Wishies

- all dresses were lined, with some light but substantial fabric; every time I look at Shopbop or whatever I just end up going “THAT isn’t lined???” all crazy furious

- more drinks that are unsweetened and uncaffeinated, like, give me a zingy lemon drink but don’t pour a cup of sugar in it, you know? I can handle it. I’m a grown woman.

- that slush ice and slushy drinks generally were available without going to the 7-11 or the mini-putt course near my parents’ house

- that “summer hours” were mandatory and that they were from 12pm onward every weekday (OK maybe on Mondays we can work until 5pm, that’s fine.) Like, how about twelve hour days in the winter because who cares and all-afternoon-outside-soccer-bike-meet-up-hang-ten-hang-time in the summer? Yes???

- that my instinct and inclination was not to drop whatever I’m holding onto a nearby surface but to put whatever I’m holding - a jacket, a shoe, a t-shirt, a lip balm, a coffee cup - where it goes. This would be small magic.

5. Started spring-cleaning my balcony this morning. It’s filthy and depressing, but the fun news is that I guess this is what my apartment/life/gestalt looks like from the outside.
4. Despite his affiliation with one Ms. Taylor Swift I hadn’t experienced any Ed Sheeran before (I mean, he’s a ginger) but his cover of “Drunk in Love” (with some “1+1” carefully dropped inside), which I found via Vulture, is a delight. I’m working on a hugely emotional (emotional for *me*, I’m not projecting) story about love and life (guh forever) with “We Be All Night” as the working title so, you know.
3. This is my best tweet of the week.
2. Really the only joy and pleasure I’ve felt for the past couple weeks has been in the gym - and I *hate* the gym ritual of sports bras and shoelaces and loud TVs and sweaty strangers - which I attribute to the ad-hoc “hot yoga” I’ve been doing in the sauna after running. Remember when people were ordering espresso and making fake lattes at the milk counter at Starbucks? This is like that.
1. The Smithsonian channel tweeted me this. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5. Started spring-cleaning my balcony this morning. It’s filthy and depressing, but the fun news is that I guess this is what my apartment/life/gestalt looks like from the outside.

4. Despite his affiliation with one Ms. Taylor Swift I hadn’t experienced any Ed Sheeran before (I mean, he’s a ginger) but his cover of “Drunk in Love” (with some “1+1” carefully dropped inside), which I found via Vulture, is a delight. I’m working on a hugely emotional (emotional for *me*, I’m not projecting) story about love and life (guh forever) with “We Be All Night” as the working title so, you know.

3. This is my best tweet of the week.

2. Really the only joy and pleasure I’ve felt for the past couple weeks has been in the gym - and I *hate* the gym ritual of sports bras and shoelaces and loud TVs and sweaty strangers - which I attribute to the ad-hoc “hot yoga” I’ve been doing in the sauna after running. Remember when people were ordering espresso and making fake lattes at the milk counter at Starbucks? This is like that.

1. The Smithsonian channel tweeted me this. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Kissy cats, for an April header. I’m hecka allergic to cats, but you guys, they are *kissing*

Kissy cats, for an April header. I’m hecka allergic to cats, but you guys, they are *kissing*

I have no top fivey for this week. Life isn’t usual right now, and all of my heart-gestalt is being sent out in the form of lovebeams and good vibrations, to my friends, then and now, who need them. <3
[Image]

I have no top fivey for this week. Life isn’t usual right now, and all of my heart-gestalt is being sent out in the form of lovebeams and good vibrations, to my friends, then and now, who need them. <3

[Image]

"The nicest guy I know is from Lubbock, Texas" is a thing I like to say. Eyad was the nicest - the. nicest. - person I have ever met, really. A sunshine-guy. He’s been ill, and he died two nights ago. All of my love is with his wife, his family, his friends. 

My name means “pure” (look it up!), which is so real. In the discovery phase (that’s a “Good Wife” nod, specifically) of re-deciding what I want in my life and work, “purity” (and “realness” and “wonder” and “earnestness” and various other constructive, posi and un-cynical values) kept coming up over and over.

(Please note that all of these qualities can and should be folded into big curiosity and practiced expressions of thought/intelligence; while this is an approach and sensibility on its own, it’s not a way to deke out of thinking and working hard.)

