Emchap's Shit from the Internet 06/17/20 🍠

I am fresh off of my first therapy appointment since quarantine started, which was weird in the way video therapy is weird, and nice in the way therapy in general nice, and overall re-affirmed my friend's statement the other week that the point of therapy is to talk about other people who are not in therapy. I ugly snot-cried and because I was in the living room rather than my therapist's office, I got to enjoy the slightly offput glares from my cat, who was awoken from his nap by my interpersonal processing.

This week has been a week for bad news from friends I love, all of whom are going through worse shit than me, and I know that time marches on and is fundamentally indifferent to the human condition, but fuck this year extremely. I'm tired and sad and want off the ride, please. I want to rewind to five months ago when I was happier or fast forward to five years from now when hopefully this will all be a distant smudge in my rapidly-deteriorating memory. I on a visceral level do not wish to be living in the present and I would like off the ride, please.

It has been a good time to lean on my professionally sad friends recently, because there is something freeing in being able to just lean into "this is bad, nothing is good, we wish that this were different" as an energy from them. All of this fucking sucks and thinking about how COVID is going to continue to be a thing for the next two years and I'm still (inshallah) going to turn 30 and freak out about that and my loved one's loved ones are still going to be sick and other people will go through their own breakups and I will get annoyed with people I like for petty shit and the world will continue to be unjust unless we shove it in the direction of absolutely bare minimum improvement is just slightly overwhelming now. And obviously the amount that this is messing with me is in part a reflection of the fact that things were easier for me before than they have historically been for other folks and that kicks off a guilt cycle and the snake eats its sad tail.

I was chatting the other night with a friend who is also quarantining alone about how weird that process is, and about how even before all of this started my life for the last few years has felt transient and unreal. The thing about living in very big cities is that people move in and out of them (LA is less bad about this than NYC, but it's still there) because it's expensive and hard and you can earn a bunch of money and still live in a one-bedroom apartment without central air in a city that breaks 100 for much of the summer. And he pointed out that the whole time he's known me (which is four or five years at this point, which is WILD) I've been talking about a need for community and stability and home, mostly focused around Atlanta, and I've been chewing on that this week.

I still am pretty certain I don't want to move back—my absolute worst ex-boyfriend once told a friend of mine that once I moved to NYC he figured that was all she wrote for me and Atlanta, and he's a tirefire but part of the reason that he's my worst ex is that he was also the one that knew me best—but my friend's point is true, and it feels like when my lease renews it may be the end of Big City Life for me.

It's hard to think seriously about any big future plans because of course planning to blow up my whole life post-breakup is my Move and planning anything right now feels like pandemic bangs and post-breakup at-home hairdye all rolled into one, but it's been interesting to have a little interior project to noodle on. I don't know what my life will look like in a year on a number of fronts, but I am starting to maybe be a little bit tentatively optimistic.

Shit to read

Shit to eat

  1. Buy some zucchini.

  2. Get dumped.

  3. Survive on raw fruit and self pity for a few days.

  4. Remember that the zucchini does not give a shit if you are sad, and will rot in your crisper regardless.

  5. Grate up two zucchini using your food processor. It will feel cathartic in a way you do not wish to analyze.

  6. Toss that into a bowl.

  7. Add 2 normal eggs or 4 wee little baby medium eggs from happy chickens.

  8. 2/3 cup canola oil and do not knock over the container because cleaning up that shit sucks.

  9. Half cup each of white and brown sugar.

  10. A teaspoon of vanilla; cheap is fine.

  11. A teaspoon and a bit of course salt.

  12. Stir it up with a wood spoon. Feel how feeble your arms have gotten during isolation.

  13. 2 teaspoons of generic pie space. Get funky with it.

  14. 3/4 teaspoon baking soda that I think I almost certainly didn't add.

  15. 1/2 teaspoon baking powder.

  16. Stir it all up then stir some more to be certain.

  17. 2 cups of whatever flour you have around.

  18. Preheat the oven to 350. While that's starting, dump the batter into a greased loaf pan and just truly coat the top of it with the coarse sugar you bought to make the fancy chocolate cookies from the now-canceled food writer last Christmas.

  19. Go stand somewhere nicer while the oven is heating.

  20. When it's done, toss the loaf in there for an hour.

  21. Cool overnight, and then enjoy a tasty breakfast treat.

(Adapted from Smitten Kitchen's ultimate zucchini bread.)

Shit to watch

  • Knives Out is finally on streaming, so I have finally seen it, and you know what? It was a delight.

Shit to buy