I am notoriously bad at knowing when I need to seek professional help. I’ve waited for eczema to completely take over the top half of my body before calling my doctor’s office. Even after I was prescribed the life-saving cream that eliminated the concerned looks from co-workers who would walk by my office and find me wrist deep in my sweater scratching my left boob because it always seemed to get worse mid-afternoon, I would wait weeks before calling to ask for a refill. Maybe it’s not eczema, I thought. Maybe it’s just dry skin. And I would peruse the lotion aisle at Target and spend tens of dollars on [...]
I do not blame the internet, let's be clear about that. I blame my own inability to imbibe the internet responsibly. Before the internet, I probably read two books a day. I read exceptionally quickly; I have always looked at a page, and instead of reading word-word-word I see paragraph-paragraph-paragraph and it goes in like GULP, and then I turn the page. It's a decent party trick, and it's been good to me. In recent years, I have not been good to it. If I'm doing a formal book review, I turn on "Scholar and Gentlewoman" mode, and all is well, or if it's, like, the new Zadie Smith or [...]
All my life I've been a fan of temporality; everything is better when you know it will never happen exactly the same way again. But last weekend I saw the Postal Service play their penultimate set at Lollapalooza and since then I’ve been hit with thoughts that are both new and unwelcome, like “Take me back" and “I would do anything except kill a person to go back” and "Why am I crying into this sandwich?"
This is only partially based on the music. I am not claiming that Give Up, with its often-clumsy lyrics and constant reach for poignancy, is the greatest album of all time. [...]
At 6 p.m. on a Sunday night I’m driving an hour outside of Ann Arbor to attend the Clarkston, Mich., stop of the Under the Sun tour, which celebrates “the golden age of nineties pop rock ‘n’ roll with Smash Mouth, Sugar Ray, Gin Blossoms, Vertical Horizon and Fastball.”
I am alone and wearing jorts and a baseball T-shirt, onto which I have Sharpied “MRS. RAY.” I am only slightly depressed that none of my friends in town seem to see the Under the Sun tour as the can’t-miss cultural event that it is; mostly I’m glad, because now it'll be much easier for me to really [...]