When I was eight years old, the only thing I wanted to be was president, and Tommy Hanlon told me in front of everyone in my class that I couldn't be.
One plank arm, square in my face with a noodly little finger: "If you weren't born here—you can't be president!" he squealed, a proud look in his eye.
At the time I was ostracized and lonely and distinctly un-American. I was, by the Southeastern Pennsylvanian definition, a "normal looking" eight-year-old, with a whole lot of love to give, but I had an untrustworthy accent that I'd brought over from England and a few other Victorian ticks like asking a [...]
Brooklyn literary darling Emma Straub’s third book and second novel, The Vacationers, couldn’t be more different than her debut historical novel, Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures. Set in the present day, The Vacationers (available tomorrow, May 29th) spans two weeks of a nuclear New York City family’s vacation in Mallorca, Spain. The Post family, which consists of food enthusiast wife Franny, recently fired husband Jim, and adult children Sylvia and Bobby, set off for sun and relaxation before Sylvia heads off to college. But as with all adorably dysfunctional families, the Posts encounter a lot more than just what’s on their vacation itinerary, particularly about one another.
I emailed with [...]
Imagine if The Nothing from Neverending Story coupled with a bumbling cartoon bear forever getting its head stuck in pots of honey. That’s Milo! Born of the dumpsters, he spent three years living in a well-appointed cat rescue shelter in northeast Portland, passed over (they guessed) because of his age and because he’s black. Superstitions die hard, and more than one shelter volunteer has told me black animals don’t photograph well, their personalities don’t come through so easily. It’s true. In his most expressive photo from the House of Dream’s Instagram account, Milo is mid-silent-meow, and looks not unlike Sloth from The Goonies—which is to say, disoriented and asymmetric.
Sometimes I think it's hard being in a long-term relationship because I don't know what "swipe left" jokes are supposed to mean, but then I remember about stories like this.
What I don't understand about these stories is that I know I've been on very few dates, none of them with strangers, but I interact with men every day! I have male friends and acquaintances, male classmates and coworkers and relatives. Some of them are weird or mean or dumb, but none of them seem to act like they were raised by a random assortment of YouTube videos in a tent in someone's backyard. Some of my interactions with [...]