I think I used to write to explore and exorcise what I saw around me, which in my twenties *was* a lot of cynicism, irony, identity-pain, the ush. Now I want to write to bring the best expression of my realest, purest (!!!see!!!) stuff to the front. I also think and know that this is where, to be cute about it, culture is going: to be better together. (I mean, even some of the filthiest comedians are on the green-juice tip, the “be nice” tip.)

Being the lighthouse, or whatever that line is, is right.

Imp quest

The Facts:

I’ve lived in my building for about a year and a half.

I semi-regularly find myself in the lobby in a more-or-less Uggs/boxers/hoodie situation.

I less regularly find myself in the lobby in an Uggs/jammie pants/thrown-on winter coat situation.

I’m already about 1/10th as well-dressed as 9/10ths of the women who live here.

The Quest:

Is it in any way OK or appropriate for me to sneak downstairs in straight. up. pajamas? Let’s say some Oxford men’s style jams? And let’s say “sneak” like the way a kid would be getting a vending-machine Kit-Kat down the hotel-hallway in their slippers and it’s easily the most dope part of the trip, and they’re all giggling and loving it?

Context:

I don’t actually need to do this, I just want to? I just want to know.

Weekly Top Fivey!

5. This week, an essay I wrote about why single men should reconsider their Facebook accounts appears in GQ mag; not online but why not buy this pretty issue anyway? Sirs Liam Neesons and Kit Harington are on the alt-covers. (I like that I got a Pharrell.)

4. Broad City is really important to me and to girl/girl friendship.

3. As part of my overall effort/quest to buy zero things, I won’t be spring-wardrobe-overhauling this year, but I did buy this thing of Deborah Lippmann “Blue Orchid” polish a few weeks ago (and then was immediately unable to wear it because a worse-than-I-thought burn on my hand meant no manicures). It’s perfect and beautiful, like you. Anyway I feel like this week is THE WEEK! Let’s go, hands! *claps*

2. On Sunday, I had a quiet-zone of groceries and errands and podcast listening (I also spilled a bag of peanuts on the floor, no big), and on my way home from the store two things happened at the same time: I felt the sun on my face for the first time since… whenever (I didn’t go on any vacations this year like a dummy), and I walked past this posse of girls singing Justin Bieber songs at (like, at, in the direction of) the Hazelton Hotel, where JB was (probably? definitely?) staying (and where you can take me for tacos like, anytime). They were so happy being together in their fandom and youth and friendship, and I was so happy to feel actual warmth, REAL WARMTH, that I (did she? yes she did) cried. Just a little.

1. Yesterday I said “Cool life!” to my friend when describing what I’d done this week (work; desk; write; work; glasses; work; computer; work) and then immediately felt stupid and guilty. I know, again and again, that I’m so lucky to get to do this job, for a job. I don’t have a total handle on all of it yet, even now - there has to be a way for me not to feel like I’m always not doing something - but I’m just so totally lucky, and I know not everyone feels that way. Should probably have some kind of ceremonial move to do following an acknowledgment like this, right? *kisses laptop*

Last-last-year, I stayed at One King West Hotel & Residence during TIFF (previous to that I had one of my most fun girls’-nights with my sister J. here, eating coconut shrimp and talking about boys).

Last weekend I was invited to come for a quick staycation (a.k.a. “staycaysh” henceforth) but was a little sick, one of many bouts of whatever I’ve had this winter that is obviously payback for every time I said “I never get sick!” last year; soooo I re-booked for this weekend, which turned out was really cool timing because as of Friday I truly needed a silent, clean room void of myself and my life for a day, you know what I mean?

I’ve been in a Premium room, where I’ve done the following: lay quietly on the mad-huge bed watching the light change and thinking deeply about my life; staring out the window - olden-days Toronto is very much repped on this stretch of King; see pics - and thinking more thinks; very much enjoyed some room service and a viewing of “Legally Blonde” (TV in bed is a novelty for me, and what better combo could exist than Elle Woods and a staycayshy Saturday?); read the paper and put in a solid million hours of work on Saturday night and Sunday morning/afternoon, because I guess right now just getting things done kind of is relaxing.

This year the hotel is undergoing a 100th anniversary exterior restoration project; in addition to the historical exterior the hotel is known for the underground bank vault and other cool features (like, say, this one, c/o an early Instagram of yours trules).

