1) I do not like juice.
2) I’m over all that stuff from before. Sometimes all it takes is puking it all out in a blog post, you know?
Have you ever been to Newport, Rhode Island? I’d never been as far east as Rhode Island before. It’s a real pretty town. The ocean, all that. I was following Jacob around at work, which that day was the Newport Folk Festival. Pretty OK festival. Minimal hipsters. I watched Ramblin’ Jack Elliott play and tell stories about Woody Guthrie, then I got to stand on the side of the stage and watch Beck, coincidentally standing right next to Ramblin’ Jack, who is the cutest elderly man who has ever lived. Beck was as sexy as the 17-year-old high school me wanted him to be—the wimpster ideal: all pale skin, tight black suit, Dylan hat, perfect moves. Yes.
The next day we walked around Newport a bit. I was trying to do that thing you’re supposed to do where you actually enjoy moments instead of doing that thing I do where you snarkily critique everything while keeping an eye out for vintage shops (none) and quality sweet treats (everyone is all about this thing called Del’s Soft Frozen Lemonade, which wasn’t bad at all but also didn’t seem to be great enough to warrant its status. At the festival there was a stand backstage with help-yourself unlimited Del’s, and I mostly parked myself there.).
As we were walking, I told Jacob he was really good at efficiently finding interesting walking routes, and he said, “What’s nice about us is that we like the same things, and we also don’t like the same things.”
Sometimes I worry that not liking things is a bit too much of a virtue in our lives. Discernment can turn into pretentiousness which can turn into assholey awfully fast. (See, Recent Events have made me all thoughtful about such things!). I think I toe the line pretty well though, mostly because I balance out my hatred of the shit-world with how much I like the other parts of the world—my parts, the places that resonate.
The thing with Newport is that most of the people wear nautical-themed clothing. Lots of red and white and blue. Every day. American flags.
Constructions of whiteness abound.
It’s not a food town, unless you’re a fan of fried sea creatures. We got so desperate we ended up at the local health food store getting one of those horrifying dry TLT sandwiches every health food store in the country has in their deli case—tempeh bacon fried yesterday, a rubbery tomato slice, Vegenaise if you’re lucky and Nayonnaise if you’re not, iceberg, untoasted dry whole wheat bread.
That kind of town.
No vegan options listed on any menus. Later on we finally found a decent gringo Mexican place, with “palettas” (much like the sweet shop had “French macaroons”) where the menu actually listed vegan tacos and had good yucca fries with nice spicy chimichurri.
Newport has all these beautiful old mansions. I guess they’re summer homes for NYC people? Or other rich people. Nicely maintained. They must have good zoning codes in Newport, because even the chain places (which abound) adhere to tight sign and light ordinances—not a lot of neon, no huge loud signs. “Preserving village character,” as we call it in the Village of New Paltz. We don’t have a lot of chains in New Paltz, but our zoning could sure use some tightening up.
I am rambling.
We walked, and talked about if we liked ourselves. We decided we did. So if we liked ourselves, and knew we weren’t assholes, what the fuck did we care about anything else?
It’s important to remember to have the confidence and the vision to continue on your path even when it annoys other people.
The conversation made me think about this part in Tina Fey’s autobiography. To paraphrase:
Tina and Amy Poehler are working on a sketch for SNL. Jimmy Fallon hears it and says, “I don’t like that—it’s not cute.” Amy says,
“I don’t fucking care if you like it.”
Not angry, just matter-of-fact.
It’s your life. You need to know who you’re doing it for, and once you know that, you can’t fucking care if other people like it.
Juice: coming up. Actually, maybe I’ll put it on the professional blog. OK, stay tuned for that.