Do You Feel Pretty?

Somebody recently asked me about the first time I knew I was pretty. It was a weird question, because pretty is such an empty thing to feel. Although, I knew what the question meant. It meant: growing up in America, where there’s a lot of emphasis on female physical beauty, tell me about your first experience feeling like you measured up to that standard. 

I went to high school in Richmond, California, which, if you know anything about the Bay Area, you know is a really fucked up city. More fucked up than Oakland, and I spent four years bussing in and out of that city to attend the high school over on 23rd street. Sure, in high school, one’s fragile mental state can be laced with the poison of physical inadequacy, feeling ugly, not being very well dressed, having too many pimples on your face. We’ve all been there. It’s a shared experience, really, feeling like a high school ugly duckling, and few people are able to evade that experience. 

The thing about being made to feel attractive by another human being is that it means more when it comes from an older, more experienced man. Sure, the boys in my high school might have found me to be acceptable in terms of my appearance, but the validation of an older gentleman – well, high school girls love that kind of shit, which is probably why older gentlemen tend to do the ungentlemanly thing and fuck underage high school girls. 

All traumatic experiences aside, walking from my high school to the bus stop everyday was generally a dull experience, but I remember the first time a drug dealer rolled up to me and said something that caught my attention. I was naive back then, clearly, if I let myself talk to some guy in a car on the way to the bus stop. There’s something about sixteen that is so vulnerable and so stupid, which was older men see in a sixteen year old girl. 

“Hey, you’re pretty,” he said, keeping his car apace with my walking.


“Wanna go for a ride?”

“No, I’m catching the bus, but thanks though.”

“Where you going?”


“Taking the bus can’t be all that fun.”

“I like it.”

“Let me take you for a ride.”

“I’m okay.”

“Well, you’re hella fine, girl. You should come kick it with my homies sometime. We’re hella fun.”

“What do you guys do?”

“You know, party and shit. Here, take my number.” He handed me a piece of paper with his number on it. “Let me know if you ever need anything. You know, party favors or shit.”

My drug fiend little sixteen year old ears immediately perked up, because if there’s anything that older men know that sixteen year old girls like, it’s plates full of cocaine. In fact, that was what me and my friends had recently started getting into: waffling around warehouse parties with our flasks full of vodka and our noses full of drugs. If I hadn’t been interested in him earlier, then I was certainly interested in him then. Our drug connects were pretty shaky at that point, so I turned and asked, “What kind of party favors?”

“Oh, you know, coke, meth, ice, ecstasy. Whatever you want, baby.” 

I took his number. My friends and I had already been through various harrowing experiences buying drugs from dealers that seemed even shadier than this guy in a Cutlass on San Pablo in Richmond. 

“Okay, well, thanks, nice to meet you.” 

“K, baby, you hit me up, okay?”

“Okay!” I scooted on over to the bus stop. With the golden number of some Richmond drug dealer in my hand, and I lost it shortly thereafter, but I guess a teenage girl’s need for drugs can never be underestimated. Because in the face of getting a free bag of coke, that was how I felt for the first time: pretty. And that’s the dangerous thing about being a woman in America: the price of being pretty is often too high to pay. 

How to Write in a Crowded Room

Writing is a lonely sport. I’d like to go out and be in a room full of people, but instead, I’m here, with these words clickety-clacking through my finger tips. Because, you see, writing isn’t something that you can do in a room full of people. It’s not a party trick that can be used to impress certain boys or girls. It’s not something that other people can sit and watch, or applaud when you’re done. Writing is something you do when the room is completely empty and the lights are kind of low. When the house is kind of quiet, and any knock on the door is death knell of a creative inclination. Writing is not a social hobby. Writing will not make you friends, it will not make you popular. Writing is not a fun thing that the popular kids do on the weekends in their spare time. It is lonely and desperate and can only be accomplished behind closed doors. It’s something to be done quietly, and in shame, a quiet masturbation of the mind that you hope no one can see. But it’s cheap, and it’s easy, a quick exit for the antisocial and semi-creatively inclined. And it’s fuelled by alcohol, which is nice, because wine can still be bought for $2 a bottle, and pen and paper are easily stolen from various Downtown establishments.

Readers’ Poll Winners: People and Places

Readers’ Poll Winners: People and Places:


Thank you for voting Oakland Alcohol best local Twitter and best local Instagram! You guys are awesome!

Congratulations to the Ruby Room (best pick up spot), 355 (best bar), Rafael (best bartender), Plum Bar (best bar food and best cocktails) and DJ Miggy Stardust (best DJ). It’s wonderful to see good friends who have been in Oakland and supporting Oakland for years get some love back. 

Let’s drink!

