I’ve only ever gotten into trouble with the authorities once.
In the church where I attended preschool, we had a system. An easel stood by the door where our parents dropped us off, and on it stood a board with little envelope pockets for each area of the school’s large main room. There were “Reading Loft,” “Building Blocks,” “Trucks and Trains,” and “Music” sections, but the crown jewel was obviously the one labeled “Dress-up.” When we got to school, we’d search the little bag hanging off the easel for our name tags, place them in one of the play area envelopes, and head over to our designated areas to play until snack time, when we’d all switch. There could only be four name tags in each envelope at a time, to avoid overcrowding. It was a very clean and organized structure. I respond well to that kind of mandated order.
The dress-up area was a Goodwill- and donation-based collection of real treasures. There were old lace up boots, high heels, shawls, sparkly stretch leotards, and dozens of dresses. Everything was about a hundred times too big, which is actually a good thing in a dress-up area, because then you can make every item of clothing into something else. It was all great, but there was this one skirt in particular - this blue-green chiffon thing with an elastic waist that almost fit us if we pulled it up to our armpits. It was, by far, the best-preserved item on the hook. So everyday there was a race between the other dress-up girls and I, to see who could get to it first in the morning. I remember it being slow-motion, but it was probably the normal speed at which kids run.
… watched pots DO boil. They do! It’s just that you sit around wasting a LOT OF TIME waiting for it to happen, and I guess the point is that you could be doing something more productive with that time, but I like to be there when the first bubble breaks because then I can get my pasta (or whatever) in right away. The same goes for my email (I want to SEE it arrive) which is why I will keep sitting in front of my laptop, torturing myself, waiting for some IMPORTANT FUCKING BUBBLES.
Also, with boiling water, you can add salt to make things go more quickly. Is there an email equivalent for this? There isn’t. It might be Netflix, in another browser window.
Hi friends! How Was Your Week was nominated for “Best Podcast,” alongside heavyweights Comedy Bang Bang, WTF, The Nerdist and Sklarbro Country.
Please vote for me! Not only because I’ve been endorsed by both the author of Columbine and Twitter user @fart, but because if I win, I promise to make it legal for dogs to drive, and MANDATORY for them to sing and play the piano at the same time.
Thank you for your consideration.
P.S. If I get to attend, I’m taking Spoony. He better get himself a tuxedo! Or at least a tuxedo cat.
Everyone ought to vote for Julie Klausner, and I say that even as someone who is also a very big fan of Marc Maron and WTF (as has been mentioned on this very blog!). And yes, that’s a 10% affirmative action-based urging on my part, as Julie is the only woman nominated, because if she wins then maybe all my other favorite women comics, comedy writers and comedians will start podcasts and receive trophies for them. WE TAKIN OOOOOVER, one city at-a-time, that type of thing. The other 90% of the reason is because Julie Klausner is a wicked smart and funny lady who gives me all the best commentary on things I never knew I needed commentary about, like Pauley Perrette, for example.
Picture this nightmare scenario: you are walking on a quiet street and a tumbleweed rolls across the sidewalk in front of you. You didn’t know tumbleweeds were even a real thing that happened, but they are - I saw them in Arizona and it was crazy. You notice a shop with dusty windows, and you go inside. There isn’t anybody working at the counter, and there isn’t much in the store apart from two long wooden shelves nailed to the wall opposite you. You walk towards them, looking nervously behind you (because who works in this store?), to get a closer look at the odd-looking boxes that sit atop the shelves. They’re metallic and robotic-looking, and taped on the shelves’ edges beneath each one are handwritten labels. They are names. Familiar ones - the names of every person you’ve ever loved. (Not loved, necessarily. “Thought you could love” is sufficient.) So now you’re scared, and you look around you one more time, and still there is no one. So you select one of the boxes, you pick it up off the shelf, and you press its large white button. The voice of that memory-person (you don’t see him or her any longer) rings out, pitch-perfect. The voice says that one word or phrase - the one the voice’s real owner was always saying - that you hated even then, but hate even more so, now.* Your face curls up, disgusted. You turn around to leave - it’s scary and irritating to be in here - but the door is gone. So are the windows. It’s only you and the voice boxes. Do you walk around pressing the buttons, or do you choose the silence? After a while, won’t you start hearing the words you know the boxes would say, if you were to push their buttons, anyway?
*For me, one of these words - the worst one, maybe - is “dope.”
One thing I worry about when I think about my future as a writer (besides what to do with ALL OF THE MONEY I WILL HAVE, haha, am I right) is how much alone time I will have once I’m done with school and whether or not it will be TOO much. I generally don’t like that much alone time! I don’t like too much group time either, but what I really like is being physically around other individuals who are all doing their own individual things. If I never have to work in a cubicle ever again I won’t be sorry, but I wouldn’t mind having some Writer Office thing to go to, at least some of the time, so that I don’t go crazy with solitude. Wouldn’t that be nice? A big airy lovely building for freelance writers and novelists and screenwriters, who’d all get their own offices, but would get to share the parts of the workday that make working in an office tolerable. The wander-about for distractions with work friends. People to go out to lunch with. Office gossip. (Writer office gossip would be SO WEIRD though!) Birthday parties! With cake. There would definitely be a lot of cake. So who wants to pay for this?
