Shout Out Sunday

Hello! This week was absolutely insane. I spent the first half sick and the second half doing Too Many Activities™. Friday was our annual work outing, at which I spent 2+ hours getting torrentially downpoured on in a sailboat (misery) and drank all the wine cocktails (happiness). Then, I drove out to Western Mass to see one of my dearest friends and go to a show (detailed below), and didn’t get home until 2 am. Needless to say, I am an empty shell of a human who requires sleep and adequate nutrition. So, without further ado, my weekly roundup:

  1. I saw Jenny Lewis (again) last night in Northampton, and it was a religious experience. She’s still on tour, so get tickets immediately! I might go see her again in Boston or Providence, it was that amazing.
  2. I’ve been watching Catastrophe again, because I’m never not watching Catastrophe in a loop. Truly the greatest series ever created.
  3. One of my biggest regrets is not registering for a high-powered blender or Vitamix for our wedding. Just trying to make my own oat milk! Also, if you’re not on the oat milk train, I feel bad for you, son.
  4. I want to try this restaurant in Newton. There aren’t enough vegan restaurants where I live!
  5. Must have this faux agave plant for my house (I’m a plant killer).
  6. This playlist, FIG for CHELS—True/Tested, i.e. the playlist of car songs my husband has been making for me over the past several months, slaps so hard it should be illegal.
  7. Michael and I are (slowly) watching Westworld. We certainly don’t have the same momentum watching it as we did Game of Thrones (the nonlinear storyline doesn’t propel it forward in quite the same way), but we’re really enjoying it so far. Thandie Newton is a sensation.
  8. Speaking of HBO, they made a series of My Brilliant Friend, one of my favorite novels of all time??? Watching immediately.
  9. Put these noodles in my body right now.
  10. This piece is extremely heavy (TW: sexual assault), but I think it’s an extremely important read. Assault is a political issue. We cannot have hideous men as leaders.

I’m sorry to bring the tears with that last one, but it so profoundly moved me that I had to share it. Silence is complicity.

Now, please enjoy this crappy iPhone picture of the one true god.

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jenny lewis \ calvin theatre \ northampton, ma \ 6.22.19

Until next week!

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Shout Out Sunday

If putting this three days late is wrong, I don’t want to be right! Accountability is hard, guys. Deadlines are hard. The important thing is that I’m back to shove articles and other media in your face—I’m reliable that way, if late.

I’ve already made you wait, so without further ado and nonsense from me, this week’s list!

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co—star really is…that bitch

 

  1. Did you guys hear about Barnes & Noble being sold? That store was such a huge part of my childhood that I actually ending up working there for years. I’d like to see them survive, and I think the strategy of tailoring them to the needs of their communities is a good one (the plan-o-gram model of universality always bugged me). I wish nothing but the best for them, but also capitalism is evil, etc, etc.
  2. The title alone has me hooked. Can’t wait to read Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows.
  3. I’m reading Homegoing, finally, and it’s incredible. 10/10 would recommend.
  4. Did you see this NY Post story? People are roasting it online…how out of touch can you get? I laughed out loud when I saw the reply, “my dad has bricked seven laptops” @shaun_jen. It goes without saying that a. Women have skills and we don’t seek mates who can build our Ikea furniture and b. Millennials can’t afford to buy houses because of the economy y’all ruined, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
  5. I had a shitty week (got passed over for a job, had an existential crisis about my professional life), but Wine Country was there for me when I needed it.
  6. On that note, Paula Pell (the GOAT) wrote a piece for Glamour that nearly moved me to tears.
  7. Start using the Co—Star astrology app if you want to get dragged to filth every day via push notifications (see above).
  8. Friday was National Donut Day and I didn’t even get to have one! I need to find some donut shops that don’t involve me driving into South Boston for Blackbird. Did you know they do weddings now? Guess I have to divorce my husband and remarry him to make this happen.
  9. An excellent take on the Hollywood boycotts of Georgia.
  10. The National’s new album is out and how am I just listening to it now???
  11. This article…affected me.
  12. Your bitch got published. A paper I wrote is going to be featured in Bridgewater’s Graduate Review. I’ll be sure to link it when it’s up!

