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Like anybody suffering broken-brain syndrome from being too online, I think about @dril a lot. The incomprehensibly funny Twitter account that defined and, let’s be honest, outlasted the rest of what we once called “Weird Twitter” has — through inhuman output, avant-garde insight and sheer longevity — become the platform’s reigning prophet. Just as Donald Trump can do or say almost nothing without being undermined by one of his old tweets, @dril’s pre-2016 archive is like a blueprint of all the horrors due to follow.

He knew in 2014, for example, that Ted Cruz would “like” a porn tweet on 9/11 in 2017. …


The answer lies somewhere between Tumblr meme culture and Howard Stern himself

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Here at MEL, we never shy away from the hard stories. Whatever question you have about the male reproductive apparatusyours, mine, your boyfriend’s, the president’s — we want to supply the answers. Which is why it’s time to address a throbbing curiosity:

What is “Cocktober”?

On the most basic level, it’s all about the portmanteau. “Cocktober” is, by any metric, a cool, fun and satisfying thing to say. Try it! “Cocktober.” That’s good as hell. But this linguistic magic alone doesn’t quite explain the phenomenon. Cocktober is also, earnestly and emphatically, a celebration of cocks. You know how on International Women’s Day, a bunch of trollish dudes throw a bit of a tantrum over not having an International Men’s Day? …


The deeper you dive into the Columbus fandom, the less anyone wants to contend with what actually transpired in the New World

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Less than a week before it would have taken place, Pittsburgh’s Columbus Day Parade for 2018 was canceled. The event had been a tradition in Little Italy for more than 30 years. While some were chill with the cancellation, others were emphatically not. “The Italian community should be a palled [sic],” Terry, a car salesman, wrote on his Facebook page, adding: “Just more liberals trying to destroy our history.”

Another Facebook user going by “Dan Mc Grind” sarcastically inquired, “Oh did an accuser come forth saying their relative was molested by him in the 1600’s, scrolls passed through 5 generations,” alluding to any number of #MeToo headlines around powerful men facing allegations of sexual misconduct and assault. …


Those endless shelves of chintzy crap are going to torpedo your cohabitative bliss

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Every couple has its disagreements, and every couple is pushed to the brink by a few universal stressors: household budgets, airplane travel, in-laws, “the Holidays,” choosing where to eat and, perhaps worst of all, the dreaded apartment move. To uproot your shared life and relocate it 500 miles or even five blocks away takes a lot of money, logistical planning, dumb luck and sweaty labor; the two of you are virtually guaranteed to squabble about the approach to some aspect of it. I know because my partner, Maddie, and I just packed up all our shit and hauled it from the Sacramento area down to L.A., …


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You may recall that fans were somewhat divided over The Last Jedi, the eighth installment in the theoretically limitless main throughline of the cinematic universe known collectively as Star Wars. In fact, the hatred some nerds felt for the film was deeply pleasing for those like myself, especially as these fanboys spent months of their lives calling for a remake and tweeting empty threats about boycotting the franchise.

But as vocal as the seething detractors were, how many actually existed? What motivated their dedication to the cause of de-canonizing the movie? A new research paper, amazingly titled “Weaponizing the Haters: The Last Jedi and the Strategic Politicization of Pop Culture Through Social Media Manipulation,” offers fascinating answers to these questions and more. In the study, media/technology scholar Morten Bay, a PhD in information studies, shows that roughly half of the criticism directed at Last Jedi director Rian Johnson came from “bots, trolls/sock puppets or political activists using the debate to propagate political messages supporting extreme right-wing causes and the discrimination of gender, race or sexuality.” …


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Lots of common “irrational” fears look reasonable to me. Dying in a plane crash: terrifying. Poisonous snakes and spiders: Why wouldn’t you be afraid of them? Public speaking: Yeah, you might piss your pants in front of a hundred co-workers. Yet I cannot locate even a kernel of justification in my strangest of terrors — the humble moth.

Whatever trauma I suffered at the antennae of moths is lost to me now, but for as long as I can recall, the winged insects have haunted me. Where others might see nocturnal butterflies, I see insidious ghosts. I made a plague of moths into an unsettling and uncanny portent of doom in my first novel, Ivyland. I can still recall a night more than a decade ago, when, after noticing that a moth had gotten into my room, I resolved to let it be and go to sleep — only to startle awake an hour later when it LANDED ON MY FACE. I spent another hour with all the lights on, hunting the fluttery intruder and finally walloping it into mush with a shoe. …


Kobe Bryant, Ben Roethlisberger and Jameis Winston have all experienced a much different fate than Harvey Weinstein, Louis C.K. and Leslie Moonves

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Here’s a telling sports media cycle for you: In March 2016, Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ star quarterback Jameis Winston groped a female Uber driver. A year and a half later, when her account of the incident made headlines, Winston denied any wrongdoing, and the NFL announced that they would investigate. The league took eight months to conclude that he had assaulted the driver, opting to suspend him for three games as a result; Winston, along with a formal apology, gave a statement referring to his choice to grab a stranger’s crotch as a “learning experience.” This September, in the midst of his suspension, we learned that the woman was suing him for emotional distress and therapy costs. …


Who is the Shots Guy? What does he want? And can he cool it with the Jose Cuervo?

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No two drinkers are quite alike. I, for instance, imbibe heroic amounts of barely diluted vodka with great regularity, but I’m a proud beer pussy, and if I have to chug a couple of Smirnoff Ices in quick succession, I’m absolutely going to blow chunks. In generalizing with respect to people’s alcohol habits, you may ignore such subtleties.

Yet there exists a guy, a type of guy, known to everyone who enjoys a night at the bar with friends. This guy is alternately feared, respected, beloved and reviled. He can be your saving grace… or your ruin. …


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A popular adage ascribed to more politicians than I care to count holds that ideology has much to do with age: “If you aren’t a liberal when you’re young, you have no heart, but if you aren’t a conservative in middle age, you have no head.” What’s the College Republican then to do?

Somehow speed up the process of reaching their flabby 40s.

There are divergent theories of how, for example, Sen. Ted Cruz can be younger than Gwen Stefani yet seem old enough to have been her high school algebra teacher. Some believe that the sheer hate and rage it takes to peddle right-wing opinions make your face and body break down faster. In my view, the converse could be just as true: Perhaps having always resembled a turtle-human mutant hybrid is what fuels the vindictive resentment of conservative policies in the first place. Whatever the phenomenon, we arrive at the same outcome: Eventually you have a corpse-like Steve Bannon wearing three collared shirts under a vintage bomber jacket to keep his mottled lizard skin from sloughing off in a single piece. Could Jack Palkovic of the Berkeley College Republicans be headed down that same road? …


I have just one question for this guy: the fuck?!

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Please brace yourself for an ill-conceived proposal I will never understand, courtesy of Reddit and a bro who risked it all for no good reason:

About

Miles Klee

Author of the novel IVYLAND and the story collection TRUE FALSE: http://www.orbooks.com/miles-klee/

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