Reading List: Allergies to Air, and Other Fun 2018 Realities

We’re in the dog days of summer, my darlings, a time of year in which the constellation Sirius appears to rise before the sun. Thank you friend of the Missive Charlie for enlightening us to the possible origins of this informative idiom, because in San Francisco it sure doesn’t refer to it being too hot, as I type here clad in hoodie and wool socks. Ah weather, what a charming and totally original topic to fall back on when you’re too damned tired to think of a clever opener before your coffee.

And not to harp on the super-interesting subject, but the fires up north are funneling their plumes into the Bay Area, and San Francisco’s air is supposedly 3 times worse than Beijing’s right now. Which means my histamine reactions are going to 11, and wearing costume jewelry yesterday has lead to hives on hives on hives this morning. TMI? Whatever, half of you are heading to Burning Man anyways and not even reading this ;)


David Gelles, James B. Stewart, Jessica Silver-Greenberg and Kate Kelly, Elon Musk Details ‘Excruciating’ Personal Toll of Tesla Turmoil (New York Times)

Kara Swisher, Elon Musk Is the Id of Tech (New York Times) - There is SO much to unpack in both of these pieces, and I suggest you read the first before you read the second. And ask yourself a couple of questions: 1) if this was a female CEO of a beleaguered but hot publicly traded company, how would the first story differ? 2) What do you think went through the company flack’s head when they saw that first story hit / is there any way we can venmo them for a CBD tincture? 3) Is there any way that all Valley decisions be required to go under Kara Swisher’s scrutiny before they impact actual humans?

Tim Miller, The Embarrassingly Timid Trump Opposition (Crooked Media) - Crooked Media’s conservative curmudgeon is an absolute delight to read in so many ways, but especially when his withering disdain is laser-focused on the mealy-mouthed-or-lack-thereof opposition to Trump’s greatest hits of illegalities from supposedly-principled Republicans. But before you liberal Misschevians get excited to see him eat his own, take in his choice words about the lack of elected Democrat chutzpah to chain themselves “to the Senate dais like an environmental activist protesting the uprooting of an endangered redwood.” TL;DR, we’re totes fucked.

Tim Sommer, “Why Weezer’s “Africa” Is the Worst Pop Recording of All Time” (RealClear Life) - I have no idea what we did to deserve this righteous rant about shitty irony in music, but my god am I grateful for it. Choice line: “Nothing can be moving, meaningful, joy inducing or tear-wrenching if irony is involved, because anything that is ironic positions itself as superior to standard human emotion, superior to anything that can touch you.” PREACH.

Tatiana Siegel, The New Politics of Hollywood Sex Scenes in the #MeToo Era (Hollywood Reporter) - Considering that part of some performers’ jobs is simulating love and physical passion for art, the fact that artists and their management still need to fight for greater oversight, safety protocols and workplace standards is infuriating.

And finally,

Gita Jackson, We Can't Fix The Internet (Kotaku) - Sigh. Just read this. Then go get yourself a nice cup of coffee and contemplate morality.

I love and appreciate you all. Be kind to each other, mmmkay?
xoxo Amy