The golden girl of American pop did make it to the right side of history

Photo by Raphael Lovaski on Unsplash

Taylor Swift’s documentary, Miss Americana, came out yesterday. I was totally unaware of this, unwittingly perusing Netflix for something to watch with my lunch. I hadn’t heard of the film at all. But there it was, and I thought it might be interesting.

Taylor Swift and I have lived our lives largely unaware of one another. (Okay, she more so than me.) I knew some of her songs, I knew she’d won a sexual assault lawsuit, and I knew she’d forced Apple’s hand to pay artists fairly. She seemed pretty on point, from a distance. …

It ain’t all it’s cracked up to be

(Photo by shefta shifa on Unsplash)

It’s a new year. And with a new year comes the predictable flow of media that’s meant to help you do 2020 better. Eight-week body transformation program? No thanks. Dry January? Maybe next year. Cutting edge daily routine sure to enhance productivity? Certainly not — at least not for me.

That’s the caveat. To get any sort of benefit from a shiny new 2020 routine, you first have to be the sort of person who likes and benefits from a routine at all. And — surprise — that’s not all of us! …

99% of the time, unsolicited = please don’t

Photo by Molly Belle on Unsplash

Picture this: you’re a woman sitting by the pool in your apartment complex with your laptop. The sun has long set, it’s cold even in your jacket, and you’re just trying to bang out the last item on your day’s to-do list. A strange man appears, walks over to you, and volunteers “you look nice”…

Let’s break the situation down:

  • I (the woman in question) was clearly busy working.
  • It was dark.
  • I was alone.
  • He was much bigger than me.
  • Just to be crystal clear, I was rugged up in night-time clothes. …

But I wish I didn’t have to be either

(Photo by Colton Sturgeon on Unsplash)

I live in America. But I’m not from America; I’m from New Zealand, and I’ve lived all over. As a result of this, I have a different world view and outlook on life than most Americans my age. And I’ve been trying to understand this strange happening in my life here…

I recently become friends with this guy. He’s cool, and we get on well. We’re very matey and not romantic at all. There’s no underlying current of sexual tension when we hang out, as it seems general sentiment would have you believe. But he’s been incessantly inviting my husband…

The 9–5, the daily grind, the sheer mundanity of it all

(Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash)

When I was five, I couldn’t understand how adults could drink so many beers while I could only drink one soda. My mother told me that I’d understand when I grew up. And I did.

When I was 15 and armed with the adult understanding of how beer and Coca-Cola differ, I wondered when I would be similarly enlightened and could understand the rest of adult life. How my parents got up and went off to the same old slog every day — and remained sane. How everybody around me followed the same established cycle: sleep, work, eat, repeat.


Consistency is key

Photo by Maria Teneva on Unsplash

We all know there’s no silver bullet. You’re never going to shed 50 pounds — or become a successful writer — overnight. It’s going to take time, and the biggest and baddest weapon in your writing arsenal: consistency.

Consistency is the foundation of all success. Yep, that’s right. Consistency is the foundation of all success. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. And again. And again. You get the idea. Very few people are instantly great at anything; most of us have to work toward greatness. For varying lengths of time, sure, but some work is typically required…

And it’s not for the reason you think

Photo by Vidar Nordli-Mathisen on Unsplash

Here’s the context: I organically became friends with somebody who happened to be a man. We met through a mutual friend, shared some common outdoorsy interests, and started hanging out pursuing those interests. We got on really well — I would even have considered him my best friend. I’m married, and so is he — which was great as it immediately set the boundaries for us. This would be a friendship and a friendship only.

We did lots of cool stuff over our year of friendship. Those interests that we shared (like rock climbing) mostly required a partner, so off…

Have you ever seen The Newsroom? That political, dark-humored, dramatic series centered around events in a fictitious (yet eerily relevant newsroom)? If so, read on. If not, please watch the following clip:

My (now) husband and I watched this in Sweden a couple years and laughed our heads off. It became a running joke, American “freedom”. But we live here in the US now, and suddenly it’s not so funny.

America, the land of the free, celebrated the anniversary of its independence yesterday, a cruel irony in the reality of this country’s rotting flesh. Once an ultimate dream for…


Meghan Markle is being somewhat heralded by the internet as bringing feminism to the royal wedding. She’s described here as “defying convention”, here her wedding dress is called “everything people had hoped”, and here she’s making a “bold feminist statement”. …

“He’s not going to buy the cow if he can get the milk for free.”

Have you heard this before? Maybe not in those exact words, but the concept… That ‘he’ (read: the man) isn’t going to buy the cow (read: the woman) if he can get the milk (read: sex) for free? You may have heard it from a concerned parent who wants their daughter to be ‘treated right’, from a friend explaining their actions, or from (one of many) movies. Regardless, this concept seems ubiquitous to millennials. But it’s wrong in so many ways…

Grace Whitley

Writing is what I do instead of sleeping. Feminist, chemist, protagonist. Made in NZ.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store