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What Happened When I Went on a 4,000-Mile Road Trip with My Cat

Originally appeared on my Medium page

Last year, I took in a six-year-old feral cat with three teeth and mouth herpes. We named her FatFace, and she has become the center of my universe.

When I say she’s become the center of my universe, I mean I’m obsessed with her. Like, people keep telling me I should have a baby instead and I respond with “NO WHY DON’T YOU HAVE A BABY?!” and they say “I do have a baby” and I’m like “Whatever. At least I can leave my cat alone for a day and she won’t die.”

FatFace is a remarkably low-key cat considering she spent her entire life on the street. Though she’s still skeptical of most humans, she will not bite or scratch when handled and our vet constantly praises her passivity. It’s because of FatFace’s chill demeanor that I decided it was a smart idea to drive her to 18 states of America.

FatFace eating BBQ in Kansas City, MO.

                                              (more…)
Writing

Zappos helped adopt out 150 pets in Austin, Texas

Sponsored by Zappos

So, I went to the Zappos Friends with Benefits Road Show a few weekends ago, and it was amazing. I got to watch sweet doggy after doggy get adopted out to new families—doggies like Princess!

Princess now has a forever home!

I also got to oooh and aww over adorable workout gear with dogs on them. Check out how awesome these shirts and pants are.


I’m so excited to have been a part of this event. Zappos adopted out over 150 pets by teaming up with Austin Animal Center, and they’ve covered over 16,000 adoption fees across the country! Make sure to check out their Friends with Benefits Road Show page to see where they’re headed to next.

And don’t forget: Sign up for Zappos Rewards Program  where you can get free shipping, rewards, early access to sales and the option to buy sweet Frye boots like these. I’m in love.

P.S. Just a reminder that I’ll be donating $50 from this (more…)

Writing

My 2017 Resolutions by Theodore Roosevelt

theodore roosevelt

(This is my first McSweeney’s rejection. Please enjoy! No, really. Please enjoy it.)

——

My dearest 2017,

Your predecessor was a challenging year for both me and my country, and I aim to put 2016 to bed like the bear I shot through the eyes on my last trek to the wildness of Wyoming.

In order to move forward on my goals for a robust and cheerful 2017, I’ve compiled a list of resolutions to heed.

These resolutions are as follows:

1. Challenge that mollycoddle Mr. Trump to a grizzly bear-wrestling competition. Whoever wins will earn the coveted title of President of Earth. (No need to worry: What I lack in height I make up for in sheer man girth.)

2. Personally protect every goddamn National Park with my militia of mercenaries known as the Teddy Bears.

3. Free climb Mt. Rushmore and draw a black ring around the eye of that pansy Thomas Jefferson.

4. Host a dinner for the current members of the Republican Party where I will smack each of their whiny derrieres with my “big stick” — especially (more…)

Writing

What We Learned at Standing Rock: A Guide for Allies

Oceti Sakowin camp at Standing Rock

Two weeks ago, four of us decided to drive to Standing Rock and deliver supplies to the water protectors and protestors of the Dakota Access Pipeline. We raised $3,500 in six days and filled two cars to the brim with milk of magnesia (for pepper spray in eyes), firewood, propane, sleeping bags, face masks, construction helmets and other supplies our contacts at the camp said they needed.

During our time there, we learned a great deal, particularly on how to be the best ally we can be. If you’re thinking of heading to Standing Rock or would like to support the movement in other ways, please read:

Ask Yourself Why You’re Going to Standing Rock

If you are going to Standing Rock for reasons other than dropping off supplies or offering skills such as direct action, legal or medical aid, food preparation or construction for an extended period of time, your presence might do more harm than good. Why? Because there are limited resources (more…)

Writing

We stand with Standing Rock.

Standing Rock

Friends, Geoff and I decided last week that we will spend our Thanksgiving holiday dropping off supplies at Standing Rock and helping in any way we can for a couple of days.

Since announcing this last week, donations of supplies and money have poured in. Seeing friends and strangers come together to help the protestors of the Dakota Access Pipeline has given me hope during a time of uncertainty.

I will probably write about the journey on the blog, but if you’re interested in following our journey, please hit me up on Twitter and Instagram. I hope to share as much as possible about the fight of the protestors.

And if you’re interest in contributing in any way, please put a comment down below.

