There are very few pieces of writing that are completely all-entrancing and all-encompassing–but when I read them, I store them in a safe space so I can keep them forever, and reread them in those times of need, pain, boredom, desire. You know, anytime I feel like I need to read something that moves me and knocks my socks off.
This is why I’m imploring you to read Samantha Hunt’s piece in The New Yorker called “A Love Story,” which focuses on what being a mom in America is like right now. Here’s some notable quotes that don’t give away the plot but give you an idea of her smart, funny voice:
“The men I know speak about sex as if their needs are more intense or deeper than women’s needs. Like their penises are on fire and they will die if they can’t extinguish the flames in some damp, tight hole. Through high school and college, I believed men when they said their desires were more intense than mine because they talked about sex so much. They developed entire industries devoted to their desire. The aches! The suffering of the boys! The shame and mutual responsibility for blue balls. The suffering of the boys. Poor boys, I thought. Poor boys, as if I were being called upon to serve in a war effort, the war against boys not getting any.”
“The plague of perfectionism on parenting blogs is rancid. Alice in Wonderland birthday parties; Spanish-speaking nannies; healthy children harvesting perfect blue chicken eggs from the back-yard coop; homeschooled wonders who read by age three; flat, tight bellies; happy husbands; cake pops; craft time; quilting projects; breast pumps in the boardroom; tenure; ballet tights; cloth diapers; French braids; homemade lip balm; tremendous flat pans of paella prepared over a beach campfire. What sort of sadist is running these Internets? And, more important, how do these blogs not constitute acts of violence against women?
“I realize that what I’ve learned about being a middle-class, hetero mother who went to college could actually be boiled down to one or two fortune cookies. I write, “hormones are life. hormones are mental illness.” I write, “equality between the sexes does not exist.” And then my job is done.”
Read the entire story here, or in this week’s New Yorker magazine.