My favorite thing about country music is the focus on storytelling. Country songs are full of vivid characters and tales of heartbreak and hi-jinks. I think this is why, sometimes when I’m listening to country, I start feeling like a different character myself. The funny thing is, it’s not necessarily the character featured in the song I’m listening to, it’s a character within myself that can only be awakened by a certain combination of lyrics and banjo chords. For example, the other day when my boyfriend Nick got home from work, I said hi and then immediately began railing against “big city fat cats” who don’t understand the values of the REAL America. Nick shook his head and said, “You’ve been listening to ‘Flyover States’ again, haven’t you?” Oops. Guilty. Here is a rundown of my five main country music alter egos and the songs that trigger them… Keep reading »
Buying your first piece of IKEA furniture. Backpacking around Europe. One-night stands. Splurging on dinner Friday night and spending the rest of the week eating ramen. These are just a few of the things most of us expect of our 20s.
Something that isn’t on anyone’s list? Slowing going blind from a degenerative eye disease.
It wasn’t on Nicole Kear’s list, either. And the Yale and Columbia graduate intended to live her life like it wasn’t. She moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career, fell in love, got married and even attended clown school. Yet through it all, Kear knew a degenerative eye disease she had been diagnosed with at 19 was slowing taking her vision away. She was told she had one good decade before she would be entirely blind. Her family and husband knew about the disease (retinitis pigmentosa), but Kear was embarrassed and hardly told any friends — she had lots of excuses for why her eye makeup looked messy or she wouldn’t drive at night. However, Kear and her husband settled into new parenthood, and she had to come to terms with the realities of her disabilities, including learning how to walk with a cane.
I read Nicole Kear’s funny, fascinating memoir Now I See You in almost one sitting and came away from it thinking, I could be friends with this person. She’s smart, spunky, and makes it easy to put yourself in her (unfortunately, no longer high-heeled) shoes. I gave her a call at home in Brooklyn to chat about blindness, how she managed to write a book with three young kids, and giving strangers the benefit of the doubt.
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What is it about Boston terriers that makes them so damn cute? Bosco the puppy would be fun to hang out with even if he wasn’t having his very first taste of peanut butter alongside his dog buddy Riley. But his utter and complete glee makes him that much more adorable. I get it, Bosco — nothing’s yummier than peanut butter. [Jezebel]
I worked in retail for most of my adult life, and now I write for a living, so to alleviate what can be total, absolute boredom in the summer, I’ve had to come up with ways to have adventures and keep my brain stimulated without spending much money. Of course, you can always go to the beach, but the last time I did that I got sun poisoning, so I like to have alternatives.
I know a lot of people who are taking up new sports ($), going to street festivals ($$) or music festivals ($$$), and traveling ($$$$). Meanwhile, I’ve learned to make the best of my community and my shallow pockets thusly: Keep reading »