Excellent resources to follow during this time are:
Native Opinion
Native News Online
Indian Country Today Media Network
Sacred Stone Camp on FB
Democracy Now!

Water is life, y’all!

And the future is unwritten.

(As I write this, protestors are getting shot with water cannons (more…)

Writing

Now is a Great Time to Start Making Art

I’m currently reading the fantastic book Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War by Adam Hochschild, and I can’t help but draw parallels to the Spanish Civil War and post-2016 election America.

The Spanish Civil War, 1936–1939, was a battle between fascism (Nationalists) and progress (Republicans). On the left, communists, socialists, anarchists, revolutionaries and artists banned together to fight oppression and conservatism. Their fight was hard, and ultimately ended in defeat (and the beginning of WWII), but their efforts inspired some of the greatest works in literature and art: Pablo Picasso’s Guernica, Ernest Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls and George Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia, the latter two writers both spending time in Spain during the war — Hemingway as a journalist and Orwell as a Republican fighter.

With the results of the 2016 election, I felt the urge to do something I haven’t thought about doing in a long time: to write a private diary. This diary (more…)

Writing

To friends and strangers who voted for Trump

I’m disappointed, but I will not berate you. Just please know that the results were upsetting not just for liberals, who you may or may not like, but it’s upsetting, and terrifying, for many women, people of color, immigrants, people with disabilities and individuals in the LGBTQ community–people you may know and love. Your support for Trump says that you do not respect or concern yourself with us, whether that was your intent or not.

Writing

The Little Bookshop in the Middle of the Desert


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I saw the desert for the first time 12 years ago, from the window of my Ford Taurus as I relocated my life from Central New York to Los Angeles, California.

It’s inspired and terrified me ever since that day.

I enjoy waking up in the cool mornings of New Mexico or Arizona, seeing a technicolor landscape of cacti, mountains and big sky. I enjoy the Southwest’s mix of cultures, evident in the art, food, architecture and decor. I enjoy the sparseness of it all–the lack of people, the lack of pretentiousness, the ability to travel for miles without seeing a single structure made from man.

But during those hot, blistering days when cover is a rarity and the ground looks well-done, that is when I’m terrified. When I see the sharp edges of the desert’s foliage, the slithering of its snakes, the warnings of the various hardened animals that can only survive in a climate such as that, I’m in full freak out mode. But that fear keeps me coming back for more.

And that is why I find (more…)

Writing

Harry Dean Stanton: Celebrating 90 Years of Awesomeness

Paris, Texas

Harry Dean Stanton: Celebrating 90 Years of Awesomeness

On October 23, Santa Monica video rental store-turned-nonprofit Vidiots bestowed the Harry Dean Stanton Award to Harry Dean Stanton. It was an unforgettable night for an unforgettable actor.


Harry Dean Stanton.

He may be one of your favorite actors, or you may be wondering who the hell he is.

You‘ve definitely seen him.

He’s acted in over 200 films, from Repo Man to Pretty in Pink to Cool Hand Luke to Wild at Heart to Alien to Paris, Texas, his only leading-role film.

Stanton is the rugged-face actor with soul-betraying eyes and firm-yet-soothing voice.

He’s the guy who always stole the show, even when he was second billed, third billed or not billed at all.

He’s the grandfather figure you’d love to grab a drink with because something about him suggests he’s one of us, the everyday man or woman.

For all of these (more…)

Writing

Punctuation Mistakes You’re Making and NEED TO STOP DOING RIGHT NOW

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THE COMMA GOES INSIDE THE QUOTATION MARKS.

Friends, I used to be really bad at punctuation. Sometimes I look back at old work and want to chuck my coffee mug at the screen. “How could you have been so dumb, you assclown?” I ask myself. But I was a complete novice then; I couldn’t recall much from my public school English courses. It wasn’t until I became a copywriter and copy editor that I truly learned what the hell a semicolon is. (Granted, it is kind of the Shia LaBeouf of punctuation: confusing yet intriguing.)

Sometimes I see that writers on Medium make common punctuation mistakes. These mistake are easy to make, and they don’t define you as a writer. However, it’s time to fix that shit.

NOW.

Below is a quick guide to common punctuation mistakes.

(Please note, GRAMMAR NAZIS: I’ve selected punctuation rules based on the most common writing style guides of America. I’m sure you can dispute one or two of these here — SAVE IT FOR LATER.)

(And if I have a typo or mistake in (more…)