An Honest Commentary About Morning Sex

I am not a morning person. For many reasons, including but not limited to hangovers, morning breath, last night’s regrets, anxiety regarding unchecked text messages, missed calls from my mother, Internet FOMO, pressing hunger, a desire to take a shower right fucking now, the desire to sleep another four hours, and a desire to know if I have enough money in my wallet with which to buy an icecream sandwich for breakfast. These are the kinds of things that take up my mind on a morning after, and, as I’m lying there, while sexual advances of certain kinds can be appreciated, having such heavy things weighing on my mind bumps morning sex pretty low on my list of things to do to when I wake up. Sure, cuddling is nice, but did I mention how hungover I am? And as soon as I wrest myself from this tangle of sheets an flesh, I’m going to have to determine exactly how to wobble through the “I’m still drunk” haze and into the bathroom to painfully brush my teeth, piss, and pinch my face back into semi-attractiveness before finding a way to kick you out of my house. And, therefore, I’m sorry, but I’m not interested in having sex with you right now. I mean, come on – did you even notice how brightly and fiercely this sun is piercing into my bedroom right now? And the alcohol that’s still churning through my veins – well, it’s not that I’m not drunk, it’s more that I’m not rhapsodic and tipsy like I was last night, and the churning of your dick in my pussy in exact rhythm with the remaining contents of tequila and hastily scarfed down potato chips at 1am. Ugh. I’m just so fucking nauseous. So you can grind on my slyly while I pretend to be asleep, but I don’t even have the energy with which to muster another half hearted “no” in the face of your semi-boner. Because, I mean, what are we supposed to do here? Is this another, ‘Ugh, I guess you can fuck me.’ Or can we just keep our eyes closed while you pull on your clothes and stumble out the door. Because I’m certainly not going to be attaining an orgasm in this afterglow hangover, and I’m silently trying to ascertain the ratio of I think I kinda like this guy to if I say no, will he not call me tomorrow. So rather than fussing my way through another tedious internal hangover struggle, how about you boot out that door and we’ll move on from there. 

Alcoholism in Post Prohibition America

Alcohol is a poison, or, at least, that’s what my friend is telling me as I sit there beneath my pleasant, supple cloud of hangover. I smile and nod, because the quippy comebacks are not coming very quickly, and the caffeine in the cup in front of me is not working fast enough. But that’s okay.

“You’re a drug dealer,” he snarls, which is something that I kind of agree with, as we sit there in the brutal sunshine and right next to the demoralizing morality that he’s dumping all over me right now.

I don’t think he’s one to talk badly about drug dealers, especially as we sit cozy in this city that used to be cheap a few years ago, and if it weren’t for the drug dealers, it would have been much more expensive.

“Yeah, but I’m selling poison to the people who deserve it. To the people who can afford it. I take their money, and…” I let my voice trail off because I don’t have the energy for my voice to catch up with my thoughts, or is it that my thoughts aren’t churning out a reasonable pace, and my voice can’t move that slowly?

I could use a drink right now. Right. Now. And not this weakly steeped cup of tea that sits in front of me, grinning and blinking with all the half remembered thoughts of last night. I could slump over on a bar stool in any bar in any town and still feel at home, which I guess is the sentiment that the worldliness of Catholicism is built upon. Or, religion in general. It’s that sense of community and that sense of belonging that snakes people in, and that’s what a bar stool does for me. It beckons. It sits there, so slyly and so coyly in any bar in any town in anywhere, with anyone or no one floating around the room. And it calls me, to cozy on in, to make myself happy. To motion to the bartender for a cup filled with liquid, and then to slurp it on down. 

I guess I’m good at what I do because I do it to myself as often as I do it to others. But alcohol’s a poison as much as religion is the opiate of the people, and both those guilty cases can be argued either way. Which is why I drink my drinks and I say my prayers at the same time, and I smile at people who are losing either of those wars. 

But it’s not that lonely, and it’s a religion that all of us have been practicing for a long time. And when we walk down the street, we wear our hangovers and our drunken highs like a crucifix around the neck, which is really just a symbol of suffering, gilded in 24 karat gold and sold in fancy shops for the fools of an unattainable heaven. 

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Date Part IV

My stomach hurts. As I try to stay clever things in this conversation in this nice bar next to the Lake. My stomach’s been hurting for days now, but I try to tamp down on the sensations of achy-ness and discomfort as I sip down this beverage that is intended to dull so many things right now, but stomach still hurts. And he’s sitting there next to me, with his smile and his nice, intelligent things that he’s saying. If he knew that my stomach hurt, what would he say then? What would he have said if I had blown off this date? Would he have been sad and dismayed? Would he have called me again? I didn’t want to bank on him calling me again, because I’m aware of the value of doing things right now and not waiting for next week. So I swallowed a bunch of antacids and called a cab to this bar so I can sit here and pretend not to feel too much pain while pretending to feel like I’m interested in being here and engaging in this conversation.

