Your Magazine Volume 9 Issue 3: May 2018

Page 1




YOUR MAG V O L U M E 9 | I S S U E 3 | M AY 2 0 1 8

K AT J A V U J I Ć Editor in Chief

N ATA L I E G A L E Managing Editor



EMME HARRIS Co-Photo Director

MIKE ZAHAR Co-Photo Director






M O N I K A DAV I S Editorial Director

HANA ANTRIM YourMagTV Director

DAY S I A TO L E N T I N O Co-Head Designer


ANNIE HUANG Talent Manager

RANA SAIFI Talent Assistant

NICK BUNZICK Style Director

IRIS PEÑA Copy Chief

L I N D SAY H OWA R D Asst. Copy Chief


MIA MANNING Events Coordinator

FRANCISCO GUGLIELMINO Asst. Editorial Director

TA L L U L A H J O N E S Social Media Director

M O R G A N DAV I E S Asst. Web Director

TEAL HALL Asst. Living Editor





6 8 10 STYLE 12 14 16 18 YOUR THINGS 20 LIVING 22 24 26 28 30 ARTS AND ENTERTAIMENT 32 36 38 40 YM ADVISES 42 ARTIST STATEMENT 44 EDITORIALS 50 59 66 74


TOKEN DUDE by Gloria Perez SAD BOYS CLUB by Jalyn Cox MIND FUCK by Morgan Davies INTERVIEW WITH A STRIPPER by Izzy Kings I DRESS FEMME TO MAKE MY MASC POP by Andy Caira WALK LIKE NAOMI by Lee Ann Jastillana GAY FOR PAY by Isabelle Lichtenstein BANG, BANG by Izzy Kings YOUR THINGS with Sophie Peters-Wilson DESTINATION: MIAMI by Aster Chang THE BABY THEORY by Jalyn Cox CREATING COVENS by Julie Moskowitz SPROUT YOUR SPACE by Christina Henderson BUS RIDE SOLILOQUY by Izzy Kings CED TALKS by Katja Vujić YOUR BEST ASIAN-AMERICAN GIRLS by Gloria Perez THE CITY SCENE by Carly Thompson FOMOSEXUALITY by Hana Antrim SUMMER HACKS AND A PLAYLIST RRAINE HANSON TASTE TEST shot by Sophie Peters-Wilson LIVING COLOR by Monika Davis and Francisco Guglielmino RUGGED shot by Madeline Weinstein-Avery SENIOR SHOOT shot by Sophie Peters-Wilson



f you know me at all, you might be aware that I’m a bit sentimental. “A bit” meaning I regularly cry while watching those short facebook videos meant to pull at the heartstrings or pretty much any episode of my favorite show, Jane the Virgin. Other things that make me cry: group singing, airport reunions/goodbyes, the Kanye West song “Family Business.” It hasn’t happened yet, but there’s a high chance I’ll cry about leaving Your Mag. Both I and this publication have transformed dramatically in the four years since I joined the marketing team and started pitching really bad ideas to the Romance section, but what hasn’t changed is the way YM has always been a place where I could express myself freely and learn from the people I was collaborating with. I’ve especially learned a lot in the year I spent as editor in chief, and I continue learning every day. Still, I’m proud to pass the job on to Alessandra Settineri, who will be taking over as EIC next semester. I know she will do great things. Our May issue opens up some important conversations. Hana Antrim asks: Might you be engaging in fauxmosexuality? And Isabelle Lichtenstein probes into the corporate side of the issue, examining how companies profit off of LGBTQ+oriented marketing. Andy Caira questions the rigid ideas society has about masculinity. If you’re trying to figure out summer plans, YM’s got you covered with the perfect playlist, the best summertime hacks, and Aster Cheng’s guide to visiting Miami. Alongside beautiful images created by our talented illustrators and photographers, I hope you’ll find words you can connect with. As always, thanks for reading. HAGS, and I hope you’ll pack us in your beach bag. With love,




at find


some ways to

here’s a certain stigma that surrounds breaking up with someone. You have to get over them. Fast. People make up rules and timelines about how long you’re allowed to grieve a relationship or whatever that complicated “talking” period was. Whoever moves on first “wins” the breakup, and the other person is left in the wreckage of their own unresolved feelings and what-if ’s. Sometimes, you don’t get over them in that certain time frame you’ve given yourself. You wallow in that post-breakup mess for a little too long, turning into someone you never thought you could be. And your former partner, they become another something you thought to be impossible—your Token Dude. What’s a Token Dude, you might ask? Well, in these past few years, social media has gone through a period of oversharing mayhem, including the niche meme: a highly specific situation numerous people might have gone through, humorously packaged in a convenient meme format. One of the most followed niche-meme accounts, @blacksheepmemes, gained popularity through her severely on-thenose posts about hookups, vices, and the destructive behaviors that we usually don’t put out there into the world. “Token Dude,” or in long form, #TokenDudeYouWillNeverGetOver, is a phrase she coined, and is a recurring character on her account. Usually, it features a hyper-specific caption (or a #mood) like “Me breaking my own heart over and over again every time I decided to pathetically crawl back to Token Dude for sex [because] I wanted more than just sex but preferred sex to nothing at all.” Along with a picture of Lana Del Rey lyrics, because let’s be real, who else are you listening to after being scorned by a man? As time went on, the phrase became something bigger than @ blacksheepmemes’ account. Search #TokenDude on Instagram, and you’ll find the tags full of niche memes made by other accounts. Her followers comment things like, “This post made me convinced the FBI is watchin[g] me bc relatable.” It’s definitely something that so many people go through, but it’s never discussed out of fear of looking like the “crazy ex-girlfriend” which is a tired and problematic stereotype in and of itself. It’s definitely okay to take the time you need to get over that person. However, it is ultimately unhealthy to hold on to a person for such long periods of time. There’s no shame in feeling this way. I know I have a Token Dude, for sure. But when I think about all the time that has passed, I wonder, what exactly did I get out of that? I ended up hurting myself so much more because of it. I

point, let go.

became obsessive. I tried everything to “get over it,” from hooking up with more people to drinking excessively. I ended up doing a few things I regret and all the while, I was definitely not over him. In fact, I was looking for him in every person I was involved with, without even realizing it. Writing, Literature, and Publishing major, Kayla Carcone ‘18 has had similar experiences with her own Token Dude. She says, “It feels like I’m subconsciously comparing every guy I interact with romantically to him. Like everyone’s in the shadow of this one person… At some point, you stop seeking him and start seeking your former self, I think. Like some part of me sickly wishes I could be sixteen and have no cares other than being obsessed with one person and that being my whole world.” I spoke about moving on from Token Dude with Megha, 21, who runs the @blacksheepmemes account. She explains, “It’s definitely possible to move on because I reference my original Token Dude in my memes sometimes. When he was Token Dude I thought I’d never move on but I did. I feel like the term just captures how you feel in the moment when you’re deep in your feelings. It feels like you’ll never get over him, but it’s just a hyperbolic term—I’m a dramatic person—that fits considering how long it takes to move on sometimes, like OG Token Dude took me between two to three years to get over.” At some point you have to find ways to let go. There’s no “right” way to do this, but there are little ways to help you move on. Allow yourself to feel your feelings, keep journals, talk it out to your friends, make art, try new things. Take this time to find yourself and what you want rather than how you could have fixed things with that one person, because it’s over. It is much easier said than done, and of course turning it into a meme can make it hurt less and help you feel less alone. But humor can become a mask to play off your feelings and prevent you from moving on with your life. After a while, the feeling does eventually fade. Remember, Token Dude isn’t actually forever, it just feels that way. YM







magine Mac DeMarco playing in the background as you try to figure out the boy who does not want to be figured out. These are the boys that pride themselves on pretending that they live in a movie. They look to you to fix them, and I’d argue that you can’t. I can honestly admit that I am so confused, yet so mesmerized by the Sad Boy phenomenon. Here I am stuck trying to analyze and understand what is going on in these Sad Boys’ heads. I wish I knew what the appeal was in finding someone to save you. I feel like that is so obviously temporary or impossible, yet here they are, everywhere, believing it. It’s funny how someone can see a happiness in you and almost fetishize it because they imagine you filling some kind of void within them. They see someone with their life seemingly put together and are immediately drawn to it because, let’s face it, who wouldn’t be? The funny thing is, these Sad Boys actually believe that this one girl or guy could make them happy. It’s impossible to just look at someone, snap your fingers, and BAM! They’re now happy. They expect the Manic Pixie Dream Girl out of you, and when you don’t deliver, they get disappointed, as if something is wrong with you. Sometimes you can’t be somebody’s muse, and sometimes all those romanticized things you thought were the definitions of love as a kid—things like sneaking off into the night and being kissed in the rain—just seem stupid now. I feel like Sad Boys do these things because they are the things they believe they are supposed to do (like in a movie), but the question is, do they really want to? Or are they just trying to fit this aesthetic? Not to say aesthetic is a bad thing. Who doesn’t like boys wearing beanies rolled up to show their ears with their jeans cuffed to show you their cartoon/quote socks? However, I think there is a huge difference in doing what you want versus doing what one thinks they should do to fit a sometimes unhealthy role. The Sad Boys Club often glorifies depression and romanticizes sadness. The Club assures Sad Boys that your love will swoop in to make them happy and giddy. Who wouldn’t want that? But the thing is, just because we want something doesn’t mean we are going to get it. There is no way one person will fix all of their problems, and they are placing too much pressure on their partner by thinking that they actually could. If anything, I think this is the downfall of their relationships. It does make me question—what do they actually want? What are they all searching for? They cannot possibly believe that they can find this magical girl or guy to fill this void in their deep old souls, and you’d think after multiple trials and errors, they’d realize it—right? YM


MIND FUCK A A Guide Guide to to Mind Mind Games Games




n the age of Tinder, texting, and fuck-persons, romance might be dead, but the complicated aspects of dating are definitely still giving us a run for our money. From ghosting to snap streaks, the rules have changed for our generation, yet we’re still dealing with the age-old bullshit that is mind games. Dating is supposed to be a fun time for all ages and everyone involved; it’s not meant to be a competition regardless of what the players say. If your significant other is making things more complicated than Monopoly, it’s time to have a talk. However, sometimes things aren’t so cut and dry. You might not even realize you’re in a game until you’re too far in for things to end fairly. For you, we have created a guide to the popular tactics of the mind games in the dating world to keep you from getting played. To be honest, our list could have been longer than Hasbro’s:

by the insistence that they don’t have time, don’t like texting, or have just been “busy lately,” even though they expect you to be available and ready to pick right back up where things left off.

