Design

Have a Fun Weekend.

halloween Brooklyn by Alison Piepmeyer

What are you up to this weekend? We are doing a Halloween candy scavenger hunt around the apartment and making these glow-in-the-dark drinks. Hope you have a good one, and here are a few links from around the web…

53 compelling reasons to vote. (New York Times)

The trailer for season four of The Crown.

Love these bird portraits.

On multiple friends’ recommendations, I tried this and it makes skin look SO dewy.

Wow, interviews with Titanic survivors.

How should Black and Latinx people sound in movies? “There’s nothing worse than a Mexican character who sounds like an Argentinian or a Spaniard… Or actors who say seven things in Spanish, and then miraculously switch to English.” (New York Times)

What a cool kids’ bathroom.

Comedic actress Rachel Bloom shares how she learned to have an orgasm.

Children’s book covers reimagined in modernist style.

50 pies, 50 states.

LaTonya Yvette’s playlist for waiting in line to vote.

Plus, two reader comments:

Says Hannah on 12 readers share their cozy corners: “I didn’t expect to be moved when I clicked on this piece – but it is such a quietly beautiful thing to be allowed into other people’s homes and see what makes them feel safe and calm and cared for.”

Says Jenny on an engagement story: “I wanted to feel chosen, valuable, rare. I wanted to feel like life celebrations could be for me, too. Gals, I’m from rural Montana and I grew up desperately poor, chubby, and odd. For my senior prom, a mom who went to belly dance class with me made her son ask me. I had recently shaved my head and wore a gold caftan with gold glitter on my scalp to the prom (I emphasize again, in rural Montana!). It was an utterly fabulous aesthetic, but that boy, outmatched and dismayed, left me at prom and the principal had to drive me home. So many things haven’t been for me because I was too poor, too fat, from the Rez. I was dazzled by the idea of being chosen and everybody knowing it. I married at 22, with a men’s turquoise pinky ring from the pawn shop by the Missoula courthouse. I’m divorced now, of course. My life is very different. But my sister had a ring made for me of two silver rabbits, complete with tails, who are either embracing or fighting, just like sisters. She has chosen me, and keeps on choosing me, as a person to love. That ring is my favorite possession. And the things that used to feel like they were keeping me out were making me into myself, a fierce caftan enthusiast who goes to Stanford Med and sleeps in the very middle of the bed.”

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(Photo by Alison Piepmeyer/Instagram.)

  1. Sara says...

    Can Jenny please be featured? Her comment was beautiful. Thank you!

    • Charlie says...

      YES! Can Jenny be a beauty interview or another feature? She sounds so unique and amazing, I would love to get to know her.

    • Libby says...

      Yes, please!

  2. k says...

    The children’s bathroom actually made me sad. If you click on the link, it shows a lovely bathroom with really nice materials (before) ripped out for…lower sinks and fun plumbing (after)? I enjoy a good before and after but this wasn’t it. Maybe there was something structurally wrong with the bathroom that the article didn’t cover (or I missed)? The thought of redoing a perfectly good bathroom just drips of privilege and left me uninspired. I had the same feeling after looking at Harling’s beautiful apartment; dripping with privilege and not for me.

    • Madeleine Northcote says...

      K, I hadn’t realized this was also how I was feeling. All these apartments are starting to look exactly the same – and it feels like often these features are used as a means of driving traffic to various creatives businesses as well. I want to see more cozy corners, or challenge COJ to have people share how much they pay in rent as part of the feature. Let’s get some transparency here, and celebrate homes from a variety of income brackets, lived experience and stages of life.

    • k says...

      Maeleine, YES! More cozy corners from all. I could scroll through tiny snapshots of a home all day long :-)

  3. Meg says...

    Jenny ❤️❤️❤️

  4. Yella says...

    Jenny.

  5. AMK says...

    That playlist is 🔥!!! What a gift!! It was made with love and so much care. Thank you, LaTonya!!

  6. Lori Lynn says...

    Thank you for such a warm and heart felt piece. I happily cried while reading it.

  7. Neile says...

    Jenny, it’s so refreshing and delightful to hear stories of people being true to themselves. Thank you for sharing yours. I, too, would love to hear more.

  8. Samantha says...

    Came to the comments to suggest asking Jenny to write a regular column and am so happy to see so many others beat me to it!

