Hello/Welcome Here Is Some Of My Old Stuff To Read
Some of these you may have seen, some are pretty deep cuts, annotations added
A lot of people signed up for my newsletter this week, presumably because I wrote this story about how I was confused about what Peloton was and then I started using my friend’s and was like OH THIS IS A PELOTON.
If you’re paying, thank you, that’s great, if you’re not, also thank you, please consider it if you can/want to, if not, please know I am delighted to have readers and listeners, paying and non-paying.
So hello to old readers and welcome to new ones. (If you ever are not getting newsletters look in “socials” or junk.) My Substack archive is here. You will see that in addition to writing I also do two podcasts, Very Specific Interviews, and Didn’t See It, Don’t Need To, with my friend, the writer Joshua Clover. VSI is interviews about very specific moments or things. In DSI, DNT, we review films we haven’t seen.
If you’re new to my work, here are some things aside from this newsletter to read:
I write about watches for the watch website Hodinkee, five columns so far, here is the first. If you think you don’t care about watches, I didn’t care about them either until I started writing these, also, you don’t have to like watches in order to read. I am thinking about writing a book about watches?
I recently wrote about my brother being a youth hockey star for the New Yorker website. I also interviewed him for Very Specific Interviews. This story used to be three times as long as it is now. The editor Jessica Winter (author of The Fourth Child) cut tons of it and I let her because she is always right.
I wrote about my two beautiful heelers for the New Yorker website. This piece was first rejected by the New York Times, and I wrote back “You’re making a big mistake” when I got the email, mostly to make myself laugh, but also because they were.
This is a more obscure piece, about having the flu, that I wrote for The Awl. No one read this story when it came out. I love it, it’s my favorite story ever. If you hate the movie Birdman, read it.
I used to do Kundalini Yoga, which I have mixed feelings about. I wrote about it for The Awl years ago. Funny story about this story: in the draft I turned in, every section had a heading, like A is for Ashram, B is for Bhajan, all the way to Z, and I put them in because I thought the piece was all over the map and it gave it structure but Choire Sicha was the editor and he was like “These headings are horrifying, the rest of the piece without them is good.”
I wrote this sort of fan fictiony thing about Emma Watson dropping out of Brown. I think it’s the second thing I wrote for The Awl, the first was about the Salem witch trials but is a joke. I was very depressed, almost suicidal, when I wrote these pieces but Carrie Frye asked me to do them and I thought I should just say yes because we were both Writers in College together. I hadn’t published anything in a while and thought my writing career was over, which, certainly the world could have survived but since I had no other skills and no large fortune I myself was a bit concerned. After I wrote this, I wrote a story about Winona Ryder shoplifting, also for The Awl, and got more work, and life improved.