Manson bloggers, the world of murder fandom, and the philosophy of being — can you ever escape who you are, or were?
Examining the music of the female orgasm and the orgasmic language of music.
Tragedy struck, but we’re thinking about our commute. What’s wrong with us? Are we not grieving enough? Or is a return to banalities a healthy sign? A meditation on loss and melancholy.
Moving is something Americans used to do a lot more of—not just moving out of a house, but moving an entire building with you. “Breaking off and hauling walls and roofs to a landfill is easier, and often cheaper, than recycling a house. Even simpler: demolition.” Jeannie Vanasco grew up in a while-sided saltbox house that had bee cut in half and moved across town. She began to search for the reason why.
A profile of Ron Capps, an Army combat veteran and former Foreign Service officer who served in Iraq, Darfur, Afghanistan, Rwanda, Eastern Congo and Kosovo during his career. After returning home, Capps was suicidal and haunted by PTSD; writing brought him relief and helped him make sense of his experiences.
Jeannie Vanasco on being named after the daughter her father lost, and artists named after dead siblings.
Excerpted from The Believer’s new book, Confidence, or the Appearance of Confidence: The Best of the Believer Music Interviews.
Molotkow takes a closer look at the memoirs of rock stars’ ex-lovers—from Cynthia Lennon to Angie Bowie. “‘The truth is that if I’d known as a teenager what falling for John Lennon would lead to,’ read ‘John’’s final lines, ‘I would have turned round right then and walked away.’ Aside from the living death of losing her husband abruptly and in public, Cynthia never recovered the life she could have had without him.”
The illegal farmers of California’s Humboldt County brace themselves for marijuana’s legalized future:
And yet California, long the marijuana movement’s pacesetter, and a haven for high-capacity growers, finds itself in the perhaps-unwelcome position of losing outlaws like Ethan. Should the state follow Colorado’s and Washington’s leads in legalizing recreational use, as is expected, already-fragile economies in the north—specifically in the “Emerald Triangle” of Mendocino, Humboldt, and Trinity counties, home to some quarter of a million people—could be crippled. The “prohibition premium” that keeps marijuana prices, and those economies, aloft would fall, possibly so precipitously that many growers would lose their incentive and (perhaps ironically) leave for more-punitive regions. In recent years, many growers have reportedly left California for places like Wisconsin and North Carolina—markets where a pound of marijuana might fetch double what it does in the Golden State. Legalization helps keep growers out of jail, but regulation slashes their profit margins.
Petersen traces the history of the celebrity profile:
Confidential was by no means the first publication to suggest that its subjects lived secret, salacious lives—the tabloid press had thrived, in various iterations, for years. But Confidential’s dirt was richer: publisher Robert Harrison developed a web of informants crossing the continent. More important, he understood what titillated: miscegenation, homosexuality, unbridled female sexuality, and communism.