…makes me feel like I’m in the 1970s remake of ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers,’ pretending to be a pod person, and amazed that no one has found me out yet.
But I’m having a really good time playing at being a grown-up, and have already learned amazing things about how there are places you can steal images from where they won’t mind!
In case you haven’t made it over to the Hairpin today to check in, I talked about German moms leaving the workforce, dubious ways of playing with your children, what cycling does to your junk, and the social construct of Shia LaBeouf.
Which traitorous author of “Unfit For Command” and “Where’s The Birth Certificate?” was spotted enjoying a lavish meal at Eleven Madison Park last night?
And who, exactly, is buying enough copies of “Where’s The Birth Certificate?” to warrant such flagrant consumption of delicious morels?
…is cute. He worries about what all this will mean for his daughters’ future choices, etc., some amount of hand-wringing. Seems like a nice guy.
And, you know, I had a stay-at-home dad, and a mom who worked (clearly, at a job which involved severing penises), and I have to admit that the extreme solipsism of childhood meant that I basically paid no attention whatsoever to that arrangement, other than “haha, you’re stupid! Daddies can make lunch too!” amusement when teachers and other kids and parents were all “DOES NOT COMPUTE” about it, and I’m not sure if it made any lasting impact on my psyche whatsoever.
(I’m going to be a stay-at-home mom (SAHM), but since right now I’m a do-nothing-with-no-kids (DNWNK), in order to be a working mom (HARPY), I would have to, um, go get a job that I could then feel conflicted about.)
But I think that we, too often, treat “or, you know, your male partner could stay home with the kids” as this mystical fairytale (well, sadly, considering the economy, having any parent at home can be an unattainable luxury) which couldn’t possibly be an actual option, but…it really is. It is. You can also…do that. Men can raise children. Men can raise awesome children!
My dad kept my brother out of kindergarten for an extra year. My mom asked why. My dad said, “he’s not ready.” My mom said, “yeah?” My dad said….”Okay, fine. I’m not ready.”
I like pop evolutionary psych as much as the next person, with the “men are here to spread their seed willy-nilly and women must trap them to use their resources to raise their young” blah blah blah, but, you know, we also wear clothes and shit now. We can make real choices for ourselves. Choose your mates accordingly.
Because, obviously, vegans need substitutes for things, and the internet is a fabulous way to figure out what works for you.
But this one line:
“If you need buttermilk you can add 2 Tbsp of lemon juice per cup of soy milk and let it sit for five minutes.”
…makes me keep remembering the immortal Simpsons moment:
“We’re out of secret sauce! Quick, put some mayonnaise in the sun!”
Oh, that’s naaasty. Normally I would say, you just need to tough this shit out until she gets a new boyfriend, which works 99% of the time, but, as you say, she’s already got a new boyfriend, and is still being a pain in your collective asses.
If I were Lucinda Rosenfeld over at “Friend or Foe,” I would say: “Just talk snarkily about it behind her back with your mutual friends, because that’s how my, and hence everyone’s, female friendships work.”
If I were Cary Tennis, I would talk for a long time about the nature of creativity and then ask if your friend is possibly an alcoholic, in which case she should get with The Program.
If I were Dr. Phil, I would come up with a script for you to use that would begin with: “Dear Friend. Although we all love you very much, we’ve noticed that you’re having a really hard time letting go of Doug. We’ve suggested you look into counseling in the past; maybe you could do that, and stop harshing all of our mellows constantly.”
Or, you could go totally rogue on this, and use this unbelievably successful trick of pretending the person is already behaving in the way you want them to behave, and then praising them for it.
Like, you go out for dinner. You make sure you get through forty minutes of conversation in which the topic doesn’t come up, and then you say:
“Jill, we’ve been meaning to say how proud we are of you that you’re starting to let go of the Doug situation. We know how hard you’ve worked to move on, and it’s great that you don’t need to sit around rehashing it anymore. Isn’t it so freeing?”
Stone Cold Poker Face Needed.
I mean, hey, it’s worth a try, right?
(It would obviously be better for her to be in therapy at this point, but it sounds like you’ve reached the limits of wholly honest interaction.)
Oh, WOW. Oh, yuck, awful. I guarantee you that everyone on the internet knows exactly what you mean, and probably hearts the shit out of you right now.
