Things I Read That I Love #82: I Hate The Word “Bitch” But I’ve Used It So Many Times In My Head When I’m Thinking About You

the-muppetsHELLO and welcome to the 82nd 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 food fluffers! 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.

I’ve been out of town for most of the week so I feel like I’m not as well-read as per ushe, but I still REALLY LOVED THESE THINGS AND YOU WILL TOO.

You Are The Second Person (June 2013), by Kiese Laymon for Guernica – Ali sent this one to me, and it’s just so good. It’s just so good. READ THIS ONE. – You wondered out loud what writing “multiculturally” actually meant and what kind of black man would write the word “bro” in an email.

Word Counts and Body Counts: On Video Games And the Writing Life (June 2013), by Thomas Beckworth for The Millions – On the social weight that comes with being a video game player who plays video games a lot, and if maybe video games helped him become a better writer. (I’ve never played anything besides Mario Kart, so IDK)

Bodies That Mattered (June 2013), by Amy Gentry for The Rumpus  – The author  was in the Texas Senate gallery during Wendy Davis. “To say that most women choose abortions is misleading. They do not choose to be among the 3% of women for whom birth control fails. They do not choose not to be able to access birth control in the first place, and they do not choose to be born into communities where they are deliberately prevented from learning about it. They do not choose to be raped or abused, or to be left in poverty by their partners with other mouths to feed. They do not choose to have fetal anomalies, life-threatening infections, or late-term fetal demise. These things happen, and when they happen, women make decisions, because we have to, because our bodies are on the line. Abortion is testimony written on the body in invisible ink. We do not know who around us has had an abortion, or why. Abortion is the silent testimony of the body that survives. We can choose to speak from those wounds, but we cannot choose who will listen.”

The Upside of Trauma (June 2013), by Mark Obbie for PS Mag -I really appreciated this piece.“Stories about post-traumatic stress have become a stock part of the media narrative surrounding tragedies like Boston and Newtown. And resilience is supposedly the best we can hope for in the face of adversity. But what if there’s a third option? The story of one mass shooting, and the surprising tug of post-traumatic growth.”

Lisa Exits “The Room” (June 2013), by EJ Dickson for The Awl – You guys for real this movie is amazingly bad, if the included clips are any indication. I’d never heard of it, I found this delightful though. G-d bless The Awl, those crafty boys.

Do I Dare To Eat a Peach? (July 2011), by John Spong for The Texas Monthly As somebody with a lot of weird food neurosis, usually related to things that’ve made me sick, I found this FASCINATING. – “There are major categories of things that affect how much pleasure we take from food. One is sensory, and that’s where the supertasters fit in. We don’t all taste things the same way. That’s hardwired. The other is experience, the pathologies you have encountered. That is all learned.”

Confessions of a Stay-at-Home Mom (July 2013), by Ashley Nelson for The Nation – Nelson leaned out when Sheryl Sandberg would’ve preferred she lean in. And now, like so many other mothers in America, she’d really like to lean in hard at this point, but there’s so much discrimination against hiring mothers and paying them well that it’s really hard and also not her fault. SO.

The Flipside of Food: Food Fluffers (November 2012), by Aaron Labaree for – About the people who make it look like the camera loves that food so much, and how their trade has evolved over time based on new trends in how people want food to look.

Captive Audience: The Music Business in America’s Prisons (May 2013), by David Peisner for Spin – I feel like in one sense it’s kinda fucked up to charge the same amount for a song to people who make 30 cents an hour as it is to people who make $30 an hour, but ANYHOW it was a really interesting article about what mp3 players have done for prisons and prisoners and it’s pretty cool. It’s not often you read anything about prison that doesn’t make you boil over with angry rage towards this country.

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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 3181 articles for us.


  1. I should REALLY be heading to bed, so I’m going to do the smart thing and wait until tomorrow to open any of these up because otherwise I’ll be here all night, which would be good in that YAY! reading interesting things! but ugh. It’s four am and I have children to deal with all day tomorrow.

  2. Awww, I’m so so glad you loved the Kiese Laymon piece from Guernica! My jaw dropped and my mouth remained open for the whole piece, it was so wonderful.

  3. Just wanted to pop my head in and announce that “The Room” is a cinematic masterpiece.

  4. What a coincidence. I was actually thinking of “The Room” today for some odd reason (I have no idea why it entered my brain) and laughing to myself because that movie is so bad, that it’s awesome. @Keely is right, “The Room” is a cinematic masterpiece. I highly recommend it to those who love black/dark comedy.

  5. I saw The Room last year during a night of multiple terrible movies. One of those “you had to be there” movies, for no other purpose than to quote it with other people who’ve seen it.

  6. Pretty sure every time TIRTIL comes out with an article I’ve already read, I feel one step closer to my personal goal of Becoming Riese Bernard.


  7. Oh wow that Kiese Laymon piece – I’m planning on devouring everything he’s written

  8. AHHH I want to read them all but I only got to the Kiese Laymon one but it was so worth it!!!

  9. I really enjoyed reading this list of articles! I’ve never heard of The Room before, but I’m intrigued after reading EJ Dickson’s article. I also found the article about food fluffers to be fascinating. I had no idea that there was a whole industry dedicated to making food look good in photographs! Thanks for sharing these great reads.

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