  9. jac says...

    I concur with the masses- More Jenny, please. <3 This is the kind of voice modern women need to hear from. There is love all around you. And seeing that and valuing it and treasuring it is what we need more of right now. Your platonic relationships are just as important as your romantic ones. In fact, if you look back at your life, often times those are the ones that have carved you out of the wood to become who you are.

  10. Rachel says...

    We need more doctors like Jenny!

  11. Beth says...

    Jenny!!!!!!!!! Best comment ever

  12. Michelle says...

    The ‘accents for Black and Latinx people’ topic resonated with me as an American of Asian descent. Not to misappropriate the topic but as a Chinese-American, I believe I speak for many of us when I say depictions of Asian languages/dialects (particularly Mandarin and/or Cantonese — these are the ones I speak but there may be issues with Korean, Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese, etc that I’m not aware of) in Hollywood film and TV shows have also been problematic for decades. I’m not even talking about incorrect regional or country-specific accents, I’m talking about Hollywood productions passing off outright gibberish as a particular foreign language/dialect, which needless to say is wholly disrespectful. I get that Mandarin is hard to learn and Cantonese is even more devilishly tricky — attempts to learn either via phonetics won’t work because different inflections/intonations will give the same word entirely different meanings — but surely they could make some effort towards depicting them at least halfway accurately instead of simply resorting to bald-faced lies/nonsense and calling it a day. As the NYT article put it, audiences are becoming increasingly worldly and sophisticated, and shows that don’t condescend to their viewers by assuming they don’t know what the actual language that they’re butchering sounds like (or presume they wouldn’t care, or more to the point, would be negligible/powerless enough that they could be ignored even if they did protest) are the smart ones. The struggle is real.

    • Amy says...

      YES, agreed Michelle! It drives me absolutely crazy when I see this happen with languages from Asia. With all the lengths that are taken to produce authenticity (costumes, set design, etc), not applying that same level of care to language is just so damn lazy.

  13. Cynthia says...

    I would love to hear more from Jenny. She’s amazing!

    • Rae says...

      Yes! Jenny — you have a story to tell in a big way. I hope you get lots of opportunities to share.

  14. E says...

    Hello readers! This is a very random inquiry, but I thought I’d ask because this site has such a wide and diverse audience: I’m writing a juvenile novel and have received good feedback from friends so far. Does anyone out there have suggestions on how to locate a literary agent?

    I have family who have self-published, but I don’t think that route is for me. The book won’t be finished until January, but no better time to prepare! Thanks for any input.

    • Nigerian Girl says...

      E, check these links out: https://www.pw.org/literary_agents and https://www.writersdigest.com/.amp/publishing-insights/20-literary-agents-actively-seeking-writers-and-their-writing

      Also, read the acknowledgements pages of books by authors you admire and/or books that are similar to yours. Authors usually thank their agents there, and then Google can help you track the agents down. Reading numerous authors’ interviews helps too because the authors might share how they got representation. And who knows? Maybe an agent will read your comment and reach out to you. Good luck.

    • Tara says...

      E, author Jasmine Guillory has TONS of great tips in her Instagram stories about this very topic! And the links from Nigerian Girl here look awesome as well!

  15. Alexandra Leigh says...

    More Jenny.

  16. Picot says...

    Redundant at his point…but, yeah, I would like to hear more from Jenny.

  17. SlyBK says...

    Jenny…After you conquer Stanford Med, consider writing that memoir we’re all dying to read, please. <3

  18. Tracey says...

    Adding to the love for Jenny! Please! More! Where do we find her?

  19. Janey says...

    I love Jenny! Best thing I’ve read in ages!

  20. Megan Ritchey says...

    Also here to hear more from Jenny!

  21. Sarah says...

    Oh wow Jenny! In just a few sentences you blew me away. I’m sorry the world was not ready for you, but the world needs you!!!

    • Lindsay says...

      WRITE THAT BOOK, JENNY. Your soul is so bright and we need your voice.

  22. KathyB says...

    I really want to like Rachel Bloom, but she underwhelms me. Rub your nub, who cares.

    • K says...

      Lol I’d like that on a mug, “rub your nub, who cares”

  23. Rosalie says...

    Like everyone else, I would love to hear more from Jenny!

