Here’s my favorite stuff from the Internet this week. And I made it (mostly) all about me. You’re welcome.
LitHub ranked fictional drugs of literature on 4/20, which is apparently a significant date to some people who do certain drugs. I have never understood why, but maybe I was never cool enough. (Read: I never smoked enough pot to understand, or care enough about understanding, this phenomenon.) Also, glaring omission of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland/Through the Looking-Glass…cue Grace Slick’s haunting vocals: “One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small…”
Karen Chee wrote an amazing Daily Shouts piece for The New Yorker: “Upcoming Utopian Novels (Now That We Live in a Dystopia).” The titles/plots are based on actual dystopian novels (e.g., The Happy Games, Animal Town, and my personal favorite, Atlas Hugged).
Marcel Proust’s Swann’s Way is my least favorite book of all the books I was assigned to read throughout my education. In fact, around the time I was reading it, a friend asked me who my arch-nemesis was. I said I didn’t have one, but later texted, “You know who my arch-nemesis is? Marcel Fucking Proust.” Earlier this week, The Guardian reported that a letter from Proust to his landlord has been discovered somewhere in France (obviously). In the letter, the bane of my literary existence complains about his amorously vocal neighbors: “Beyond the partition, the neighbours make love every two days with a frenzy of which I am jealous.” This is my favorite of all of the Proustian sentences I have read. I’ll admit that it made me think about revisiting Proust’s work. But ain’t nobody got time for that. Or if they do, it’s lost. (Get it? Heh.)
You already know that Bill O’Reilly was booted from Fox News. (I hope. You know this, right?)
Part of my joy in this announcement came from the fact that I know it will piss off certain people in my life who could use a good pissing off. My mother’s response to the $25 million payout was that it made her “want to set up a Twitter account with #way to reinforce sexual harassment!” She may not understand how hashtags work, but her analysis is on point.
An incoming freshman at the University of Michigan wrote a very impressive opinion piece for the New York Times about how to overcome the socioeconomic gap vis-a-vis standardized test prep: “How I Learned to Take the SAT Like a Rich Kid.” Personally, I’d love for him to write a piece called, “How I Got an Opinion Piece Published in the Times Before I Even Graduated from High School.” Kidding. Because seriously, you go,
Glen Coco Dylan Hernandez.
Speaking of teenagers, they’re apparently the worst because SCIENCE. You can read all about a groundbreaking discovery that no one has ever thought of in the history of adolescence in the article New York Magazine published on Science of Us called, “Teens Really Hate It When Adults Try to Solve Their Problems.” (Mind? Blown.)
I watched a lot of Sesame Street when I was a kid, mostly because my mother thought it was a smart show that operated on two levels, appealing to both children and adults. She’s not wrong, and this pillar of children’s programming remains current and clever. Exhibit A: The Real Grouches of Sesame Street, a parody of the entire Real Housewives franchise. (Sidebar: If you watch the Real Housewives of New York, tune into Twitter on Wednesdays at 9 PM EST. I no longer go out that night because I am home live-tweeting #RHONY.)
“Tinder is synonymous with love” is the funniest independent clause in any sentence in any piece of writing in any medium I have ever read. But according to the Times, increasingly more people are finding longer-lasting and more meaningful relationships than just one-night-stands (including marriage?) on Tinder. I think you probably already know how I feel about this.
Steve Madden is bringing back the sandals I was wearing in sixth grade when I slipped and twisted my ankle. My math teacher, who looked like a pedophile, had to carry me to the nurse and chose to do so bridal style. Then, my middle school banned flip-flops. To add insult (and retroactive humiliation) to injury, “When Kate Densen fell down the stairs and got flip flops banned” was listed under “Most Memorable Moments” in my yearbook’s senior superlatives. Six years after the incident. BRB, reliving the horror that was my adolescence. (But, honestly, when am I not? I’m not crying, you’re crying.)