Hello, Joy Nation!
Tennessee has admittedly been a drag lately. But…it’s been two years since I moved back home to Nashville and I’m still delighting in all the charms I missed while I was gone. Recently, a friend began a story by saying, “Hand to heaven…” Another friend wrote in an email, “I didn’t fall off the turnip truck yesterday.”
The turnip truck!! “I’m going to steal that,” I told my mom. “You don’t need to steal it,” she replied, “It’s been around for ages.”
I am so in love with Southernisms and the way words are flipped around ‘til they simply sound better. Like, instead of describing a drink as good, folks will say, “That ain’t half bad.” I’m sure you could easily Google a list of these phrases but I prefer to collect as I go. And the more people I talk to, the better. Below are some other things that charmed me this month and have a blessed day.
• “This is my favorite video on the Internet.” Same. (Twitter)
• Even though I’m a mom, I rarely link out to parenting content unless it makes me lol. But Kathryn Jezer-Morton on the laziness of helicopter parents takes the cake. (The Cut)
• As a lifelong Nora Ephron devotee, I can’t wait to read this Sophie Gilbert piece on Heartburn. (The Atlantic)
• Go ahead and text Ada Limón’s poem, Instructions on Not Giving Up, to your friend who’s really going through it right now. (Poets.org)
• Molly Tolsky’s convo with Alana Haim and Sasha Spielberg is pure fun. (Hey Alma)
• My YouTube algo is all messed up from the kids using my phone to watch Mr. Beast. But I do sprinkle these Chinese Cooking Demystified vids in there for relief. (YouTube)
• If you’re looking for a light book you can leave on the kitchen counter or in your car to dip into for a bite-sized distraction, I’ve been enjoying Steve Martin’s Number One Is Walking. It’s part memoir, part graphic novel. All joy. (Bookshop)
• Based on one of your comments, dear JTB readers, I did my first cold plunge on my birthday and am officially hooked. As Jenna Wortham describes a skinny dipper’s journey: “Total immersion of my body into water allowed for a total surrender of the illusion of separation between self and the world, the universe, whatever you call it. If you don’t believe in god, say ocean.” (New York Times)
• This piece on Elliott Smith’s high school band adds a sweet layer to his musical history + a window into the creativity of a shy group of 1980s teens. (Pitchfork)
• The beginning of Spring this past week introduces the perfect time to make these strawberry and vanilla bean daisy conchas. Who needs flowers when you can bake them! But flowers are so lovely, too. (Joy the Baker)
• And, finally, Courtney Martin’s notes on building a (professional) life you love are stunning. (Substack)
I don’t think those sayings are Southernisms… I live in Canada and they’re very well-known phrases.
Thank you for the fresh poem to keep open in my tabs and ruminate on for the next couple of weeks. (Recently, I had Lost by David Wagoner open in a tap via Ash Rodriguez https://ashrod.substack.com/p/scenes-from-fall for several weeks.) I also plan to return to the Courtney Martin read several times over the coming week. Thank you.
That first video is just the best thing I’ve seen all month! Can you imagine being the kid who got the correct answer, freeing up recess-time?! She will remember that for the rest of her life! (Kind of like I am feeling right now … my cold plunge comment may have sparked your bday plunge and I’m feeling like an MVP! And hope you are, too! It is an addictive, sensory high– I’m so happy you love it!) Finally, thank you for the introduction to Courtney Martin– I love how she makes spare her thoughts on each component to building a meaningful professional life. It gave me a lot consider. Thanks for a rich compilation this week!
I have been enjoying your guest bloggers but hope all is OK with you Joy. Did I miss something because I don’t know why you have been absent., best wishes from a fan.
It’s me! I needed that poem today as I struggle with the most intimidating and loneliest phase of my doc work. Thank you, Toby.
As someone who volunteers to fill in when no one else does, but also hates feeling busy and overwhelmed, i love Courtney Martin’s idea of a “blanket ‘No’ season!” Thanks for sharing! ???