Also.Also.Also: Today Is for Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka ONLY

Feature image of Simone Biles by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images and Naomi Osaka by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

I’m know I usually use this intro space to meditate on what I’m having for dinner (tonight it’s eggplant fries and shrimp in a garlic butter sauce), but I’m going to be vulnerable with you.

The news about Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka both having such difficult ends to their Olympics yesterday (Simone might still compete in the individuals, I believe) has weighed on me. I’m a Black girl who wakes up every day and comes to work on this ‘lil website we love while fighting depression and anxiety — some days I do better than others. I am so grateful and proud that Naomi and Simone centered and prioritized their mental health. I also know what it feels like when your mental health keeps you from obtaining the goals you put your everything into, what it feels like when it seems the world is crumbling and your dreams were right there on the horizon, but in the end you have to stop to take care of yourself because if you don’t, who will? I keep thinking about Sha’Carri Richardson today, and how she self-medicated her grief and it cost her so much, but Megan Rapinoe is at the Olympics right now and using its platform to promote her sister’s cannabis/CBD company. It’s all related. I wish I had something more profound to say — but mostly I just feel really soft. And a little sad.

Sending all my love today to Black girls who deserve a little softness in a world that gives them everything but.

Queer as in F*ck You

In Louisiana, House of Tulip Provides Housing to Trans People of Color

Coming Out in the Year of Staying In. “I never felt like I could claim the label ‘queer.’ Quarantine gave me the opportunity.”

They Saved Chicago’s Last Lesbian Bar and Infused It with Black Queer Culture. “The new owners of Nobody’s Darling, which was previously known as Joie De Vine, have remodeled the space into an inclusive cocktail bar for queer women.”

Nonbinary Olympic Skateboarder Alana Smith Was Misgendered on TV. That goes with Unapologetically Themself: Nonbinary Olympian Shares Powerful Message and All the LGBTQ+ Olympians Who’ve Won Medals at the Tokyo Games (So Far)

Saw This, Thought of You

Simone Biles Says She Wasn’t Right Mentally During Olympic Final and Naomi Osaka Ousted from Olympic Tennis Tournament in 3rd Round by Marketa Vondrousova

Simone Biles Credits Naomi Osaka For Inspiring Her To ‘Focus On My Mental Health’

Heather actually found this one over the weekend, but whew is it related to today: Black Women on Team USA Have to Play Two Games. “Seven Olympians—including Gwen Berry, Keturah Orji, and Natalie Hinds—reflect on the overwhelming month before Tokyo.”

Also, Black Women Athletes Aren’t Your Performance Mules

And all of this brings us to The Ambivalence Olympics — “Can you still love the Games with so many reasons to loathe them?”

Covid Long-Haulers Get Disability Civil Rights Protections

As Infections Rise, C.D.C. Urges Some Vaccinated Americans to Wear Masks Again. The pandemic is not over. Please stay safe.

The Surprising Innovations of Pandemic-Era Sex

3 Rules for Middle-Age Happiness

Political Snacks

Today was the first day of the hearings on the January 6th Capitol Riots, here’s live updates. I found this one to be particularly harrowing: ‘I Have Kids,’ Capitol Officer Says He Pleaded as Rioters Beat Him

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+!

Carmen Phillips

Carmen Phillips is Autostraddle's former editor in chief. She began at Autostraddle in 2017 as a freelance team writer and worked her way up through the company, eventually becoming the EIC from 2021-2024. A Black Puerto Rican feminist writer with a PhD in American Studies from New York University, Carmen specializes in writing about Blackness, race, queerness, politics, culture, and the many ways we find community and connection with each other.  During her time at Autostraddle, Carmen focused on pop culture, TV and film reviews, criticism, interviews, and news analysis. She claims many past homes, but left the largest parts of her heart in Detroit, Brooklyn, and Buffalo, NY. And there were several years in her early 20s when she earnestly slept with a copy of James Baldwin’s “Fire Next Time” under her pillow. To reach out, you can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram, or her website.

Carmen has written 716 articles for us.


  1. <3
    feeling all that softness today too, as a Black girl who also struggles with anxiety and depression. Thanks for writing this.

  2. Thank you for this.

    I defended Rapinoe on another racism issue a few weeks ago but no defense here. Clearly unacceptable and messed up.

  3. I listened to some of the hearing this morning on my way to work. I really hope this more than just some show & something positive comes out of it. I don’t want to see more surveillance or any other bs.

  4. I’ve found myself spontaneously praying for Simone Biles on and off in the past two days. Which is not typical for me. AT ALL. But here we are.

    May Simone Biles be surrounded with love. May she find the healing and care and respect that she needs to thrive. May all Black girls struggling with anxiety and depression find the healing and care and respect that they need to thrive. May everyone struggling with anxiety and depression find the healing and care and respect that they need to thrive. May all of us feel the love that surrounds us. May we all find the healing and care and respect that we need to thrive.


Comments are closed.