To Kim K, on her birthday

Today is Kim Kardashian’s birthday. A lot of people probably don’t care, but I do.

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Kim is a woman whose body has been sexualized and demonized, degraded, an object of media scrutiny and abuse. Yet she has grown and matured, and has reclaimed her body in a beautiful and empowering way. She is artistic, elegant, and tastefully tongue-in-cheek. Her humorously self-aware approach at life is refreshing.

Kim is living proof that a woman isn’t defined by one identity — she’s a mother and a wife, but also a sexual being, a model, a business woman. She is neatly running a multi-millionaire dollar empire. She is the overlooked, underrated #GIRLBOSS.

And to return to her being a mother — Kim defies the idea that mother’s have to act and look a certain way. I think she sets a unique example for her children in that she takes pride in who she is and how she looks. She expresses self-confidence and self-love. She also often publicly displays deep love, adoration, and protection for her family. It is a connection that cannot be ignored.

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It’s important for me to recognize that Kim Kardashian is problematic. She has been known to appropriate a myriad of cultures. She is extremely privileged, so she’s had the opportunity to leave her infamous sex tape behind her. But Kim also makes an effort to educate herself and stay well-informed on important divisive topics. She has spoken out on the Black Lives Matter movement, and has endorsed Hillary Clinton for President. This demonstrates progress and understanding, which I believe the Kardashians will continue to grow and blossom into.

She is adored by few, disliked by many, but I find her endlessly fascinating. She has inspired me to take ownership of my body, to challenge others perception of me, to overshare, love fiercely, put family first, and to never take life too seriously.

You can find a million ways to fight me on my love for Kim Kardashian, but I will always view her as a QUEEN. Happy birthday, Kim K! I love you!

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Selfies

I love selfies. They’re the biggest breakthrough in photography since (arguably) the invention of the camera itself. I find it difficult to think of any images that satisfy me more than selfies.

Many adults (and plenty of teens — primarily boys) are extremely critical of the selfie, accusing these shots of being vain, or obnoxious, or embarrassing. Taking a selfie in private is conceited; taking a selfie in public is humiliating. Your friends will call you out if they catch you posing for a Snapchat at a party, and posting more than one selfie on any form of social media within a given set of days (maybe weeks) could very well make you a social pariah.

Obviously, I do not share these views. I fucking love selfies. Unfortunately, these are just the social stigmas attached to front-facing photographs. But why? What’s the point of being so cynical about a truly honest self-portrait? If Van Gogh had an iPhone, you bet your ass he would be snapping selfies all damn day. Van Gogh would probably give up painting if he had Snapchat.

Selfies are, in a broad sense, an artistic movement. In an article regarding Kim Kardashian’s new selfie-portrait book, Selfishcontributor David Wallace-Wells said, “Over the last year or two, the selfie’s actually also undergone exactly the kind of category reimagining we’ve been talking about — from punch line and sign of end of culture to subject we can’t stop thinking about as a majorly meaningful relic of the present day.”

What do selfies say about the present day? How will they echo into the next generations? No doubt, they’ll continue to evolve — look at how far they’ve come in just a short amount of time: from the addition of front-facing cameras on iPhones to the newest development in selfie technology, the selfie stick. We see people on college campuses and in Times Square and on the beach using these arm-extenders, and we make fun of them. But maybe they’re just trying to include all of their friends in a picture, or are enjoying a family vacation, or just want to take the best version of a photo that they can without having to ask a stranger to take the picture for them. Maybe they’re just having fun by taking a photograph in which they can be their most authentic selves.

I don’t just love selfies. I love celebrity selfies. These are pictures that let us into the most personal parts of their lives — sometimes without makeup, sometimes with a dog, sometimes late at night. We could have photoshopped pictures of Kylie Jenner on the cover of Cosmo, looking kind of robotic, or we could have her selfie videos on Snapchat, which are hilarious and gorgeous and turn her into a human person rather than a caricature. A huge part of why culture has begun to embrace selfies can be accredited to the Kardashian-Jenner family. It’s noteworthy and kind of commendable that they’ve let us into their lives in such a specific way with their reality show, yet there is still something special about a Kardashian selfie. It reveals so much, and allows us to see them from a different perspective, which is entirely the point of a selfie.

Personally, I don’t like posing for pictures. It causes a lot of drama among family and friends, but I’m a very self-conscious person, and I don’t like seeing pictures and feeling uncomfortable with the way I look. A selfie gives me complete and total control — I dictate the angle, the lighting, the way my hair and face looks. I can delete and not have to worry about it being posted anywhere if I don’t like it. It’s a photograph completely for me.