1. The Question Curve

There’s the people who mean this, and then there’s the people who use this. They’re usually easy to discern between, since the people who mean it will openly tell you what they want, even if they don’t call it by a particular name. The fakers? They’ll probably try The Question Curve next.

Probably the most basic and straight forward of the mind games all around, “question curving” is when a partner simply refuses to give you an answer. This game is identified by a jumpy attitude, blatant ignoring, and random and inappropriate subject changes by a significant other. It is commonly used when the status of a relationship, a jealous comment, or someone’s general emotions are inquired about. 2. The “I Don’t Want You...Until I Do” My own father recently called this one the age-old “Dog and Treat” game, when we discussed the young dating scene during a trip home. The “Until I Do” game is also pretty straight forward, and is the most essential and obvious way people tend to string others along. Whether it’s the friend who turned you down, but got weird when you moved on to someone else, or the fuckboy/girl who insists they’re indifferent to your presence, until they don’t hear from you for a while, this game is based on chasing and power dynamics. The person perpetuating the game typically wants to feel wanted and in control, regardless of if they have feelings for the other person or not. Which is the worst part—you never know if the longing is real or just a power move. 3. The “Now You See Them, Now You Don’t” Not quite ghosting, not quite not ghosting. This is the play used by all the lovers who came around, swept you off your feet, and then couldn’t be pinned down for another few weeks. Often characterized

4. The “You’re Special” “I Never Do This...” is another variation of this game. You’re so different from everyone they’ve ever met, and make them act like they’ve never acted before. There’s just something about you. Not enough to really get involved, but they just can’t lose you. You’re like... maybe the one. Strong maybe, if they were into that sort of thing. Honestly, there’s a 98% chance that their last partner was special, too. 5. “I Don’t Like Labels”

6. It’s not me, it’s YOU It’s one thing to call a partner out for being unfair, or to talk over a relationship issue that you don’t agree about. The “It’s You” game is played on a separate field. Often used to deflect blame, this one has several levels. There’s the common “I’m sorry YOU feel that way,” an indifferent response typically used when another person doesn’t want to take responsibility for their part in making you feel a certain way, or doesn’t want to listen to your feelings. And then there’s the more severe forms, like when a partner blames you for everything that goes wrong in a relationship, insists you’re unworthy, or should feel “lucky” to have them, and in general belittles and berates you. ANY and ALL of these forms of this game are NOT OKAY, and many of them can actually be used as systems of gaslighting or emotional abuse. In general, the only games you should be playing with a significant other have boards or apps. If you think you are seeing any of these behaviors in your relationship, it’s important to have a conversation with your partner, and fix situations in which you think you’re being treated unfairly. If things do get out of hand, know that there are resources out there to help. YM The National Domestic Abuse Hotline: 1-800-787-3224




tripping has become more talked about recently, with celebrities like Cardi B, Blac Chyna, Amber Rose, and Dita Von Teese openly discussing their stripping careers before fame. I asked Christie, a college student trying to make ends meet, what life is like for a stripper who hasn’t necessarily reached celebrity. Christie strips at a small, local club. Still, an unconventional job comes with unconventional stories. I asked Christie to share her experiences with me and shed light on the profession so many people stigmatize and idealize. IK: WHAT MADE YOU GET INTO STRIPPING? C: I wanted to try it out. More of a hobby, but also as my primary job after a few months due to flexible hours and minimal need to work because money is so good. IK: HOW MUCH DO YOU TYPICALLY MAKE? C: I work five shifts and, on my worst days, can average up to $20 an hour. I make anywhere from $100 to $600 per shift. Q: WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT STRIPPING? C: I love dancing on stage and learning new tricks. IK: HOW DO YOU LEARN NEW DANCES? DO YOU TEACH YOURSELF? C: At my club, girls are more than happy to teach you what they know and help you expand your capabilities. The best way to learn how to pole dance is straight from a dancer. I learned everything I know from a few girls at the club. No videos or classes. IK: ANY BAD EXPERIENCES WITH ANY OF THE PATRONS? C: I hate the entitled, creepy, disgusting guys that think their $20 includes fondling or sex. Men will try to push their limits to get what they think is their money’s worth. I’ve had guys lick my armpits, stick their fingers in my belly button, stick their tongue out like dogs, and shake their head in between my breasts. I’ve had dicks whipped out or men cum on themselves. I’ve had someone bite my nipples and constantly try to stick their hands in my panties. I’ve seen couples looking for threesomes, people willing to pay any amount to see me go home with them. Everyone tries to graze your vagina if they can.


IK: WHAT’S THE WEIRDEST THING SOMEONE HAS ASKED YOU TO DO? C: There was this one guy that got a 15 minute private dance. He claimed he’d “never gotten one before because he was a gentleman.” He then asked if I could kiss him, begging, constantly repeating that he loved me and he was a gentleman and that I was so beautiful. He was slobbering all over my chest and offered to spend any amount of money to keep me for the rest of the night. I declined because it was so weird. Some other guys just want you to stare into their eyes for long periods of time. I’ve had a guy get a 30 minute private dance just to listen to me talk. IK: WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING TO WEAR? C: My favorite outfits are teddies [a one piece] over a g string. I love lingerie. IK: HOW DO PEOPLE REACT WHEN YOU TELL THEM YOU’RE A STRIPPER? C: People either don’t care or try to be white knights with sayings like, “You’re too pretty to work here,” or “Too smart.” I’ve had one experience when someone couldn’t be around me because they knew I was a stripper. IK: DO YOU EVER FEEL UNSAFE? C: Sometimes I get paranoid that someone will stalk me, but we have pretty high security at my club. The bouncers will watch the door and walk you to your car after your shift. I don’t give out any personal information, so I don’t feel unsafe usually. IK: HOW IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE WOMEN WHO WORK THERE? C: They are so sweet and not out to get you. They don’t feel threatened by competition because they know their worth and how much they’re going to make. IK: HOW IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE PATRONS WHO WORK THERE? C: You definitely meet some interesting people. After awhile you develop a repertoire. Some people are a friendly face that you know is there just for you. Some you know to avoid or you have to just grin and bear it. If you work weekends, a lot of people are just drinking and looking for some fun and you get to bring the party to them. YM


interview with a stripper




earing makeup can be magical. It can make you feel like a million bucks for the price of a few. And, truthfully, it’s incredibly fun. Our culture is rooted in ideas of hyper masculinity and separated by the boundaries of binary genders. Boys are supposed to be the antithesis of girls: tough, strong, masculine, and unyielding, as opposed to gentle, soft, feminine, and benevolent. The real difference does not lie in biological traits, but in the way we raise kids. Challenging how society says you are supposed to dress is how we can start to begin to change the culture. This is not a new concept. There are celebrities that have intentionally challenged our idea of gender in ways that you may not have even realized. Cue David Bowie and Prince, both rejecting society’s ideas of masculinity. Forever enchanting audiences and always looking incredible, Bowie favored expressing his identity through his clothing and music by writing about being gay and speaking about blurring gender boundaries. A lover of brightly colored suits and glittering accessories, Prince smashed what the world expected him to be. Defying what it meant to be a man, on top of that a black man, Prince captivated the world’s attention. His incredible voice paired with his sense of style and stage presence put him at the forefront of pop culture. Prince is credited with becoming a genderfluid symbol, and rightfully so. Musicians have been, and continue to be, at the vanguard of challenging masculinity. From Bowie and Prince to rappers like Jaden Smith and Frank Ocean, our culture is beginning to embrace what it means to be a multi-faceted human with diverse interests in clothing and expression. There is a new generation of artists pushing back against what society believes is the way to look and act. Jaden Smith has received criticism for wearing “women’s” clothing and not acting as the young man society expects him to be. His next move? Wear more skirts, jewelry, and makeup. Frank Ocean wore makeup in a music video, prompting people to question and assume his sexuality. Tyler the Creator’s merchandise line is full of bright colors and flowers, making it uniquely him. On wearing makeup and dressing in bright colors, Sahil Patel,


