Photo by Chang Duong on Unsplash

I recently had a fairly debilitating altercation with a close friend. It was like new rain water pouring through a crack in the ceiling — at once shocking in its suddenness, and yet also the reckoning of what was, perhaps, only a matter of time. It was ultimately the result of a near year of no extended emotionally intimate moments with one another. It was the thing you look at above your head when you try to fall asleep each night, the thing you see and think, I’ll do something about that tomorrow.

And then tomorrow happens, and you don’t…

I’m writing this in the middle of the night because I, like too many of us, cannot sleep.

photo by Cecile Hournau via Unsplash

Tonight my something-o’clock in the morning alertness isn’t so bad, though. It’s the quiet, calm, candlelit eye of the storm kind of awake. The odd sense of peace that happens sometimes these days, usually when I am alone, usually when it is dark (and it is so often dark).

Since the beginning of the pandemic, or maybe since the beginning of 2016 or since the first time I experienced rib-snapping heartbreak, I often exist in a kind of fast-paced sparkling optimism that…

(Or, My Personal Tattoo Manifesto)

photo by Yekaterina Gyudu

To exist as a human woman on earth means to exist in a world that will constantly try to make decisions about your body for you. How you are allowed to dress, what you should eat, how your body language will be interpreted, and what you’re deserving of if you overstep these invisible boundaries are all edicts that were set in place long, long before you were ever born. Even in the US, where freedom of expression is (theoretically) celebrated and clothing options are plentiful, there’s a code of “social acceptability” that everyone (and especially…

Last week as New York City went into COVID-19 quarantine, I received texts from two different friends letting me know that The Sims 4 was on sale for $4.95 (originally $39.99). Whether the price was so low because the game’s popularity has significantly lowered since its peak in the early 2000s or because EA is capitalizing on quarantine boredom remains to be discovered, but regardless, the price worked — I immediately downloaded it and texted another handful of friends about the price decrease.

Since then, I’ve seen plenty of Sims discussions and celebrations on Twitter, reinforcing my hunch that this…

Image courtesy of Strange Pantheon

You’ve probably heard of Arbonne, the all-natural, sustainable online cosmetics line. If you haven’t, then you must not have a friend who’s an Arbonne rep.

On paper, everything about Arbonne sounds great. They are transparent about their ethics, ingredients, and cruelty-free philosophies. Their products are pricier than drugstore brands, but equivalent to anything you’d expect to find at an upscale skincare retailer. And considering their sustainability and good-for-you ingredients, the price seems totally worth it.

When a woman I vaguely know — “acquaintance” is even pushing it — asked if I was interested in joining a quick call to learn…

Tallie Gabriel

freelance writer, cellist/folk musician, poet []

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