  24. Sarah says...

    Adding another Jenny vote! I’ll read anything she wants to write.

  25. Annie says...

    Clearly, Jenny needs to be heard from many more times over! JENNY! JENNY! JENNY!

  26. Rosie says...

    Yes! Jenny! Yes!

  27. Jenny! And the Rachel Bloom excerpt! Thank you, COJ, for all things, always.

  28. Rebekah says...

    WE 👏🏽 WANT 👏🏽MORE👏🏽JENNY!

  29. V. says...

    Hi, I’ve been a regular reader for several years. I live in Philadelphia, where Walter Wallace, Jr., a young Black father, was killed by police earlier this week. I’m feeling *deeply* disappointed that this has not been mentioned on this site at all this week. I had hoped at LEAST for a “demand justice for Walter Wallace” line could have been included in today’s link list, or links to supporting Mr. Wallace’s family’s GoFundMe.
    You’ve done this sort of thing in the past. Why not for Mr. Wallace? I really do understand that social justice is not the primary goal of this site, but you all went to enormous effort to make space for BLM and to say names of Black people who have been killed by police in the past (you even stopped posting and then only posted content by and for Black folx for a while after George Floyd was killed in June). I guess I don’t understand why do all of that effort then, but not now? I worry that it could be perhaps because Mr. Wallace had known mental health conditions, or perhaps because Philly is the poorest big city in the country, that far less attention is being given to this situation, as if being from a poor area or having mental health conditions could possibly make you any less human or deserving to live. OR, is it that you feel silence on the matter is permissible because because OTHER sites aren’t speaking up, so you don’t feel any pressure to do so either? But Black Lives Matter REGARDLESS of whether every corporation is sending “we stand with the Black community” emails OR NOT. Silence means that we are complicit, ya’ll. We don’t get to pick and choose when it’s convenient to dismantle white supremacy. Black Lives Matter today and EVERY DAY, no matter what. I had really, really hoped that your response in June meant that this would continue to be a priority for you all and that you understood the power of your platform and the responsibility that comes with it. Our community is watching our city be under siege, once again, with curfews and riot police all over. I usually come to this site to remind myself I’m not alone, but today this post made me feel more alone than ever, after a horrific and devastating week. Thanks for taking my concern seriously & take care,
    V.

    • SlyBK says...

      V.
      As a fellow reader, I just want to thank you for this. Not because I noticed it, too…because I didn’t, and your comment spoke deeply to me about how easy it is to fall into “I want to be distracted from the news” on the internet…even on our beloved blogs. Watching Walter Wallace Jr.’s little boys speak about their father should be required viewing for every American. So many lives were decimated by his murder. Distraction, denial…they’re just giving in to the idea that black lives don’t matter. Walter Wallace Jr.’s life mattered. Black lives matter. Every black life matters every day, no matter what. Thank you for those words. Sending love to Philly and praying for justice for Walter Wallace Jr and his family .

    • Em says...

      Thank you for saying this. The amount of silence everywhere around Walter Wallace Jr.‘s murder is disgusting. I don’t know how people, especially white folx, can think that being silent because they are “too tired at of all the things” is ok.
      For the record I am a white woman and we white people cannot be silent. BIPOC have been forced to carry the bodies of the dead alone for far too long, and it is time for white people to do the work.
      The silence is deafening with both Mr.Wallace’s death as well as the death of Kevin Peterson on Thursday.

    • D says...

      Hi V – Black woman here. I’m trying to understand your point of view when you said that there are “riot police all over.” Would you prefer that there be no police during the burning and looting? The death of this young man is extremely sad and I feel deeply for his family. But if one of the police officers who answered the call where your brother or husband, you would expect him to have let Mr. Wallace stab him to death? He was armed with a knife charging at the police officers. He could have killed them and even his own family members that were around (that is why they called 911). Organizing to advocate for families to get appropriate mental health care and for accessibility of those programs for the communities that need it most would have possibly saved his life. Responding by burning and looting hurts us all and does not honor his life or that of his hurting family.

    • Becky says...

      Hi V,
      I am originally from the Philadelphia area. I flow the news regularly from both there and nationally. It doesn’t seem to be spoken about much even in the national news. Because Joanna and her team are not national news reporters I’m not sure how they would have much access to any established information to report accurately. They are life style blog and I dont expect them to cover such topics though it is great when they do. Mr. Wallace’s story stood out to me because I worked in mental health for almost a decade. Mental health is not spoken about enough and perhaps that is something the CupofJo team could address and discuss more and not just when something happens in the news.

