Daily Drips highlight what I'm up to + into on any given day.
Eating: A Trader Joe’s cookie butter sandwich cookie. These are amazing if you, too, enjoy biting directly into a stick of butter.
Last night for dinner I made bucatini alla carbonara. This was a spontaneous decision which means I didn’t have pancetta, which means I definitely didn’t have guanciale. So yeah! I used bacon! It’s an easy dish to throw together. Cut and fry your choice of cured pork in some olive oil. Dump the grease but leave the meat in the pan. Whisk up a few egg yolks and one whole egg with a half cup of pecorino and piles of black pepper. Throw the pasta in the pan with the bacon and slowly add the mixture and some pasta water on a lowish heat so the egg doesn’t scramble. Enjoy or whatever.
Currently Reading: American Pastoral by Philip Roth.
Listening to: “G3 N15” by Rosalía. This track came to me like a haunted hummingbird, each vocal flit a keyhole peer into kaleidoscopic sadness. I fought back tears reading that it’s about her young nephew, Genís (hence the stylized title)—a lamentation of the two years of his life she missed during the pandemic and recording this album. Warnings of the track-marked arms of LA, its stars and its models, a world from which she wishes to protect Genís.
As long as I’m living away from my nephews, even a mere 2.5-hour drive, I’ll always feel a sharp guilt at the heart of my every decision. I grieve the life we could be sharing that every day I wake up and choose not to. Am I wrong? Am I selfish? Who’s to say, but hearing an artist I admire encapsulate it so beautifully… sonic balm.
Thinking: Guilt has been on my mind a lot lately. I feel guilty all the time about everything. If you’ve read my stuff long enough, you’ve gathered that. It’s the instant regret of doing something you don’t want to do for someone who wouldn’t do the same for you because you’d feel guilty not doing it. And then you feel even worse for thinking like that, like you’ve transactionalized your relationships by wanting basic reciprocity. We’re all martyrs in this way. Some of us just let it happen more often.
This weekend I found myself buried in hours and hours of freelance grant-writing for my old employer—not because I need the work, but because I felt guilty that they haven’t filled my position. Every second of gathering report card data and summarizing after school program activities reminded me exactly why I left that job, and exactly why I need to grow a spine. But here is my quandary: over the last two years, I’ve watched society bend toward selfishness in the name of self-care. The shift began well-intentioned, reminding us that it’s ok to say no and stop stretching ourselves thin. But somewhere along the way, we lost the plot, every minor inconvenience for the sake of being good friends/family/colleagues deemed an assault on our energy. I resolved to stand against this. To say yes, to be dependable. But I, myself, lost the plot in forgetting balance. We’ve got to be able to turn shit down solely because we need time to ourselves. We’ve also got to be able to do shit we don’t want to do on occasion to remind people they’re loved and supported beyond text messages and Instagram comments.
I want to be a less guilt-driven person. I also want to be a person who sticks to their word and shows up. I think I’ll tie a hammock between those two sentences and crack a beer.
Just Read: This piece on the origin of genies (“jinn” in the Arab world). TLDR: lore of jinn pre-dates Islam, and jinn are widely regarded as powerful characters by Muslims to this day. More common than their propensity to grant wishes is jinn mischief, darker inclinations said to haunt buildings, people, even sewers. So often we cling to pleasant ideas of supernatural beings like angels and jinn when perhaps we could learn more from their evils. After all, what is moral allegory without badness to teach goodness?
I still think there’s something fun in the fake, Western genie persona. Maybe I just hope for my next life to live in a lamp, harem-pantsed and gold-adorned, ready to make someone’s dreams come true.
Just Purchased: Like, five little shirts from Brandy Melville. Brandy Melville is a sinister company that captures the disaffected essence of a certain Gen Z and millennial woman. Problematically thin, vaguely libertarian, responsible for turning Esther Greenwood into a cliche. I’m merely an observer who enjoys tshirts thin enough to show the entire outline of my breasts. Whilst trying on clothes last Friday, the high school-aged workers were openly talking shit about me in between taking orders for their Starbucks run. Fair enough. I’m visibly 30 shopping at Limited Too for depressive teens. Anyway, I’m ready for summer.
Excited for: I think I’ve blasted this enough on Instagram but I’m obliged to share here, too: merch is live! Well, one piece of merch :) a precious dad cap in shades butter and baby blue with the Broke But Moisturized logo embroidered with love, here in Philly. I’m so happy with how these turned out and can’t wait for others to enjoy them. You can get yours here.
It likely reads bizarre to make merch for a speck in the blogosphere. But people asked for it, so I thought, why not? The BBM alias is corny enough to get a laugh out of a stranger. Who am I to deny people a conversation starter?
I’m accepting submissions for May’s edition of Bootleg Therapy. Get your burning questions in anonymously on brokebutmoisturized.com for the chance to receive free public advice! As always, thanks for reading/liking/supporting. Now go get a hat.