Interweb Finds: the most scenic national parks, a portrait of debt & more

Interweb Finds: the most scenic national parks, a portrait of debt & more

Happy Tuesday, friends!

(And to those of you buried under what, as of Monday evening, is supposed to be an epic snowfall, happy stay-the-hell-home day, am I right? Let me know if you want a postcard from SoCal.)

I’m back in the the swing of things at school for my last semester EVER, working on my freelancing (and job-hunting) game and reading a LOT. Right now, I’m reading three books simultaneously, and over the weekend I plowed through Stephen King’s On Writing. I love writing, but when I read a lot, I love writing even more. Kinda cool how that works, huh?

Anyway! As promised, your monthly interweb finds:

A round-up of the most scenic national parks. Uh, I need to get on the road. I’ve only visited three (and driven through two) out of 25!

Related: scenic cabins to make you hate winter less. (I’m really thinking of you, East Coast!)

If you’re like me and psyched that Friends is on Netflix but don’t want to watch the entire series through (again), here’s a handy list of the best episodes.

A fascinating (and important) read: What Ruth Bader Ginsburg Taught Me About Being a Stay-at-Home Dad.

“[M]en appear to be just as dissatisfied with the stickiness of gender-based norms as women: Nearly half of fathers report dissatisfaction with the amount of time that they are able to spend with their children—twice the rate of mothers who say the same. The gender-equality debate too often ignores this half of the equation. When home is mentioned at all, the emphasis is usually on equalizing burdens—not equalizing the opportunity for men, as well as women, to be there.”

On a similar note, can we solve our childcare problem?

“Conservative women have long charged feminists with hypocrisy for employing other women at low wages as they make headway in corporate America. […] I don’t think hiring a nanny is hypocritical, but I do think that a failure to acknowledge how another woman’s hard work enables your own is a major feminist blind spot.”

The Debt Project is a photo series and catalyst for an honest conversation about the way debt cripples people all across America. We talk about debt as a national problem often, but very rarely do we open up about our own struggles with debt. Do you agree?

A beautiful reminder for when you’re having a shitty day: today is not over yet.

$837/month for a one-bedroom apartment blocks from the beach is unheard of in Santa Monica. When can I move in?

Vitriolic comment section aside (seriously, wtf is all the hate about?) I love these vintage photos of hippie communes.

Hilarious and accurate: Disney princesses with realistic hair.

How to book the cheapest flight possible anywhere.

That’s all the web finds for this month. Stay warm, and read a good book if you have the day off! What’s on your reading list?

Interweb Finds: A vintage trailer makeover, dogs annoying cats with friendship & more

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Merry (almost) Christmas, friends!

Soon, John and I will be hopping on a plane headed east to spend a week with our families back home, and I can’t wait to finally break out my beloved winter coat I never get to wear in sunny SoCal. It’s going to be nice being spoiled by our parents again.

I’m not hauling my laptop with me, but I’ve got a couple posts scheduled to keep this space fresh in the meantime. And when I return in time for New Year’s Eve, I plan on digging into some coding and design to debut a new layout that’s going to be clean and simple but still have a little flair. I’M SO EXCITED, GUYS.

But for now, here are those interweb finds you came for.

A visual alphabet-dictionary of unusual words. My favorite is scripturient: possessing a violent desire to write.

The musical middle class is getting squeezed:

“The truth is that touring is hardly a big moneymaker for many bands. It’s expensive. It’s viciously competitive. It’s tiring. And not every band can command the $100 or $200 or $500 a ticket that acts like Beyoncé and Madonna can. As such, tour revenue has become more unevenly distributed among artists over time, exaggerating music’s superstar economy and contributing to the hollowing out its middle class.”

People who live near the Hollywood sign are trying to hide it and decrease traffic in their neighbors. How? By making deals with Google and GPS company Garmin to place it somewhere else entirely on the map.

I really enjoyed this interview with Chris Rock. An excerpt:

“To say Obama is progress is saying that he’s the first black person that is qualified to be president. That’s not black progress. That’s white progress. There’s been black people qualified to be president for hundreds of years.”