    • CL says...

      Hi V – Long time Cup of Jo reader here. I hear you and I support your perspective.

  30. Eva says...

    I need a book of all Jenny

    • Dd says...

      Anyone else see the kids’ bathroom sink and wonder how long till the sink or tile cracked from kids climbing on it?

  31. KC says...

    I’d note that you can do the “crunch wintergreen lifesavers in the dark to make glow-in-the-dark sparks” thing without a black light. At least, I assume you can still do this? Have they changed the formulation? Anyway, I thought that was *amazing* as a kid and was entertained for quite a while by it. :-)

  32. Suzanne Munroe says...

    Jenny, the world needs more of you. I need to read your memoir so I can be friends with you in my head. PLEASE WRITE MORE!

  33. Ashley says...

    Can we hear more of Jenny’s story??

  34. Bianca says...

    Holy sh*t Jenny is a great writer and she sounds like a brilliant badass. Imagine she just tossed this bit of writing out in a comment and I’m hooked, and want to read more about her and know her in real life. I’m sad she was probably made to feel like a misfit growing up because she sounds spectacular to me.

  35. caitlin says...

    Hell. Yes. Jenny! The story, your writing, the ring — love it all.

  36. Ally says...

    Oh Jenny- your engagement story brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing. You are a worthy and wonderful human.

  37. Anna says...

    Jenny, please write your memoir. It will be good. Thanks from all of us future readers.

    • gina s says...

      Lol yes.
      Truly one of the most amazing paragraphs I’ve read in years.

    • Andrea says...

      You put it better than I could’ve, Anna! Yes, Jenny! Count me as a preorder.

    • Hilary says...

      Yes, yes, yes times a million.

  38. Jen says...

    Wow – Jenny’s writing. Just wow.

  39. Kelsey says...

    I want to make Jenny inspired t-shirts. I want to carry that (you will be) ‘outmatched and dismayed’ energy into fighting for our rights over these next few years! (Hopefully fighting alongside Pres Biden and VP Harris!!!)

  40. Lizzie says...

    The people have spoken. WE NEED MORE JENNY!!!

  41. Lizzie says...

    YASSSS JENNY!!!!!

  42. Clara says...

    hahah, hot damn, yes! Jenny you are amazing.

  43. Jenna says...

    In a world of awful comment sections, ours contains Jenny! And so many other thoughtful, interesting, and caring humans. I know its been said before but there is no better community on the internet than CoJ!

    • Sasha L says...

      Oh right, so true!

      What a bright light you are Jenny. Thank you for inspiring me.

  44. Sara says...

    sharing the JENNY LOVE!

    • Tara says...

      JENNY, you are WONDERFUL and so is your sister! Your writing stopped me in my tracks. You are amazing and if you ever need a friend in Seattle, surprise, you already have one! Keep kicking ass!

  45. Charlotte K says...

    Another vote for more Jenny, from today’s snowy Boston.

  46. Marisa says...

    Thanks for sharing LaTonya’s playlist! Loving it!

    Also just so bouyed by how much everyone loves Jenny’s comment. What a wonderful community you have here.

  47. Christina says...

    Team Jenny!!! Jenny, I saw you popped in earlier and commented, and there are so many more now. I hope today feels like one of those big life celebration moments, because we are all celebrating YOU. xoxo

  48. Bonnie says...

    Thank you for sharing, Jenny – you ROCK. I can SO PICTURE, as you say, rural Montana. I lived in Florida in my 20s and 30s and spent my vacation money and time traveling to Montana … partly because I fell in love with it from A River Runs Through it (“The world is full of bastards, the number increasing rapidly the further one gets from Missoula, Montana.” Thank you, Norman MacLean…) and partly because once I’d been, the people I met each visit were just tremendous. I look forward to meeting YOU even more through COJ…

  49. Margot says...

    Another Jenny fan here to say she sounds f*cking amazing.

  50. Marisa says...

    So hope we get to hear more from Jenny. I’m absolutely smitten with her!

    • Kathryn says...

