Would Recommend: September

Gigi Silla; Washington, DC—

Welcome to “Would Recommend,” the new and improved version of “Gigi’s Corner: A Column,” the column in which I write about things that spark joy in my life and then rate them on a 10 point scale. Sort of like if Marie Kondo wrote Yelp reviews. There are plenty of things in my life that don’t spark joy (eggplants, the Republican National Convention, my college cancelling on-campus housing at the last minute), but here in the column we like to keep things positive. 

Music 

  • In A Dream by Troye Sivan: Oh, what I would give to be a Rager Teenager right about now, instead of an incredibly sober teenager who plays board games with her parents for a good time. 8/10. 
  • “Hurricane” by Wafia: Just some seriously good pop. 10/10.
  • “Faraway Look” by Yola: Holy f*ck the chorus is so good. I have no words. 11/10. 

Television 

  • Biohackers on Netflix: I watched this show to brush up on my German for my placement test (yes, there are subtitles, get over yourself), and I learned how to say antibodies (Antikörper), freckles (Sommersprossen) and lots of other words that were definitely not on my placement test. But even if you take Korean or Spanish or (God forbid) Latin, I’d highly recommend this show. It’s got women in STEM, glow-in-the-dark plants and attempted murder on a train. What’s not to love? 10/10. 
  • Schitt’s Creek: I am ab-so-lüt-lé glee ridden to announce that my first born bébé shall be called Dävid. 10/10. 

Books 

  • Weather by Jenny Offil: Do you regularly find yourself in a state of existential dread and/or panic induced by the looming threat of facism and/or climate change? If so, this book is for you. Read along as university librarian Lizzie preps for the end of the world and acquires various tidbits of mildly useful information, such as how to make a lamp out of a tuna can and how to start a fire with a gum wrapper. Also, it turns out, 1,000 Bic cigarette lighters are a more practical resource for the end of the world than one generator. 7/10. 

Podcasts

  • Next Generation Politics: I can’t remember the last time I laughed as hard as I did while listening to the episode with Kevin McHale called “Who said it: Donald Trump or Sue Sylvester?” 10/10. 

Accounts To Follow 

  • New New York Times (@NYT_first_said on Twitter): “Tweets words when they appear in the New York Times for the first time.” Self explanatory, nerdy as f*ck, absolutely delightful. For example, on March 28, 2019 (ah, simpler times) the word “deadass” first appeared in the Times. The threads that result from these tweets are also quite enjoyable. Take, for example, when New New York Times tweeted “multifasciata” on August 22, 2020, and @NYT_finally replied “‘multifasciata’ has been published in at least 1102 books since 1822,” which I think is a pretty sick burn, as it implies the Times to be seriously ~behind the times~ since they’re only now, in 2020, getting around to publishing a word that’s been used at least 1102 times since 1822. Get schooled, New York Times. Get f*cking schooled. 11/10. 

Miscellaneous

  • Scrabble: On August 16, at roughly 6:30 PM, history was made when I beat my heretofore undefeated Scrabble champion father at his own motherf*cking game with a score of 303 to 281. The word that changed my life was quip, which I played strategically on a triple word score, earning me a whopping 45 points in just one turn. Incredible. In addition to being a fantastic ego-boost of a game, Scrabble is also a prime opportunity for me to show off the obscure vocabulary I acquired in AP Bio. Taxon. Loci. Endoplasmic reticulum. And I’m not even pre-med! 10/10. 
  • House plants: The perfect roommates for these social distancing times. They don’t clean the bathroom, but they also don’t steal your food from the fridge. 9/10. 
  • Snail mail: Who knew all it would take was one bad date with facism to make sending letters fashionable again? You probably shouldn’t text your ex, but who says you can’t send them a postcard? Choose from an eclectic variety of stamps at usps.com or your local post office, including stamps with frogs, tomatoes or even silver coffee pots. Very classy, if I do say so myself. 8/10. 
  • Seltzer water: Like a White Claw, but you can drink it while driving. 10/10.

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