I contributed one of these. See if you can guess which one.
ME: Thanks for humoring me. Is there a word for that in French? It’s when, like, someone is bad at something but you pretend they’re good at it because they’re your friend.
FRENCH GUY: There is not a word for that in French. There is not an idea for that in French.
I got to write about Deaf stuff like three times in the past month. It’s probably my favorite beat but not one where there are a lot of mainstream opportunities.
First, I talked about the “deaf and dumb” American Airlines scandal and how the travel industry consistently gets it wrong for Deaf passengers over on PeterGreenberg.com.
Then, I explained why I really, really hate those “deaf person hears for the first time” viral videos and I wish nobody would ever send them to me.
The last and I think my favorite one was this essay for Teen Vogue about my family. I’m quite proud of this, and I’m thrilled that it did very well - it was the #2 most-read story of the week and has been shared on Facebook nearly six thousand times.
Grandmotherly Advice, Courtesy of Netflix: In the ‘Murder She Wrote’ heroine, I see glimpses of my late ‘Grandmama’
The roots of my obsession with Murder, She Wrote, and about how the show helps me remember my grandmother, who died when I was a teenager.
When people tell me they admire my freelance career, when they tell me it must be nice to sleep in, when they then break eye contact when I tell them how much I am paid, when I am sending a fourth follow-up email to an editor regarding that check, you know, that one you said was in the mail a month ago, this is what I think about:
These teacup balconies in Japan are just delightful.
So a few months ago my ex-boyfriend (we’ll call him B.) decided he wanted to be a writer. I was trying not to be a complete dick about his sudden realization - I mean, who’s to say that you’re bound to one career for your whole life and that you can’t ever develop other interests? - but I also felt zero interest in helping him pursue journalism work. I’ve been doing this shit for about a decade and still barely make a living, so I don’t feel like giving away all of my best info for free, especially to someone who has a trust fund and who tires of new careers easily.
He sold a piece to a decent publication right off the bat. For about five seconds, I was proud of him. But once he had sent me half a dozen panicky emails asking what “file by” means and complaining about all the “extra” work they were asking him to do, I was done. I don’t want to talk shop with him and bond about how annoying it is to go through multiple rounds of edits for what amounts to a blog post. And, on a deeper level, I don’t want to be there for someone who has never been there for me.
I have major issues with class. Those issues have only been amplified since I moved to New York. And now that constant sense of inferiority is combined with frustrations about my own work. Where am I going? What are all these pieces adding up to, what are they building? No matter how many bylines I get or how many of my pitches are accepted it never gets easier. This isn’t the line of work where you get a year-end bonus to congratulate you on your hard work.
Once, a guy I was dating asked me what my favorite flower was. I told him I liked white daisies. He laughed at me. “You see? That’s why you’ll always be poor, because you don’t expect anything better than daisies from a man.”
I didn’t see. I still don’t see.
I was dating that guy and B. at the same time. Foolishly, I thought that if each of them gave me about half of what I wanted from a boyfriend, I could cobble that into a whole relationship. It didn’t work. One half plus one half sometimes equals nothing. And one article plus one article plus one article equals nothing too.
Bich Minh Nguyen, Pioneer Girl
Can I just say how bummed I am that I never got to take one of her classes at UNCG?