      This comment from Jenny!! So useful to read those excellent, wise words. Thank you, dear Jenny, for lighting the path. Seriously needed this weekend, when everything hangs in the balance xx

  51. Ruth says...

    wow. I agree with everyone on the Jenny vote! Lets hear more about her, see her, do a week of outfits or an interview, please! She sounds fabulous. x

  52. Rosa says...

    More from Jenny!!!

    I was moved to read her comment, thank you CoJ for finding this rare, fierce gem.

  53. Jenny!! Wow wow wow. More from her please! She’s a born writer.

  54. Illana says...

    Oh, Man. Jenny – this comment is everything, and it’s both the story of me and also so far from me, but it’s me, too. I think it is many, many of us. Thank you for this.

  55. Elle says...

    Thank you for posting Jenny’s comment! I shared it to my own Facebook page the other day. My friend group largely consists of educators, and English teacher after English teacher ‘loved it’. I have a feeling that it will make its way into an instructional lesson for a few. **Jenny – I gave you credit, but could only site ‘Jenny, commenter, Cup of Jo blog, 10/28/2020’.

    • Trisha says...

      I’m an English teacher, and yes, I LOVE Jenny’s message, prose, and person.

  56. Nadege says...

    MORE JENNY

  57. AN says...

    Yessssss! Jenny’s comment made the round-up!!! It deserves the audience of THE WHOLE WORLD!!!

  58. Jess. says...

    I only needed a “45” reason to vote. :) Went out in the pouring rain and voted early this morning. xox

    • M says...

      I hope he is absolutely defeated! ;-)

  59. Melisa says...

    That comment by Jenny made my day, she sounds utterly beautiful and I’m so thankful she shared that story. My brother and I were super close as kids but are very separate adults, growing more distant over time, and I’m so awed by Jenny’s relationship with her sister.

  60. SC says...

    Chiming in to the chorus here that Jenny’s comment brought tears to my eyes. What a beautiful human you sound like, Jenny!

  61. Melinda says...

    I echo all the love for Jenny and her amazing comment!!

  62. Sharmine says...

    My 4 kiddos go on a scavenger hunt in our house on the daily. Tomorrow, we’re collecting from the neighborhood. We can stay socially distant! Just throw us the sweets!

  63. Quinn says...

    Wow – thank you for highlighting Jenny’s beautiful comment.

  64. Alison says...

    Jenny – Loved your comment beyond measure. Fierce, strong and with humor. Echoing everyone who would love to hear more from you. Thank you for making my Friday!

  65. Michelle says...

    The 53 compelling reasons to vote are spot on! And yet this weekend before the election my anxiety is through the roof! I believe the polls are skewed. I believe that suburban women have not abandoned trump. I can only have faith that more people love America enough to right the ship! Lets go Joe!

    • Sage says...

      I hear you friend. I’m sick about it!

  66. Sarah says...

    The best scary movie I’ve seen in a while was The Host which is a Shudder (Netflix for scary movies) original. It’s under an hour and takes place 1) during the pandemic 2) is entirely filmed as a Zoom call. They do really cool things with camera angles and there are some fun “Zoom-era” tongue-in-cheek moments. Super fun, super cool, super scary!

  67. LCB says...

    Please let’s hear more from Jenny!

  68. Corey says...

    The pie instagram account is amazing!

  69. Allie says...

    More from Jenny, please. Loved it.

  70. SK says...

    Jenny!!!!! Wow.

  71. Marki says...

    I’d love this! Jenny’s comment was one of the most beautiful pieces of writing I’ve read in a long time. I’d like to know more please!

  72. CL says...

    I can’t speak for everyone else but I for one think a “week of outfits” with Jenny sounds spectacular! A human who went to prom in a gold caftan with gold glitter on a bald scalp seems like just the kind of inspiration I need these days! Beautiful! Thanks for sharing Jenny!

    • Madeleine says...

      Came here to say the same thing! Jenny, you sound so freaking cool and I think we would have been friends in high school.

      PLEASE COJ, Jenny – a week of outfits. The collab we need.

    • Megan says...

      Agreed! As a fellow Montanan, I would LOVE to see what Jenny is wearing and I mean that in the most sincere way possible.