“I think people are going to be really excited,” Tegan Quin says of the still-untitled album. “I think we have a really good batch of songs. I know on the last record [2009’s Sainthood] we were experimenting a lot—like on “Paperback Head” and “Arrow.” Not all the songs landed, but certain tracks really did, and I think with this one, this is going to be more in the vein the way people got attached to So Jealous and The Con. They’re all really good songs—really good stories, really good intentions.”—For someone like me who worships The Con and So Jealous and is only so-so on Sainthood, this is VERY EXCITING NEWS. (Read the whole T&S interview here!)
Do you have any questions about how to behave like a nice human being while also using technology in your life? It could be anything! Anything even remotely related to manners and technology! You can reply here or email me at email@example.com.
I think what’s really great about long road trips is that the getting there is so excruciating that it makes you thirty times as happy to arrive and fifty times as happy to be home, after. There are things you can do that you don’t know about until you drive across the country, like staying awake (for all intents and purposes, those little dozes don’t count) for 26 hours in a row, or learning to use cruise control without being thrown into an overwhelming panic about brake failures. There will be parts of the country that you will appreciate for unexpected reasons, like finding Missouri welcoming and downright urban after you’ve just been through Kansas, and loving Oklahoma because it means at least you aren’t in Texas anymore. There will be this stretch of time from 2:00 to 4:00 in the morning when you can’t believe the stars and you think you’re seeing UFOs every couple of minutes or so. They’re just radio towers, or whatever, but they might not be! And then there will be this part when you’re 22 hours in, talking about the horrific smell of the factory farms in Texas where it smelled like shit for twenty minutes straight, and how Joyce inexplicably opened the window and announced that it smelled like shit out there too, and somehow you’ll start referring to it as a “poop farm,” and what if there were a farm that really grew poop, hanging off plants like vegetables, and Joyce says “and what if the farmer laid out little feces as the seeds,” and then all of a sudden you are all laughing hysterically for an embarrassingly long time, even though you are adults, because there is nothing funnier than poop jokes when you’re that tired and finally getting closer to home.
Today has been the kind of day where I cry because two of my four friends on this trip don’t want to go out for breakfast with me. (My period walks me over to the local breakfast cafe, crying the entire way.) It was mostly about other things but also in a tiny way it was about pancakes. Why do certain people not like going out to breakfast?? Not “brunch.” Just going out for a nice breakfast with coffee. How could you not enjoy that?
This afternoon we all went to Bearizona (haha aw) which is a drive-through wilderness park. We saw bison and “doll sheep” and black bears, and then a black bear literally walked IN FRONT OF OUR CAR. We all screamed. Throughout the park we listened to this audio guide, and the man on it said, “Kids, there’ve been reports of a Sasquatch sighting in the park - keep an eye out!” And I was waiting and waiting for a man in a Bigfoot costume to run across the path because that would have made my entire life. But he never did. And at the end, the audio guide told us the gatekeeper was a Sasquatch masquerading as a Bearizona employee and that we should growl at him (ahhh what?). So we did. And then he gave us stickers.
After that we went into the walking part of the park and saw a baby black bear being fed. An 8-week-old bear baby!!! The employee was feeding it from a bottle, and do you know how many people walked right up to her and touched the bear without even asking? Five. She kept saying “no touching, sorry,” and after each new person tried I got increasingly embarrassed for the human race. What’s our problem? Why do some of us just think that you can pet a BLACK BEAR just because it is small and cute?
We walked over to the petting zoo part, where petting IS allowed, and this pig I liked kept running away from me when I tried to pet him. THAT is the kind of day it has been. Then we all stood together and watched one of the pigs shitting all over the place as a chicken ate directly from his asshole. So I don’t really know what animals’ problem is either.
Oh look! It’s the first edition of my new weekly advice column on BuzzFeed FWD! It’s etiquette for digital things and technologies and lives! If you have a question for me you should send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Otherwise just read it!
This week I answer questions about FACEBOOK and how it’s ruining all of our lives but also making them better.
This Time “debate” is so awesome and hilarious I don’t even know how to handle it.
You see, like most women, I was born with the chromosome abnormality known as “XX,” a deviation of the normative “XY” pattern. Symptoms of XX, which affects slightly more than half of the American population, include breasts, ovaries, a uterus, a menstrual cycle, and the potential to bear and nurse children.
