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It's a Girl Thing, Life & Other Drugs, Listicles

Junglepussy: An Abbreviated Personal Listening Guide

March 8, 2017

Growing up, I was immersed in a culture that values romantic love in a highly exalted sense. I watched wedding themed shows on TLC such as Four Weddings and Say Yes to the Dress, meticulously maintained the aesthetic of my very own Pinterest wedding board, and religiously kept a mental catalogue of the characteristics I would hope to find in a future spouse.

After a stint of personal heartbreak, I’ve grown out of this commodified, confectionery, Capitalized, and capitalistic version of Love. The cast that held my soul in form while it set back into a healthy state: the music of the visionary wordsmith Shayna McHayle, AKA Junglepussy.

I am no music expert, and I know the long and troubled history of basic-ass white people such as myself appropriating the excellence of black music culture. I’m not here to claim the music of Junglepussy. I’m simply here to share my own personal listening guide, a playlist of tunes that feel like a cool washcloth to the forehead when you find yourself feeling the hot-headed pressure to settle into a life that you’re leery of.

Without further verbal assault on the institution of hetero marriage and in no particular order, here is a list of Junglepussy’s discography correlated to totally hypothetical situations that I’ve definitely never experienced:

 

  • Spicy 103FM

When to listen: You’re at Christmas and your extended family members are asking where your recently-made-former S.O. is, while you scroll through an Insta feed flooded by couples in front of a huge-ass tree while the girl is delicately placing her hand on the guy’s chest in a very specific way that you never quite learned (almost like she’s afraid of breaking him? Is he made out of paper mache? Is a paper mache boyfriend my next big craft?)

Memorable lines: “Brazilian steakhouse with the unlimited plates, great!/Café up on Ludlow where we kissed and just ate crepes/No boo up in Malibu, soul food up in Flatbush too/Relationships are more than food & lusty interactions dude”

Got-me-hype meter: I’m groovin’ in my swivel chair at the Rock while I peruse applications for law school

 

  • Bling Bling

When to listen: You casually mentioned that you might not want to get married and now your elders are aggressively reassuring you that you indeed will, you’ll grow out of this “women’s lib stuff,” you don’t want to die alone, you just haven’t met that special ~one~ yet

Memorable lines: “Bling bling bitch do my own thing bitch/Fuck a wedding ring that ding a ling was just a fling bitch”

Got-me-hype meter: I’m inexplicably throwing up the double-middles to Sandals Resorts commercials while wall twerking (so hype that I’m defying physics)

 

  • Picky Bitch Checklist

When to listen: You tried to make a Tinder late on a Tuesday night when you should have been writing that one essay you’re putting off, but then the app won’t properly connect to your Facebook so you swallow the pea-sized amount of pride you have left and make a Bumble instead. You’re swiping left until the cows come home

Memorable line: “I’m not bougie, I’m selective”

Got-me-hype meter: I have ascended into a removed spiritual state while swaddled in a bomb faux fur coat

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Life & Other Drugs, The Tabloids

All Aboard!

March 1, 2017

If listening to Kacey Musgraves in earnest has taught me anything, it’s to stay connected to my ~roots~. So in an attempt to stay connected to my home state of Kentucky while following my arrow in the bustling metropolis that is Providence, I’ve been reading local Kentucky news. Continue Reading…

It's a Girl Thing, Life & Other Drugs, The Tabloids

The Poetic Praise of Two Pauls

February 10, 2017

When people ask me why I write poetry I tell them it’s a means of expression, a way of magnifying and distorting minutiae most people pass by without a second glance. I am inspired to wax in verse about the most beautifully tragic things in life: unrequited love, loss of childhood innocence…and actors whose relevance has fallen by the wayside. Particularly, I’m intrigued by what I like to call “P-List Actors.” Continue Reading…

Life & Other Drugs

Meeting the Plants

November 30, 2016

Somehow I’m now someone who owns plants. Not just a plant, but plural plants. Two to be exact. I started out with such meager goals: buy a plant, take care of it, see if I’m capable of sustaining life outside of my own being. Then, it happened: my birthday, and suddenly my boyfriend had to be a jerk and give me a thoughtful and creative gift in the form of an aloe plant sent via mail.