Until next week! Or, rather, the end of this one.

xoch

Shout Out Sunday

‘Sup?! A lot of bullet points today, so we’ll get straight to it!

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i can’t believe we didn’t go to this place when i was in oxford. eternal regrets.
  1. ALWAYS BE MY MAYBE IS OUT AND IT’S PERFECT.
  2. I’m going to see Rob Delaney in August and I might actually die. He is one of my favorite living human beings. You’ve got to read his book, it’s incredible.
  3. Gimme this soup!
  4. I made this hair tonic (with almond oil, since it’s all I had), and it smells so fantastic! I don’t know if it’s actually working to make my hair grow faster but it’s not not helping.
  5. Currently lusting over these sneakers.
  6. This mask is coming in my Fab Fit Fun box and I’m so excited to try it! I’m trying to get more into masks. Self-care, baby.
  7. Everyone is obsessed with the show Fleabag but I just cancelled Amazon Prime! Legit cursed. I may have to reactivate…
  8. I’m pumped to watch the show Special! I listened to an interview with the creator (Throwing Shade!) and it seems like such a groundbreaking piece of television!
  9. Did you see Kate McKinnon on Billy on the Street?
  10. Should I try Bubly? Apparently La Croix is over.
  11. If you think for a second I haven’t started reading the books bc of withdrawals, you’re crazy.
  12. It’s bound to melt your heart.
  13. I swear to god if season 5 of Schitt’s Creek doesn’t drop on Netflix soon I will move heaven and earth!
  14. I am a sucker for marketing and I really want to try these socks out!
  15. My husband, Michael, wants to watch Mad Men next and I’m so excited. I haven’t seen an episode since the finale aired (RIP to my soul for enduring that bullshit).
  16. This article by the incomparable Grace Lavery is incredibly moving.

See you next week, mes animaux!

Shout Out Sunday

Good morning, long weekenders! I needed this mini-vacation like you read about. I have no plans, which, it seems, is the best possible way to spend a weekend as an adult. I would like to try to get to the beach at some point, but considering the holiday, I might have to settle for the nearby pond. I hope you make the most out your days off!

Enjoy this week’s round-up!

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the namesake makes an appearance!
  1. It’s Memorial Day weekend, so watch this deeply moving episode of You’re the Worst. It gutted me.
  2. We’re all sad to see GoT go, but Barry has been renewed for another season! Bill Hader would never disappoint us. This article nails why the show is so effing good.
  3. I did it—I became a mystical bitch. Crystals, Tarot, you name it—sign me up. I had my first ever psychic reading on Sunday (I was in tears the entire time). I bought this fancy deck set and some stones for meditation at Open Doors in Braintree, and yeah, I’m signed up for the crystal meditation class on June 3rd, so see you there?
  4. I finally fixed my Instax Mini 8 (i.e. put new batteries in it) and I’m going to try to take more physical photos. I miss having actual pictures around! I’m pretty sure my cat, however, doesn’t appreciate me following her around like a paparazzo.
  5. I snagged Rainn Wilson’s book on clearance at Barnes & Noble and I’m pumped to read it. Dwight Schrute is my dream man.
  6. While I was at BN, I also picked up Tyrant by Stephen Greenblatt, which had been recommended to me by a professor, and of course, this absurd trinket.
  7. J.Crew sale is 50% off this weekend!
  8. You can’t escape frizz.
  9. I don’t know who needs this Twitter account, but you’re welcome.
  10. It’s a week old now, but have you seen Leslie Jones talking about the Alabama abortion ban on Weekend Update? 5 words: Leslie. Dracarys. That Bitch. Jones.

Have a lovely day off tomorrow, if you’re lucky enough to have one. And even if I’m not the world’s most forgiving person when it comes to this weekend’s theme (those planes tho), a Facebook friend shared this petition and it seems like a great cause.

See you next week!

 

Are you watching Barry yet?