a junior Humor and Post-Colonial Narratives IDIP student, believes it is a great way from him to express himself. He is beginning to incorporate more vibrancy into his everyday wardrobe. Sahil serves looks every day with his curated color palettes and cute ‘fits, experimenting with colors and styles. “I like exploring,” Sahil says, “I like finding a color palette that makes me feel good.” Curating his own clothes forces him to make an effort and discover what styles look good on him. Sahil enjoys wearing makeup and is unafraid to try new and bold looks. “Lets go wild,” he tells me, “I want it to be very clear that I'm wearing some dope ass makeup.” His favorite makeup is a bright blue eyeliner he owns. While he admits that he is not the best at putting it on, he loves the look and likes having his face done up for him. On his makeup look for the Blackout Fashion Show, he says, “It looked intense. I like that. It made me feel good.” He says his next step is to try even more looks and wear more consistent styles. “I wanna fuck with glitter,” he concludes. Femininity does not only belong to queer people and women. It belongs to everyone. The desire to express oneself genuinely is within everyone. It is our job, as a society and culture, to allow everyone to wear makeup and bright colors. Pink does not belong to the concept of fragility meant to represent women. Pink is the sky after a warm spring day. Pink is the most beautiful smelling flowers. Pink is just a mix of dyes that looks good on guys (or anyone for that matter). Being in touch with femininity is not about the sexuality of a person, it is about being a kinder and well-rounded human. Men should wear dresses and rompers if they want. Men should wear makeup. Why? Not to make an impressive statement about what it means to be a man, but because they want to and because they think it looks nice. “I think it's really good for confidence,” Sahil tells me. Boys, if you are reading this, buy that eyeliner that you have been curious about. Wear that really nice pink shirt on a night out. Put some highlighter on those cheekbones. Do it all to make yourself feel better. Fuck with glitter. YM


STYLE | 15

When you walk,

everything should be about you.





urtains open to show the illuminated runway, lights flash, the music cues up, and a tall, beautiful model wearing only lingerie and huge angel wings emerges from the back of the stage while the crowd cheers. This is the basic formulation of the widely anticipated Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, and, for a few hours, all eyes are on the glowing women strutting down the runway. That, in my head, is what I want to look and feel like while walking down Newbury Street (except fully clothed). Nothing feels better than putting on your favorite outfit, listening to your favorite song, and walking down the busy streets like a supermodel walking down a runway. Whether it’s running to the grocery store or sauntering into your 8:00 a.m. class thirty minutes late, there’s no doubt that a confident walk can make an entire outfit look that much better. British supermodel Naomi Campbell is known to have the gold standard of runway walks. Her signature strut comprises a fluid movement of hips and a whole lot of attitude. I like to think I look like Miss Campbell (long shot, I know) when I’m on my way to work on the weekends. Though my walk makes me feel confident, I wanted to find out how I could make it look more like a runway model’s. Albany Alexander, a freshman Journalism major, has been modeling since her sophomore year in high school and has walked for Raul Penaranda and Solutions Bridal. Her model-walk, however, doesn’t stop after exiting the runway. Alexander says she regularly does her walk down streets to boost her confidence. “Models are super guilty of walking across crosswalks like they’re catwalks,” she said. “I definitely am aware that when I change my walk and do more of a model walk when I’m just walking down the street, I feel better about myself, and I feel more confident.” The major tips Alexander adopted from walking in shows and taking classes include keeping her chest out, ensuring her arms are relaxed, and consciously extending her neck. “I was told to imagine that there’s glitter on your chest, and you’re showing people the glitter,” she said. “That opens your shoulders, shows your collarbone off, and keeps your chest up.”

During the ‘80s and ‘90s, the runways showcased models walking pigeon-toed—one foot after the other like walking a tightrope. Alexander says she sees a lot of girls in runway deviating from that today, and though she still incorporates a little bit of it in her walk, she says the common misconception is that it has to be perfect. Alexander also encourages others not to worry about people looking when doing a model-walk down the street. “People are going to notice that you’re confident, but they’re not going to notice that you’re trying to model-walk,” she said. “Do what you want to do with your walk and don’t worry if other people are looking at you.” Naomi Jones, a freshman Creative Writing major, also promotes this positive personal perception. “Imagine that you are on your own stage. When you walk, everything should be about you,” she said. “Really feel like the outfits you put on are what you like because you are beautiful in every single outfit that you put on.” Jones did her first runway show and took her first runway class at sixteen under the Shiloh Debutante program in Connecticut. She has since participated in Emerson’s Black Organization with Natural Interests’ Blackout fashion show. Jones’ main technical tips from her runway experience include keeping your head high, walking like a string is attached to your head, and keeping your arms at your sides. “With arms, what I usually do is cuff my hands like doll hands and put them on my thighs,” she said. “When you keep your shoulders square and you have your hands on your thighs, it prevents you from swinging your arms.” Jones also gave major tips on walking with different footwear. With heels, she advises not to slouch because it may look like your legs hurt. With flats and more comfortable shoes, she says that sticking out your neck or leaning all the way back can be tempting, but you should keep your body on the same plane as your shoes. Above all, for Jones, confidence is key to a killer walk. “Personal perception is how you’re going to carry yourself,” she said. “As long as you are looking at yourself like you are royalty, people will admire you like you are.” YM

STYLE | 17




hen Gilbert Baker, an artist and drag performer, created the rainbow flag in 1978, it was originally intended only for use in San Francisco’s annual pride parade. Now, the rainbow has become a symbol for the queer community, each color representing a different identity, and the overall scheme representing inclusivity. Recently, more fashion brands are using the iconic rainbow to market to the queer community. Earlier this year, Burberry released “The Rainbow Legacy,” a new design that combines the brand’s distinctive check pattern with the colors of the rainbow in support of the LGBTQ+ community. This new branding comes on the heels of Gucci announcing it will outfit Elton John for his farewell tour, and Acne showcasing a gay influencer couple in an ad among other LGBT-oriented marketing. But is this kind of marketing progressive, or simply a ploy to push queer consumers to spend more money? According to national data recording company Nielsen, LGBTQ+ consumers spend approximately 7% more than heterosexual ones. While the percentage may seem small, the queer community is worth an estimated $835 billion according to Canada’s Center for Digital and Media Literacy. For fashion retailers, this is a huge demographic, and one that has been present in the industry for years. Although the market is worth a lot, the problem for companies is how to promote to the queer demographic, often leading to the use of the rainbow. The use of this pride symbol is a form of “pinkwashing,” a term describing breast cancer campaigns that make items pink and raise their prices in support of the cause. For gay-targeted marketing, the practice is referred to as “rainbow-washing.” Most of this queerinclusive advertising emerges in June, when the anniversary of the Stonewall riots is marked by pride parades around the world. Fashion companies use this month in an attempt to boost sales by using the rainbow image. Levi’s does it yearly, adding a rainbow background to its logo, accompanied by brands like Ralph Lauren that create largescale window displays in rainbow hues. Now, rainbow fashion marketing is popping up outside of Pride month. Nike, for example, released #BeTrue, a collection of rainbowprinted shirts, and Adidas introduced the “Pride Pack,” multi-color footwear targeted towards the queer community. This kind of branding can sometimes feel out of place, making queer individuals feel targeted instead of welcomed. While the point

of marketing is to appeal to a demographic, using an image of pride to sell products can make it seem like a company is showing artificial support for the queer community. Katie Heaney, a queer writer, discusses how this type of marketing makes its audience feel in her memoir Would You Rather? Describing a PrideFest where she expected to find support and understanding of the queer community from all attendees and companies present, Heaney instead found artificial rainbow advertisements that left her feeling crassly commercialized. “Up front, maybe, it was all marketing, but it was supposed to be more,” Heaney writes. “Who had told me that any of this would be queer?....Some companies fit in more successfully than others, and ultimately I’d rather buy from a brand that is at least willing to align itself with gay people than refuse them outright, but...I felt repulsed, not proud.” Due to the rise in rainbow-washing, some individuals have learned to see through advertising tactics. Alex Sieklicki, a queeridentifying senior Marketing major, says that, for him, rainbowfocused ads are simple to see through. “I think it’s easy to tell when it’s tokenish,” says Sieklicki. “You can tell when a company genuinely means it versus when they’re just putting out a ‘gay edition.’ Using a ton of rainbow is usually a first red flag, though, just because they’re overplayed.” Of course, when companies use these tactics for a good cause, it’s often a different situation. Burberry, for example, takes a percentage of the sales from their Rainbow Legacy collection and donates it to three charities: the Albert Kennedy trust, the Trevor Project, and ILGA. This drastically changes the meaning behind the campaign, and allows for representation instead of tokenism. There is a fine line between marketing for the queer community with the purpose of support and rainbow-washing advertisements as a way to target a financially large demographic. Elise Van Heuven, a senior Communication Studies major, agrees, insisting that queertargeted marketing is only effective and non-exploitative when there is a greater cause behind it. “[They] only rub me the wrong way when they don’t contribute anything educational or charitable along with the campaign,” says Van Heuven. “If a company is marketing heavily...they better be donating to a relevant queer cause or be playing close attention to the responsibility to be intersectional and well informed.” YM

STYLE | 19




BANGS “jeopardize” beauty so women have started to proceed with caution.


