RuPaul’s Drag Race vocabulary guide

Rupauls drag race dictionary vocabularyMy best friend Tyler is a doctor of clinical psychiatry who recently put his brainpower to work in an email thread introducing a friend to a dictionary of RuPaul’s Drag Race terms. In honor of the upcoming Season 6, I’ve pasted it with minimal edits below.

“Dearest ladies and lady-boys venturing into RuPaul’s Drag Race:

To minimize the jarring nature of your transition to euphoria, I’ve crafted a little insider’s guide to all things drag, particularly the nuanced lexicon in use by these world-class enterTAINTers.

Dictionary (the library is OPEN):

Jujubee from RuPaul's Drag Race in the library reading you to filth

Fishy: generally used to refer to a queen who seems “real,” in terms of femininity. Sometimes, this is used in a derogatory fashion (i.e., “She may be fishy, but she’s not that talented”). It is also possible to “serve fish,” meaning you’re going for a particularly “girly” look.

Ki-Ki: the process of gossiping with another queen. You may often hear reference to a “Ki-Ki session.”  (more…)

How to find a journalist’s email address in 8 steps

Sherlock Holmes hat and magnifying glass to show finding someone's email address

Most news sites don’t make their writers’ contact info easy to find. If it were, reporters would get even more slammed with pitches, spam, and crazy reader rants than they already are. The further down the digital rabbit hole the email is, the more effort it takes to find (and the more it weeds out uncommitted people and bots).

I’ve gotten pretty good at finding people’s email addresses, so I’m sharing my process here. Start at step one, and you should find most emails by around step four. The tough ones will have you going all the way through eight.   (more…)

Quotes about writing from Stephen King’s “On Writing”

Stephen King quotes on writing

I read Stephen King’s “On Writing” recently and loved it. It’s full of great quotes about writing. I compiled all the ones that I highlighted while reading below.

The book is half autobiography, half writing advice. I’ve been a fan of Stephen King since I was a kid, so probably had extra appreciation for his story about becoming a writer, but any writer will find it interesting. It’s like the storytelling version of Strunk and White’s “The Elements of Style.”   (more…)

Punctate Inner Choroidopathy, the fun retinal disease that’s killing my vision

Punctate Inner Choroidopathy PDT lesion

I’m 28, and I’ve been going blind since my freshman year of college.

I don’t talk about it often, and I hesitated for a long time before putting it online (medical diagnoses + Internet = privacy risks), but there’s such a lack of information about it that someone had to do it. It’s a rare eye disease called Punctate Inner Choroidopathy (PIC for short) that causes patches of blindness in the retina. It affects near-sighted women starting in their early twenties.

I first noticed it over spring break in 2004, when I was home from college working on a paper in a Word document. I didn’t realize it then, but a white background and black text is the perfect canvas for spotting anything odd with your vision. I noticed a black spot in my left eye that moved wherever I looked.

At first I thought it was a problem with my contact lenses, which I wore for way too many hours in high school and college. Like, days in a row. And this was before high oxygen contacts were on the market. My bad. But the spot kept getting bigger, and it moved with my eye, not with my contact. While at first I couldn’t see one or two letters on the screen, it progressed to blocking out entire words.   (more…)

My rant in the 2002 Conard High School paper about the tardy policy

Photograph of the front entrance to Conard High School in West Hartford, ConnecticutI was organizing some files on an old hard drive tonight when I found an article I wrote for my high school’s paper about the arbitrariness of the tardy policy.

Although the bitchiness and the grammar make me cringe, reading it brought back memories of how idiotic certain high school rules really were. Plus I’m proud that I was rallying against The Man.

So now I present to you–completely unedited–my rant as it appeared in the February 28th, 2002 Conard High School Pow Wow. I have no idea why they let this run.

Oh, and more than a decade later, I’m still chronically late.   (more…)

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