Sometimes, people say really stupid things on the internet. Do they deserve to be called out? Sure, probably. Do they deserve to be blasted by the media, ridiculed by thousands of strangers online and get canned from their job? One journalist responsible for the demise of a woman’s career reconsiders.

HI. SWOON. I adore this vintage trailer makeover.

I literally got teary-eyed watching this: dogs annoying cats with friendship.

Aaaand we’re going to double down on the HuffPo pet videos, because we can: shelter pets at the Christmas dinner table.


That’s all from me for this month—I’ve got packing to do. Have a happy, stress-free week!

Interweb Finds: Body farms, homemade cookie butter & more

Bradbury building

Oh hey guys. Remember me?

I’m officially on Thanksgiving break, which means I finally feel like I have a moment to exhale, relax and get back to this blogging space I love so dearly. I’m sorry I’ve left you so long.

A few updates from my world: I’m working on a couple of longer stories that I’m really excited about (and hope I can find a home for). I’ve made some very tough but what I hope will be rewarding decisions to take career-related risks that one day I might not have the luxury of taking. (As in, when those student loan bills start rolling in.) And John and I are cooking Thanksgiving dinner for the second year in a row. (This time, with his sister as our guest!) All very exciting things. I’m planning on having a much-needed catch-up session on my blog reader this week, but I’d love to hear what’s going on in your lives.

I thought this space was about due for roundup of the best web finds from the past couple of weeks. Check ’em out!

How to make homemade cookie butter. (I die.)

Good news for grumpy people: they get the details right.

If you’re fascinated and awed by all things morbid, check out this piece on body farms and how they’re used to learn about the decomposition process.

“The bodies are donated and left out in the elements as part of research aimed at better understanding the process of decomposition, mainly to assist in criminal investigations. When an unidentified body turns up, the first question police typically ask is how long ago the person died — and the observations made at body farms have been crucial in allowing them to answer it.”

Did you see the video of the woman getting catcalls all day as she silently walked around New York City? Here’s a hilarious video depicting what it’s like to walk around as a white guy in NYC for 10 hours.

Best gift ever: a woman wondered if she and her mom would’ve been friends if they weren’t mother and daughter. So she Photoshopped pictures of both of them growing up and the results are perfect.

You should move at least five times in your life.

Check out this awesome, trippy and totally acoustic instrument handmade by the artist playing it. I’d like to meditate in that room.

Is Banksy a woman? This writer makes a case for it. (And if you haven’t seen Banksy Does New York yet, it’s a great documentary available on HBO.)

Here’s how Alexandra Franzen met the love of her life.

“I also expressed — by ticking the appropriate boxes in my profile setting — that I was interested in a long-term relationship. Not short-term-and-let’s-see-where-this-goes. Not casual. Long. Term. Love. That was the truth, so that’s what I put.”

The Men’s Central Jail in Los Angeles has its very own gay wing unlike anything else in any other jail or prison. Instead of violence and racism, there is fashion and love. (My badass classmate and friend Ani Ucar knocked it out of the park with her first cover story in L.A. Weekly!)

Do you ever feel like you’re not good enough? Stephanie from Loudmouth Lifestyle talks openly about her own experience with self-doubt and gives us all a much-needed reminder of realizing our worth.

On a similar note, Hannah Brencher kills it with this one: you can’t be all the things.


That’s all for this week! I promise not to be gone so long again this time—after the holiday, I’ll have another featured Feminist to Follow.

In the meantime, have a happy Thanksgiving! How are you celebrating?

Interweb Finds: Dream jobs, Gillian Flynn’s influences & more

Interweb Finds

My birthday was the best, you guys.

Not only did I eat the tastiest sushi at my favorite local spot and drink mai tais in the tiniest, diviest tiki bar (pictured above!) with friends, but I also spent the rest of the weekend exploring the O.C. and hanging out with corgis at Corg-a-palooza, or Corgi Beach Day. There were hundreds of corgis. On the beach. It was as magical as it sounds. Pictures to come.

But now, web finds!

Speaking of corgis, Melyssa’s letter to her corgi pup Monja was just about the sweetest thing ever. (Do you feel the same way about your pets?) Aaaand while I’m on a corgi kick, here’s a video of a tiny corgi playing with a pumpkin. Okay, I’m done.

