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March Minis

Some people have a hard time trying to find the right thing to say when they're trying to comfort someone. So we asked some of the Girl Gang for tips on how to comfort others, and how they like to be comforted when they're feeling down. Hopefully some of their answers can help you next time you need come comfort.  

WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU'RE TRYING TO COMFORT OTHERS?

L I N D S A Y  

When I see someone needs comfort I try to listen to them first. Everyone wants to be comforted in different ways and it's important to give them what they want and not what you think they'd want. I definitely try to make things light and fun. My tactics include going out dancing, eating really good food, chilling out, or being spontaneous.

C A Y L E E

Comfort. Okay. So this is kinda a big question. I think for me it's kinda similar to the whole love language thing because everyone is so different. So like in general I do my best to empathize and listen to understand. I try to really make sure they know their thoughts are valid and how they feel is valid. That's sort of my starting point. Sometimes comfort is sitting in a room not saying a word to each other--- it's just the presence of another person that helps. Other times I do my best to distract the person from whatever it is. 

HOW DO YOU LIKE TO BE COMFORTED WHEN YOU'RE FEELING DOWN?

L I N D S A Y

When I need comfort I like it when someone pulls me aside and gives me a hug. Sometimes I just need to tell someone one on one how I am feeling and just have a listening ear. I don't want to go into a cave of depression so I need someone to shake me up and force me out the door. I am very confident though that camping is the one thing that will bring me back to life when I'm very down. 

C A Y L E E  

I feel comforted if I can just vent and feel less alone in my head. Also really big on hugs. Honestly, just swaddle me like a child and I'll probably feel 100x better and likely fall asleep in your arms. For me, there's so much comfort in touch.

March Wellness

Ain't No Mountain High Enough | Taryn R.

In my adult life thus far my health was something that admittedly took the back seat. About two years ago I had a health scare that forced me to become someone who valued exercise and trying to keep a moderately health lifestyle. In a nutshell I was having severe chest pain daily that truly felt like what I believe a heart attack feels like. It was debilitating. I chalked it up to indigestion for a while and then one night it got so bad I passed out and my dad had to take me to the hospital. I found out I had developed a Hiatal Hernia (something I learned runs in my family, thanks genetics!). After an endoscopy I learned that I had two options: lose weight, or have surgery to remove it. Surgery and removing the hernia would create inability to burp, and sometimes even throw up. I CAN’T BURP. WHAT. Those side effects sounded weird and pretty awful. Weight loss, healthy eating and medication would minimize and cause the severe acid reflux to go away. I was 24 when this started and I didn’t want to take the easy way out and get surgery this early in my life. I decided to tackle the more difficult route.

Over a 3 month period I lost almost 40 pounds by going to the gym once a day (sometimes twice a day), not drinking alcohol and eating healthy. It was the longest 3 months of my life because I hate the gym. It’s boring, it’s crowded and I’m sweating profusely in front of a wave of strangers. I played softball for almost 9 years and I love to be outside and active so exercise wasn’t what turned me off. It was the way I had to do it to see results. I stuck to the treadmill and quickly learned I burned the most calories on an uphill incline an accelerated speed. It felt like I was hiking, but inside the gym. I began to get this high I have never experienced that I feel like people have always talked about in reference to working out. I started to feel great and get natural energy that I didn’t have prior. Once I hit my goal I celebrated with a hike in Laguna Nigel with one of my best friends Emily on the morning of New Year’s Eve. We celebrated at the top with my first drink in 3 months, Pliny The Elder. Yum.

After that, my gym stint transitioned into a hiking stint. Hiking then became my favorite way to exercise and something I did weekly. As a Long Beach native I was fortunate to be in the middle of a variety of neat trails. On my days off, a good hike became my high priority plan for the day. I hiked in Palos Verdes and Laguna Niguel with challenging trials and beach destination views, Signal Hill for a quick local workout, and a variety of unique trails in Los Angeles. Looking up trails became a fun obsession, but to my surprise, the coolest peaks were the most challenging hiking trails. It was difficult with a unique work schedule to always find a hiking companion so it turned into “me time”. I made playlists to pair good tunes with my workouts and I’d often bring a beer and book to relax at the top after a particularly long hike.

