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It’s a Friday night. I’m home alone and halfway through a bottle of Pinot Grigio and a season of Selling Sunset when I get a notification that Megan Thee Stallion is going live on Instagram. Not particularly interested giving the doll-like real estate agents on my television my full attention, I swiped.

Megan Thee Stallion — Meg, The Hot Girl Coach, Megan Jovon Ruth Pete — sits before the camera, her Dragon Ball Z hoodie drawn up snugly around her bare face, turquoise bangs peeking out. “I’m so over this shit,” she says. …


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TW: Suicide, self-harm, mental illness

I was up late on Friday night, struggling to fall asleep in the sticky heat of my childhood bedroom. My mindless scrolling was stopped short when I saw a photograph of a familiar, smiling face and the caption “please don’t let this be true.” Suddenly even more awake, I clicked through and read a headline I could not have predicted in a million years: Hana Kimura had taken her own life.

Kimura had been a regular presence in my life for the better part of the last year. As a devoted Terrace House fan, I became acquainted with her when she joined the cast of the popular Japanese reality show in September 2019. With her bright pink hair, tan skin, and infectious laugh, she was a welcome change from the lineup of porcelain models that the show has a habit of casting. Kimura was a well-known professional wrestler, and embodied the strength of her profession while remaining butter soft at heart. Some fans saw Kimura as irritating and immature, particularly when she began her romantic pursuit of housemate Ryo Tawatari, a professional basketball player. Yet, each time Kimura laughed a little too forcefully or struggled to hide her jealousy, I could only see myself in her. It’s a near-universal experience shared by unique women to face the pain of rejection on the basis of that uniqueness. …


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For years, writer and artist Chanel Miller was known to the world only as “Emily Doe.” She was the faceless victim of Brock Turner, the Stanford prepstep who in 2015 was convicted of three counts of felony sexual assault, yet ended up serving just three months in jail due to what the judge perceived as Turner’s “potential” (apparently he was really good at swimming or some such bullshit).

In September 2019, just a few months after Turner’s release, Miller abandoned her anonymity via the publication of her memoir, Know My Name, which chronicles Miller’s personal and legal battles stemming from Turner’s assault. …


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My Torbilund-based residence, of which I am very proud.

The past week hasn’t been the easiest. After nearly a month in isolation, the positive effects of being homebound have started to wear off, leaving room for anxious thoughts and habits to take hold. …


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I don’t want to live in a world without sweaters.

It’s February 24th, 2020 and the Mr. Softee ice cream trucks have already made their seasonal debut. When I emerged from the subway at 181st Street this afternoon, the truck’s jingle was afloat over the usual buzz of St. Nicholas Ave. In that moment, hearing a familiar song had never felt more strange. The lilting song filled me with a sudden waft of pink sunsets and sticky July nights, but I was quickly reminded of the reality that I was sweating through a wool coat and wet socks. The high was 60º, and it felt as though pollution and sadness were hanging tangibly in the humid air. …


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Every day for the last 21 years, Rodney Reed has woken up in a Texas correctional facility. On May 28, 1989, the state sentenced him to life in prison for a crime he did not commit: the 1996 murder of Stacey Stites.

In 13 days, Reed, a Black man, is sentenced to be executed. He will wake up in a maximum security prison cell 13 more times before systemic corruption ends his life in the most slow and painful way imaginable: a life behind bars, from which escape eludes you utterly. A literal nightmare.

Reed has maintained his innocence for the entirety of his trial and imprisonment. From the date of Stites’s death — she was strangled and left in a ditch — evidence has continued to mount in favor of Reed’s innocence and in direct connection with Stites’s cop fiance, Jimmy Fennell. …


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Image via Shutterstock

TW: This article contains discussion of suicide.

Today, it was announced that Choi Jin-ri, known by the stage name “Sulli,” had taken her own life at the age of 25. I knew Sulli as a member of the Korean pop group f(x), a now-defunct quartet whose songs like “Four Walls” and “Red Light” brought a unique, mature, and even androgynous perspective to the heavily feminized genre. Unlike many other K-pop groups, particularly those with female members, f(x) was known for their involvement in writing their music and directing their visuals.

In 2014, Sulli went on hiatus from f(x) due to the physical and mental effects of cyberbullying. Sulli’s hiatus ended a year later, with a formal departure from the group. While Sulli did ultimately record a solo artist, fans speculate that continued cyberbullying contributed to her death. …


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Image via Reddit

While protests of historic proportions rage on in Hong Kong, I sit on my couch and play Overwatch.

As tragic as this is to admit, I’ve played Overwatch nearly every day of my life for the last two years. It’s a supremely fun game, with compelling characters, immersive battle mechanics, and just enough infuriating setbacks to make you say “okay, I’ll play for ten more minutes and then I’m done — for real this time.”

And while one might think it would take loss of limb to keep me from the game that motivated me to write fanfiction for the first time in ten years (whatever you do, do not search AO3 for “Moira”), earlier this week, Overwatch’s parent company, Blizzard, did just that. …


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Dear Mr. Sanders,

Katie Fustich here. You surely don’t know who I am (unless you’ve taken notice of my monthly campaign contributions of $2.70 a pop), but I have been a pretty big fan of yours for a while. I just heard that you aren’t feeling too well, and that your campaign events have been put on indefinite hold while you recover.

I’m not gonna lie, Bernie — reading that you had to undergo an emergency heart procedure gave me the start of at least one gray hair. The very notion that something grave might happen to you, or that you might have to abandon the 2020 presidential race in order to care for your own health is terrifying for myself, and for the millions of others who have rested the idea of a better future on your shoulders alone. …


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This afternoon, the United States House of Representatives, led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, launched a formal impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump. In the hours since, I have broached the topic various friends and family (largely through feverish and emoji-laden text), curious for their thoughts and reactions. All of these individuals — my mother, my boyfriend, my friends — despise Trump (as does anyone I associate with), yet I did not receive a single elated response to the news that baby steps have been taken to possibly remove him from office.

Instead, they all reacted to the news with a shrug and a “meh.” To them, it seemed like another empty gesture, another “one step forward, two steps back” scenario as we all, living under the Trump presidency and the internal combustion of the Democratic party, have come to expect from each day’s headlines. …

About

Katie Fustich

Writer | Professional Sad Girl | http://katefustich.com

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