Support striking workers by getting John Lithgow to paint your dog, Elizabeth Holmes and Jen Shah are besties & wanna paint your home Heinz ketchup red?
The best cringe news of the past week according to yours truly.
Or rather - hello friends! We’re overwhelmed (mostly with joy, but also fear) with the response we’ve received on TikTok and Instagram to our submission callout for our next issue centred around PLEASURE, and are so happy to welcome lots of new people into our small corner of the internet and independent publishing. <3
If you’ve submitted work to us, please know that we’ve been spending this weekend trying to get back to as many people as possible and you should hear from us soon. We’ve also received an unprecedented amount of poetry, so please do not feel discouraged if we sadly have to pass on your submission. (And of course - please feel free to pitch again another time!)
Today’s Would You Rather references 2 stories from New York Fashion Week (more context in our Watercooler section), so without further ado, let’s get into this week’s newsletter:
WYR be denied access to an event by a yelling PR person or not realise you showed up half-ready at a NYFW event?
Georjia: The only thing I have to say after watching the video of that influencer getting yelled at is: Know Your Place. It’s a horrible phrase but some people need to hear it. It’s New York Fashion Week!!! You can’t expect to be treated the same as Gigi Hadid or Michael Kors (as much as we should all be treated the same but I’m sure you get the gist). And for someone to film it and it go viral: even more embarrassing. Realising you’re half-ready after you’ve attended an event could be so much worse if you wanted to deep it. Ignorance is bliss when it comes to that. I’d take that easily, throw some clips in my hair and take me to a fashion show.
Annika: Both scenarios have ‘imposter syndrome’ written all over it: I can’t imagine the humiliation of being denied access to an event when feeling entitled to be there (I wouldn’t get in a shouting match with whoever’s at the door though, I’d just leave in silence and shame if I found out I’m not allowed in). Trying to serve a look for the cameras at NYFW without realising my hair and makeup team left me unfinished? I’d get paranoid as hell and see this as a deliberate attempt to humble me; teaching me a lesson that YouTubers should not be at NYFW events! At least if I was denied access, there wouldn’t be any photographic evidence of me messing up. If I ignore the fact this was recorded for everyone to see on TikTok, and I pretend that I wouldn’t be the one shouting, I might just choose being denied access.
Quinn: I think I would prefer to show up half-ready for a fashion show. Getting yelled at is just plain awful no matter what the context. Plus my sense of style is so half baked (more like quarter baked, let’s be realistic) to begin with that I don’t think anyone would really question it.
Have you been getting your blankets and mugs out, ready for nesting season? Adding films to your Letterboxd so you can vicariously live through the characters instead of having to leave the house yourself? Realise that you will inevitably have to do so anyway and run into people with nothing to talk about? No worries friend, we got you.
Here are our favourite headlines you can bring up during conversations you’d rather not have:
TikTok has been serving us some New York Fashion Week drama on our FYPs which we’re referencing in today’s Would You Rather, including
a fashion influencer in a yelling match with a PR person at an event because she was denied entry (PR person has clearly dealt with this kind of stuff before, considering all the zingers they had at the ready).
a less dramatic story only made embarrassing because it’s NYFW about Youtuber Monet McMichael leaving her clips from hair and makeup in her hair while serving for the cameras.
Whether you need something to ease your imposter syndrome or just want one of many opportunities to shit on GB News, here’s a devastatingly cringe clip of Martin Daubney gloriously failing at presenting a breaking news story. Just sheer panic on live TV. As referenced in this week’s Pop Bitch newsletter, the Observer once aptly described Daubney’s editorship of Loaded Magazine in the following way:
“There are many editors who can't write, and many writers who can't edit. Daubney is the first editor who can't read.”
Complete vibe shift: We recently learned that suspected terrorist and prison escapee Daniel Khalife has a dog called Fluffy. It’s giving Charlie and his dog Bonny in 7 Psychopaths:
This might be the most tomato-Europe thing we’ve ever witnessed: The streets of São Lourenço do Bairro in Portugal were flooded with over 2 million litres of red wine after a local distillery’s tank burst.
It only seems natural that as the boundaries of parasocial relationships are pushed further and further beyond reasonable limits, people would start landing real-life gigs impersonating celebrities (if you can’t be with them, be them). Here’s a clip of Ariana Grande impersonator Paige Niemann walking down the runway during New York Fashion Week.
“What it does is it sucks something from you. It takes something from your soul or psyche; that is very disturbing, especially if it has to do with you. It’s like a robot taking your humanity, your soul.”
