I told him not to worry. Cell phones are forever sliding out of pockets in my van. I find them lodged between seats, silted up under the springs, scuttled in the back by the spare tyre. All over the place. Nursing secrets, aching to spill the beans. —
From Noontide Toll, which was excellently reviewed by renowned essayist and novelist Pico Iyer this past weekend in The Wall Street Journal.
One of the first works of fiction set in post-civil war Sri Lanka, Noontide Toll is a powerful meditation on memory and reconciliation brought about by the trauma of war.
To celebrate the occasion, we’re doing a limited giveaway over on Goodreads - enter here by 10/31 for a chance to win a copy.
File under: Things for you to read.
Behind a Huge Pile of Trash
Just About Every Block, New York, NY 10001
When life gives you enormous piles of trash outside your building almost all of the time, cry your eyes out behind ‘em for hours on end!!! Once you get past the putrid smell and the whole ‘accepting that you’re…
I feel like I might have done this.
Cheat Sheet. If you’re going to bring roses, make sure to bring the right color.
my mama really felt strongly about these rose rules. I remember who very clearly making me buy yellow flowers for a friend’s life events because she didn’t want me to give off the wrong impression if I brought red. Funny mom.
wait there is a ‘closing the deal’ rose color? that is pretty spectacular.
(Source: thatkindofwoman, via ingodwetrustnyc)
I normally wouldn’t do something like this, but given the dismissive and disrespectful response we’ve received from the people responsible for producing and proliferating this offensive image for daring to speak out, I’m coming to you all for help.
The offensive image above was plastered across the halls of my law school and put on the internet as the cover photo as a joke to advertise a party. Given this nation’s history of using black women as props, mascots, and metaphors, women of all colors and those standing in solidarity with us were offended by this. Reasoned replies on the Facebook event explaining that the photo was offensive were deleted. Some who had their comments deleted were ignored. Others were sent dismissive and disrespectful responses explaining that the photo is “camp,” a joke, and bemoaned the fact that “we lost Joan Rivers too soon” because perhaps then we’d understand why this is apparently funny.
Because it was clear that honest and open critique would be silenced and ignored, myself and three other black queer/female students wrote an open letter outlining why the above image is racist and sexist and asking for an apology. Since posting the open letter, the people responsible for the image have not apologized, but have put up one response essentially reprimanding all of us who have voiced our opinions for daring to speak out in a way, tone, and forum of which they do not approve. Their response mischaracterized our critiques, were indicative of entitled and privileged thought, and were emblematic of the very issue our letter was meant to highlight and explain.
It is clear that those responsible for this image and for making the halls of my law school a hostile and alienating space will not apologize for or acknowledge their behavior until they are made to see that what they have done is offensive and not okay.
Please help by reading the open letter, sharing it, and reblogging this post to help us make clear that this type of mascot-ing and mocking of women of color will not be tolerated.
I leave you with an excerpt from our letter:
…This is not just racist or sexist in a theoretical, these-kids-can’t-take-a-joke sense. These images, when controlled by the wrong people (here, racially unconscious white men) are harmful to those of us, particularly to black women, who enter the halls of Berkeley Law and other law schools fighting a nearly insurmountable presumption that we do not belong, lack merit, and are ignorant and incompetent. Now, images of bodies like ours and dance forms which first found life in the minds of our sisters, for which we have been defamed, ridiculed, called outside of our names, and punished for performing and merely being associated with, have been stolen, bastardized, and reduced to jokes and posted for the consumption of the privileged white heterosexual men walking the halls of an elite, top-ten law school. These are institutions which have been historically hostile to us, but which we (perhaps naively) hoped could be a site of our overcoming. It hurts. It is a slap in the face–a reminder that our presence is only desired in the symbolic form of props, mascots, and metaphors.
“we lost Joan Rivers too soon”
Because that clearly unlocks the key to understanding humor.
The open letter is really spot on.
Anonymous said: Do you have any suggestions of jobs for people with anxiety? I'm 19, can't go to college because of my anxiety, I was homeschooled in High School and I just want to make money and work but my anxiety is hindering me :(
Hmmm not really sure on this one, my love… The only advice I can offer is this. Retail jobs may seem like hell, but believe me when I say a good retail job can actually do wonders for your anxiety. ANY job is going to be scary at first. But when you get good at retail you find yourself feeling so much more capable to talk to people, and people from all walks of life! It lets you get comfortable with that scripted sort of conversation, and whilst that may not seem like a worthwhile skill to have, I’d argue it is invaluable. Before I learnt it I couldn’t even talk to a bus driver without getting the ol’ nervous sweats. Now that I’ve got the pleasant superficial chats skill under my belt though I can at least go out and have a nice day in the world without obsessively avoiding all possible human interactions.
Try and find somewhere that isn’t hella busy so you won’t be constantly under the pump. Somewhere even that you might get some time to yourself. The main thing is though that you just have to push yourself to a reasonable degree. You have to sort of decide that fuck it, I’ll start this god damned job search and I won’t stop until I’m wearing some swish new shoes!! Don’t expect it to be easy, because it WILL challenge you. You are more than capable to be a superstar though, the only one who would tell you otherwise is yourself. And down the track when you do leave your first job you will have come so far from where you are now, in ways you couldn’t predict yet are so thankful for. You honestly have nothing to lose and everything to gain from giving the job search a crack- put your foot out there, see what job feels right, and I trust that you end up somewhere awesome with lots of hot customers.
~~Anxiety cat xxxx
this is a cool and sensitive answer, <3 u, Anxiety cat.
I haven’t been on my personal tumblr much lately but I have to say - I loved this conversation, and not just because Ivan is a dear friend of mine who I’ve been having great conversations with for years now about race, books, online marketing for the books we love, and so much more.
We’re 3 episodes in now at MiP and have some great guests coming up, including a bookstore owner, a roundtable on those publishing certificate programs with 2 POC who went through them, editors, and much more. Subscribe to us on iTunes!
Date night! [x]