I’d say my favorite hike I have ever done was the hardest one. It also didn’t help that the week before I had gotten my wisdom teeth out. I was stir crazy after a week of immobility so I selected a trail for a much needed solo adventure. It’s called “Wisdom Tree Trail” in North Hollywood and it is a 3 mile steep incline trail to the top of this particular peak. This trail is what you take to also get to the Hollywood sign, so for any LA hikers reading this, you know that is a very difficult one. The trail leading me to wisdom tree felt almost entirely vertical. I was using my own body to push off of just to step higher and higher up the trail. There were times I would grab the side of the mountain or even a stray branch just to get my footing. Half way up I almost turned around because it was so difficult and my jaw was throbbing. I decided to take as many breaks as I needed and not give up. This was in July so the 98 degree heat wasn’t a nice asset to my workout. I finally made it to the top and I am so happy I didn’t give up. It felt accelerating to finish because I saw a handful of people turn around and not make it to the top.

At the top of the Mountain there is a huge tree with seats under it and a trunk filled with notebooks and paper. Hikers are encouraged to write notes, wishes, goals, etc. and fold those notes and place them under numerous stacks of rocks dispersed all around the top of the mountain. The stacks of rocks had uncountable messages stashed throughout each tower and I myself stashed my own message in one of the stacks. I sat at the top and admired the insane view I had of Los Angeles. You could see Lake Hollywood Reservoir and the beautiful city scape all the way to Downtown. I did take a moment this day to celebrate this small victory because I knew for a fact a year before I wouldn’t have been able to complete something like that. Exercise was not important to me for many years and finding something that brought me happiness to help me stay healthy was something that made me very happy. Hiking turned into my workout, my time to relax, to be outside, to reflect, enjoy my own company, and my way to have some adventure. 

March Media Companion

There's No Good Card For This: What to Say and Do When Life is Scary, Awful and Unfair to People You Love  | Emily McDowell and Kelsey Crowe

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl | Alfonso Gomez-Rejon

I'm a sucker for hipster coming of age movies, and books. So this movie was right up my alley. It was a pretty solid adaptation of the YA novel by Jesse Andrews that it's based on, which also made me happy. The story follows an awkward high schooler, Greg, and his friend Earl. They make really fun movie parodies, but their friendship doesn't consist of much else. Those sequences in the book are really vivid and fun, they were adapted beautifully with some cool effects. The titular "Dying Girl" is Rachel. She's in their class, but neither Greg nor Earl have ever really talked to her. When she's diagnosed with cancer, Greg's mom makes him befriend her. Neither of them are very keen on the idea. He's an introvert with no idea what to say to a dying girl, and Rachel doesn't want the pity. After awkwardly hanging out with her a few times (everything about Greg is awkward), they open up a little. Rachel is funny, self-deprecating, and really pretty. But she's dying. Which is another stone to throw on top of the pile that is Greg's nervous, angsty, teenage life. This movie isn't for everyone. I know a lot of people thought it was hard to get through, and felt a little forced at times. But I think that underneath all of the warm hues and sarcastic dialogue, you can learn a few things from a Greg's awkward mistakes. No one asks to get sick, and when we encounter sick people, sometimes it's easier to freeze up and forget all of the other pieces of them. Rachel was just a kid. Sometimes we find sour selves bald to be in situations that we were forced into. We may need a push, but it never hurts to reach out. Whether you're asking someone if they want to hang out, if you can help with something they may not have time for, or just reminding them that you're around. It can make a huge difference. Compassion can seem scary, or like too big of a thing. If you think something would be a nice gesture, chances are it would be. And you've already thought of it, so you're halfway there.

