Hey kiddo. How was school today? Would you like a juice box, maybe some cookies? Here, take the special Spiderman cup you like. Apple, orange, both? Okay, fine. I won’t patronize you any longer. The real reason I wanted to talk to you is daddy and I are breaking up.
Yes, that’s right. After more than three years of dick jokes, stunt pieces, and musings on the beauty myth’s relationship to capitalism, today is my last day at The Gloss.
It seems like a lifetime ago that I sent in my first story, the now notorious firsthand account (can I call something I wrote notorious without being an asshole?) Terry Richardson Is Really Creepy: One Model’s Story. In actuality, it’s been three-and-a-half years. I’d been wanting to get that story off my chest for more than six years, and I figured that as long as I was going to write it, I might as well do it for a smallish, more “up-and-coming” publication that might actually appreciate it and give me something in return, even if it meant getting less money for it at the time, because I sure as hell wasn’t getting any more work from Vice after that (fun fact: my biggest client at the time). I thought about killing it for many reasons, but once I get an idea in my head that something is The Right Thing To Do, or even just The Thing To Do, I have to go through with it, or I start to feel bad inside. This is my blessing and my curse.
Due to this story, or to other things I’d written, or maybe just the charming way I made creep-eyes at Jennifer and Meghan at parties, The Gloss eventually asked me to blog more regularly, and I was stoked. It isn’t easy to make a living as a freelance writer in New York City (maybe you’ve heard?) and this job offered me the flexibility to work from home and take time off when I needed to go on vision quests across America, while still dependably paying my rent each month. I felt like the luckiest girl in the world.
Over the past two-and-a-half years of daily blogging, The Gloss has let me do all sorts of fun shit. I’ve walked around topless in Central Park to test out New York City’s indecent exposure laws. I’ve called out misogyny, absurdity and stupidity in fashion and culture. I’ve written thousands (or was it hundreds? Math is hard!) of blog posts that I hope gave people a think or a chuckle before they were flushed away forever by the next day’s news. I’ve written things I’m pleased to look back on, and at least a few things I’m willing to admit were downright asinine. Can’t win ’em all.
I’ve also had the pleasure of working alongside some of the smartest, funniest women I’ve ever met. As a freelancer, it can be difficult to form real relationships with anyone, and that insularity is part of what I like about it. True love means never having to put on pants or shower. But even if you mostly just see them on Skype, it’s hard not to get to know the people you talk to every day. And that made me happy.
Jennifer: with your impeccable appearance, contrarian yet annoyingly unassailable arguments, love of competence, and biting, strange, adorable, frightening witticisms, you are one of a kind. I’ll always be grateful you encouraged me to do this. Professionally speaking, you’re the best thing an argumentative leftist can ask for: a worthy adversary. Personally speaking, you’ve got a heart of gold under all those expensive clothes. I respect you, partly because I’m a little bit scared of you, and I hope you think the same of me. I will see what I can do for you when the proletarian uprising of 2015 rears its mighty head.
Ashley: I will always be a little bit jealous of your drive and discipline (you wrote a book! How does one even do that?), your ability to make jokes that are Simpsons-level hilarious, and your apparent lack of any cockiness or ego. Also, your height. You are so much taller than me. But despite my short stature, I’m a grown ass woman, so that doesn’t keep me from wanting to be your friend. Thank you for always having my back, and I’m sorry for the occasions on which I annoyed you or made your day harder (this goes for everyone!). I hope I know you for a long fucking time.
Sam: I’ve really only worked with you for a few months, but from what I can tell you are a patient, funny, kind-hearted person with an ironclad sense of right and wrong. I hope your brief association with me does not ruin your chances of election, should you ever decide to run for office for altruistic reasons.
Amanda: You are a lover and a fighter. We’ve never met, but I feel like I know you from your brave confessions and amusing selfies. I’m glad you found what you were looking for and I’m sure we haven’t heard the last from each other.
Eve, Liz, Julia, and Joanna: I haven’t known you guys very long, but I can see from your writing that I’m leaving The Gloss in good hands.
And thank you Meghan for taking a chance on a weird, awkward, black-clad nobody with little daily blogging experience. Seriously.
Thank you as well to everyone who read and engaged with my articles, whether it was to tell me your own personal stories (all of which I read) or simply to call me an asshole. You are an important part of the new media experience!
I’m not 100% sure what the future holds for me, but you can follow my adventures in rock and roll, drugs, and a little bit of sex (but not much because I’m boring now) at MTV Hive, The Village Voice, and Myspace (the new one) if you feel you need me in your life. And by “life,” I of course mean the time you spend fucking around on the internet at work. Remember that both mommy and daddy still love you very much, and don’t worry about this old bag of bones…as you know by now, I love doing things to shake up my little world. The rest is still unwritten.