in recent years

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an overlong ode to disneyland

I am missing Disneyland today.*

22609 -- disneyland resort

Well, to be fair, I am never not missing Disneyland, but today is wielding a particularly powerful ache for it around my ribs. Sort of haunting and cold and sad.

This is partially because I spent a couple of hours last night reading posts about Disney projects that never came to fruition in their original forms — Port Disney, WESTCOT Center, Disney’s America, and The SS Disney — and partially because I am just a person who is subject to flights of whimsy, nostalgia, and misery.

  [more…]

back to school with judy blume: an outro

OKAY. I’ve put this off for too long and I can’t take it anymore. I want to wrap up my Back to School with Judy Blume project before I forget everything about all eight of the books I read last month. I put it off because this is my 100th post! And I wanted to figure out a way to celebrate that! And probably give away some free shit!* But I came up with absolutely nothing. So here we are instead.

school's out with judy blume
I spent my September getting emotionally educated by the inimitable Judy Blume and eight of her teen and pre-teen protagonists. I learned some stuff! And I remembered some stuff! And I shared a whole bunch of personal details that probably no one in their right mind ever needed! That was my favorite part though, let’s be real.

Most of all,   [more…]

back to school with judy blume: blubber

Dear Judy,

Reading Blubber was not a fun experience. That’s usually a sign of a book that has affected me in some way, so that’s not necessarily a harbinger of doom or anything. But, let me tell you, it’s not not either.

I am fat, Judy. Extremely fat! Death fat. The kind of fat that they crop the heads off of on the news while talking about the OBESITY EPIDEMIC that apparently has a death grip on the entire United States. I was a fat kid, a fat adolescent, a fat teenager, a fat adult, a fat undergrad, a fat substitute teacher, a fat grad student, a fat unemployed writer, and I’ll probably someday die while fat. I will likely always be fat. And, Judy,   [more…]

back to school with judy blume: deenie

The exact edition from my youth. Bless those crazed vintage buyers.

Dear Judy,

Deenie. Where do I even start?

Deenie was the second of your books to reach me in my youth and after rereading, I find myself with a fondness for Deenie and her story akin to the one I have for Margaret and hers. I see flaws in their characters more clearly than I did as a kid, but they are the ones who knew me when, two of my favorite companions on the torturous path of adolescence.

Okay, Judy, let’s get personal. By sixth grade — Deenie’s very age — I had already worked out the whole masturbating thing. Not just the doing it bit, but that it was normal, that it wouldn’t kill   [more…]

back to school with judy blume: otherwise known as sheila the great

Dear Judy,

First, allow me to apologize for my tardiness. This is not a Festive-Ass Flicks Situation, I literally lost a day this week and still have no idea whether it was Monday or Tuesday that I left in the dust somewhere. I thought yesterday was Tuesday and woke up this morning, ready to finish reading and write to you, but discovered it was Thursday while checking the weather. I even had a conversation with my dad about it being Wednesday yesterday because we both thought it was Tuesday. Was it aliens, Judy? I’m scared.

Second, Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great was pretty okay! Sheila is particularly irritating, even as a background character in Tales of a Fourth Grade   [more…]