Longform

Special Edition Outtakes & Excerpts #1: Enjoying the In-Between

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Fran and Emma (2016) by Kate Mitchell

I sat with my back against a hundred-year-old grave marker, eighteen years old, the promise of liberty as a soon-to-be-college-student pumping adrenaline through my veins. Michael kept close. He knew the graveyard creeped me out a little. It was February and a few degrees below freezing—the perfect excuse to sit side-by-side, knees touching. Funny how quickly intimacy can blossom between strangers.

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Art

Afternoon Rainstorm Beneath the White Tent (Again): Dinner Party Does Frieze LA

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Articles on commercial art fairs almost always start with some variation of, “It’s easy to hate on [insert art fair here],” and Frieze is no exception. To a large degree, this statement rings true—and not just because an art critic is attempting to make some lofty, highbrow commentary about the debasement of visual art through commodification.

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Think Piece Roundup

Think Piece Roundup: Marie Kondo and The Life‑Changing Magic of Tidying Up

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I’m fascinated by America’s current fixation with Marie Kondo. I’ve been familiar with the KonMari method for years now, from an old boss who eagerly anticipated getting their hands on the English translation of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up back in 2014. And though I had an inkling that Kondo’s gentle, thoughtful approach to organization had the potential to reach the upper echelons of spirited office lunch hour conversations, I never would have imaged that this cheery, shiny-haired tidying fairy could actually cause thrift stores across the country to restrict their intake due to an overwhelming increase in donations.

Not only has Kondo caused the creation of a slew of new memes, a dedicated r/konmari subreddit with over 40k followers, and an entirely new verb, but thanks in part to her wildly popular Netflix series, it seems that Kondo and her methods have sent more than a few cultural pundits into a typing frenzy. Read on for a curated list of articles about the internet’s latest obsession, from an assessment of “the privilege of clutter,” to a dissection of the not-so-subtle racist outcry against the organizing guru.

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Events

2018 Vulture Festival Los Angeles: Sunday

For pop culture junkies, it’s easy to go way too hard at the Vulture Festival knowing that you could be getting the inside scoop on Syfy’s Deadly Class one moment and touring Grand Central Market with Phil Rosenthal and Nancy Silverton the next. We learned our lesson from last year and paced ourselves accordingly on Sunday, focusing on a handful of the festival’s returning “signature” events. Read on for some of our favorite moments from Day Two.

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Longform

On Form N-400

This essay was originally published by the literary journal Rock & Sling in Vox, a special edition issue on the 2016 presidential election. You can get your hands on this issue, as well as the upcoming Vox II: American Identities by visiting their online store

“You can color in the bubbles for me,” Courtland offered, sliding the ballot across our kitchen table.

I looked at him, horrified. “That’s fraud!”

“Only joking,” he said. “I’ll let you wear the sticker though.” He held up the small white oval stuck to his thumb.

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