angs are like cilantro—you either love them or hate them. My relationship with cilantro is a lot like my relationship with bangs, indifferent but really great when they’re done right. While I don’t currently have bangs, I’ve had them twice in my young adult life—once in high school and once in college. Each time I got bangs I received a multitude of unsolicited opinions from friends who warned me repeatedly, “You’ll regret it!” There was a vibe of fear around bangs that permeated deeper than simply not liking them. While the backlash bang-haters create seems harsh, I’ve learned it’s actually well intentioned. Bang cutting is often associated with a woman on the edge of an emotional breakdown (cue every movie where an emotionally distressed female character cuts her bangs shakily in front of a mirror). As a result, “bang warnings” have become an epidemic, a feminine propagated anxiety that has shaken society to its core. As children, most little girls have bangs. Just take a look at class pictures from preschool age and on. To outsiders it looks cute (it probably was), but the vulnerability that comes with youth often blurs the reality of the situation. Our embarrassing, awkward stages are often entirely out of our control. Their perpetrated by meddling mothers, hormones, gullibility, and uninformed decisions. Bangs are a physical reminder of our childhood trauma. Even if they could actually serve as a viable fashion statement, the trauma associated with bangs often travels into adulthood and influences our present-day decisions. Women think, “I was ugly, I was awkward, and I had bangs.” Bangs become the scapegoat for our past insecurities. There’s also the issue that bangs are a pain to grow out. If you want to grow out your bangs, you run the risk of having them covering your eyes for around 6-3 months. Bangs make women anxious because it means they are willingly agreeing to about a half a year of bad hair days. And since a woman’s worth has been dictated by her hair for centuries, women subconsciously prescribe to the notion that hair is a means of validation; even today. Bangs

“jeopardize” beauty so women have started to proceed with caution. Bangs also intrude on the routine of everyday life. What used to be throwing your hair into a ponytail and going for a jog has become struggling with how to deal with greasy bangs. Sometimes no matter what you do to them, bangs can never seem to rest nicely on your head. They are not a hairstyle that’s conducive for a quick, five minute morning routine. Bangs are literally like a target on your forehead. Any stray hair and the world knows you are unable to tame them. Finally, there is the quintessential unthought-out and unplanned hair change that many women (or men—we all like a change!) go through after facing something traumatic. Often, when a woman brings up bangs to her friends, they know that this might be the case, so they put her on blast. This concern could get misconstrued into dislike for bangs rather than a simple warning. Lindsey Goldin, a Communications major, impulsively cut her bangs during midterms her sophomore year. “I wasn’t in a bad place at all; honestly, I think I was looking for inspiration, maybe even artistically, because I felt stifled and bored with my current look,” Goldin said. What happened next was a mistake. “They looked pretty bad because I cut them myself. [My friend] Delia’s mom, who’s a hairdresser, fixed them for me. But I had to go all the way to western Mass to have her fix them.” There are some women who rock their bangs (peep Rashida Jones). Some women can’t imagine life without them. When getting bangs, it is important to consider whether you actually want them or just think you do. It’s important to think over the consequences—will this affect how I part my hair? Is my hair the right texture that it wouldn’t require too much work? Would I have to straighten them? Do I have the patience to grow them out? Do I actually want them or have I just watched too many Zooey Deschanel movies? Unplanned bang-trimming just adds more fuel to the bang-hating fire. Women who don’t properly think through their bang decisions will blame the bangs rather than blaming themselves. This gives bangs a bad name and, trust me, they don’t deserve that. YM

When getting BANGS, it is important to consider whether you actually want them or just think you do.

STYLE | 21





This coat was such an impulse buy. But it has perhaps become the most iconic thing that I own. It’s also the only really warm jacket that I own so it was kind of forced into becoming a staple in my closet. Once I got asked if it was the vinyl coat by Vetements and that made me want to cry a little bit inside because goals. . LAVENDER STUFFED SOCK PUPPET

A little piece of home. On my first day of working at Madewell, I saw this scarf that mapped out a cartoon of NYC. I never got it and always regretted it. A few months ago, it popped up in a search on a used clothing website. I got so excited that I accidentally had my account blocked for spamming the seller. So I had to make a new account to buy it and it’s being hanging on my wall ever since.

My dad bought this for me about 10 years ago at a craft fair in Upstate NY and he’s travelled everywhere with me since. It’s supposed to be one of those scented things that you keep in your sock and underwear drawer but young Sophie wanted it as a toy.


MARBLE PHONE AND LAPTOP CASE Call me basic but I love marble. My laptop case is marble, my phone case is marble, my water bottle is marble. I even have a watch that’s marble. If I had a house, the floors, the countertops, and the bathroom would all be marble. I’m just out here hoping that this trend will last forever so I can be one giant marble obsessed machine.


Whenever I walk into a room, there’s almost a 100% chance that I’ll be holding an almond milk latte from Tatte. I love it. It’s what I’ll miss most about Boston. It’s the best coffee in the world. That is all. WHITE SNEAKERS If you know me then you know that I own about 5 pairs of almost identical white sneakers. And I keep buying identical sneakers. Ridiculous? Maybe. Resourceful? Maybe. City streets can get shoes pretty dirty after a day of walking around so I like to have multiple pairs of crisp white shoes that I rotate out.



s a native Floridian, I am lucky enough to be familiar with much that the state has to offer. While I am not from Miami, I have been there enough times to know which experiences are worth revisiting. South Florida is one of the most culturally-rich regions of the US and can be overwhelming to the rookie spring breaker or vacation-goer. To make things easier, here are some of the best things SoFlo has to offer.

Wynwood Art District A formerly rundown, industrial part of the city, local artists decided to transform the streets of Wynwood to be their outdoor gallery. With its large and vibrant geometric murals, the Wynwood Walls take graffiti to a new level. Located in the heart of the Art District, the Wynwood Walls are surrounded by multiple new art galleries, restaurants, and boutiques which all stand in revamped warehouses. The area’s businesses frequently host events throughout the week that draw more and more people out to explore what Wynwood has to offer. My personal favorites are Murk Mondays at Coyo Taco and Reggae Sundays at Wynwood Yard. Both events are free and feature live music, dancing, and food. Pro tip: On every second Saturday of the month, the entire ArtDistrict is open until midnight for the largest block party in the city––the Art Walk. Food trucks and DJs line up along the blocks for quick bites and a dance party that continues into the night.


WRITTEN BY ASTER CHENG ART BY ELEANOR HILTY Little Havana Recently declared as a national treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Little Havana is the central hotspot for Latin American culture in Miami. It started out as a place for Cuban exiles to settle and is now a vital middleground for Latin American and American culture. One of Little Havana’s best treasures is Calle Ocho, an avenue which features food, parks, and Paseo de las Estrellas, Little Havana’s own version of the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Latin American artists such as Gloria Estafan and Thalia. Alongside it is Domino Park, a place for elderly Cuban residents to play dominoes and socialize. It is a major aspect of life in Little Havana for many of its residents. Not only is Domino Park a place for them to interact, it sits in the center of different memorials that commemorate the heroes and leaders of Cuban culture. Also in the neighborhood is the Versailles Restaurant that has been voted the best Cuban cuisine in Miami. Some of the restaurant’s top dishes include: cuban sandwiches, croquetas, palomillas, and ventanitas. Pro tip: Viernes Culturales (Cultural Fridays) is a festival that takes place on the last Friday of every month in Calle Ocho. Similar to the Art Walk, this is an event full of musical performances, art displays, and food. Museum of Ice Cream Decked out in bright colors and cute props, the Museum of Ice Cream is a pop-up event that gives its attendees the perfect Instagram photo ops. Whether it’s the pool of sprinkles, the graphic wall designs, or the glittery dance floors, the MOIC is guaranteed to give anyone the quality content their feed has been needing. There is also free ice cream on each floor of the museum, varying in flavors and forms. From mochi to melted, and with flavors as generic as vanilla to as exotic as mango, the museum has a wide selection of treats. Since the museum is a pop-up event, subscribe to the MOIC’s emails at for information on the next location near you. Club Space Club Space is a never-ending party located in the heart of downtown Miami. The rooftop club frequently features worldrenowned DJs, as well as local talents. This is the place to be for those who are looking for a stereotypical Miami Spring Break experience full of loud music, dancing, and many opportunities to make mistakes with zero regrets. (Age requirement is 18+ for ladies and 21+ for guys) Lincoln Road As the Newbury Street of South Beach, Lincoln Road boasts numerous restaurants, cafes, and retail shops that stretch for a mile between 16th and 17th Street. However, Lincoln Road is the complete opposite of Newbury in terms of design. While Newbury