Necessary weekend cool-down, c/o One King West Hotel & Residence.

vicemag:

Style and Shopping as a Means of Expression and Self-Realization
by Kate Carraway
Illustration by Penelope Gazin
Girls and women (it feels so corny to consider girls and women as these separate classes of experience, right?) have, more so than guys and to our great benefit, style and shopping as a means of expression and self-realization. As problematic as it is to get super-excited about spending money toward, like, selfhood, it’s a socially and emotionally safe way to have some stripe of identity-adventure, to tell ourselves stories through our choices and things, and, more and more, to share those adventures and tell those same stories online. (This is why I don’t hate it when a tween buys a pee-quality body splash for $14 and posts about it; I know what she’s doing when she’s choosing, when she’s having, when she’s showing.)
The online show-off experience could have been about sex—some of it is, obvi—but girls tend to do the show-off parts of the internet the way they do clothes, which is mostly for themselves and for each other. This way of doing the internet, our way, converges as an inward “me gaze.” The aspects of performance and intimacy are all there, but are for us, and for an audience of us-es.
Continue

New by me

vicemag:

Style and Shopping as a Means of Expression and Self-Realization

by Kate Carraway

Illustration by Penelope Gazin

Girls and women (it feels so corny to consider girls and women as these separate classes of experience, right?) have, more so than guys and to our great benefit, style and shopping as a means of expression and self-realization. As problematic as it is to get super-excited about spending money toward, like, selfhood, it’s a socially and emotionally safe way to have some stripe of identity-adventure, to tell ourselves stories through our choices and things, and, more and more, to share those adventures and tell those same stories online. (This is why I don’t hate it when a tween buys a pee-quality body splash for $14 and posts about it; I know what she’s doing when she’s choosing, when she’s having, when she’s showing.)

The online show-off experience could have been about sex—some of it is, obvi—but girls tend to do the show-off parts of the internet the way they do clothes, which is mostly for themselves and for each other. This way of doing the internet, our way, converges as an inward “me gaze.” The aspects of performance and intimacy are all there, but are for us, and for an audience of us-es.

Continue

New by me

The sickest

I caught some gnarly cold and a mega-cough last week, which ends my reign of annoyingly proclaiming that I never get sick (“I just never get sick!”) and my over-reliance on my vitamin regimen. Things I am blaming this cold on: how very North of the Wall-freezing it was last week while I ran errands (I am buying up every ingredient mentioned in the Gwyneth cookbook with an anxious Gwynethy fervor); the dry heat of the sauna at the gym and staying in there too long because it feeeels sooooo gooood; skipping a few days of the bigger/more challenging of my vitamins because I just do that sometimes.

What is getting me through it is a careful orchestra of actual medicine and personal superstition, which anticipatorily includes this:

… which is a Humio humidifier that i ordered off of Amazon in the hell-middle of my cold, so it’s going to arrive when I’m totally better, which is about right. The reviews were good and it’s also a colorful nightlight so, like, YEPPER. [image]

I’ve also been deep into Vicks VapRub, maybe my favorite medicinal product of all-ever, which is likely because my mom used to put a tiny, tiny dot of it on the tip of my nose when I was a kid (my mom was the kind of parent who didn’t let me watch TV for more than maybe an hour when I was home sick, because “if you’re sick enough to stay home, you’re too sick to watch TV,” etc. etc. etc.) and I do that now, too, just a tiny dot (except NOW I’m totally allowed to watch TV, which this week has included the entire series of Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and an 18th go-round of the middle seasons of Gilmore Girls, because the work of Aaron Sorkin and Amy Sherman-Palladino is my ultimate soothy-comfy-nice-nice).

What else… I use a lot of Aquaphor on the regular, but upgraded to Eucerin Dry Skin cream (the thing of it says “ORIGINAL” in a way that commands that old-school, general-store-style realness that is so favored in the cosmetics community lately). I have been clinging to my favorite blankets and moving in and out of my top-tier jammies (and in and out of the laundry corner of my apartment) since this all started.  Today, I’m way better. Later this week, a flu shot.

