it’s summer (sort of). i feel like i’m going insane (sort of). i have been thinking about too many things for me to handle, so i made a list of all of them and now they’re your responsibility.
do the right thing, and other movies about the heat
Spike Lee’s DO THE RIGHT THING is one of the greatest films of all time, and spending an afternoon watching it is one of the best possible things you can do when it’s too hot to breathe. i also recommend THE SEVEN-YEAR ITCH, DOG DAY AFTERNOON, and A SUMMER’S TALE.
my friend dasha introduced me to herbal cigarettes a few years ago and now i smoke them all the time. i buy honeyrose menthols. they don’t have any nicotine or tobacco and are a bit better for you than regular cigs (but still bad for you, to be clear) — i like them because i can sit outside and chainsmoke a million of them just to give myself something to do. cigarettes in general are the perfect excuse to leave any situation for five to ten minutes, which is objectively one of the most fun things in the world.
it started raining the other day while i was out in a park so i sat under one of the playground structures and smoked a cigarette while listening to the new lana album. i kept one earbud out so i could hear the rain hitting the wood above my head. it really felt like god had created the world just for me, and that i was doing, in that moment, the only thing i could have ever been expected to do with it. i hope and pray that everyone can experience something so unremarkable and so perfect!!!
also: i think a big part of why i like my phone so much is because it gives me something to do with my hands. it’s nice to have something else to do with my hands.
doing normal things in a park
do whatever you’re doing in your house, but in a park. bring your dinner to the park on a plate and eat it on a bench. bring your laptop to the park and write with no internet. take a nap in the park (be careful). the park is your oyster.
picturing yourself as a child and, when you inevitably begin to think of all the ways you’ve failed her, refusing to bury or avoid those thoughts; instead, responding to each one with a reason why she would be proud of you and a reason why you are indebted to her
a. she always wanted to be a writer
b. she is really the only reason why i’m here
shopping by fabric
sometime last year, i realized that i used thrift stores in the same way a lot of people use Shein or Amazon: as an outlet for my insatiable desire to overconsume. of course, bringing home a thrift haul from my local Value Village every week is a lot less materially impactful than compulsively ordering micro-trend pieces made in overseas sweatshops — and that was a great argument in its favour. it felt like a cheat code. constant consumption without any of the guilt or shame!
i realized, though, that there’s something sort of spiritually degrading about giving into my most base consumptive desires, regardless of how good i feel about my carbon footprint. eventually, i looked at the pile of unworn, unwashed thrift-store clothes taking up space in my tiny bedroom and realized that i had ultimately bought them all in search of nothing but the feeling of buying something. it was more of a simulacrum than a life hack: i had found a way to fit classic American consumerism into my low-income and quasi-morally-conscious lifestyle. and regardless of the price of consumption — monetary or ideological — it just doesn’t feel good to be perpetually unsatisfied, always desperate for something other than what you already have.
i had a philosophical problem there, but i also had a physical one: a metric ton of cheap, synthetic sundresses and plasticky windbreakers that looked and felt like shit. after some introspection, i gave most of my excess clothing away and went almost eight months without thrifting anything at all. now, i have a golden rule: by and large, i only thrift 100% cotton, 100% silk, 100% linen, or some combination of the three. (i could also include 100% wool, but this is a summertime post.) these pieces are overwhelmingly high-quality, long-lasting, comfortable on the body, and — perhaps most importantly — difficult to find; overconsumption becomes difficult, if not impossible, and the things i do buy are almost unavoidably beautiful and high-quality pieces that i’ll wear for years.
outlaw country is obviously some of the greatest music ever recorded. this is undeniable. but, much more controversially, 2000s pop-country can also hit in the most insane way if you stop resisting and let yourself have fun. if you like American Teenager by Ethel Cain (which you probably do), you’re literally already halfway there. grow up and listen to Reba! or, if you’re from the south and/or any small town — connect with your inner child and listen to Reba!
this is one of the greatest summer songs ever, by the way, and singing it in the car with your best friend while driving to the beach is maybe the number one feeling of all time. i miss my best friend so much sometimes that it feels like my stomach is going to turn inside-out.
driving to a town from your childhood by yourself and putting it together with new eyes
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