is characterized by its historic brownstones along the street, Lincoln Road’s shops stand in modern, crisp, white buildings along a promenade that is closed off to vehicles. The promenade also opens up opportunity for performances by local musical and acting talents. “Live on Lincoln” is a series that features performers at the 1100 Lincoln Road stage on the weekends between 1pm to 4pm. Zoological Wildlife Foundation Word on the street is the rare, exotic animals that are part of the Zoological Wildlife Foundation were originally used to smuggle in drugs to the US. The owner and former kingpin of Miami’s cocaine market, Mario Tabraue, had a change of heart (and career path) after his stint in prison and opened up Florida’s most interactive zoo. Unlike traditional zoos, visitors to ZWF are encouraged to not only watch, but actually interact with the animals on the sanctuary. The ZWF offers the opportunity to learn about, feed, and pet tigers, grizzly bears, alligators, monkeys, birds, anteaters, and other exotic creatures. Portions of proceeds go towards supporting wildlife organizations with goals of preserving endangered creatures like rhinos, cheetahs, and others. While Miami is full of adventure and excitement, a short drive away is Homestead. The rural town of Homestead offers many activities that are a calm amongst the fast-paced lifestyle of Miami Beach. Knaus Berry Farm Knaus Berry Farm is a family-owned farm that has been around for decades. The roadside market is known for strawberry picking and their famous cinnamon rolls. Locals say that it is not uncommon for the line to stretch for “miles” on holiday weekends for a few dozen of their cinnamon rolls, homemade key-lime pie, and milkshakes. Schnebly’s Winery Schnebly’s is known for its handcrafted wine to tourists and locals. More importantly, the winery plays a major role in the community with its weekly events that bring the neighborhood together. The most popular one? Country nights on Friday evenings beginning at 7pm, where many of Homestead and its surrounding towns’ residents come out to enjoy glasses of wine and country line dancing. The Everglades South Florida is home to 1.5 million acres of wetland preserve that is rich in both plant and animal species, ranging from little subtropical plants to the majestic Florida panther. Daily airboat tours are not only fun to ride, but visitors have the chance to see iconic Florida flora and fauna like mangroves and gators in their natural habitats. YM





“I thought you literally bought babies.”


ow are babies born? I definitely had a lot of different ideas about the topic when I was a kid, and it was not until my friends brought it up in random conversation that I began to think about all the creative things we, as children, came up with to justify the phenomenon of babies. When I was younger, I went to a Catholic private school, which basically explains my theory. I thought that you prayed to Mother Mary for a baby and then you got magically pregnant. As much as I want to say my school told me that was how it worked, if I am being completely honest, I definitely could have made it up all on my own. Grace Goodell ‘21, said, “When I was younger, my grandmother had said something about how as she was getting older she felt like she was shrinking and getting smaller. So I for some reason assumed that as you got older you turned back into a baby and your grandchildren took care of you.” Grace justifies this idea by saying she was a very gullible child. This is the quote that started the whole article. When I heard Goodell say this, I knew there had to be more ideas out there—ideas we come up with when we don’t know or understand the whole equation. Goodell was the youngest child, so she never witnessed her mother pregnant which probably lead to this idea of grandmothers shrinking into grandchildren’s babies. Maya Huter ‘21, said, “I thought you got pregnant by connecting a tube to your belly button, and yeah, that was how I thought the egg transferred to the sperm and what not...I just thought you connected belly buttons with a long tube and that’s how it happened.” Huter believes she made up this explanation to make sense of the only partially known. I think the main reason our minds ran free with this idea is that we had no satisfying explanation. So, to justify it all we had to come up with one for ourselves and, as kids, reason creates no boundaries for our imaginations.

Max Tedford ‘21, said, “I thought children popped up like cancer tumors and people chose to keep them or not.” He thinks he made this up because he knew about abortions before he knew about sex, so to him, this just made sense. It’s a pretty creative theory because Tedford took the little amount of information he had, in this case the idea of abortions, and built off of it to come up with this more apparently concrete reasoning for pregnancies. Jarrett Wilder ‘21 said, “I thought your parents made you, like sculpted you, and it all mattered how talented your parents were to see how pretty you would end up. The pregnancy was the baby in the human version of a kiln.” He doesn’t know why or how he came up with this creative nonsense, but I think I like this one the best. I think my husband would have to be the artist because I’d make one ugly kid. Wilder’s idea sounds like a whole lot of pressure, but in a really cool kind of way. Carina Wiggin ‘21, a student at Howard County Community College said, “I thought you literally bought babies.” She said she had this idea because she was adopted, but that doesn’t necessarily explain why she thought babies were available for purchase at the mall. I like this one because it feeds into this idea where as kids, we pick up on the little we know to form ideas about the world around us. Wiggin took the idea from her adoption while Goodell took the idea from her grandmother. They are both wrong, but they grasped what they were told to form their own theories about the phenomenon of babies. It’s funny what we come up with when we don’t understand, but it is even funnier to see how much we didn’t know before we had “the talk.” Most of the people I talked to thought that two parents just agreed it was time, and BAM! there the baby was. A good number of people thought babies were bought and sold, as well. Our understanding of the world changed quite a bit after we found out about sex, but our creativity will never stop helping us make our own sense of things. YM




rom Grimes and Stevie Nicks to Abbi and Ilana of Broad City, to your freshman year roommate who just had to sage your entire suite in LB, everyone seems to be calling themselves a witch these days. This witchiness hasn’t been limited to Halloween either, since for the last year and a half the term has been popping up everywhere. When we think of witches, many of us probably conjure images of pointed black hats and broomsticks and women with warts gathered around cauldrons bubbling with mysterious brews. However, a witch, and their coven for that matter, are much more than that. In the past, witches, and people who have been labeled as such, have tended to be women who fight against the status quo of the patriarchy, organized religion, and even governing bodies. Think Joan of Arc, Marie Laveau, and the Salem Witch Trials. So why have we seen not only a resurgence of the use of this term as a label, but the reclamation of the witch identity as well? To find some answers, I chatted with Brianna Suslovic, an accomplished writer and busy student in the Social Work program at Smith College, who also considers herself to be a “witchy” person. Suslovic told me that although she doesn’t “align with the full identity,” she feels that there is a lot about the witch lifestyle that speaks to her. She defines witches as people who are “in some way connected to spirituality outside of dominant religious views,” particularly through specific hobbies, beliefs, and practices, citing the use of tarot cards, crystals, and herbs as witchy things that she feels have risen to prominence in recent years. When asked about the use of witchcraft as a way for marginalized communities to reclaim power and control, Suslovic explained that to her, witchcraft is more akin to meditation, and that there isn’t necessarily, “a conscious pull to think about the supernatural as being something that takes power away from bad people and gives it to good people. There’s a part of me,” Suslovic said, “that wants to believe that and a part of me that believes, if that were the case, that


we wouldn’t be in the situation we’re in as a country.” The age of fourth wave feminism, which is (in theory) the most intersectional wave of feminism to date, gives a new meaning and purpose to covens. Suslovic, a millennial, queer woman of color who was recently sworn in as Commission Member of The Massachusetts Commission on LGBTQ Youth, has embraced her witchy identity largely in the last couple of years. “In the current political climate I’ve felt especially grateful to have...a group text called ‘Coven Goals’ which provides a small group of people to vent to and process and share resources with. I think there’s something about, maybe not even power, but shared identity, experiences, and practices.” As Suslovic described her Coven, who are often seen on Instagram reading each others tarot cards, I found myself thinking of groups like the Combahee River Collective, a black feminist lesbian organization that was active in Boston from 1974 to 1980. The Collective sought to address issues that they felt were not deemed important by white feminist groups of the day, with a mission statement that read “The most profound and potentially most radical politics come directly out of our own identities.” When it comes to Suslovic’s Coven’s own intersectionality, she said that, “incidentally, the crew that I am closest with, who believes in these sorts of things, are all women and all cis-women, now that I’m thinking about it, but I think that there is an acknowledgement of, ‘if you feel like you have been oppressed by patriarchal forces, this is probably for you.’” It seems that “witch” is not just a name, but a lifestyle. It is a set of values and practices that connect people and create a community that many people, particularly those who have been feeling disenfranchised and perhaps disillusioned by both their government as well as organized religion as of late, might be drawn to. If that is the case, then anyone can be a witch. And if a witch is someone who bucks against the patriarchy by reading tarot cards and engaging in radical self-care, then it certainly doesn’t seem like a bad thing. YM





ating back to ancient China, where it was viewed as a symbol of wealth, the houseplant has a long and winding history. Traditionally, the houseplant primarily served an aesthetic purpose, demonstrating beauty, exoticism, wealth, and extensive travel—but a modern take on houseplants offers far more practical benefits than before. With studies linking plant areas, dubbed “green spaces,” to anything from air purification, reduced anxiety, improved productivity, lower blood pressure, and claims of full on reduced depression, the search for the perfect house plant takes on a new angle: how to get what you want aesthetically to be what you need mentally. Technology is adding yet another factor to the search for the perfect house plant by taking aim at the growing food crisis with SproutsIO, an app-controlled gardening system that allows anyone to grow food at home at any time. The technology, boasting “no green thumb required,” puts growing produce in the consumers’ hands at a time when articles are pouring out on food wasted in the transportation process from farm to table. However, with the new system currently testing in its pilot program, its implementation across Boston homes and restaurants begs the question, “What is the future of the ordinary houseplant?” Whether picking a plant for your mentality, to grow herbs, or simply for a pretty piece of decor, research is always a good idea before running to the nearest Lowe's. Living in colder, cloudier places such as Boston presents another challenge of picking a plant that is manageable in an urban setting. Within the domain of low light plants, there are entire realms of species based on what you are looking for. While succulents offer you simple, easy to care for plants that are perfect for those neat freaks who love things that keep their own order, vines may offer other people a wild escape from their urban life as they branch out and climb over whatever they can reach. Lavender may offer a calm-