Oh you guys, I’m an idiot. You know those mugs? From before? (Reading Between the Texts MUGS.) I don’t understand the way Etsy works. I didn’t realize somehow that when you listed the cost for shipping you were adding on ANOTHER charge?? What?? So my original listing was like, $26??? No wonder pretty much nobody bought one. I’m sorry. I fixed the problem. Now the TOTAL cost is $10 (a little below what I thought I was doing before, but that’s just because I’m like, ashamed). OK? Better. Drink up!! Haha..err weird.
ETA I WILL TOTALLY SHIP TO CANADA YOU LOVELY NORTHERNERS.
Somebody call 911! Shawty fire burning on the dance floor.
Around 4:30 the fire alarm started going off in the hallway, so I grabbed my laptop and winter coat and gloves and boots and went to Rylee’s room. Rylee asked me if we “had to go” and I said “yes, probably,” and we went outside to stand in front of our building.
About fifteen other young people were out there as well as some moms with babies. Most people opted to stay inside and suffer through the noise, I guess? Our friend Silvana who lives in the apartment below ours came out carrying her laptop and a file folder with her marriage certificate (just in case). We all realized that we all left our wallets inside. We all agreed that the most devastating thing to lose, though, would probably be our makeup and nail polish collections. This is not true but it felt like the worst thing at the time. They just take so long to accumulate.
We’d been outside standing for about twenty minutes when a very tall, very large, crazed-seeming sort of man carrying a cat on his belly wandered out the front door and immediately started talking to the entire crowd. He told us (or nobody, really, I don’t think it mattered to him) that of COURSE this would happen when he was just getting into a nice nap, and he couldn’t sleep last night because some idiots in the apartment near his must’ve been taping the fight of the century or SOMETHING because the thumps were incredible, LIKE YOU WOULDN’T BELIEVE. This went on for a good ten minutes - all of which his cat spent hanging out on top of his belly, like a shelf. Then he sat down and said “I guess I’d better call the emergency line,” and nobody really said anything because we all figured that the alarm system was hooked up to the fire department, and that anyway somebody must’ve called the fire department by now, and they’d be over any minute because the fire station is literally one Taco Bell away from our apartment.
Cat man chatted on the phone for about five minutes, and two minutes after that three fire trucks (THREE) drove right over and a whole bunch of firefighters strolled into the building. We waited another ten minutes and then the alarm shut off. (A classic case of Burned Food.) Then we went inside. Then one of the firefighters said, “Hey guys, next time the alarm goes off, you have to call 911. We’re not hooked up to the building.”
And then we were all like, okay, cool. Good to know. Thank you, crazed cat man, for somehow being the only person in our building capable of calling the goddamn fire department when the fire alarm is going off.
Christine just sent me this link to a Jezebel story (the best thing that will be on the internet all day) about Tyrese confusing Amber Tamblyn for Amber Rose and asking her to “collaborate on a musical project.” Amber, calling herself “an actress engaged to a comedian,” obliged.
This is my favorite demo from her “Tyrese Sessions.” Start at 1:00 to hear the best part:
I HATE YOU SO MUCH I FORGOT WHAT I WAS TALKING ABOUT.
WHO WANTS TO GET MEXICAN FOOD?
JAY-Z, DO SOMETHING!
Hey Amber Tamblyn, I’m your #1 fan now!
I’ve loved Amber Tamblyn dearly since her Hillary Clinton-‘08-supporting days but now that she’s gone and dubbed herself the “Hillary Clinton of Ghostface Killahs” and messed around (nicely) with Tyrese and recorded a pretty bad-ass and hilarious rap about birth control, I love her even more.
- This club meets once every two months and is for me and all the people I’ve come to “know” via the internet who live in New York and who I want to be friends with IRL. The Ohio Turnpike is the answer I got when I Googled “what is halfway between Minneapolis and New York.” We would just get waffles together and laugh about life!
2. Failed Spelling Bee Competitors Anonymous
- We would talk about all the words we got wrong and how they haunt us, still. (CHINOOK, GODDAMN YOU.) :(
3. People Who Like All My Same TV Shows And Watch Them With Me Weekly
- I get really mad at you guys when you don’t watch Pretty Little Liars.
4. FFFF (Four Friends having Feelings on the Floor)
- You know in movies when, like, four friends lie on the floor so their heads are together and their bodies are pointing outward to make an X? Rylee and I need two more people who will come over regularly to make this happen. And then we’ll talk about our feelings.
5. The YA Players
- For the dramatic reenactment of favorite scenes from YA classics like “Alphas” and “The Clique” and “The It Girl.”
6. Guacamole and Margaritas Until We Almost Throw Up Club (GMUWATUC)
7. Harry Potterotica
- HAHA I don’t really want that as a club but that name just popped into my head (errr) and I really love it a lot. Say it out loud!
8. Adult Fort Building Club
- Does anyone want to come build a fort with me? I have this giant box just sitting in my living room and I think it could make a pretty solid fort guest bedroom. Or a spaceship!!