Inside Out | Pete Docter

Expectations are a funny thing. They can go either way. They can sneak up on you, let you down, or surprise you. I think my expectations for Inside Out were mild, nothing crazier than any other Disney movie. I hadn't read much into it, but I wasn't expecting to be blown away. Have you ever had anything dramatically exceed your expectations? It is one of the best feelings. I spent so much time reading about Inside Out after I watched it through tear filled 3D glasses on a weekend afternoon. Pete Docter (who also directed Up, more tears) wanted to make a movie for his young daughter, the inspiration for Riley, to show her that it was okay to be sad. For someone who's struggled with depression for almost ten years, that opens up a lot for old wounds. It also makes me so grateful that there's something like this out there for younger versions of myself. My life would not have changed completely if I'd seen this movie when I was younger, but I would have remembered feeling like there were people out there who understood. Understood enough to tell it in a story. The pressure to be happy, and genial, and always smiling can be extremely overwhelming, especially for a girl. Riley is trying to figure out life in a new town, without her old friends to reach out to, and her parents are busy settling into their new lives. Things that seem trivial can sometimes be the most difficult to deal with. Having Riley's emotions be the primary storytellers could have proved challenging. I bought the art book that was published along with the movie and it was fascinating to see the early concept art for what the emotions would eventually become. Some early sketches were similar, but some evolved in such interesting ways. The use of color and the design of the memory system. I think it's brilliant, and beautiful. So often we're taught that things must exist separate from one another. If you're happy, it's impossible for you to also be sad. The world isn't black and white. Life isn't, and the way that you feel definitely isn't. It's really hard to understand something as intricate as emotions, especially if you're trying to explain them to someone else. The simplest visual aid can help with that though, like colors. You can be both happy and sad, there is nothing wrong about that. You can have multiple, twisted, complicated thoughts about something. Your memory globes will blend and change, for better or for worse. But they will always be yours, and you will always be you. 

Jane the Virgin | Jennie Snyder-Urman

I did not expect to like this show. I handmade a habit of not watching anything on The CW. In hindsight, I was just being a snob. We screened the premiere at work and one of my coworkers told me that I had to try and catch a few minutes of it. Long story short, they had to keep pulling me from the theater to get me to go back to work. I love this show. I am obsessed with Gina Rodriguez. And I tell anyone who questions me about this, that they need to give the show a chance. The titular Jane starts the series living with her mother, Xiomara, and her grandmother, Alba. The show is a telenovela. Yes, like the ones on daytime TV that your mom or your grandma watch, but mostly only when it comes to the format. There's a narrator (he's amazing), and lots and lots of drama. It all sounds like it would be too much, in theory it should be, but this show knows what it's doing. The pacing is quick, and the show burns through plot like nothing I've ever seen, but I have never seen a show with so much heart. There is so much negativity in the current TV landscape, and I watch a lot of it. But sometimes you need a break from that. Jane the Virgin is my break. The show has the strongest mother, daughter relationship that I can recall seeing on television. And they hit it from multiple angles: Jane/Xiomara, Ximoara/Alba, Jane/Alba. They find ways to talk about important issues without it feeling forced or preachy. In four seasons, they've managed to look at: immigration, the prison system, postpartum depression, single motherhood, race, class, and female empowerment, just to name a few. Sound heavy right? Okay to be fair, sometimes it can be. I've cried a lot while watching this show, but I also laugh out loud during those same episodes. I mean, the show is about a religious girl who while waiting for marriage to have sex with her long time serious boyfriend, is accidentally artificially inseminated during a what is supposed to be a routine pap smear. I know, it's a long long. But it's a good one. Trust me. It's full of heart, acceptance, love, compassion, and an overall positivity. It's good vibes, I don't really know how else to describe it. I love TV. It's one of my greatest passions in life, and shows like this one are the reason why. Jane is a wonderful character, she definitely has her flaws, but she is such an important role model for girls. No matter what age.