ing scent to sooth your mind during midterms, and the peace lily may be the bougie decor piece your $800 Allston apartment is in dire need of. With that in mind, we’ve created a quick guide to the best houseplants for Boston. Succulents: Succulents are a dorm favorite as one of the most manageable and simple plants to care for. While few flower, leaving growers without the aesthetic value of scent in many cases, they can offer a slew of mental and physical health benefits. Top Picks: aloe vera, pearly dots, and panda plants Vines and Stalks: Give your living space a more wild look with vines that will pretty much grow until you clip them. Popularized in the low lit Victorian era of England, plants like English ivy typically grow best in hanging pots, but can work on ground pots as well. Top Picks: English ivy, pothos, and bamboo Scents and Flowers: Aromatherapy is rumored to help anything from chest pains to headaches to insomnia—but what if a plant could give you the same effect as an essential oil diffuser? While not all flowering plants come with a predominant scent, plants like lavender and jasmine can grow with a bit of effort in any living space. If you’re not up for the challenge of a scented plant, other flowers offer aesthetic value to decor such as the peace lily, which can thrive in low light and sprouts beautiful white lilies every year. Top Picks: lavender, jasmine, peace lily, and African violet Simple Herbs and Spices: Where could you possibly get better ingredients for your ramen than in your own pot? Herbs take a bit more work than other indoor plants, typically needing to be transferred from tray to pot after six weeks of germination. Our best advice is make sure to pay attention to the ideal growing months on seed packets. If you’ve just missed the growing season for a particular seed, don’t panic! Many hardware stores or nurseries sell developed sprouts ready to be transferred to your pot. Top Picks: rosemary, thyme, basil, and chives Happy Planting! YM







he Lucky Star bus has been taking me from New York to Boston and vice versa since August 2015. But I hadn’t fully grasped the magnitude of my relationship with Lucky Star until recently when I heard the opening line of BROCKHAMPTON’s “STAINS”. In it there’s a line that says, “I spent like a year and a half on the Greyhound bus/ On my way to see this girl.” I’m writing this on a bus right now. As a New York native, many of my responsibilities were stuck 216 miles away. These included family, friends, doctor’s appointments, and gross ex-boyfriends. Before college, I had never taken a bus across state lines in my life. But I suddenly found myself making four-and-a-half hour trips almost every weekend, wasting close to 10 hours each week of my life on a bus. I’ve learned the best times to travel and the worst. I’ve sat beside homeless couples, druggies, tourists, and people of every different race, religion, language, and sexuality. I know the familiar rest stops: The Burger Kings, the McDonalds, the Chinese buffet in Hartford, Connecticut. Friendships have sent me to D.C., Philadelphia, Vermont, and Syracuse, but these trips were just secret affairs compared to my lifelong union with the journey to New York. I remember listening to “Bad Religion” by Frank Ocean constantly when I stared out the window. Behind me, a couple yelled expletives at one another. They seemed to be coming off a substance, eagerly waiting to arrive in New York. The woman was testy, anxiously searching for her bottle of liquor that had coincidentally rolled by my feet towards the front of the bus. The man harshly tried to shush her, “Shut the fuck up. Shut up.” In the beginning, riding the bus only filled me with sadness, anxiety, and nervousness. You spend a lot of personal time with your brain when you travel alone almost every weekend. It drove me insane and probably hindered the progress of many things in my life at the time: my relationships, my education, my happiness. I journeyed for the sake of home. For loves that should have never been. For the safety in knowing I’d be doing something Saturday night and not potentially wasting away in a dorm room alone with no friends. The bus gave me a lot of time to think about these “friends,” my life at school, and my future. This should’ve made me eager with anticipation but it only blinded me with fear. “Bad Religion” might well have been my anthem. “Taxi driver/ Be my shrink for the hour/ Leave the meter running.” Replace taxi driver with bus driver and you had the same story. Sure, now I think back and realize that Frank Ocean’s pleas to a taxi driver about his unrequited gay love (to which the taxi driver cursed him in intolerance) hardly compares to the woes of my privileged, anxious college student life. But for all intents and purposes, the Lucky Star bus driver was my shrink for the four-and-a-half hours of the trip.

I always sit on the right side of the bus. My head naturally leans to the left and I like to look out the window. Highways become blurred into concrete tracks and I begin to realize that I am constantly skipping thoughts on them. When will I leave this messy relationship? When will I feel safe at school? When will these bus rides ever feel normal? Now they do feel normal. I’ve had semester-long breaks in which I was able to tear away from the confines of a bus and instead focus on creating anchors in my new city. Spending Saturday nights alone in a dorm room isn’t as life-crushing as it originally seemed. In fact, the greatest memories have come from the spontaneous things that can happen in college dorm room. A year or so later I began to take the bus again for doctor’s appointments. Once a month, like clock work. These rides were often filled with impatience, but there was an easiness in knowing I had a life for me when I’d inevitably come back. I remember sitting in front of a homeless couple and their friend. “Consideration” by Rihanna blared on my headphones— “When I look outside my window/ I can’t get no peace of mind.” The couple and their friend talked about park hopping, “Just wait till we get to Union Square, man. Then we can score.” I was fascinated by the community they’d managed to create with one another and by how connected all these parks in different cities seemed to be. I then began to realize that no matter how long I stared out the window, I would never find peace of mind. But perhaps like the bus route, I am just getting better at navigating the journey. YM







edric “VISE1” Douglas is tall. His physical presence, already hard to miss, is amplified by his presence, that invisible thing a person like him has that makes people pay attention. His outfit today—beige khakis, a dark blue denim vest over a red and blue plaid button-up, a red hat with the flat bill flipped up (and the logo of his project, Street Memorials, printed on it in white), glasses with black rectangular frames, thick grey socks with black New Balance sneakers, and two chunky metal rings—is color-coordinated and somewhere in between youth and maturity, complete with a septum piercing that suggests the fortyyear-old’s appreciation for youthful rebellion. As Emerson College’s new artist-in-residence, Douglas is about to embark on his Street Memorials project. “Being a street artist and coming from that background, I see the streets in a different way,” says Douglas. The project remixes common street icons to deepen and change their meanings. Those printed tags you’ve seen around campus declaring the names of victims of police brutality—Oscar Grant, Michael Brown, and Walter Scott, among others—are a big component of his project. Later, with the help of student volunteers, he will hand out roses memorializing police brutality victims, including a note with a photo of the victim, their name, birth and death dates, and a short paragraph or two describing their life. “People sell roses on the streets - [I’m] taking that and making that have new meaning.” The project also includes a projection component, which he will work on in conjunction with Assistant Professor Paul Turano’s public art and projections course. Douglas plans to install an adhesive image in the shape of a human body, then project the heads of different victims of police brutality onto the figure. Although he’s concerned with many community issues, police


brutality seems to be the injustice Douglas is most passionate about. “There’s the whole [debate]: should you go to jail, should you get the death penalty? The police are making that decision in the streets. Kill,” says Douglas. “They’re like the justice system. It’s crazy. They’re making those decisions for us.” Douglas first connected with Emerson after hosting a tour around his neighborhood as part of the Americans for the Arts conference. He had created signs, modeled in the style of street signs, memorializing first his uncle, Danny Edwards, after his untimely death, and then Odin Lloyd, a neighbor who was shot and killed. Lloyd’s murder made the news because Patriots football player Aaron Hernandez was convicted of the crime, so when Lloyd’s family asked Douglas to make a sign for him, it drew attention. “When I did the tour of the signs on the street where I grew up, there was a group of people, and in that group was one of the professors from this school,” says Douglas. That professor was Cher Knight, and after a successful visit to her class, Knight knew the relationship needed to grow. “That’s how I ended up here, doing this, which is related with the memorial, and it’s a continuation of it.” In fact, on the day we met, Douglas had just returned from putting up another in his series of street signs, a sign in honor of Terrence Coleman. “I installed one of these street signs at the house where he was killed. On the building,” says Douglas. “It’s a memorial.” In a too-short roller chair in the Iwasaki Library coLab, knees reaching the table, Douglas is absorbed in one of what his stepfather, David Bailey, calls “CED talks”: lengthy out-loud musings about art, society, life, and everything in between. His voice travels easily through the quiet room, and his hands are in

constant motion to accentuate his words. Douglas’ talks are often enlightening not just for the listener, but for Douglas himself, who is always learning and coming to new realizations. But they are talks, not conversations: “Even if you try and ask a question, it’s hard to get it in,” says Bailey. Perhaps Douglas is making up for lost time; as a child, he was quiet and somewhat withdrawn, often electing to stay in the car during family outings and showing a reluctance towards meeting new people. Not so today. “One of the things that I love doing is talking to strangers,” says Douglas. “And what I realized, when you have conversations with people, is that there’s the sixth degree of separation that always happens, where they know someone that I know that knows a family member. They might even be related somehow. Not always, but you find how much commonality you have with people when you start talking. And then you appreciate people more—or not.” Douglas is a lifelong learner; he loves self-help books and motivational youtube videos. It’s fitting that he also loves to play chess, a thoughtful activity that requires strategy and planning, much like his art projects do. He’s a bit of a hoarder, keeping every memento and every sketch that could turn into art. He has a binder full of old plans and sketches, neatly tucked into plastic page protectors. His desire to connect informs his work and it’s at the core of all his projects. Douglas believes in building bridges, in community, in communication. Part of this comes from the way he was raised. Until the age of six or seven, he lived with his mother, grandmother, and many aunts and uncles in Dorchester— his grandmother had thirteen children. There, he was part of a large family unit in a diverse neighborhood. Douglas himself is