Have you seen Gone Girl yet? Author and screenwriter Gillian Flynn lists her biggest influences for the book.

Through stories of her encounters with racism, Amanda explains what it’s like being biracial:

“Being biracial means I’m always, eternally, perpetually both races, not what’s convenient for you.”

A long and fascinating read about a sting in the desert that ruined lives—and it was all over illegally removed Native American artifacts.

Creepy and unethical, or harmless fantasy? I vote the former. People are stealing baby photos on Instagram.

Grumpy Cat has an angry competitor, and I couldn’t love him more. (THAT FACE!)

The once-beloved Beverly Hills hotel is practically deserted, and the celebrity boycott is only hurting hotel employees.

Have you heard of Dream Jobbing? I’m on the lookout for my next gig!

I hadn’t noticed, but the musical fade-out is fading out, and the explanation is actually pretty interesting.

“The Beatles preferred cold endings throughout their career, but they became more open to the fade-out after they stopped touring in 1966. No longer burdened by the need to recreate their songs onstage, they got a lot more creative with their endings, and it was during this period that they recorded some of the all-time great fade-outs.”

Unbelievable photos of Melanie Griffith and her pet lion. (Um?! That playful swipe of the paw looks deadly.)

Something to make you feel better that your’e not the only one, and worse because, well, it sucks: student loan repaying is so complicated, even a top expert can’t figure it out.

We need to stop saying babies ruin bodies. It’s not just harmful, it’s completely shallow and is a disservice to the beauty of motherhood.

You’re in a relationship and you’ve laid out your baggage and issues. Great. That doesn’t excuse you from never working on them, as Jas so wisely explains:

“Instead of transferring the blame of our own shortcomings to the ones who refuse to indulge them, why don’t we ponder the following: you don’t get a free pass just because you alert your partner to your emotional baggage and bad behavioral patterns. It doesn’t make you a better partner and grant you a pardon from the negative things that you do.”


That’s all the web finds for this month! Why don’t you say hi on Twitter?

Interweb Finds: How to eat sushi, grown-ass women & more

Manhattan Beach Pier

This weekend, I fell in love with Manhattan Beach.

Like, what-do-I-have-to-do-to-move-here in love. The temperatures in L.A. were as high as 110 in some areas this weekend, but you wouldn’t have known it at the coast. Manhattan Beach was a nice respite from the Venice and Santa Monica madness, and exploring made me feel like I was on vacation. So sweet.

My interweb finds posts will be monthly from now on, which means I’ll be throwing in more links with each post!

Check out this month’s web finds:

My new favorite band is Lucius, and I can’t get this song out of my head. These girls (and guys) are electric live.

For book lovers and list lovers: How many of these books have you read? I enjoy the writer’s challenging of a “Best American Novels” list to which this more inclusive list responds.

Sarah Von Bargen has been killing it with her Grown-Ass Woman series. This post on friendships might just be my favorite.

Aside from the claustrophobia and inability to walk, it’d be cool to be a permaid for Halloween. (See more photos on the mysterious permaid’s site here.)

This might be the reason we hate the word “moist.”

Do you know the right way to eat sushi? (I didn’t know you’re supposed to eat with your hands!)

So interesting: an Australian’s first impression of the U.S.

“Everything is ‘cute’. My top was cute, my hair looked cute, oh, isn’t that sign cute? I don’t think I’ve every called something cute if it wasn’t a small child or an animal…”

The oldest person to have ever lived just celebrated her 127th birthday. And sadly, the world’s tallest dog just died.

Reese Witherspoon seems so down-to-earth in this interview, and one essay argues that the upcoming films Wild and The Good Lie have saved her career. I can’t wait to see her portray Cheryl Strayed on the big screen.

College is a ludicrous waste of money. Strong words. Do you agree?

Such a thoughtful post from Shannon: Does your partner need to be a feminist?

“I think about how long it took me to understand the term, to not instinctually shrink away from it, and I wonder, is it more important that my boyfriend identifies as a feminist or that he acts like one?”

This post on getting stuck in the consumerism trap probably rings familiar for a lot of people. I’ve become much more aware of it myself lately.


That’s all for this month! Check back Thursday for the return of Beer with a Blogger.