  73. Kristin says...

    Horror movies are the best form of escapism for me right now. The creepier the better. They remind me that, as bad as things are now, at least my apartment isn’t haunted by a ghost that wants to kill me, etc. It’s all about perspective.

    • Km says...

      You must watch The Haunting of Bly Manor then. The story with a soul literally and figuratively.

  74. Monica says...

    I’M ALSO TEAM JENNY! :)

  75. Meghan says...

    Jenny! Your writing gave me goosebumps. Thank you for sharing

  76. Julia says...

    Jenny for president

    • liz says...

      JENNY!!!!!!

  77. Susan says...

    TEAM JENNY!

  78. lauren says...

    TEAM JENNY.

    • Susan says...

      Okay no joke but I submitted my very similar comment just three minutes after you!

  79. Kate says...

    Jenny – you made my whole day! What a beautiful way to emphasize that you don’t need a lover to be chosen, cherished, and loved. I love the idea of a ring or other object to symbolize these connections.

  80. MK says...

    Jenny’s comment is powerful and beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing.

  81. Jessica says...

    That reader comment…Jenny! Wow. That hit me hard and makes me feel like I can face whatever the rest of 2020 has to offer. Love the vulnerability and the story! She sounds like an A+ human being worthy of being chosen over and over!

  82. Megan says...

    What a comment. This line just killed me, in the best possible way: “And the things that used to feel like they were keeping me out were making me into myself.”

    Like so many things from CoJ, I want to try to remember that, to tell my daughter when she gets older. Thanks, Jenny.

  83. Denise says...

    O, wow, Jenny’s comment is so lovely. Thanks for featuring it!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you so much, Katie! really good to know.

  84. Km says...

    While you wait for the Crown. please watch The Queen’s Gambit. This is the best show in years. In the world full of psychological thrillers and dark gloomy twisted dramas, this is breath of fresh air. Brilliant at every level, acting, editing story direction.

    • Kristin says...

      We just started this. It’s fantastic!

    • Amy says...

      I loved it too! The costumes & set design were amazing! It had pretty decent character development too. I wish there were more like this on Netflix.

  85. K says...

    Wow Jenny’s comment was beautiful and made my whole morning. Can we have a post on her?? A week of outfits or home tour or anything? I’d love to know more about this awesome person.

    • Katie says...

      I second this.

    • AMK says...

      Same!!! Wow!!!! I want to learn more!!

    • Stacey DeWitt says...

      Yes please! I second this!

    • N says...

      Ditto!!! Grateful for her story.

    • Lizzy says...

      I agree! I got teary.

    • Paige says...

      Same! Who is this incredible person??

    • kash says...

      echoing this! MORE JENNY

    • Alex says...

      Yes!! More Jenny!!

    • Brittany says...

      Yes! More Jenny content, please.

    • Ker says...

      More Jenny!!

    • Tinny says...

      Yes yes yes!!!!

    • Jenny says...

      I just popped up from my board exam study hole like a grimy little prairie dog, only to find so much kindness waiting for me here about my reader comment! I am so grateful for these truly encouraging notes, and for this group of people. I reiterate: sister-love, friend-love, the love you receive from women will change your entire-ass life. Caroline’s beautiful, tender essay made me think about all the ways the engagement myth dismisses the love of women and femmes. I always think that Caroline is the best kind of writer because the comment section is always filled with our stories in response.

    • Jessica says...

      YES! I want to know more about this amazing woman!!!

    • K says...

      Jenny!!! I am in the midst of board studying too (ID boards) and your comment made my tedious hell so much brighter! woo hoo you go girl!

  86. Sara says...

    Jenny – write a book, please!

  87. Louisa says...

    “Peruvian Inca tern. All images © Tim Flach, shared with permission” — I tried to picture how to get a Peruvian Inca Tern to sign a waiver until I realized they meant the photographer.

  88. Sarah says...

    omg wow love that comment from Jenny! thank you for reposting it as i didn’t see it on the original post. Jenny- you sound so rad. Even better- COJ team, could we get a week of outfits from Jenny!?

    • Laura S says...

      I second this idea! That comment from Jenny was so touching. Thank you for sharing!

  89. Olive says...

    I must have missed Jenny’s comment the first time around, but this time it stopped me in my tracks and made me cry. It’s like a novel in one paragraph. Loads and loads of love to you, Jenny, in all your glorious incarnations.