of Jamaican descent, and his friends and classmates were mostly Black and Latinx, from various cultural backgrounds. In third grade, his mother married Bailey and the family moved to Quincy. Life in Quincy was very different. At the time, it was a majority-white town, and Douglas says he and his brother may have been the only black kids at his school. Still, he says he was exposed to new cultures there, too. He often went back to visit Dorchester, becoming especially close with his uncle Danny, only a year his senior, who got him interested in art and graffiti. “Graffiti was the first thing that jolted me to think and see the world creatively,” says Douglas. “It all goes back to my uncle, who taught me how to do what I’m doing, making it my life.” VISE1 is Douglas’ current graffiti name (his first was “Finesse”), and although it originally indicated a guilty addiction to graffiti art, he says that today it stands for “Visually Intercepting Society’s Emotions.” He spent the nineties learning many of the tenets of graphic design—composition, balance, space, and typography—through his graffiti art. After studying design in college, Douglas graduated to working on larger-scale projects, primarily focusing on local Boston communities. “A lot of the work I do is social intervention work that is making people look at society in a different way and see the things that are not just,” he says. He wants to make people think, and more importantly, to make people care. “Success, for me, for a project, is if it’s impactful.” As Street Memorials has altered the landscape of Emerson’s campus, it’s now up to students to pay attention, engage, and carry that impact into action. YM




rowing up as a first-generation half-Filipino half-Cuban girl in Connecticut, finding representation was definitely a challenge. Especially as someone with immigrant parents— each one so connected to their past homes. It was impossible to pick one identity, ethnically, Asian or Hispanic or American. I couldn’t check one box on standardized tests. I’m all of those things, and it was a little disorienting. Even more so because it was hard to find Asian-American influences in media. Lucy Liu and Jackie Chan were the biggest Asian stars in the U.S. that weren’t figure skaters. But they were considerably older, so there wasn’t much to relate to. I think the only other exposure I had to anything close to my background was through Sailor Moon and Mulan. Both of those stories contained strong female leads and killer storylines and adventures, but was that really it? Fast forward to now. I’m a junior in college, still at a predominately white school, but the difference this time is: there is hella representation, especially in music. There have been so many break-out stars from Mitski to Japanese Breakfast to Jay Som. These women break every stereotype that western ideologies have forced down the throats of Asian women. We’re not always soft and submissive. We’re not always good at school. If we are, we’re that and so much more. This is about letting Asian women be multifaceted people and not stagnant characters such as the tired tropes like tiger mom or the karate hero. And why should we be? Can’t we just… live? Singer-songwriter, Mitski Miyawaki, just Mitski on musical projects, has had huge success in the indie-rock scene. She writes songs about every hard feeling—vulnerability, pain, uncertainty— with such beautiful, heart-wrenching lyrics. She channels her experience of being a Japanese-American woman in a relationship with your typical American boy in her song “Your Best American Girl.” Her voice flies over thrashing electric guitar, singing, “Your mother wouldn’t approve of how my mother raised me, but I do, I think I do.” This song in its base form is about finding self-love and worth while not fitting into someone else’s world. Not just of herself but also of her background and upbringing. In the penultimate chorus, she changes “I think I do” to “I finally do,” and that makes for a striking resolution of acceptance to the pain of not fitting in. Although there is a certain empowerment through embracing your culture, there is a downfall of being the representative figure. It’s a thin tightrope to walk when everything you do turns political,


just because you’re one of the first. In an interview with Line of Best Fit, Miyawaki explains, “I write personal stories about relationships, and living in this world and being a human being…but I happen to live in a world which views me as an Asian-American. So my experiences are tainted by that, even if I’m not conscious of it.” Of course the fact that she is Japanese-American is not important to her work as an artist, however it can be so rewarding for both the artist and for listeners because it provides young Asian-Americans that might be interested in pursuing something artistic someone to look at that is just like them and made it. That is an incredibly comforting feeling. These artists understand the need for representation because it is what they’ve experienced as well. Michelle Zauner, who goes by the name Japanese Breakfast, discusses in an article with Teen Vogue, “...when I grew up there was no Korean popular culture in America. So I grew up relating to Japanese culture quite a bit because it felt like the closest thing I had.” Zauner continues later in the article explaining, “...Karen O [from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs] like changed my life... I just remember seeing videos of her spitting water all over herself and like deep-throating a microphone and just being like, ‘I want to do that.’” Despite her stage name, Zauner is of Korean-Jewish descent and was raised in Oregon. She chose the name because it fit the vibe she was going for, the American familiarity of breakfast mixed with something commonly exoticized—Japan. It mingled nicely with her music, which is nostalgic and pop-y, but with a hit of something else you can’t quite put your finger on. She is outspoken about her Korean background, her Twitter description is “PSA: I’m Korean.” In her video for “Everybody Wants to Love You” she’s in traditional Korean dress, hair, and makeup, shooting pool, riding on the back of a motorcycle, and partying in a bar, emphasizing her love for her Korean and American identities. I’ve even found Filipino artists such as Melina Duterte, who goes by the stage name, Jay Som. Her parents are both immigrants, and she grew up in Oakland, California. She’s a well-known name in the bedroom dream-pop scene, and has produced so much content on her own between the two albums she’s released since 2016. She and Zauner are good friends and have even collaborated on a Valentines playlist together for NPR and they are also on tour together. These women and so many more have provided a shelter for Asian American girls. Not only do they blaze a trail for those to come, but they invite others to learn and re-educate themselves on who we are as people. The mold America has built is not only broken, but burned down. Now it’s time to dance on the ashes…to some great music. YM











omewhere in a dingy basement on the outskirts of Boston, a new form of music appreciation is taking shape. It consists of a five dollar cover fee, a couple of unknown artists, and a bunch of hip college students to fill the room. Shows often happen in houses of students who live off campus. Criteria to host really only includes one thing: A basement big enough to stuff in about fifty people. When I arrived in East Boston, around eight o’clock, it seemed there were already about half that many people milling around the musty basement of the white paneled townhouse. The lights were dimmed so low it was hard to see where you were going. JUUL smoke gave the air a hazy texture and the faint smell of alcohol and sweat lingered everywhere. A drum set and speakers were set in a corner of the room, but no one crowded the area where the band would be. Teenagers lounged on the floor, sat on couches and chairs pushed to the edge of the room, and chatted in small groups. Eventually, the first band made its way to the instruments and started playing a sort of alternative rock with breathy vocals and a funky bass progression. Some people danced a little with their shoulders, tossing their heads back and forth. Others just nodded along to the beat. There definitely wasn’t a bad view in the house. Seemingly the opposite of stadium and arena shows, this kind of homemade venue gives students the chance to listen to live music for cheap—and in a more intimate setting. So close you can actually tell which chords the guitarist is strumming and see the sweat beaded on the lead singer’s forehead. While similar to other small venue spaces in capacity, basement shows are completely planned and executed by the artists and their peers. What do music lovers and concert goers potentially have to gain from these underground shows? Is it a better way to connect to the artists? A road to a more raw and natural experience? Do basement shows hold added social potential as well? Emily Bunn, a current student at Emerson College, describes the experience as “very DIY,” meaning “do-it-yourself.” She continues to describe the setting as “...youthful...With it just being college kids in a basement, decorated in paper heart strings, it felt somewhat underground and very fun.” Bunn is specifically referring to a show many Emerson students attended a couple of weeks ago in East Boston around Valentine’s Day called “Resurrection of Love.” The process brings together many different groups of

students on campus; some from the internet radio station WECB and others from the student-run record label Wax On Felt. It seems to be a way that students interested in music can reside in one space, collaborating and planning to create a music community in Boston for students by students. The experience also offers a social component. Many of the attendees are around the same age and from the same colleges. Most are in their later teens to early twenties and are from Emerson, Berklee, and sometimes Northeastern. Brought together by a common love of music, the environment has the potential to build new music groups, create connections between the existing ones, and foster a whole new sound. With the nature of an urban campus, there aren’t a lot of places where Emerson students can hangout and interact. Basement shows seem to be one of the few, but is this community really as welcoming as it should be? Bunn describes the social environment as fun, dictating that “everyone was hanging out with their own friends, musicians included... I think that anyone would have probably talked to anyone else, though,” she says. While essentially described as “welcoming,” it does seem that many students come in preformed groups—some surrounding the artists themselves. This begs another question: How do these events get planned, what goes into the planning, and who decides who hears about them? WECB Program Director, Alexa Harrington, says that “word usually spreads via word of mouth and through Facebook events a few days before the actual date.” A Facebook event was created for the “Resurrection of Love” show, complete with the address and other details attendees needed to know. This is the part where being involved in WECB or Wax On Felt comes in handy. Being “in the know” seems to be the key to finding out about these underground events. The slight secrecy though, might be part of the fun. This side of the music scene wouldn’t be truly “underground” if everyone knew about it, if posters were plastering the walls of Emerson spaces. Mia Manning, the Events Coordinator at WECB, has experience hosting one of the basement shows. She says that planning a show was a good way for her to get involved, since she doesn’t play an instrument. The experience helped her realize she might want her future career to involve music in someway. Manning added that basement shows “allow you to meet new people and make more connections. It’s a great way to discover new bands and music in the Boston area.” I’d have to say I agree! YM