2017 Oscar Picks

Happy Oscar Sunday feMAILs! We asked some ladies for their Oscar picks. We'll announce our winners after the show. Good luck!

Best Picture

Best Actress

Best Actor

Best Supporting Actress

Best Supporting Actor

February Minis

This month we asked some of our feMAILs what they do when they're feeling lonely. Send us your submissions and we'll add them in. Maybe they'll help someone else when they're feeling lonely.

L I N D S E Y

I make myself call people. People I don't usually talk to but need to. 

J E N N A

I listen to a lot of Band of Horses and watch murder shows. Does that sound as bad as it seems? Haha

M A R Y

Oohh! Snuggle my dog and read.

R A N D I

Loneliness is a funny thing. When I was in Lesotho I learned how to lonely and accept it. I play my guitar or go for a run or draw. Sometimes I would write letters home. 

C A Y L E E

Masturbate. Read. Go on a drive. Write about it. Try not to do anything destructive. 

This Day in History

Hi feMAILs! For this month's history post we wanted to celebrate Black History Month by highlighting some of our favorite representations of the black experience. Check out the books, comics, graphic novels, tv shows, movies, podcasts, newsletters, writers, music and more that inspire us. Click on the pictures to read more about each pick!

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE send us your suggestions. We'd love to keep adding to this post and turn it into an archive that we can keep coming back to. 

BOOKS | COMICS | GRAPHIC NOVELS

TV

MOVIES

MUSIC

 

PODCASTS

NEWSLETTERS | WRITERS | VOICES

News. News. News.

Hey feMAILs! We're adding a post here to share some articles with you throughout the month. Emma's starting us off with some reads she's stashed away for a bad day. Enjoy!

Roxane Gay: By the Book 

Here is a short interview with one of my literary idols and feminist role models, Roxane Gay. She talks with the New York Times Book Review about everything from the books that are on her night stand right now to what she would require the current president to read ("...well, any book at all, because he does not give the impression he has ever read a book. I'd offer recommendations, but anything I might suggest is well beyond his reading level. Alas.") Definitely a must read!

When Can I Say I'll Be Alone Forever? 

This article by Aimée Lutkin is fabulously good. It brings up a topic that I believe we all need to think more about; singledom as a valid way of leading one's life. More people than ever decide to identify as permanently single, and this piece considers in-depth what it is like from the perspective of the single person when others show a lack of understanding regarding one's chosen identity. What to say in such situations, and what the forever single individual needs to do to move forward as a whole person.

February Media Companion

Love Warrior | Glennon Doyle Melton

"I was loved. If love could prevent pain, I'd never have suffered."

I was just telling someone how I don't read the synopsis of a book before I buy it. No inside cover flap, no back cover. I'm mostly a word of mouth person. It's worked out really well for me so far. It led me to Love Warrior. I got an email from Goodreads (Are you guys on Goodreads? If not, you really should be.) that had a note from Cheryl Strayed telling me I had to read this new book. Then one of my favorite artists, Emily McDowell, made print with a quote from the book, saying it was a must read. That was enough of an endorsement for me. Plus, the quote was a gut punch. Glenn on Doyle Melton is a warrior. She didn't know it, and it took her a long time to believe it, but she found her way there. She was loved fiercely, her entire life, but it was never enough because she wasn't able to love herself. Her story highlights a lot of the battles that women end up fighting their entire lives, sometimes starting at a tragically young age. No matter our differences, whether we feel like they further separate us or bring us closer together, we can all agree that the world is not trying to make life easier for women. And unfortunately, being loved isn't always enough. That thought has stuck with me since I finished reading this book. I wasn't loved enough for a very long time. Then I stopped looking for love from certain people, people I thought I needed it from, but somehow it still wasn't enough. So I suffered silently. A choice that many people make for far too long. But Glennon's story made me feel less alone in my pain. Sometimes all it takes to start healing is to tell someone you're hurting. Glenn on told a lot of people, and it started an avalanche. Her story is full of strength, compassion, and so much bravery. I hope you'll pick up this book. I've recommended it to everyone I know, and I think it's a story that every woman needs to read. Go find your inner warrior.

