Weekend Rumpus Roundup


First, Brandon Hicks allows us a peek into psychological disorders of the animal kingdom, the most elite bars in the world, and more in “Just Some Jokes.”

Then, in the Saturday Interview, our own Arielle Bernstein talks with blogger Josie Pickens about identity, gender, race, and class politics. The “uplifting” influence of readers on social media provides a source of hope during difficult times. Vulnerability, and the implicit disapproval of its expression, has served as motivation for Pickens. But, she admits that she “struggle[s] with titles” like “feminist.” She says, “In my heart I would like to identify as a human writer.”

Meanwhile, Sarah Einstein speaks with her “generous mentor” Kevin Oderman about his travel writing in the Sunday Interview. Oderman points to the conscious acknowledgment of his own otherness when playing the role of tourist. The traveler’s unique powerlessness elicits a sense of wonder. He argues: “…there are few enough places where you can scratch and not find blood, people being what they are.”

Read more of Max Gray at Big City Sasquatch or follow him on Twitter @City_Sasquatch. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in Encounters, Mount Hope, Conte, tNY.press, and English Kills Review. He co-hosts the etymology podcast Words For Dinner and is a graduate of the Rutgers-Newark MFA program. More from this author →