Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Weekend Open Thread and Links


Jan Buchczik for The Atlantic

Hey, look at that – it’s the weekend again! And here in NYC it looks to be a beautiful one. Hope it’s nice wherever you are, too, and that you have a good one. Here are a few links that might interest you:

“We all yearn for the end of the human suffering brought about by the pandemic. And many, if not most, of us look forward to the end of the constraints and inconveniences it has imposed. But deep inside, there are probably a few things you dread about going back to normal life. Each of us, if we are brutally honest, could make a list of the activities and relationships that we didn’t like in pre-pandemic times, but that we accepted through self-deception, sheer inertia, and the pressure to go along and get along.

If your relationships, work, and life have been disrupted by the pandemic, the weeks and months before you fully reenter the world should not be wasted. They are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to come clean with yourself—to admit that all was not perfectly well before. Here’s how you can make a plan not to return to normal.”

A Once-in-a-Lifetime Chance to Start Over: It’s time to prepare for a new and better normal than your pre-pandemic life.

Related to our discussion this week about re-entering the world and the different levels of anxiety we feel about the process: People Aren’t ‘Addicted’ to Wearing Masks, They’re Traumatized.

For the horn dogs among us: Is oral sex more Covid-safe than kissing? The expert guide to a horny, healthy summer

4 Friendship Problems That Might Occur Post-Vaccination

Not very long ago, “millennial” was synonymous with youth. They, the kids born between 1981 and 1996, were horrifying their elders with their blogs and avocado toast and lack of urgency around marriage, kids and homeownership. The jeans of their youth were flared at the ankle, tight on the waist and, in some cases, rode low on their hips (giving rise to”muffin top,” an odious term from 2003 describing, as New York Times language columnist William Safire put it, “three to six inches of stomach bulging out below a short blouse and above hip-clinging ‘low-rise’ jeans”).

Now the millennials are middle-aged, or getting close. The skinny jeans of their twenties have become a sign that they aren’t so young anymore. Maybe they’re not ready to accept that. They’re fighting about jeans, says Sophie Hooker, a 22-year-old college senior from Grand Rapids, Mich., “Because they’re scared they’re not cool anymore.” And there is nothing less cool than asserting that you’re still cool. (Ouch.)

The Jean War Between Millennials and Gen Z Cannot be Won. If any longtime DW readers remember the heat I got about nine years ago when I dared to say anything remotely critical about millennials – here, and here – it may not shock you that I’m feeling a little amused watching this silly jean battle between the current hottest market generations play out.

I don’t know why I’m the slightest bit invested in the reunion of Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck – maybe it’s nothing more that nostalgia for a simpler time. If you’re interested too, here are some deets about their recent weeklong Montana vacay and where things currently stand between them.

In case you need a little nudge to get moving. How Exercise May Help Us Flourish: Physical activity can promote a sense of purpose in life, creating a virtuous cycle that keeps you moving.

14 comments… add one
  • KatieM May 15, 2021, 6:19 am

    As a Bostonian and a long time fan on JLo, nothing is giving me more joy this week than listening to the reports of Bennifer 2.0 and think about how ARod is home sucking on a lemon.

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  • Melissa May 21, 2021, 10:53 am

    Man, as an older Millennial (eyeroll at all generational discourse goes here), I don’t remember ever feeling on top of anything, just financial crisis after crisis and constant frustration and anxiety about my career and stability, and I can’t remember the last time I saw someone my age wear skinny jeans. I’m terminally uncool, though, which is honestly very relaxing. Do real people (other than Very Online teens and thinkpiece writers) really care THAT much about anything other than whether their jeans are comfortable and clean and have sufficient pockets, much less what jeans other people are wearing?

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    • Kate May 21, 2021, 12:33 pm

      I do. I’m Gen-X and I’m interested in fashion and trends.

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      • Kate May 21, 2021, 12:35 pm

        When it comes to jeans, I care quite a bit about how they make my butt look, and if they’re the right length on me, as well as if they’re in style. And that’s not anything that stresses me out, to your point about *relaxing*.

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      • Melissa May 22, 2021, 10:40 am

        Oh sure, I mean, I’m not totally indifferent to aesthetics. I guess what I don’t get is worrying a lot about whether what I LIKE is also in style (other than insofar as that impacts its availability). My impression is that most people do not immediately put away clothes they like when the winds of fashion blow another direction, or worry a lot about whether they are perceived as “cool,” much less cool to Very Online teenagers. They go for things they like, within the range of stuff offered by the market, and don’t care if other people are going for different things, i.e., why can’t mom jeans and skinny jeans and boot cut all coexist, even in the same closet if someone likes all of them?

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      • Kate May 22, 2021, 11:18 am

        Sure, people should wear what they like if that makes them happy. I think it’s best not to go to extremes either way though… not to where you’re buying every fad, but also not to where you reject everything that comes into style just because. You’re going to look clownish if you go too far in either direction.

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      • ele4phant May 24, 2021, 2:18 pm

        I would say I’m interested in what looks good and flattering on me, less so what is trendy.

        Sometimes what’s trendy looks great on me, other times it does not.

        The mom jeans that are popular with today’s youth (as well as the lowrider flares of my own teenage years) DO NOT flatter my body type.

        I think no one bats an eye when you wear things that aren’t trendy so long as they are flattering on your specific body.

        There is nothing more sad than someone too old wearing trendy things that look terrible on them (I mean, it’s also unfortunate when the youths stick to the trends that don’t work for their body types, but they get a little more forgiveness because of their youth).

        So, I’m still wearing slim cut pants (I don’t like skinny jeans that totally hug every roll of my body) and parting my hair slightly off to the side, because that works best for me. I don’t really care what anyone – my generation or the generation younger than me – thinks on the matter.

        Wear what looks good on you, and that’s going to be age agnostic.

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  • Bittergaymark May 24, 2021, 2:04 am

    Hey, I’m all for dumb young women everywhere to start wearing Mom jeans. NEWSFLASH: If anybody is truly dumb enough to think that’s a good look — well, then may they all look that fucking dumb. Forever.

    Seriously. Mom Jeans are to Pants = What Trump is to Presidents.

    Just fucking awful.

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    • Kate May 24, 2021, 9:16 am

      To start wearing them? Gen Z has been wearing them for years. Now they’re onto the low-rider boot-cut contrast-stitched pocket jeans from the early 2000s.

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      • Bittergaymark May 24, 2021, 10:24 am

        Lowrider bootcut jeans are much, much better. But the article in question says Gen Z loathes those.

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      • Kate May 24, 2021, 10:31 am

        I dunno, I’ve seen them on Instagram 😭

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      • ele4phant May 24, 2021, 2:28 pm

        BGM – much better?!? I disagree.

        Both are awful. At least mom jeans don’t give me (and any other pear shaped woman and/or woman with a long torso) muffin tops.

        I encourage you to embrace your youths and taking the lead on setting trends Gen Z, but I learned my lesson in the early 2000s and will not be rejoining you on this.

        Do like the Birkenstock trend though…

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  • Bittergaymark May 24, 2021, 10:56 am

    Okay… The craziest thing about the 1980s babies threads is when I’m REALLY railing against Reality TV and all things Kardashian…. Somebody brings up how much better values were in the era of The Cosby Show — and I agree. I even remember the episode in question. 🤦🏼‍♂️

    Wait. What?!? This thread predates the much, much, much deserved Fall of Cosby?! Crazy.

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  • Bittergaymark May 24, 2021, 11:02 am

    PS — It remains fascinating how defensive many 1980s Babies were. Which — frankly — only rather proved Wendy’s rather mild point.

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