, as trauma.

The Toxic Drama on YA Twitter, by Kat Rosenfield for Vulture, August 2017

I hate this! I don’t think online bullying is ever okay, I think it’s always a bad look. I hate massive pile-ons and big call-outs and when everybody pounces on somebody or develops very strong opinions about the worth of a piece of art they have not even witnessed! Or declares that art should not exist! AHHHH. Anyhow this is an old piece but I found it via this piece, which is new.

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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 3211 articles for us.


  1. I was just looking into that YA controversy situation about Blood Heir! I think there are a lot of elements at work and I really want to read the book to see for myself what the deal is. It’s hard because sometimes I feel like the pushback in these kinds of situations is justified (like for The Continent which was the most problematic book everrrrrrrr seriously I read both versions and it was bad) but sometimes it’s not and twitter can be so toxic and terrible and people make me mad this is why we can’t have nice things.

  2. Sexual assault as male bonding gives me chills in a very bad way. Where is that Lesbian commune? I’m ready.

  3. Riiiieeeessssseeee I love this fucking column and I love ALL these choices and I’ve added them to my massive Pocket backlog and I don’t feel bad about that!

  4. Whew the mention of Christopher Pike and immediately thought of several other YA authors whose names haven’t crossed my mind in forevs… Avi, anyone? Lurlene McDaniel?

  5. ahhh, i finally reorganised my bookmarks in my internet browser, and i have one folder specifically for all the things i want to read! am gloriously, organised-ly bookmarking all these things now!!

  6. Riese, this is one of my favourite columns and I really hope that you keep compiling it for a long time. I always get a wee thrill of excitement whenever it gets published. I loved the fan one this week! It made me chuckle.

  7. Count me in as a fan of the fan, too. So well written and such a lovely break from having to think about non-bathroom fans things.

  8. Dang. I thought the Christopher Pike one was gonna be about Star Trek. The tell-tale fan was pretty great, though.

  9. The sunscreen article validates some things I’ve been loudly protesting for years, but they can keep their filthy hands off my supplements tyvm

  10. Wesley Morris is a national treasure. Anyone else here listen to Still Processing with him and Jenna Wortham? Very good, much recommend.

  11. The bathroom fan story was so impressive I’m now bingeing on everything Sarah Miller published online. There’s a lot. She’s been in about 4 TIRTIL which is a lot but also not that much. Have you noticed how TIRTIL is basically Kiwi “turtle”? Anyway, off to read again.

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