There was no way I could have blown him off, anyways. Look at him. I try not to look at him as he chews on his food and says things to which I am supposed to respond. What are we talking about right now? Oh, yeah, that’s right. We’re doing the first date, introductory dance of, “Where are you from?”

“I’m from here,” I say, already mildly irritated by the question that I have to answer every time I meet someone new. I’ll never be from anywhere different. I’ll always be from here, which is why people often respond with, “Oh, you’re a local! How rare!” That’s what he says, too, and I hate that answer, although I try to check my hatred and irritation at this conversation, because maybe I’m feeling ornery because of my stomach. Read more →

Burning Sensation

I’m feeling slightly scalded at exactly the place where I can feel his eyes looking at me. My skin might be smoking from the heat that he’s generating with his eyes alone, and I’m shriveled slightly from the sensation of his eyes on my skin. Which I think might be the chemical reaction of lust itching just out of reach and beneath my clothes as I fill my self up with the hotness of wanting and the unbearable desire to suddenly find myself naked and in his arms. But, no, that’s not where I am. Instead, I’m here, which is in the food court at the mall eating a salad while I slowly chew and try to dip into the conversation with clever remarks and without spitting my lunch all over my plate. 

Do I look pretty? I wish I had put on more make up. I wish I had prepared for this moment. I wish I had known he would show up, and, no, I’ve never met him before, but it’s turning out to be a rather unpleasant onset of love at first sight while I secretly hope that my lipstick isn’t smeared all over my face and this dress isn’t very flattering, is it? 

So I smile, and I burn, and I smolder slightly in this plastic chair on the basement level of the food court in the mall. I am wrapped up in flames from his existence as he sits there in that chair, and I wonder if he can smell the charred heart wafting from inside my chest. 

Happy International Pussy Appreciation Day

My pussy. My pussy. My golden fucking pussy.

So I stand in front of the mirror, and there it is, smiling out at me from between my legs. I smile back. At its little lips pressed together, and flesh like tongue poking out slightly.The small hairs that wind out and grow like a well manicured mustache.

“Pussy, I love you,” I whisper as I touch it gently as a sign of appreciation.

“I love you, too,” my pussy whispers back. Read more →

Demoralize Me

I just want to be held. In his arms, with his arm roped around my neck while he’s fucking me from behind. And his other hand in my hair, not gently stroking but violently grabbing and pulling my hair. So that it hurts. I want him to throat fuck me while the mascara runs down my face and all traces of the lipstick that had been smeared along my cheeks dissolves quickly with the saliva that keeps spilling from my lips. I want him to call me a slut. A whore. A cunt. Cheap. Worthless. To spit on me. To slap my ass and shove me face first into the pillow while he fucks me in the ass. Yank on my nipples and touch me and fuck me and that way I’ll know he loves me. I want him to cum on my face, and, then when everything’s all said and done, I want him to ask me, “Who’s Daddy’s little girl?” 

“I’m Daddy’s little girl.”

The Fuck Feast Guide to Whether You Should Fuck That Guy You Know You’re Not Supposed To

~because Teen Vogue isn’t breaking it down with enough realness~

Society is constantly telling us, among other things, that there are certain people that we just shouldn’t fuck. It’s rude, it’s embarrassing, it’s desperate, it’s imprudent, it’s social suicide, it’s politically catastrophic. Well, you know what? Just because you shouldn’t fuck him doesn’t mean you can’t, and because it’s someone you shouldn’t fuck, you know what that means: it’s probably fun as fuck! So, we’d like to give you a quick guide to the pro’s and con’s of fucking that guy that you just know you shouldn’t. (Warning, this is kinda gross. I know, right??)

Your Sister’s/Best Friend’s/Mom’s/Roommate’s Boyfriend (or, even better, Husband!)

They call it sloppy seconds for a reason, but let’s admit it: if you’re in your 20’s, you’re always going to be someone’s sloppy seconds. So don’t let that reason stop you. On the other hand, nothing tastes better than forbidden fruit. The only downside to fucking homegirl’s main man is that you have to be ready to completely forfeit your friendship, and, like any break up, you might find that some of your formerly mutual friends are taking sides that might slightly ostracize you. If you’re just hanging out for a one night stand, you can always rectify the situation with the whole, “Sluts before Fucks! Don’t let men come between us!” bullshit. If you’re going for a full on relationship – well, you can’t get mad when he starts fucking your other best friend. So, before you go down this path, ask yourself: is his dick worth it? I mean, homeboy better be throwing down something fierce in the bedroom. And if he’s not, then revert to the “Don’t let men come between us” bullshit. It might not work, but it also might work. Be prepared to wear the “homewrecker” mantle for a moment, you scurrilous cunt, you! Read more →