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Weekly Reading: Best longreads on the web

Saturday 5th August 2017

Our weekly recap highlighting the best feature stories from around the internet.


Photo: AFP


Aziz Ansari On Quitting The Internet, Loneliness, And Season 3 Of Master Of None, by Mark Anthony Green, GQ

“I was talking to a friend of mine the other day. We both have more money than we ever imagined. And I was like, Can you imagine if someone called us a few years ago and said, “All right, you're going to have this much money when you're this age. What are you gonna do with it?” You would say all sorts of fantastical things, right? No one would say, Oh, I would figure out how to make more money and keep working all the time. Everyone just buys into this, like, Oh, I need to keep making stuff, I need to go make more money. I don't need to make more stuff. I've made a lot of stuff! I'm financially okay. I'm not gonna make stuff just for the sake of making stuff. I want to make stuff ’cause I'm inspired. Right now I don't really feel inspired.”

I’m A Woman, Shake My Hand, Damn It, by Catherine LeClair, Deadspin

“Emboldened by beer, I stuck out my hand for a handshake when my turn came. It felt like an act of defiance—partly a joke, because it somehow felt too formal to shake hands with my co-worker, but it was an instigation too, because I didn’t understand exactly why a cross-sex handshake felt so odd. He looked down at my hand and laughed, and then opened his arms for a hug. I laughed too, undercutting my social experiment for fear of embarrassing one or both of us, and accepted the embrace.”

The Mystery of L.A. Billboard Diva Angelyne's Real Identity Is Finally Solved, by Gary Baum, The Hollywood Reporter

‘"Would you be interested in a story on Angelyne's true identity?" the man wrote last fall under a pseudonym, referring to the enigmatic L.A. billboard diva who has been a pop culture icon of self-creation and self-marketing since the early 1980s — and is now regarded as a forerunner to Paris Hilton, Kim Kardashian and every personal-brand hustler on social media. "I have many details on her life — all well documented — from when her parents met to early adulthood. It's very different from her public, concocted story — and more interesting."’

Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: A conversation with Reni Eddo-Lodge, by Saziah Bashir, The Pantograph Punch

“Sometimes white people ask me ‘what can I do to help?’ and I would say you’ll have to think about that yourself. The undercurrent of entitlement in that question ‘what can I do to help’ is ‘please provide me with the answers.’ I feel it’s not the burden and responsibility of PoC who have been losing out from the system to then also provide the answers to changing that very system. What about the benefactors of that system? If a committed white anti-racist recognizes they are a benefactor of that system, why can’t they spend some time thinking about what they can do to change things?”  

Losing It in the Anti-Dieting Age, by Taffy Brodesser-Akner, The New York Times

“We sat there silently, as if we were aliens who had just arrived on Earth and were learning what this thing called food was and why and how you would eat it. Each time we did the eating exercise, I would cry. ‘‘What is going on for you?’’ the leader would ask. But it was the same answer every time: I am 41, I would say. I am 41 and accomplished and a beloved wife and a good mother and a hard worker and a contributor to society and I am learning how to eat a goddamned raisin. How did this all go so wrong for me?”

How We Should Respond to Photos of Suffering, by Sarah Sentilles, The New Yorker

What should one do when faced with images of violence? I spent thirteen years researching the question, which became more urgent as those years passed and social media began connecting people around the globe. Every week, perhaps every day, something terrible happens somewhere in the world, and, whether it is far away or right at home, we are inundated with images of the horror. Do these images harm their subjects? Is it an ethical violation to make a photograph of suffering beautiful? Do I have a right to look at other people’s pain?

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