Speaking of pushing boundaries of parasocial relationships: The saga of fans throwing shit on stage continues, as singer and rapper Maluma catches a crutch thrown at him onstage.
The irony of Grindr fucking over its employees is not lost on us: Nearly half of the company’s employees have quit their jobs following a decision to end its remote work policy, which has forced many to relocate to new cities to keep their jobs (even those who were originally hired remotely).
Dream job? USA Today and the USA Today Network’s newspaper The Tennessean are hiring a Taylor Swift Reporter - it’s exactly what it sounds like. If you’re more of a Beyoncé stan, there’s a position for you too.
If you thought Barbenheimer was a weird marketing collab, wait till you hear about Heinz’ collaboration with home décor brand Lick: Their new limited edition shade Red HTK 57 allows you to paint your home in the iconic tomato ketchup colour. 10 points for creativity, you can’t deny it!
You might have seen examples of this already (“Natasha Lyonne Will Help You Solve the New York Times Sunday Crossword”): Actors, writers and directors are offering to do a variety of activities for and with you to raise money for crew members whose healthcare benefits are currently at risk during Hollywood’s Writers Guild of America strike. One of our faves:
“Oh, that's funny.”
Chris Evans responds: “Michael, what the fuck are you doing responding to this email from 9 years ago?’”
A match-made in heaven (prison): Elizabeth Holmes and Jen Shah have allegedly become friends in prison, according to rep for Jen Shah:
“They’re friends. They’re both rehabilitating and have bonded over being on this journey of positive change,” the rep, Chris Giovanni, tells PEOPLE. “Their situations brought them together, and they have a good understanding of one another. They’re getting through it together.”
Speaking of jail: Founder of Rolling Stone Jann Wenner excludes Black and female artists in his new book about some of the best musicians of all time titled “Masters”, saying that “they don’t articulate at the level of white men”. Did the KKK sponsor this book? Luckily, the New York Times journalist tries to call him out on his BS:
Carole King, Madonna. There are a million examples.
When I was referring to the zeitgeist, I was referring to Black performers, not to the female performers, OK? Just to get that accurate. The selection was not a deliberate selection. It was kind of intuitive over the years; it just fell together that way. The people had to meet a couple criteria, but it was just kind of my personal interest and love of them. Insofar as the women, just none of them were as articulate enough on this intellectual level.
Oh, stop it. You’re telling me Joni Mitchell is not articulate enough on an intellectual level?
Hold on a second.
I’ll let you rephrase that.
All right, thank you. It’s not that they’re not creative geniuses. It’s not that they’re inarticulate, although, go have a deep conversation with Grace Slick or Janis Joplin. Please, be my guest. You know, Joni was not a philosopher of rock ’n’ roll. She didn’t, in my mind, meet that test. Not by her work, not by other interviews she did. The people I interviewed were the kind of philosophers of rock.
Of Black artists — you know, Stevie Wonder, genius, right? I suppose when you use a word as broad as “masters,” the fault is using that word. Maybe Marvin Gaye, or Curtis Mayfield? I mean, they just didn’t articulate at that level.
How do you know if you didn’t give them a chance?
Because I read interviews with them. I listen to their music. I mean, look at what Pete Townshend was writing about, or Jagger, or any of them. They were deep things about a particular generation, a particular spirit and a particular attitude about rock ’n’ roll. Not that the others weren’t, but these were the ones that could really articulate it.
Don’t you think it’s actually more to do with your own interests as a fan and a listener than anything particular to the artists? I think the problem is when you start saying things like “they” or “these artists can’t.” Really, it’s a reflection of what you’re interested in more than any ability or inability on the part of these artists, isn’t it?
That was my No. 1 thing. The selection was intuitive. It was what I was interested in. You know, just for public relations sake, maybe I should have gone and found one Black and one woman artist to include here that didn’t measure up to that same historical standard, just to avert this kind of criticism. Which, I get it. I had a chance to do that. Maybe I’m old-fashioned and I don’t give a [expletive] or whatever. I wish in retrospect I could have interviewed Marvin Gaye. Maybe he’d have been the guy. Maybe Otis Redding, had he lived, would have been the guy.
Go have a nap, Wenner.
This week’s meme goes out to yours truly, who accidentally wrote in last week’s original headline that a Sky News reporter called Daniel Khalife’s dad ‘daddy’ (PSA to never write anything severely hungover!!!!)
(meme courtsey of Georjia, who kindly made this to help me make fun of my mistake)
That’s it for this week! Feel free to let us know what cringe content, memes, and headlines you’ve been enjoying lately. Until then, we’ll see you in your inbox next Sunday!
Your Cringe Team x