Read our second print issue of the year, including stories about pride at Yeshiva University, invasive lionfish on the Brazilian coast and deep brain stimulation surgery, reviews of Anitta’s breakout Versions of Me and Slowdive’s classic Souvlaki, the latest installment of our Songs of the Summer series and more. Cover photos by Matt Hono.
Letter from the Editor
By Keating Zelenke
I found bugs in the pancake mix in my pantry a few weeks ago — that was a major blow. I guess anyone can have flour weevils, but it sure made me feel more pathetic than the average person. Sometimes, I go on reading and reading about them: they lay their eggs in your food, their larvae look like maggots, they can fly. If I ever say I have butterflies in my stomach, know I’m actually talking about the flour weevils I probably consumed while living in my Port Jefferson Station apartment my senior year of college.
I’ve been thinking about the future a lot because this spring is my last semester at Stony Brook. There are lots of people in my life asking rude and uncalled-for questions like, “What are you gonna do after graduating?” as if I know what I’m having for dinner tonight.
What do people even do after graduating? Join the Peace Corps? Move to Brooklyn and start their own sustainably-sourced coffee brand? Start smoking cigarettes? Work in data science?
You know what I think would make me feel better about everything? I should read more. I’m proud to say I actually read a whole seven books last year. That’s probably the most I’ve read since middle school — elementary school even. Every time I start to feel a little fucked in the head, I turn to reading. It doesn’t make me feel as shitty as rewatching the same five episodes of Hoarders over and over again does. It feels productive, like look at me, engaging with literature like a healthy, well- adjusted person.
I’m reading a book called Monkey Boy right now. It’s a pseudo-memoir about this half-Russian Jewish, half-Guatemalan Catholic journalist. The main character — who shares the same name as the author, Francisco Goldman — is kind of an asshole. I’m on page 80, and the first 80 pages are building up to Goldman finally eating a goddamn train station sandwich — and you know what, that’s fine. I’m also very excited about sandwiches a lot of the time. Maybe not quite 80 pages worth of excitement, but I bet I could clear somewhere around 60 pages about how much I love sandwiches and how much I’ve mourned lunch meat since I became vegetarian my freshman year. Maybe I’ll become vegan after I graduate — a natural progression following my vegetarianism after high school. Every four years, I’ll become more and more difficult to feed until I’m 70 and the only thing I’ll ingest is cashew yogurt with chocolate chips and prunes. And delicious vegan sandwiches.
Two days ago, I very carefully and lovingly made two very delicious sandwiches for me and my boyfriend to eat in the Press office while I worked on this fucking magazine for like 12 hours straight. Maybe I’ll bring a sandwich to work tomorrow — eat it after we send the magazine file to FedEx for printing. In a way, it’s kind of like the 56 pages in your hands are all leading up to one thing: eating a delicious goddamn sandwich.