DIGNITY. None of us ever manage to be dignified when this happens, but I absolutely guarantee you that in two years, looking back, you’re not going to say “God, I really regret that I didn’t spend more time obsessively texting him and sending him news stories that I think he’d enjoy in hopes he’d think I was more fun and interesting than Random New Pussy Who Showed Up Out Of Fucking Nowhere Like The Blonde Cylon.”
(You have said literally nothing to suggest that you are doing this, this is just what I and most of my friends invariably do, and then feel stupid about afterwards.)
Here’s the thing: it was definitely not going to work. Because a) this happened, and b) successful college relationships that make the transition into adult life are like motherfucking unicorns, except not really, because we all know the, like, three exceptions to this, and sometimes you see those couples in the wild and you want to hate them but have a hard time doing it because they’re so cute.
And you’re so so so so so so young, even by Tumblr standards, which are terrrrrrifying, and you absolutely do not want to be settled at 21 unless you live in an Amish community, and, honestly, even then, Brother Amos might not actually be your soulmate, which you would have discovered if you’d stayed single long enough for Brother Jebediah to get his shit together and approach you at a quilting bee.
I digress. This sucks. I am so sorry. Take a bunch of electives senior year, have casual, protected sex with other people, and then be so so so so so so so happy that you broke up now and not just after you moved to wherever you decide to move after graduation, because that’s more existentially upsetting to your apple cart, trust.
Love you so much,
Oh, hey, let’s read the New York Times Magazine piece on shaken-baby syndrome!
Because, you know, it’s not like the internet is full of shirtless pictures of super-butch dudes, or poems about kitties, or streaming Netflix versions of movie musicals.
Shteir has written a new book about the gestalt of shoplifting, which I have just acquired (legally), and am enjoying greatly.
Despite, myself, never once having managed to steal anything from a store (from my brother? sure!), because I am a gargantuan pussy.
Honestly, if I leave a department store without buying something, I feel as though I have stolen. And I get sweaty and uncomfortable, and attempt to walk past the registers all “I have not found anything in your fine establishment today, but have in the past, and have every intention of doing so again in the future, my good sirs.”
I knew this guy at college who just didn’t feel like waiting in line to pay for his small bag of Utz barbecue chips, so he simply dumped them in his messenger bag and walked out. And it was probably the most terrifying experience of my life, and I refused to eat any of said chips, and could simply never again take him seriously on matters of social justice, because my constant inner monologue had become “perhaps first the revolution could begin with affluent white college students not ripping off elderly Koreans, instead of…throwing chairs through Starbucks windows at G8 summits.”
But I’m sure you do get a delightful rush from stealing things, don’t get me wrong. I’ve stolen wireless, and I used to use Napster, when Napster was a thing.
Oh, God, my poor friend once got one of the “Cease and Desist” letters from our college informing her that she was in possession of Illegal Music, and it would have been upsetting enough, but they included a list of her Illegal Music, and, obviously, it was all the wonderful embarrassing stuff like the Spice Girls and Kylie and “It’s Raining Men” and all the things that invariably shuffle up on your iPod when someone wants to see it.
Don’t steal. Do read this book.
As of tomorrow, I’m moving over to The Hairpin for the summer (like camp!), so make sure to check in there regularly for your lazy blogging fix. I’ll still be here, too, but, you know, you have to follow the tremendous amounts of bank that online journalism provides, right? (Then comes the power, and then, the women. Or so I hear.)
Because, to be honest, anyone who knows me would tell you that I am notoriously terrible at relationships. Awful! No good.
I am, however, just dynamite at being with Industrious Husband, which is why we got married instead of having a terrible breakup.
And I think that’s often more common than not, you know? We have this whole, relationships are hard work, thing, right, and it’s absolutely true, I’m sure, that having a good marriage ten years in is hard work.
But if you’ve been dating some guy (or girl, obvi, just fill in your own blanks) for six months to a year, and it’s hard work, find another fucking guy. Not that there’s even anything wrong with him, you know, he’s probably just fine, he may be SUPER RAD, even.
But, generally, Lizzie-and-Darcy-notwithstanding, if you’re going to be happy with someone, you’re going to meet, and like each other a lot, and want to hang out, and then hang out all the time, and enjoy watching TV together, and have good sex, and, ideally, prefer having the room at a similar temperature for sleeping, and then not break up, and continue not breaking up, and then either get married or get happily not-married, and then just…do that. And, you know, have a good time, and stuff.
