I’m gonna be honest: Read This:, the weekly Wednesday column in which I do a roundup of online journalism that I’ve been reading and loving is one of my favorite parts of this blog. I’ve always been a fan of curation, always had a knack for it. Lists! Lists are so great, there’s so much joy in neatly ordered collections of things to be offered to others.
I haven’t posted a Read This: in a month and the reason why should be fairly obvious. We’re all anxious, yeah? It’s hard, the world is so much harder and more difficult than it seemed to be a month ago. I spend a lot of time – more than ever – afraid lately. But, as I’ve said on various social media, we have to be here for one another now more than ever – community, unity, strength.
It’s Wednesday, here’s what I’ve been reading.
“A Time for Refusal”, Teju Cole for The New York Times Nov 2016
Evil settles into everyday life when people are unable or unwilling to recognize it. It makes its home among us when we are keen to minimize it or describe it as something else. This is not a process that began a week or month or year ago. It did not begin with drone assassinations, or with the war on Iraq. Evil has always been here. But now it has taken on a totalitarian tone.
I’m not going to include anymore Trump/Election-related pieces as I assume you’ve all read them. I will take this time to say that anyone who needs to get their feelings out, can do so here in the comments, if you need to vent.
“Now Is The Greatest Time To Be Alive”, Barack Obama for Wired Nov 2016
Look, I’m really going to miss Obama.
I’m a guy who grew up watching Star Trek—and I’d be lying if I said that show didn’t have at least some small influence on my worldview. What I loved about it was its optimism, the fundamental belief at its core that the people on this planet, for all our varied backgrounds and outward differences, could come together to build a better tomorrow.
“Haunted Womanhood”, Heather Havrilesky for The Atlantic Oct 2016
[Shirley] Jackson relished untangling the process by which women lose themselves.
“‘The Lottery’ in Stars Hollow”, Mallory Ortberg for The New Yorker Nov 2016
Thank GOD for Mallory Ortberg. Thank God for Gilmore Girls coming back into our lives when we need it most. Also, yes this is Shirley Jackson’s classic short story “The Lottery” retold as The Gilmore Girls. (An alternative to venting about the election: tell me how excited you are about the GG revival! I’m stoked!)
Finally – tomorrow is Turkey Day for America and my thoughts are with those of y’all who have to deal with family dinner in the aftermath of this political shit storm. I am saved by my girlfriend, who will be the only person I see tomorrow – her and the hundred talented doggies on the National Dog Show.
I am feeling very sad that I’m not cooking with my mom, which I’ve done every year since I was old enough to reach the kitchen counter. But she’s here in spirit – by which I mean we are constantly texting each other today as we do the prep work for tomorrow’s meal. She just sent me one that says, “This stale bread for the stuffing is TOO stale!” with an eye-roll emoji, which is pretty cute.
Here, watch Julia Child prepare Thanksgiving Dinner, and then read this super heart-warming piece on her from The NYT. It fills the void:
“Thanksgiving, The Julia Child Way”, Julia Moskin for The New York Times Nov 2015
“The phone would ring all day,” said Sheryl Julian, now the food editor for The Boston Globe, who celebrated Thanksgiving dinner in the Childs’ home in 1976 and 1977. “Every time she hung up, it would ring again, and it would be another total stranger with a turkey problem.”
No matter how busy, Mrs. Child would hand off whatever kitchen task she was doing, take the phone and talk the nervous cook down from the ledge. […] But Mrs. Child refused to unlist her number or turn off the phone; instead, she embraced the role of national Thanksgiving commander in chief.
Featured Image: Julia Child, credit: gretchenrubin.com