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Letters to a Young Poet |  Rainer Maria Rilke

Diving Bell and the Butterfly | Julian Schnabel

I don’t remember when I watched this movie for the first time, but I remember how it made me feel. It was one of the first foreign films that I watched on my own, without having to for school or something like that. I went out to get the book afterwards and read it too. I wanted to feel all of it, and I didn’t want that feeling to go away. It made me think about how we can take communication for granted, and that seems even more real now. (More than when this film came out in 2007.) Jean-Dominique Bauby was the editor in chief of French Elle Magazine. One day he suffered a massive stroke and fell into a coma, until he woke up twenty days later. He woke up physically paralyzed with locked-in syndrome. He was mentally aware of his surroundings, but only had the physical ability to move his right eye. Using that eye, only blinking, he wrote the memoir that was the source for this film. He spent every day in the hospital with nurses and doctors, but I could never imagine the loneliness. So often we retreat into ourselves to escape pain or loneliness or any other myriad of emotions, but what do you do when you are physically locked into yourself. When you have no way out. Bauby did what a lot of people do, he told his story.

Some of my most lonely spells come out of feeling like there’s no one listening. I’m not always great at writing things down. I tend to look for someone else to tell me a story, rather than writing down my own. But, writing things down is a way out (or in) for a lot of people. It’s how Bauby got through this trauma. He blinked his eye over 200,000 times, four hours a day, for ten months to tell his story. To keep communicating, and stay connected. Yes, this is an inspirational foreign film, and sometimes that can sound cliché, but I highly recommend it. It remains one of my favorites and I know that I can always watch it when I need inspiration myself. It also doesn’t hurt that the cinematography is gorgeous and the direction is fantastic. A lot of it from the point of view of Bauby’s only working eye. You get to hear his thoughts about what’s happening, even though he can’t speak. You hear his fears, frustrations, and his joy when his life begins to move forward. No matter how lonely you are, someone is always waiting to hear your story. Even if it’s just a pen and paper.

Difficult Women | Roxane Gay 

I would still say I'm relatively new to Roxane Gay. I read Bad Feminist a few years ago. Then bought An Untamed State, but still haven't read it. She'son my radar though. So I'm always ready for her next release. When I heard about Difficult Women, I got really excited at the idea of essays on women I maybe hadn't heard of or wasn't really familiar with. Then I learned that it was a book of fictional short stories, and I got even more excited. I'm a total sucker for short stories, and I finished the collection in two days. I loved it so much. The more I thought about it as I read the stories, the more interesting the title became. All of the women in these stories are considered to be "difficult" by the world around them, usually men, but as a woman reading about them, I didn't see them that way. They seemed remarkably human. I think that also had to do with the sci-fi/surrealist vibe of some of the stories. They also highlighted an overarching sense of loneliness that comes with being a woman. Out in the world, it can feel like we're on our own sometimes, whether we're surrounded by others or not. Walking down the street, at work, at home (with or without roommates/family). My time in Connecticut has been especially lonely, in the weirdest way. Not really good or bad necessarily, but in a very different way than what I'm used to. Sometimes when we're lonely, we create routines to fill the void, the time, the space. What becomes ritual to us, can be (mis)construed as difficult to someone else. What I'm trying to say is that I think "difficult" is subjective. I'm not sure what I thought about that before, but I definitely feel this way about it now. I wanted to highlight some of my favorite stories from the collection. They were all great, but these ones stood out to me.