So now I have two plants, a self-purchased orchid and a gifted aloe plant, and I’m feeling like I’ve gotten a little ahead of myself. To own two plants is to be a capital-a Adult. Where do I get off thinking I can muster the responsibility to remember to spray water on an unmoving object twice a week?

The thing is, these plants are no longer objects to me; no no, these plants have become my friends.

 

rib-pic-1

 

Meet Awomanda. Her name’s Awomanda rather than Amanda, because she embodies the resistance to the patriarchy that I strive toward in my own life. She has a little brown spot on her leaf, and when I first saw it I earnestly thought about scheduling her a dermatologist appointment. Then I remembered she was a plant. Awomanda is beautiful and self-assured and doesn’t fuck around. We should all strive to be like Awomanda.

 

rib-pic-2

 

Now, meet Nameless Aloe Plant. His name is Nameless Aloe Plant (get it? I’m ironic now, I’m in college, that’s my thing). For short, we’ll call him Nap. And nap he does: look at those stems!!! He’s a disgrace to the family. And the way he demands so much space on my desk in his ornate pot despite the fact that he is the size of a literal peanut. Nap plantspreads and we all hate him for it. Don’t be like Nap.

My plants may not be perfect (I’m looking at you Nap), but they’re good enough from me.

Images via Dana Schneider and Annie Warner.

Life & Other Drugs, Listicles

I’m Too Lazy to Write a Whole Book: A Memoir by Dana Schneider

November 4, 2016

I am a writer, but I am also impatient. In fiction, solid plot and character development takes meticulously and painstakingly crafted detail (read: time). In non-fiction, respectable arguments and assertions take research (read: effort). In Dana’s writing: you will find off-the-cuff observations and unfunny quips (read: this article).

You’ll notice that many of these titles follow the format “Blah Blah Blah: Yadda Yadda.” This is because an English teacher once joked that the best titles always have colons in them, and I take people too literally. In all seriousness, a functioning colon, whether it be in regard to writing or digestive health, is a ~major~ key to a successful life.  Continue Reading…

Life & Other Drugs

Pitbull and Moms: A Theory

October 16, 2016

I’ve only been in college for about a month now, and yet frenzied and overzealous pals are already talking about dreams of graduate schools and lofty internships, as they cavalierly mention that they fluently speak six languages and recently designed an app that delivers fresh-baked cookies to elderly people’s doors. Needless to say, I’m left reeling, casting a hard glance back on my life’s small pile of accomplishments. The shining gem on the top of the heap, shrouded in a nimbus of pure and utter once-in-a-lifetime brilliance, is this: My theory on Pitbull fans.

You see, not all mothers in this world are Pitbull fans; however, definitively, without any speck of doubt, all Pitbull fans are moms. Before you begin to question the rock-solid validity of this claim, I beg you to picture my mother, a 50-something-year-old mom of two, cruising down the highway in her Mazda 6, blaring the 2014 banger that smashed the Billboard charts at rank 23: Fireball. Is there a single soul on Earth who feels such shameless and intoxicating glee as she smugly looks over to me in the passenger seat and lowers her voice to mimic Mr. 305’s anthemic declaration of whiskey?

Maybe your mom hates Pitbull. Maybe your mom’s mom hates Pitbull. But you are kidding yourself if you assert you’ve never caught a glimpse of some jazzy footwork at a wedding or a lil’ dash of steering wheel drumming from some mom in your life at the first note of “Hey Baby (Drop it to the Floor)”.

What’s the explanation behind this scientifically proven phenomenon? To try to tackle justifications with absolute certainty is to try to assert the meaning of life in less than two words: insufficient and dissatisfying. I like to think that we’re all born with the capability to be Pitbull fans, but then again, I’m a nurture over nature kinda gal. It’s nice to imagine that moms are the only ones so deeply entrenched in the I-don’t-give-a-what attitude that comes with bearing an actual screaming mass of life out of your hoo-ha to be able to openly and unabashedly appreciate the genius of Pit’s work. Maybe his baby-smooth head invokes a sort of instinctive maternalism; regardless, the infatuation is a natural and just fit that helps me get to sleep at night. If this is the one generalization I embrace in all of my life, I will die happy and willingly “Timber” into my grave.

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