HELLO and welcome to the 320th 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 know more about The Bachelorette!! 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.
How She Transformed a Viral Twitter Thread About Sex Work Into a Sinister Comedy, By Jenna Wortham, June 2021
On Janicza Bravo and Zola’s story and the vision behind the film coming out this very summer, which I am very excited about!!!
Generation X at 30: ‘Generational Trashing is Eternal’, by Douglas Coupland for The Guardian, June 2021
In 1998 my friend Zach told me I could be the Douglas Coupland of our generation, but I think at this point, whatever our generation is, most of them haven’t heard of Douglas Coupland. I don’t have a conclusion here, just a sentence fragment.
I think that kind of generational trashing is actually eternal human behaviour – we all just never collectively lived long enough before to see it repeatedly deployed.
How Republicans Became the ‘Barstool’ Party, by Derek Robertson for Politico, June 2021
An element of the new GOP comprised by bros who fear progressive politics and think Trump is a great president. So I guess like; idiots.
Rachel Lindsay Has No Roses Left to Burn, by Rachel Lindsay for Vulture, June 2021
I know very little about this show but it’s interesting as it holds so much weight in our modern culture — but in addition to being about The Bachelor / Bachelorette franchise, it’s also about a much more common narrative, which is how unsupportive majority-white workplaces can crush the spirits of the Black women they employ.
The Return of FOMO, by Matthew Schneier for New York Magazine, June 2021
FOMO is the thing I found most soothing to be able to shed entirely during the worst part of the pandemic. But it’s not necessarily a fear of missing out as much as it is…. a fear that I’m doing something wrong by choosing to miss out?
Lockdown was taxing, sure. “What I found so interesting,” Shannon O’Neill, a psychologist at Mount Sinai, told me, “is that we were instructed to behaviorally mimic symptoms of depression.” But the return may be no less fraught. “It was a shared collective experience that you weren’t missing out; everyone really had to stay home. Now, with everyone being able to pick and choose what they do again, seeing people out on social media — whether you don’t feel ready to go out or you’re quite comfortable with this new way of living — I’m sure that often causes a lot of emotional distress.”
The State of Ohio vs. a Sex-Trafficked Teenager, by Jessica Contrera for The Washington Post, June 2021
A 15-year-old child was sent to jail for her participation in a robbery that turned into a murder — but she had been sex trafficked, and the murder victim was her pimp. The court mishandled her case from the start, but changing awareness around sex trafficking and some high-profile advocates eventually enabled her (semi) freedom.
Meetings. Why? by Caity Weaver for The New York Times, June 2021
There are not a lot of bylines that would make me read a piece about meetings, but this is one of them.
With Friends Like These, by Warren Littlefield for Vanity Fair, 2012
An oral history of Friends! Because yes the reunion show really re-lit that spark for me! The anecdote about David Schwimmer suggesting the actors negotiate as a group and all get paid the same amount was particularly interesting.
The Rise of Black Homeschooling, by for The New Yorker, June 2021
The piece follows a family in Detroit who, after years of mistreatment in public schools and an inadequate distance learning situation within the pandemic, began exploring homeschooling with a network of existing and new Black families with similar goals, including teaching their children history that is accurate and not white-washed.
Stalking, by Becca Rothfield for The Yale Review
Indeed, part of what distinguishes online stalking from its dangerous, “IRL” analogue is that no online stalker wants to meet, much less seduce or harm or abduct, the object of her obsession. The online stalker aspires to remain invisible at all costs, which is why I frantically Googled “Can someone tell when you Google them?” in the midst of Googling Rachel over and over.
Mr. Bailey’s Class, by Josh Levin, Susan Matthews and Molly Olmstead for Slate, April 2021
Phillip Roth biographer Blake Bailey was a beloved middle school English teacher for gifted students who turned out to be a sexual predator and rapist who was grooming his students and encouraging all of them — even the ones he did not pursue sexually — to spill their secrets to him in personal journals.
The Boy Next Door, by Stacey May Fowles for The Walrus, November 11, 2013
Growing up in the shadow of the Scarborough Rapist (Paul Bernardo, who raped and murdered multiple women, often with his girlfriend Karla Homolka), but also in the shadow of rape culture everywhere, even before he came to town.
The real terror was that it felt so ordinary and suburban, that the vilest acts occurred in the spaces we thought were safe. I was struck by the same sense of banality, looking at the home where Bernardo grew up.
Evil was not foreign to our idyllic community. It had been with us all along.
Law and Wooder: On Mare of Easttown, by Aaron Bady for The Los Angeles Review of Books, June 2021
Much more than most shows of this kind, Mare of Easttown makes it so much harder than it should be to be pleased with the result of Mare’s detection. And once we stop being distracted by the whodunnit aspect of the spectacle — and by our own need, as viewers, to know the solution to the puzzle — we might start to notice the more general reason that no one likes Mare and why everyone lies to her, apparently all the time: being a cop just doesn’t seem to help, and no one seems to want her to be one.