Weekly Top Fivey

5. When I took "The 5 Love Languages" quiz to determine what my “love language” is, I thought I’d get “Words of Affirmation” or “Physical Touch” because I’m a super-verbal, super-touchy kind of girl. Instead, number one with a bullet, was “Receiving Gifts.” (The others are “Acts of Service” and “Quality Time.”) That’s kind of embarrassing, non? But also, I guess, true: I don’t and have never cared about the money aspect of a gift; what I care about immensely is time and effort and energy, and being thought of and being known. When someone remembers you like one particular kind of dark chocolate and they pick some up during their usual grocery shop and kind of casually slide it over to you… I dunno, those moments feel like being lit up with sugary-white sunlight. (In this scenario, sunlight tastes like the particular kind of dark chocolate I like, too.) I dig writing and sending cards and buying presents (individually or in little gifty bundles) so much that I have a desk in my apartment devoted only to stationary and gift-wrapping, and this week I squeal-revealed to a close pal that I’d already bought him the book he was telling me about, and that it was on its way. Really the Platonic ideals of my love language, right?

4. I have had several projects happening at once for a very long time, and a couple of them have become due at once. This has happened before, and it’s both exciting and heavy in the way it exists in my head, like, I’m more or less alone with everything I do (for now) so it’s just me managing my schedule and my decisions, big and little, and maintaining momentum, all alone like a lost forest animal. (This is not to say that I am not TREMENDOUSLY HAPPY to get to do creative, expressive things for a living. I am grateful every moment in a way that demands cornyness.) So anyway two days ago my friend made a suggestion about how to handle it, which was so true and so right and so helpful, not only in its content but also in its existence, like, DOY, I am never alone. FREEEENZ!!!

3. Iced coffee in winter. Not sure why. I think because the quick sips of it work so fast, a true necessity on a day when getting out of bed includes multiple steps of decreasing warmyness? (Today I sat up, tented myself in a blanket to acclimate to the room sans comforter, then put a warm shirt on under the tent, and then actually stood up.) Also if I drank hot coffee for warmth instead of caffeine I would be squirrely for all eternity so I do iced coffee in the a.m. and herbal tea the rest of the day and therefore achieve a perfect equilibrium.

2. Related: I want these so unbelievably bad.

1. Was on The Current on CBC Radio this morning talking about Lena Dunham, Girls, bodies, girls, etc. Was super-fun as always.

Wait, what?

To be dramatic about it: this is day seven of a theoretically 21-day cleanse that I’m doing for the second year in a row with the adult members of my family (minus my dad, who could not be less interested). The idea is that whoever lasts longest “wins”, and last year, I won while everyone else cracked and had beer or cheese or chocolate. (Spoiler: I already won. !!!) I have food-related plans this weekend, though, so let’s be real about this.

We do the Clean cleanse, favored by Gwyneth Paltrow (don’t you feel like we should have some official short-hand for her? Maybe just a symbol of some kind that requires no utterance?) which is not actually very brutal: one solid meal a day, in the middle, and two liquid meals on either end but not closer than 12 hours together, and no food from the sugar/wheat/dairy/nightshade/inflammatory families. Unlike a juice cleanse, you get a lot of protein and can still chew; it’s the absence of chewing that has thrown a lot of my pals off their cleanses. I think once my friend either did or considered putting food in a baggie and chewing it when he was deep into a cleanse? Anyway.

The reason I’m so good at cleanses is because I need and enjoy limits, especially those that involve other people. This is why I like being a writer: deadlines are how things happen. Being accountable to my family even in a fun group-email “I hate this” way gives me this sense that what I am doing, making, eating, etc., has meaning, and meaning-making is my everything.

That all said, I feel like/think that most cleanses are ineffective and can be dangerous, but for me are the best-ever way to reconsider what food actually is and how it should be used. I never eat as systematically and consciously as I do when I’m on some kind of cleansey program; otherwise, I might just be like “Dry crackers for lunch sounds really good” and be confused two hours later why I’m sleepy. Plus, like, that righteous feeling is its own kind of fuel.

Weekly Top Fivey

5. I wrote this piece for the Globe and Mail about why buying fewer but better clothes is a greater thing than getting sugar-high and buying a zill half-good things from Zara or w/e.

4. I don’t know if this is playing in your town or city or megatropolis but I saw August: Osage County last-last week and I just want to carefully check and fold my vote for Chris Cooper as sweetie-pie dad of the movie-year. And it’s January!

3. Went on DNTO today to talk about dating profiles.

2. On day two of my family’s annual competitive cleanse. Have more to say about this, but am currently too stupid.

1. My birthday was last Saturday. I’m obsessed with birthdays - everyone’s, not just my own - because they are the purest, nicest way to celebrate life generally. I went shopping, and to the spa, and then to dinner, and then to dessert, and I saw and/or talked to almost all of the people who are important to me. Wore a sparkly skirt, you know?