Things I Read That I Love #135: Too South To Be North and Too North To Be South

HELLO and welcome to the 135th 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 Adam Levine! 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.

Living the Fitbit Life (June 2014), by David Sedaris for The New Yorker – In which David Sedaris gets one of those bracelets that keeps track of how many steps you walk and then goes crazy with it.

What I Learned As A Woman At the Men’s Rights Conference (June 2014), by Jessica Roy for Salon – This sounds like a group of truly unbearable human beings, hats off to the author for attempting to have compassionate feelings of any sort.

The $124,421 Man (June 2014), by Chadwick Matlin for Medium – This essay is about basically the best possible case scenario for a human being facing a $124,421 student loan debt after graduating from Tufts and for some reason I read it with great interest all the way through so who knows maybe you will too.

The World Cup Of Dirty Dreams: Inside Brazil’s Most Infamous Brothel (June 2014), by Amos Barshad for Rolling Stone – Actually this is about much more than just that one brothel, it’s about the whole sex work industry in Rio which I obviously found fascinating.

Stoop Stories: These Are The Two Baltimores (June 2014), by  D Watkins for aeon“Clean and high, I’d float through Loyola. Some of the students were racist – not to my face – and it seemed like my professors made sure I knew I was the only black person from low-income housing on their planet. My philosophy teacher was the worst. One time he asked: ‘What sport did you play to get into here?’ I fantasised about having Nick pistol-whip him, but he was only a pedestrian on my road to bigger goals.”

Who You Love Is A Political Choice (July 2014), by Josie Duffy for Gawker – I read the essay that this essay is responding to, “The Reality of Dating White Women When You’re Black,” and thought it was really shitty and fucked up, and this response essay is super on point.

Adam Levine Doesn’t Care If You Like Him (But He’d Really Prefer it If You Did) (July 2014), by Jessica Pressler for GQ – “You might know Adam Levine Or his band, Maroon 5, singers of the catchiest white-people music of our time. Or maybe you’ve seen him on The Voice, where he is the unrepentantly bro-y coach with the groomed stubble. Maybe you even own some music—chances seem good, since people have downloaded more Maroon 5 songs than songs by Justin Timberlake or Jay Z. Chances are also good that you find him strangely uncool. Because, well, there’s just something about him, and he knows it”

The Children of The Corn (September 2013), by Tracy Motz for Modern Farmer – A neat-o photoessay about the teenagers who work summers detasseling corn in St. Joseph County, Michigan.

A Surprising Weekend Inside The Touchy-Feely World Of Polyamory (July 2014) by Alex Mar for – I feel like people will have strong feelings about this one. I found the concept of “NRE” (New Relationship Energy) really compelling, though. “Over the course of the conference, however, I see sides to being poly that are more than tit-for-tat — the lifestyle alternates between seeming self-serving and painfully generous.”

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


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 3201 articles for us.


  1. Shout out to Baltimore! Also that essay is ON POINT, I read it already and as a white Baltimorean felt….a lot of feelings. Many feelings. Also excited for the David Sedaris piece and the MRA & poly conference pieces. I only recently started actually reading this column let alone actually reading other stuff because I have the attention span of a flea, so getting me invested in 3 whole things this week is A+ work yayyy

  2. This was one of my most favorite weeks for this column.

    Great roundup.

    I hadn’t read any of these pieces before today, and I found most of them pretty interesting.

    Well, except for that Adam Levine one. I think maybe that made me less interested in him than I had ever been before.

Comments are closed.