Whenever I bring up the show Barry, I am shocked that no one I know is watching it! Since the entire world watched this season of Game of Thrones, I know you all have access to HBO. So what’s the problem? Do you not like thrilling, dark, hilarious antihero stories? It’s Memorial Day weekend—you have the time to binge-watch a show about a fictional veteran.

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photo source

Barry, created by Bill Hader and Alec Berg (of Seinfeld fame) is the tale of a Marine-turned-hitman-turned-actor trying to escape his life of misdeeds by pursuing a career in the arts. It’s glib to refer to gunning down innocents as “misdeeds,” but the slippery relationship between good and evil is exactly what makes the show great. Barry Berkman (stage name: Barry Block) is the best kind of antihero, because no matter how sinister his actions, we still want him to come out on top. It’s rare that a show can make an audience root for a man to kill a cop, for instance—later, even as we watch Barry in a flashback, overcome with rage, murdering a noncombatant in Afghanistan, somehow we fill with pity instead of disgust. The show has a lot to say about the power of emotion—and its absence.

In summary, Cleveland native Barry Berkman (Bill Hader) becomes a hitman in the employ of Monroe Fuches (Stephen Root—from Office Space!) upon leaving the military. Doing reconnaissance for an ultimately botched hit in LA, Barry stumbles into an acting class, is profoundly moved, and decides to quit the killing business to pursue acting. Disentangling himself from his life beyond the law proves trickier than anticipated—chaos ensues. Season two gets even darker. The show’s writers deftly fold so much into this morality tale—a critique of the narcissism and sexism of show business, a reverence for the power of storytelling, abuse, mental illness, and a scathing indictment of the way the military leaves its veterans.

Barry’s past as a Marine is a vital part of the show, because it makes clear, without ever explicitly stating it, how insidious and vile an organization we socially recognize as “good” and “honorable” can truly be. It’s hardly a secret that bloated military spending is a huge national problem, and that service can often mean the disruption or destruction of the lives of those enlisted, but what the show explores instead is America’s fetish for killing, its bloodlust. In a flashback to his deployment (“The Show Must Go On, Probably?”), the audience gets to watch Barry’s first kill, to see him discover his dark talent and be rewarded for his ability to turn off his emotions and take lives. In a moment that would shatter most people, well-adjusted or otherwise, Barry finds purpose and community. His soldier friends celebrate him when he “[takes] out a sheepfucker from 700 yards.” They rally around him and chant his name, seconds after he shoots three people for their dubious “suspicious activity.” When Barry leaves the Marines after, as acting teacher Gene Cousineau puts it, “Basically, you killed somebody and you got away with it” (“What?!), he claims that he “didn’t think [he] deserved a good life.” Fuches, a family friend, is there to manipulate the shell of a man left by deeply traumatic wartime experiences. The Barry that returns from Afghanistan is emotionless, blank—a trained and effective killer brainwashed to believe that his murderous capability is his only redeeming quality.

Barry’s ability to shut off his emotions entirely and kill make him a great soldier and hitman but later stunt his ability as an actor. It’s no coincidence that the writers chose acting as Barry’s would-be career—a life of robotically acting on orders (in the military and then as Fuches’ employee) has left Barry stagnant, depressed, and hollow. It’s only through inaction, or the purely dramatic rendering of actions, that Barry can tap into his emotions and start to grapple with the evils he has committed. Dramatic acting forces Barry to thoughtfully consider situations and juggle their emotional weight—he can no longer blindly act at the behest of a commander or boss. But the delicately nuanced show doesn’t absolve Barry of his many wrongs—it dances with just how innate Barry’s killing ability is. Barry doesn’t just carelessly point a finger at the military—it points a finger at America itself and the ways in which we encourage and facilitate senseless violence. As audience members, invested in our protagonist, we are complicit in condoning scores of murders, typically at least one per episode. We have become anesthetized to it.