DIFFICULT WOMEN

This entry was fun because it had more of a list-y feel to it. There were women with different labels (ex. crazy or loose) and examples of how they would act or react in different situations. I could honestly have read an entire book laid out that way.

BREAK ALL THE WAY DOWN

This one hit home for me. I'm always really thrown by stories about mothers who lose children because I had a brother who died when we were both young. It's tragic and it changes everything. But I loved the dynamic between the characters in this story. There's a lot of compassion and hunger for understanding. This woman could definitely be considered "difficult", but she has every right to be.

THE SACRIFICE OF DARKNESS

A man flies an air machine into the sun, plunging the world into darkness. This is a story about family and the choices we make when everyone is watching. This was one of the stories with a sci-fi vibe, and I don't want to give away how things play out, but it was one of my favorites. I loved how she took somewhat conventional themes and retold them using engaging characters and a fresh premise.

REQUIEM FOR A GLASS HEART

This story is about a woman made of glass who's married to a stone thrower. #Awkward. And they live in a glass house. #DoubleAwkward. This story is beautiful and powerful. It makes you sit with uncomfortable feelings and think about what you really mean or what you're really doing when you say you're doing something for the ones you love. 

We Should All Be Feminists | Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

This is a super short read. It comes as a fifty-ish page book at the bookstore, or you can get the eBook for under five bucks. But, the written version is based on Chimamanda's TED Talk, and I've linked that above. It's a must watch. Check it out.

Just Kids | Patti Smith

One Sunday about a month ago I decided to take myself out on a date. When I go on a date with myself I like to start with a nice cup of coffee and a croissant to go. Then I head to either a library, used bookstore, vintage clothing store or record shop. This day I had the intention to buy some new (but they are used) books. It's always hit and miss, but I was craving a new book that I could read for 30 min before bed. This day nothing was catching my eye. After a few failed first page reads I was on my way out of the store and came across Patti Smith's Just Kids, a memoir about her fascinated 20s and passionate relationship with former lover Robert Mapplethorpe. Patti goes into detail about her coming of age (which is technically older than typical coming of age stories but I'm realizing more and more that I'm currently coming of age even at the age of almost 26) and the process of finding her artistry. Robert was a prominent influence in her artistic passion and helped her find her voice. Even though she was destined for greatness with or without him, his impact shaped her influences.

I couldn't believe I found myself relating to a human god like Patti Smith. In the beginning of her book she mentions a similar dating herself situation (she is way too cool to use a phrase like "dating myself") where she would go to the local coffee shop, order a cup of coffee and a pastry and begin to work. By working she says that she would just do stuff, like write poetry or write in her journal. Just pretend to be busy even if you're not. I feel like that's the exact cycle I have tried to stick to. It's almost like the second I find myself getting bored, I try to pick up something I haven't worked on in a while. This book also made me aware of how young and in experienced I am and that's ok. I feel like I'm in the beginning stages of shaping the kind of artist I want to become. I hope to be like Patti in the sense that she has never limited herself to one form of art. I was reminded that these are the days that seem like everything but will be looked back as a step.

Jackie | Pablo Larraín

Have you ever wondered what Jackie Kennedy did the day her husband was shot to death? If you have, then "Jackie" is for you. After having tried for weeks to find time after work to go to see the movie, my husband and I finally got to go this past Monday. Even though my company did not enjoy the movie as much as I did, overall we both had a good experience. Sure, the film at times moved rather slowly, however I loved the fact that the story portrayed a woman's tragedy in such detail. More importantly, it did it in a way where the First Lady did not come off as weak in her grief, but rather as in charge of it.

