An imagined monologue sponsored by my anxiety

(Photo by Ron Lach from Pexels)

Hi team, thank you for participating in this brainstorm! Remember, there are NO bad ideas, only ones that reveal the depths of your incompetence and make your colleagues look at you differently. I assure you this is a fun, zero pressure, collaborative exercise — everyone will have an opportunity to say something they regret the moment it leaves their mouth.

I value your feedback and I want to get the most out of our time together. That’s why this brainstorm has been minimized for productivity and maximized for tangents, ramblings and confessions you’ll feel pressured into giving because no one…

Staying home is the safest thing to do but it doesn’t have to be a bummer

Rainforest Cafe, formally on 605 N. Clark St. Chicago, IL, where I celebrated Thanksgiving in 2014.

In my twenties I lived in Chicago and flew home to Connecticut only once for Thanksgiving (so that I could attend my 5-year high school reunion which was ill-advised). Being a plane ride away meant I couldn’t afford to come home for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. So for 7 years, my Thanksgivings were whatever I wanted them to be, a scary but ultimately liberating practice for a person who had previously celebrated by the book — with a big family, a home-cooked meal, and an aunt who makes phenomenal pies.

That first year “alone,” only 2 months after moving to…

by Ali Kelley, Danielle Kraese, Kate Herzlin, and Ysabel Yates

“The detection of a gas in the planet’s atmosphere could turn scientists’ gaze to a planet long overlooked in the search for extraterrestrial life.” — Life on Venus? Astronomers See a Signal in Its Clouds. New York Times. 9/14/2020

They’ve been largely overlooked by science.

Everyone makes a big deal when they produce gas.

People are constantly judging their ability to nurture human life.

They’re under an immense amount of pressure, the kind that would crush a man instantly.

Societies have historically spent way too much time tracking their every…

Refreshing excuses you can use at any time

Photo by Jess Low from Pexels
  1. I’m sorry I’m an hour late! It’s daylight saving time somewhere!

2. I know I’m a grown adult and I shouldn’t be scared to go to work, but somewhere it’s Sunday night.

3. Oh, you’re planning on wearing white to my wedding? I know I don’t have the congressional authority, but I’m declaring war. It’s 0:500 hours somewhere.

4. I respect that we’re at this memorial service for your grandpa, but I need to watch a primetime, procedural drama. It’s 8/7 central somewhere!

5. Despite how unflattering they are, I’m going to buy these low-rise jeans. …

Upholding marriage vows in confinement

Photo by Daria Shevtsova from Pexels

I’ve always said you should live with someone before marrying them, but I never advocated for an indefinite quarantine. I am not a monster or a reality show producer. But for the past three weeks, every couple that lives together has been put to the test. (And every couple that lives together and has kids should qualify for sainthood).

The only difference now between the married couples and the unmarried couples who live together, is that the married couples (myself included) already made our vows. And under the most trying of circumstances, we are doing our best to uphold them…

Updated superstitions and justified paranoia for the new year

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

1. Going outside with wet hair will make you catch a cold that you won’t be able to treat until your insurance premium goes down.

2. If you swallow gum it will stay in your stomach for the length of time it takes you to find an in-network gastroenterologist: 7 years.

3. It’s bad luck to open an umbrella inside the waiting room of your gastroenterologist’s office.

4. You should wait an hour after eating before opening the bill from your gastroenterologist visit.

5. The white spots on your fingernails are due to your lying about completing Whole30.

6. Eating…

You are more than the feminine hygiene products they blame you for

Hate that you’re constantly getting blamed for wrecking the plumbing with your tampons and sanitary napkins? Don’t let an accusatory, Word Art poster in the women’s bathroom reduce you to a tired stereotype.

It’s 2017 and NEWS FLASH: Not all women use their feminine hygiene products to clog the toilet. Some of us are clogging toilets with our Teenie Beanie Babies collection, for example. Here are some other inventive items you can use to clog the toilet and help reclaim your toilet identity!

1. A 44-disc box set of the complete Frasier series. If you’re afraid you’re coming off as…

A Belladonna #TBT post

Smash the patriarchy!

Editor’s note: This is a Belladonna #TBT post, where we resurface old favorites that are just as hilariously relevant today.

Subject: Nice to meet you!

Hey, thanks for checking us out. How does a promo code sound? Enter NEWDEAL at checkout for 15% off your entire purchase. Don’t be a stranger ;) We’re all friends here.

Subject: OK, now you’re making us blush.

Wow, we love that you dig our high-rise skinny jeans (almost) as much as we do.

Complete your order now and we’ll give you an extra 10% off when you use promo code VIBES.

Subject: We’re a…

Because every. single. story. deserves to be told

1. Weather/Wither

Global warming is the single greatest threat facing our planet. But in Medium’s new publication, “Weather/Wither,” we’re exclusively focusing on the inane weather conversations that define the American work experience and make you want to die inside. We’re not interested in reported features on Norway’s melting ice caps or the vanishing Adelie penguin population in Antarctica. But we are eager to hear literal tired takes on how the rain outside is making you sleepy and this heatwave is zapping you of all your energy.

2. 1984

Constant cyber attacks, identity fraud, government wiretapping. Privacy concerns in 2019 are at an all-time high…

Beware the fast fashion fantasyland…

Written By Rosamund Lannin and Ali Kelley

The Ant and the Grasshopper

On a crisp morning in November, Anna debuted her new winter staple — a beautiful suede swing coat with faux fur collar. She had spent her summer working double shifts at Mulligans to save up enough money to purchase the coat. Proud of her purchase, she posted a photo to Instagram.

Her friend Greta left a comment, “Gorg! I’m going to have borrow that from you ASAP!”

Anna DM’d Greta shortly after, “Girl, you know I can’t let you borrow this coat. I gave up my summer to afford it and I’m never…

Ali Kelley

Brooklyn-based writer raised in the Connecticut suburbs. Words at Slate, Washington Post, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency /

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