TTENTION: Are you a straight girl on gay Tinder? You may be participating in FOMOsexuality! Nah, it’s actually spelled fauxmosexuality and it’s a phenomenon that has been meticulously studied by one of Emerson’s very own, Dr. Kristin J. Lieb, beloved professor and author of the book Gender, Branding, and The Modern Music Industry: The Social Construction of Female Popular Music Stars. Sorry for the clickbait—I promise we’ll get back to that pot-stirring declaration later, but first, we have to lay some groundwork. Lieb defines fauxmosexuality as “a video production strategy in which straight-identified female artists play gay for the camera in order to court the male gaze and everything that its approval enables such as attention and money.” For those of you a little fuzzy on that buzzword, male gaze, it’s a term that theorist Laura Mulvey coined back in the 70s and it refers to the lens through which hetero dudes look at women, and through which women are forced to view themselves. So—what does fauxmosexuality look like? Did you ever see the music video for “Can’t Remember to Forget You” with Shakira and Rihanna? I bet you’ve seen the music video for Katy Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl”—regardless of how you feel about her, that song was an ‘08 bop. Well, both music videos include performances of eroticism between women: Shakira and Rihanna writhe around on a bed and caress each other’s perfect butts and Perry and her friends have a fun and flirty pillow fight in their underwear. At the end of KP’s video, she wakes up next to her boyfriend; phew, it was all a dream. Speaking of boyfriends, in a 2014 interview with Billboard magazine, Shakira said of hers: “He’s very territorial, and since he no longer lets me do videos with men, well, I have to do them with women.” She said this with a laugh, but these words insinuate that relationships with women don’t count, which totally invalidates the identities of lesbian, bi, and pansexual people, and that’s no laughing matter. Some stars try to package their girl-on-girl on-camera action as some sort of celebration of sexual diversity, but how can that be if they’re not engaging with each other the way two people who are genuinely attracted to each other would? In “I Kissed a Girl,” no girls are kissed, and in “Can’t Remember to Forget You,” no lips lock either, no eyes even lock. What’s more, the female pop stars perpetuating fauxmosexuality (Katy Perry, Rihanna, Shakira, Madonna, Nicki Minaj, etc.) are all highly feminine and gender normative and, thus, their images are pretty much constructed to please male audiences. The real nail in the coffin though is that all these stars publicly identify as straight, sealing the deal that these performances are just playing into male lesbian porn fantasies for commercial gain. When Professor Lieb first mentioned fauxmosexuality in class, I thought it was spelled FOMOsexuality, as in Fear of Missing Out, and my brain went immediately to this thing I’ve been lazily calling “straight girls on gay Tinder.” The age of swiping left and right has ushered in a new phenomenon of women who have historically identified as straight switching on the option of women in their dating app preferences.

This bothers some gay and bi women. Apps like Tinder have been important spaces where queer people can find people that they know are also queer. So you can understand why someone would be upset that women who aren’t actually interested in dating other women are on “gay Tinder”—it brings doubt back into this space that was built on the notion of guaranteed mutual attraction, sexual attraction; it’s a dating and hookup app after all! I spoke to my friend Jess about this, who graduated from college a few years ago and now lives in New York. “It’s amazing that sexuality is so fluid, that it’s being talked about and that identity isn’t so stark, but I guess my problem is when people just do it to ride the contemporary wave. It’s almost like an art movement, right? The current movement is to be completely fluid…” It is indeed amazing that the times are increasingly open to spectrums, fluidity, and freedom, but it gets complicated when sexuality is treated like a trend. “I’m first generation too, right?” Jess says. “So for me to wake up and identify as queer or gay, when I hear those words it’s just like panic in my family, you know? It’s nothing that I just wake up and choose. It’s very heavy and loaded.” And so this is very much a conversation about the privilege of choice too; it is a conversation very similar to that of cultural appropriation. For both, a glaring issue is those having the privilege to choose to take part in something, and to be able to shed it when it’s not working out. “Fomo-sexuality has similarities to fauxmosexuality in that it focuses on the perceived exoticism of non-heterosexual sexual identities, but it is less concerned with attention and more concerned with not missing out on anything exciting,” says Lieb “It, too, can be harmful to the people living in lesbian or bi identities because it can be hard to tell who's afraid of missing out, who’s experimenting with same-gender attraction because they’re in the process of discovering their identity, and who is actually identifying and/or living as bi, lesbian, or pansexual.” Yes, FOMOsexuality is less concerned with the same kind of attention; in fact, it entirely and intentionally excludes male attention. For some of these women, their motivation to swipe through gals instead of guys comes from some form of the “I’m sick of men” narrative, and for some it comes from a desire to receive approval from other women. For some it comes from a fear of missing out, but for many it doesn’t. For many it comes from the sentiment of “you never know ‘til you try.” And this is why telling straight women to switch off the preference of women on their dating apps isn’t really fair either. Straight women have the freedom and the right to do this, because exploring your sexuality is something that should be encouraged. So where does that leave us? How do we navigate the infinitely nuanced realm of human sexuality in a way that feels liberated, while also taking care in not simply touring another sexuality, hurting people along our trip? I’m not sure, but if you’d like to continue the conversation, hit me with a Super Like and we can DM about it. YM


Ym advises SUMMER HACKS Some of us love summer (warmth! sun! free time! summer flings!) and some of us hate it (humidity! sweat! bug bites! heartbreak!), but we are all about to be thrust into it whether we like it or not. And so we at YM are here to provide you with all the hacks that will make your summer better: natural sunburn solutions, how to pack for vacation, how to avoid bug bites, how to survive a broken heart...etc. Read on and make summer your bitch.

Take advantage of the outdoor seating at restaurants — it’s way easier to people-watch that way.

If your face gets extra sweaty and oily during the summer, toilet seat covers make great DIY blotting sheets!

-Alessandra Settineri, Romance Editor

-Daysia Tolentino, Co-Head Designer

If you live near the beach, take a book, a beach chair, and something to drink and sit on the beach while the sun sets. It is a super relaxing thing to do either after a lazy day or after a stressful work day.

Essential oils are key! Rub a few drops of citronella, eucalyptus, or lemon oil on your neck, wrists, and ankles to prevent mosquitos. Oils derived from any citric fruit will enhance your energy and clarity for any day; and coconut, peppermint, or lavender oil will help soothe that stinging sunburn.

-Isabelle Braun, Arts and Entertainment Editor No more snow! Take the opportunity to walk instead of taking the T. Feel the breeze through your locks, lather up on SPF, grab your fav sunnies, and enjoy those extra steps. Take in those summer rays and bask in the heat. - Delia Curtis, Style Editor If you’re in the city for the summer, take advantage of the fun and FREE fitness classes offered by the Esplanade Association! They’re a great way to get in touch with the city and the Boston community, while also getting active and enjoying the outdoors!

-Francisco Guglielmino, Assistant Editorial Director Mosquitos are always the biggest inconvenience of summertime. But there’s not much we can do to keep them away, right? Wrong! Keep some dryer sheets in cups around your outdoor area to keep the bugs away. The sheet’s fresh and flowery scenes will mask our human smells from those pesky mosquitos. And you won’t feel sticky for the rest of the day! -Lindsay Howard, Assistant Head Copyeditor

If you hate summer heat as much as I do, then just move to Antarctica.

If/when you’re swimming in the ocean this summer, don’t be afraid to get salt water in your mouth. In fact, gargle it around in your mouth (helps clear sinuses) and rub it on your teeth ‘til they squeak - salt water is a natural disinfectant and tooth-whitener!

- Sophie Peters-Wilson, Creative Director

-Katja Vujić, Editor-in-Chief

- Morgan Davies, Assistant Web Editor





The Art of Anxiety, or Don’t Fucking Look at Me - 16mm b&w film


A Series of Firsts - 16mm color film

The Divine Femmunity - mixed media short film (16mm, digital, animation)


they say: be black and be proud! they say: be woman and be proud! they say: to be queer? question. quiet. quell. i say: i am inseparable i say: i am a blackqueerwoman i say: it again and again until it is loud i say: i am still working on being proud

we are not your costume. we are not your color palette. we are not your shoulder angel. we are not your fairy god parents. we are more than your soundtrack. we are more than your moral lesson. we are more than your stereotype. we are worth more than a token. we exist. we exist. we exist. — PSA for white filmmakers


words left on the sheets (SEX) (SEX) (SEX) (SEX) nervous breath unsure of the other’s feelings waiting to kiss the questions away (SEX BUILDS) (SEX BUILDS) (SEX BUILDS) (SEX BUILDS) soft honey sweetened voices skin warm from the moisture still trying to get to know them (SEX CONT.) (SEX CONT.) (SEX CONT.) (SEX CONT.) hearts beating fastest patient but impatient wanting the space between to disappear (SEX WANES) (SEX WANES) (SEX WANES) (SEX WANES) who loves who does it even matter their hair is in your face (????) (????) (????) (????)

The Divine Femmunity - mixed media short film (16mm, digital, animation)























































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