Since I'm not a film critic, I will not give you an in-depth discussion of the film's characters and themes. Rather, what I'm going to do is describe two scenes that I was particularly fascinated by and tell you why. The first scene is one in which Natalie Portman's character is sitting in the kitchen of her Cape Cod home (mansion!?) being interviewed by a journalist who is reporting on her husband's shooting. She is wearing an off-white sweater with a rounded neck, dark pants, and simple ballerina flats. Oh, and she is also smoking obsessively. What was interesting about this scene was not the dialogue between the two individuals, but the way in which her emotional state was expressed; not only through her body language, but also via her clothes. That is, you could perceive the heaviness of her sadness in the way her clothes fit on her body. Portman moves in a way that makes the clothes look heavy on her--you can see how fragile her mind is by how fragile the "large" sweater makes her appear. 

The usage of clothes in the second scene that I chose also intrigued me. In this scene Portman as Jackie has just returned to the White House after the assassination and she is walking the halls of the massive house. She is dressed in the same outfit from earlier that day; a pink jacket with a matching skirt. Both clothing pieces are stained with blood, and she walks through what looks like a small library. As she moves through the room music that sounds like it was taken straight from a scary-movie (ala Funny Games) can be heard in the background. Now, just as in the first scene the clothes that she is wearing here seem to weigh her down. Portman even walks in a way that makes it appear as though her emotions are woven into the fabric; they are overwhelming, too much for anyone to carry, and they are pushing her down towards the floor. The clothes (her emotions) making it hard for her to walk steadily. The more I think about it, the clothes in this scene even works as the background of a sign, with the blood the symbols on it, constantly reminding the audience of the tragedy.

I might be reading way too much into these two scenes... :) Anyway, watch the movie and please let me know what you think! 

You Must Remember This | Karina Longworth

"Ms. Longworth has hit on a peculiar sweet spot, where hipsterdom meets Turner Classic Movies." - New York Times

If you are anything like me, you would appreciate a break from all the political news engulfing our nation. Luckily for you, I have the answer: Karina Longworth's podcast You Must Remember This about "the secret and/or forgotten histories of Hollywood's first century." The podcast comes out weekly and tells creative nonfiction stories about both well-known and lesser-known Hollywood persons; actors (e.g., Humphrey Bogart, Marlon Brando, and Montgomery Clift), actresses (e.g., Lauren Bacall, Marlene Dietrich, and Marilyn Monroe), industry people (e.g., Howard Hughes, Walt Disney, and Louis B. Mayer) and those who just happened to do strange and awful things in LA at the time (such as Charles Manson). 

The podcast is put out in seasons of varied length, but they all cover fascinating happenings and people of the era. Ms. Longworth has released many episodes, 96 to be exact, and of course I have listened to all of them (I know, nerd alert on me). As a result, I want to give you some friendly pointers about where to begin. Personally, I was advised to listen to the season about Charles Manson and his followers first, and so that's where I would like you to start as well. The season is not too long (12 episodes), but be prepared to binge-listen for hours. Not only does she cover Manson's background and path to Hollywood, but also interesting famous people who were connected to him and his "family." When you are done with that season, you have to move to the one about the all and mighty queen--Joan Crawford. Look for the season named "Six Degrees of Joan Crawford" and ready yourself to get obsessed. (After I listened to this batch of episodes I ended up not only reading 3 biographies on Joan, but I also added her most famous movies to my Netflix queue. FYI, Mildred Pierce is fabulous). 

At this point, when you are done with the Manson and Crawford seasons, I think you are ready to enter out into the world of old Hollywood on your own (the most recent season is titled "Dead Blondes," just saying). As you do, if you ever find yourself in need of a fellow You Must Remember This lady friend to talk to about a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g Hollywood related, don't hesitate to reach out.  Also, I know I said at the beginning of this post that we sometimes need to take a break from the world of politics, however, I want to emphasize; we only need to take a short break (an hour a week to be precise)! Once we are done recharging our feminist batteries with that Hollywood glamour, we need to get out and do our activism!

P.S. If you find yourself as smitten by Ms. Longworth's podcast as I am and want to go on a walk through Beverly Hills this summer to look at the old homes of the stars, let me know! We can even stop by the Beverly Hills hotel for drinks by the pool :)

- Emma