Things I Read This Week: December 23, 2016

2016-12-19 12.13.18.jpg(via Glamour)

How was your week? Tomorrow is Christmas Eve, and I’m really looking forward to a few family traditions — in true French-Canadian fashion, we have dinner at midnight, followed by opening presents until the wee hours. Exhausting, but so fun! Here’s what I’ve been reading:

Glamour – Gwen Stefani: “I Feel Like I Got Woken up This Year”
I bought the print version of Glamour’s December 2016 issue so I could read this feature on Gwen Stefani. She says, “Sometimes to be woken up again in life, you need to go through some really bad, hard times. I feel like I got woken up this year.” Preach, Gwen. I can’t wait for 2017.

The Washington Post – The secret life of cemeteries: Go for a stroll, meet your book club, visit the dead
My parents recently moved to a small town of about a thousand residents and a truly beautiful cemetery. No one we know is buried here, but I was drawn to how pretty it looked and had a nice stroll through the grounds when I last visited in October. I admit that I didn’t really think I was allowed to walk through as one would cross a park — I worried that someone might run out of a neighboring house and yell at me for doing so — but I’m glad I did. I liked this article, too. “It’s easy to forget that cemeteries were made for the living.”

The old town cemetery, across the street from the new town cemetery.

Here are three of my favourite stories from the Bloomberg 2016 Jealousy List:

GQ – Kim Kardashian West on Kanye and Taylor Swift, What’s in O.J.’s Bag, and Understanding Caitlyn
At the time that she invited me to touch the upper-left quadrant of her left breast, I was merely an unkempt person Kim Kardashian West had met one time. And yet, on just our second short meeting, I felt comfortable enough to ask her to “please describe what your boobs feel like.” That’s how we got here.

The New York Times – Swim. Bike. Cheat?
What motivates athletes who seem to cheat systemically, with forethought and planning, rather than, say, indulging in one-off opportunistic lapses? How can they justify it to themselves? And how, exactly, did they pull it off?

Eater – Twilight of the Four Seasons
In the beginning, there were beefsteak tomatoes carved tableside and French woodcock flamed in Cognac and Dover sole and the extravagantly titled “YOUNGEST CARROTS in Butter”; in 1995, Buffalo steaks and Olympia oysters and Chinese egg rolls and French terrines and Dover sole and whole duck for two; the 2016 menu boasted tuna carpaccio and asparagus agnolotti and Dover sole, still. Forty dollars bought dinner for two, once; seventy-five today buys a diner a single bison filet. But the food was never the point.

And here are a few of my favourites from Saveur’s equivalent list:

Washington Post – The sinister, secret history of a food that everybody loves
Spoiler alert: this is a deeply nerdy history of the potato, and it’s fantastic.


Politico – Michelle Obama sets her garden in stone
Pictured above: Michelle Obama, boss lady gardener, worthy of a million muscle arm emojis.