As a pre-teen, I always dreamed that I’d take a beachy, tropical, possibly debaucherous senior trip in high school. Cancun. Acapulco. Hell, even Myrtle Beach would have sufficed. Instead, I found myself, three days before graduation, zipped into my sleeping bag to avoid contracting malaria in a rickety, cobwebbed cabin along with eight other girls in Caratunk, Maine.

Despite spending my formative years in the snow capital of Syracuse, New York and the woods of New Hampshire, I’ve never been an outdoorsy person in the slightest. I appreciate a good (four-hour round-trip) hike on a brisk fall day. I also…


She’s sad, she’s sullen, and she loves Saves the Day!

Illustration by Enrique Meseguer on Pixabay

Here at American Girl, we’ve long been dedicated to inspiring young women to learn while they play with our collection of dolls that capture important eras in our country’s rich history through the lens of girls just like them. Now, for the first time, we’re celebrating the heyday of Hot Topic and Hawthorne Heights with our very own nod to the monumental emo movement of the early-to-mid-2000s, xJessicax.

Clad in a My Chemical Romance tee and hoodie, skinny jeans fastened with a neon green studded belt, and checkered Vans, xJessicax is ready to rock, cry, and then rock again —…


(Photo/Food Truck Empire)

All of this isolation has given me a lot of time to reflect, and I think I owe each one of you an apology. Yes, you in the Burlington Mall. You in the Cambridgeside Galleria. Even you in the filthy, dirty Corner Mall. You’ve provided me with generosity, kindness, deceptively delicious orange chicken, and countless souvenir toothpicks. And what have I given you in return? Nothing but false hope, broken dreams, and half-hearted, polite smiles. Closed-mouth, of course, as I chew coyly and glide ever-so-slowly away from you toward the promised land of Taco Bell. I mean, snackable fried chicken…


Start by entertaining the idea of having a roommate for the rent relief, and maybe the camaraderie, before having flashbacks to all of the terrible experiences you’ve had. The one who had sex with your mutual male friend while you were trying to sleep five feet away. The one who loudly watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer episodes on her laptop in the living room. The one that told you she didn’t smoke and then stained your lamps with her cigarette ash. The one who filled the kitchen with fake, plastic cakes and hung magazine pinups of naked renaissance woman in…


Time to Make the Donuts

It was destiny that brought Dunkin’ Donuts and I together. More accurately, it was getting fired from an ice cream shop in the summer of 2005 that facilitated our blessed, caffeinated union. But fate works in strange and soul-crushing ways. …


I’m just not cut out for virtual life. If the past eight-plus weeks have shown me anything about myself, it’s that tiny, pixelated, and frozen Brady Bunch squares of friends, family, and potential employers are fine when they’re occasionally supplementing actual, in-person interaction. But otherwise, get them out of my face — literally. These days, even a 10-minute Zoom call drains me of energy and viscerally upsets me. I. Am. Over. It. I know it’s the best we’ve all got right now, but that doesn’t mean I can’t hate it.


Whipping my hair a la Willow Smith in 2010

As 2010 began, things were comfortable in a lot of ways. I had a good job — my first one out of college — as a travel copywriter. I was just about to attend a book club meeting on a total whim where I’d meet a group of women I’d grow incredibly close to over the next several years. I had recently moved into a beautiful apartment just outside of Boston where I had only one roommate. I filled my nights with live music, live-tweeting reality shows, and a smattering of sporadic online dates. …


The Reach and Rotate

Next time you find yourself strategically at Home Depot on a Sunday afternoon, pick an item on the highest shelf you can find, like, say, a lightbulb. Don’t need a lightbulb? Doesn’t matter — that’s not the point. Raise your right arm up to the sky, groan loudly and strangely enough to make everyone else in aisle five wonder what the fuck is wrong with you, and then turn exactly 90 degrees toward the unsuspecting bearded hunk on your right, screaming “YOU’RE MY ONLY HOPE!” Now you have a lightbulb and a date. Or, if executed…


In your early 20s, you get sex tips from Cosmo. In your early 30s, you get steak tips from Costco.

In your early 20s, you use Craigslist to find a roommate. In your early 30s, you use Craigslist to find a Roomba.

In your early 20s, you binge-drink Long Island iced teas. In your early 30s, you binge-watch Long Island Medium.

In your early 20s, you go to a nightclub at 11pm. In your early 30s, you go to a book club at 6pm.

In your early 20s, you ride on mechanical bulls. …


I was browsing through Spotify’s curated playlists the other day, and stumbled upon one called “Guilty Pleasures.” Extremely curious as to what the “experts” and algorithm classified as such, I clicked…and promptly felt a mixture of confusion and anger as I scrolled through the tracks. “Good” by Better Than Ezra? “Jerk It Out” by Caesars? “Teenage Dirtbag” by Wheatus? “NO RAIN” BY BLIND MELON?! One of my favorite songs of all time, and one I have absolutely no shame about loving, I’ll add? I’d like to have a word with whomever created this absolutely ridiculous list (yes, the computer, too)…

kim windyka

writing, communications/marketing, pop culture, travel, food, general tomfoolery // blog: http://midnight-snark.blogspot.com

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