Sh*t We Like: May 4, 2018
Posted by FSGO
May 04, 2018
Happy May, friends! Here’s some shit.
Week of May 4, 2018
Elif Batuman in The New Yorker: Elif Batuman’s piece in The New Yorker on Japanese rent-a-families was bizarre, moving, and exquisitely executed. The phenomenon is such a representative product of our insane world, but Batuman also slyly makes us question what family means in the first place. The Idiot was one of my three favorite books of 2017 and Elif is just the shit. This piece made me miss my family a lot. (JH)
This week I didn’t do much cultural consuming. I was visiting my grandmother in El Paso, Texas–working during the day and hanging out with her in the evenings and going to bed very early. I like El Paso–love it, even. And I really love my grandmother. She’s a pistol. She lives just below the Franklin Mountains and a stone’s throw from the Juarez, Mexico border. It’s a beautiful, strange place, like most border towns. When my mom was a kid they went to Juarez to get their hair done, to see dog races, and to dinner clubs in the evenings. It’s very different now. Do I sound like my 92-year-old grandmother when I say, “drugs are bad?” Maybe I mean “drugs are sad.” I dunno. I guess I did do some cultural consuming. (EB)
Broad Band: This week I’m reading Claire Evans’ Broad Band and I love it. It’s about the women who helped build the internet — a mathematician, a database poet, a social network pioneer, a self-described “biggest bitch in Silicon Valley,” among others — but who have been ignored by mainstream history, which has a habit of doing that to anyone not white and male. Evans’ portrayals of these women, their careers, their defiance of cultural norms, and their efforts to establish an enriching relationship with technology (imagine!) are intimate, frank, and bursting with admiration. What emerges is an urgent argument for non-white male persons to learn basic web-skills — to demystify the internet so we can influence the way we communicate and consume and digest information in the future. (NH)
“Womp Womp” – Valee feat. Jeremih: I really love this new song by Valee and Jeremih, which I reviewed for Pitchfork. If you haven’t heard Valee’s voice before, you need to: he whispers. The song is so silly and so grimey and just makes me want to throw something through a window in the best way possible. Get ready to hear it out of every car window this summer.