In the second episode of the second season, “The Power of No,” Barry asks Chechen mobster Noho Hank (Anthony Carrigan), “Am I evil?” In perhaps the series’ finest moment of comedic delivery, Hank replies, “Oh my god…I mean, absolutely! Do I not tell you that enough? You are like, the most evil guy I know, man!” Barry replies, “You know, I take no pleasure in killing people. You know that, right?” But as Barry attempts to convince Hank, he doesn’t succeed in convincing himself. The show doesn’t provide an answer to the question of whether killers are born or made, but it does leave viewers with the creeping sensation that, under the right circumstances, they too could be Barry.

Both seasons of Barry are currently available to stream on HBO GO.

Shout Out Sunday

Happy Sunday, friends! I wish I could say “Happy long weekend,” but alas, that’s next weekend. Here’s the stuff that “freaked my week,” and yes, I regret saying that.

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this picture was taken february 7th in st. pete florida. literally why do i live in the northeast?
  1. I finally started watching You’re the Worst and it’s a perfect show. Je suis obsessed. Chris Geere is my boyfriend. The Ferris Bueller discussion at the beginning of episode two is the very definition of *chef’s kiss*.
  2. Gimme dis vegan ice cream.
  3. I bought the damn Rothy’s and they’re incredible. Worth every penny.
  4. Last week’s Game of Thrones was TRASH—sound off in the comments if you’re as upset as I am, and as terrified for tonight’s finale. This thread is everything.
  5. Check out this trippy video for “Oh What a World“! And yes, I am a Kacey stan, sorry ’bout it.
  6. I don’t know if you saw the original piano Cardi B video, but he’s back with another one and it’s perfect.
  7. Wait for the cameo at the end of this video. My god.
  8. I know it’s basic to plug yourself, but I wrote this piece about Céline Dion 2 years ago and watching everyone on Twitter stan her so hard lately has made me feel like an honest-to-goodness trendsetter.
  9. I just placed a hold on Reese Witherspoon’s book at my local library via the Libby app. I listened to her interview on Sooo Many White Guys the other day and she truly is a boss.
  10. I don’t have a dining table (or a dining room for that matter), but these chairs are the most perfect things I have ever seen and I must have them.
  11. Is Chipotle cancelled?

 

See you next week! Or, y’know, sooner if I decide to actually write a blog post one of these days.

*My very smol dragon tattoo in the above pic (Smaug!) is courtesy of Oxford Tattoo.

 

Shout Out Sunday

Good morning, friends! I know it’s…Tuesday, but Sunday was Mother’s Day, aka the worst day of the year, so I took a knee and bailed on the post. This week I’ve been reminiscing a lot about England, how fortunate I was to get to live there for the better part of a month. It was a dream come true, and I can’t imagine not recreating the experience again soon.

The rest of this post has exactly nothing to do with any of that, it was just on my mind.

Enjoy this week’s round-up!

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bath, england
  1. Johnathan Rice’s new album, The Long Game, is out!
  2. The Netflix show Dead to Me is SO GOOD. I can’t stop watching it.
  3. This article makes me want to wash my sheets twice a week.
  4. I am obsessed with this dress! I scored it on clearance in store for even cheaper (and during a 20% sale), so check your store to see if it’s in stock. Size up because Wild Fable is junior’s!
  5. Now that I caved and got Allbirds (I love them, by the way—they absolutely lived up to the hype), should I get Rothy’s? The pointed yellow ones are calling my name…and they’re washable!
  6. Boston is getting a new art museum!
  7. I cried just reading about the new Linda Ronstadt documentary. I can’t wait to watch it.
  8. Maris Kreizman wrote this devastating piece for The Atlantic and it nearly broke me.
  9. It’s been a week and I still can’t tell how I feel about this SNL short. Is it genius or the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen?
  10. I’m going to read this book next—I’m totally fascinated by French culture in general, but French motherhood is something I think Americans can really learn from.
  11. Is the velvet trend finally over? I mean, I’m going to keep a couple of pieces, but I’m glad to see it go. Like off-the-shoulder tops—what were we thinking? What do you think the next inescapable trend will be?

Until next week!

-chels