Which is another reason I never trash-talk ex-boyfriends on here, right, because a) I actually get along super-well with most of them, and b) there’s nothing *wrong* with them, we just didn’t get along well enough to be happy together, and c) when you’re in a bad relationship, you’re kind of a shitty person, you know? You say bizarre things, and you’re (fill in what you are!) needy, whiny, distant, cold, clingy, vicious, cutting, lonely, angry, aggressive, passive, passive-aggressive, weepy, or just…bored/boring.
And, you know, when you’re happy, you’re just…yourself, but the more pleasant version.
I actually go all gaaaaaaaaag when people reference the whole “I want to be with someone who inspires me / makes me want to be a better person” thing, because, no, that’s obviously great, but then, if you’re actually dating someone who says shit like that, they invariably want to, like, go to different places on vacation than I do and not watch “Top Chef Masters,” because it’s super insensitive because there are hungry people in the world. Which is totally fair, right, but that person is not going to be happy dating me. So, you know, Freebird, and shit.
We’re naming her after my best friend. I don’t want to be all MY BABY HAS A GOOGLEABLE WEB PRESENCE and everything, so let’s just say that she shares said name with a) a missing female aviator, b) the companion of the Eleventh Doctor, and, apparently, c) the only female Vampire Elder in the ‘Underworld’ franchise.
Sometimes you pee in the stall. If the bathroom’s out of order, or your stall barn doesn’t have a bathroom, or you’re at a show and the Porta-Potties have gotten disgusting.
And you think, oh, you know, my horse pees in here all day long. And, yeah, she looks a little funny at you at first, and you try not to make eye contact, but, before you know it, you’re holding the trailer door shut so your trainer can pee in the trailer during a long haul.
And if you’ve just shared part of a Gatorade with your mare twenty minutes previously, it almost seems like a nice bonding experience. Until she steps on your pant leg, and you can’t un-squat until she moves off.
Again, it’s all class, all the way, when you’re at the barn. I’m sure this is exactly how you pictured National Velvet in her downtime.
At one point, I went forty miles an hour.
No one honked angrily at me at any point.
I am basically Mario Andretti.
(Unless, like, that would involve parking between other cars. Or not over-turning.)
When people are reviewing, like, Epicurious recipes, and they give something two forks out of four, and their review says: “I swapped out half the butter with unsweetened applesauce, and there was just something…off. I think there are better cookie recipes out there.”
And I’m all die in a fire, bitch.
Like, I’m sure Mugabe is a real dick, but I wouldn’t necessarily push him in front of a bus if we met on the street, you know? And I almost never talk about a book on here that I didn’t like, because, hey, the internet has lots of that already.
But, for some reason (well, I mean, for obvious reasons), I hate Bill Donohue more than anyone who has ever lived. And he’s never even had someone shot. (That we know of.)
And I’m hesitant to even mention it, really, because I don’t want Bill Donohue to think anyone pays attention to him. Because, you know, if you’re not Catholic, there is literally no reason you should know who he is. The same for Archbishop Dolan, obviously, who doesn’t even seem like the same sort of loathsome, malevolent beast of a creature. Like, why on earth should CNN be asking religious leaders how they feel about topical political and civil rights issues? Who gives a shit? What do they know? Why should we care?
And, you know, Donohue is divorced, right? Divorced. Which, mazel tov, you know, many of my favourite people are divorced. Many of my favourite people are divorced AND Catholic. But very few of them are public figures who are publicly salivating for a mandatory return to a universe in which the Vatican runs the lives of all citizens, who would doubtlessly ideally become small yeoman farmers, like, probably not actually reading the Bible for themselves, because you know on some level Serious Old School Catholics Who Resent Vatican Council Two tooooootally want to get all Fuckin’ Hardcore On That Front.
Folksy elderly driving instructor finishes sugar beet lecture.
‘Stardust’ by Nat King Cole comes on the oldies station.
Folksy elderly driving instructor: ‘My wife and I used to slow-dance in her parents’ basement to this when we were courting.’
‘If she…goes before me, I’d like to play this at her funeral.’
Pregnant, hormonal Lazy Book Reviewer bursts into floods of uncontrollable tears.
(Surly, texting teenage girls attempt to comfort her.)
He plays the oldies station. So, the sugar beet lecture was delivered to ‘You’re Just Too Good To Be True,’ which, for me, is always going to be Denise Richards in ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous,’ spinning around with the Jesus dummy on the cross.
Driving instructor delivering lecture on, no shit, the history of refining sugar beets in the Salt Lake valley.
(Took down jokey ‘sexy teenage girls’ post because it wasn’t really saying what I wanted to say, will expand later.)