As it happens, not much writing gets done. They go for walks, watch movies, gossip over dinner. Nina, the narrator, has recently escaped a toxic marriage. Filtered through her inner life, the story is also about making art, gender and sexual identity, self harm, and abuse. The pleasure of reading this story comes from lurking in this highly specific world inhabited by people who at first seem peculiar and by the end are intimately familiar. With her candid prose, Gerard creates a textured verisimilitude—at turns pleasurable, at turns painful—where the confessional and theoretical are blurred. A comparison of sexual exploits ends up being an admission about the separation of mind and body—how sex traps and pleasure betrays.
Do You Want to Be Her or Do You Want to Fuck Her?
In case I am dead and you find this, it was a guy in a white car. The side mirror and the inside of the passenger seat door are broken. I made a mistake. Woops, sorry. F inding this note between the pages of my travel journal, scribbled on a torn piece of paper, gave me chills. I had written it months earlier, partly to try to make myself laugh, and partly because I thought it might be useful. Two stout, conservatively dressed middle-aged women shared the front seat, and every so often they would crane their neck to steal a glance at me. I smiled and turned my gaze out the window, resting my head on the glass as I watched the lush, thickly forested foothills of the Caspian coast pass by. One by one the passengers filed out, and then I was alone with the driver. He was young, maybe in his mid-twenties, with a thick crop of dark hair and a V-neck white t-shirt that looked several sizes too small.
In the niftiest thing to come out of Hillel since the matzo sandwich, the Jewish campus organization paired with celebs to make a non-partisan video urging year old Jews to vote in the upcoming midterm election. Grandma: In Germany! Grandpa: Big mistake. So vote! Or curse your descendants with intergenerational guilt forever. And happy MitzVote. Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward.
The hair on my legs stood on end. Then, the feeling of needles grazing the flesh of my arm announced itself to my brain. It began pumping through my arteries. My blood ran cold. My stomach lurched.