  90. Sally says...

    Oh my goodness, Jenny’s story hit me in the gut. In the best way. I’m crying.

    My mom divorced my dad a few years ago and her sister (my aunt) also bought her a beautiful ring to wear instead of her wedding ring. Where would we be without sisters?

  91. Johanna says...

    Jenny’s story just moved me to tears. Is there any way we can learn more?

  92. Maryann says...

    Goodness, that comment from Jenny was just beautiful. Her words are going to stick with me, I know. Thanks for sharing.

  93. Laurel says...

    I always think about the accent question when dealing with characters who aren’t native English speakers.

    In the show Outlander (my quarantine guilty pleasure), the Native American characters are pretty poorly done. They speak perfect English with absolutely no accent, except they will occasionally leave out a word. Like they’ll say, “I go now,” instead of “I will go now.” I’m always thinking, wouldn’t they have accent? But then I immediately think, maybe it would be worse if the actors attempted an accent? Which is more offensive?!

    • Katie says...

      I’m went to a rural poor Texas 1A school. We did a play for UIL where you compete against other schools. I can’t remember the name of our play, but it was based on Irish characters. Our director made a very pointed decision not to do accents from the very beginning because a bunch of East Texas kids doing an Irish accent would have been BAD. I wore old lady makeup for my part and we won a bunch of awards. One judge didn’t like that we didn’t do an accent but conceded that everything else about our delivery was spectacular and the backgrounds of the characters were obvious. I even won the best supporting actress award. Later, when I was sitting in an auditorium with a bunch of kids from other schools, they all started badmouthing our low budget production. One of the kids was from the richer school that had a light show and fog machines and all that stuff. They didn’t realize who I was because I was out of makeup, but one of them criticized our lack of accent. I couldn’t speak up fast enough to tell them who I was, and when I first started trying to, they thought I was agreeing with them. It still tickles me to this day. I don’t know why.
      Anyway, this is obviously a different scenario from what was described, but yeah, bad accents are very cringey.

    • Christina says...

      Yes, either let the actors speak English, or let them speak with the correct accent – or in the correct language if they are supposed to be non-English. Wrong or weird accents or gibberish that symbolizes another language are just annoying!

    • Amanda L says...

      Katie your comment reminded me of my South Carolina high school production of The Diary of Anne Frank. Our teacher told us 2 days before opening night that we would be doing German accents. No guidance on what that sounded like, so obviously we were all over the place. We performed at the Jewish Community Center, and a Holocaust survivor was in the audience. We did not pull off the accents, and I’m embarrassed to this day that no one stood up to our teacher and said “maybe it’s not a great idea”.

    • Michelle says...

      @Christina — YES! 1,000%! I hate it when Hollywood movies/TV shows resort to using gibberish to denote a foreign language. I’m Chinese-American and I can’t even begin to list the many times American actors of both Asian and Caucasian descent have absolutely butchered what’s supposed to pass as Mandarin or Cantonese in English-language shows. I understand better than most that both Mandarin and Cantonese are heavily reliant on inflection to convey meaning — the same word can have vastly different meanings depending on where one places the emphasis or how it’s enunciated — so it’s not like I expect them to sound like a native speaker who’s spent years in Beijing or Hong Kong with the correct regional accents. But jeez Louise, would it kill them to at least pretend to care about getting it to sound right? Especially since it’s usually just one or 2 scenes in the entire movie or TV episodes that require characters to converse in them. It wouldn’t even be that bad if they spoke Mandarin or Cantonese with like an American accent; at least that would have some veneer of believability — it’s these actors saying nonsense with a straight face and expecting the audience to buy it, and those who know better to just accept it, that’s really problematic. Because that means everyone else involved, from the directors, the sound engineers, the writers, the producers, right down to the post-production/editing teams, couldn’t be bothered to get it right. And if there was absolutely no one on the team/crew involved who understood the languages/dialects being spoken on the show, that’s a whole other level of problematic too.

    • Diana says...

      Oh man, speaking of accents – Willoughby in Outlander (Jamie’s Chinese associate) was speaking an odd form of Cantonese instead of Mainland Chinese. I mean, fine if he spoke Cantonese but I had no idea what he was saying. My Cantonese isn’t great but I suspected it was part gibberish. I just fast forwarded through his speaking parts.