I recently started a blog where I post my different outfits and selfies, most of them taken while on my break at work. I used to have this selfie blog locked, in which it was only accessible by entering a password. What’s the point of that? In writing this post, I’ve realized that I need to completely detach any shame from my selfies. Why should I, or anyone, feel embarrassed or “self-obsessed” for wanting to share the photos in which we feel our very best? Posting a selfie takes the highest level of confidence. It is, to a degree, a vulnerable image of ourselves that we reveal uncomfortably, and that we try to joke about when we do — “Haha, I posted a selfie, I’m so fake.” Let’s drop that stigma. Let’s be proud to share our selfies.

#Thankful

I’m excited to announce that I think I’ve officially become a “thankful” person.

I associate gratitude with weakness the same way that people associate peanut butter with jelly, so this is actually huge progress on my journey to becoming an Actual Feeling Human Being. Emotions are real! The world is turning!

Of course, I am still a cold robot, but sometimes life gets good, like a well-written episode of Mad Men, and you just gotta ride the wave until you get paranoid that something bad is going to happen at any second and kill your vibe. While you’re riding the wave, might as well say, “Hey, this is a good thing. I feel happy about this. Thanks, Universe, for this moment in time where everything is nice.”

Anyways, how can you not at least be a little bit thankful for your life when there are things that exist out there like pugs and Harry Styles and deep-dish pizza and Sex and The City re-runs that play while you run on the treadmill? Is there really anything more you can ask for? Aside from a frozen yogurt machine that dispenses directly into your mouth with no repercussions, of course.

I don’t even know how to elegantly articulate how much I love “Blank Space” and how much I need it in my life at all times. This is also my formal plea for Taylor Swift to bring her music back to Spotify. I thought, because I don’t use Spotify, I wouldn’t be affected by this drama, but when you can’t bump “Blank Space” at a party because it’s unavailable to be streamed, it ruins literally everything. I feel so strongly about this. Please bring Taylor Swift back to Spotify.


Here it is, everybody: the most perfectly executed bitch face of all time. I want to achieve this someday. I hope in the future, my face just naturally falls into this exact look.

“Both. Just say I’ve got an allergy to cheap Champagne. Tell them exactly that. I have acid reflux, and unless it’s really good bubbles, I’m not going to take that!” He shakes his head and laughs. “But please don’t sell that too well. Make sure they know it’s a joke. They’ll really think I’m an asshole.” 


About a month ago, I made a spontaneous decision to travel from NYC to CHI via Megabus and surprise my family and friends for Thanksgiving. It was SO fun, but some of the most LOL-worthy moments occurred, surprisingly, while en route. It’s basically the travel nightmare that you would assume, but if you’re looking forward to something at the end of it, it isn’t as bad. An old Russian woman next to me got in a screaming match with the bus drivers, someone threw up within the first two hours, there was a dog on the bus, and at one rest stop, they were selling L. Ron Hubbard DVDs. Apparently, Scientology is huge in Ohio. The entire bus ride took nineteen hours, and when I finally got to my front door, no one in my family was even home, but at least I got frozen yogurt later that night and got to enjoy the well of joyful emotions that exist only in Costco stores the next day.


Per Emerson family tradition, we hit the mean streets of suburban Illinois at 3 AM on Black Friday to help the economy/get some bangin department store deals. We also were Danby Station’s first customers of the day at 6 AM, because we will do anything for food from the best restaurant in Glen Ellyn, IL. I was awake for a full 23 hours, 12 of which were spent shopping. I’m a survivor.

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Since there’s nowhere to cook on campus/I only eat rabbit food, I spend at least 90% of my time blankly staring at delicious food on Pinterest, bookmarking it and then literally never cooking it ever. But I want to drown myself in this sweet corn, zucchini, and fresh mozzarella pizza. 

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It’s a stalemate to see who will cut their hair first and neither of us are caving.

“Eve then says that we should make this T-Swift-inspired class ‘a thing,’ but alas she will be in the Hamptons next week. I will be in suburbia for the holiday weekend eating Chinese takeout and wearing flannel pajama pants, but that is neither here nor there.”


My parents came to visit the second weekend of November and it was truly a delight. We got a round of Salty Pimps at the best ice cream place in the world, Big Gay Ice Cream Shop, and also met Bradley Cooper outside of his broadway show after seeing him perform. This is truly what it means to “live the dream.”

Selena Gomez’s monologue at the beginning of this song is also how I feel about Justin Bieber. I KNOW HIM.

Maybe if you live under a rock (aka don’t follow me on Twitter) you wouldn’t know that 1D has a new album out. BUT THEY DO AND IT’S PERFECT FROM START TO FINISH. Me and my journalistic companion Kiley Roache will be having a listening session in the coming days, but you should pre-game our analysis with a little “Girl Almighty”.

“I know a lot of people are probably so thrown by how serious we’re taking this boy band, but loving them is no different than obsessing over any other act we value for some arbitrary ideal of authenticity. There’s nothing more fun than loving something, and boy bands are one of the the only sets of artists that require you to love the whole package: from music to personalities to all the baggage they can muster.”

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I think Harry Styles is calling me out via tattoo

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Darling, I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream.