• The Substance Issue
    The Substance Issue
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    What Our August Contributors Are Eating, Reading, and Obsessing About

    We asked some of our August contributors what they are reading, eating, and obsessing about right now.

    Josie Mosser

    Artist and Graphic Designer

    What are you reading right now?

    I am currently re-reading Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson.

    J.P. Tamang


    What is your current obsession?

    Forgery. Not replica. Forgery. It seemed like a logical pursuit for someone who doesn’t have what I believe is called an artistic "voice”. Signatures. Letters. Voice recordings. Money. Official documents. I’m mostly obsessed with learning about people who are better at it than I am, but I am trying my hand at forging a famous painting. Which one I won’t say, just in case it ends up at auction as the real deal...suckaz.

    Matt Casciano


    What are you reading right now?

    I am reading Isaac Asimov’s Guide to the Bible. It’s a twelve-hundred page line-by-line analysis of the most-read book in the West by a highly regarded scifi author and, apparently, atheist Hebrew scholar. Hardback. Found it on a bookshelf in a house ten of my friends just moved into.

    Dorothy Howard

    Writer, Poet

    What are you listening to right now?

    I’ve been listening to a lot of Stereolab while working on my laptop with a cup of coffee. A Taste of Honey by Phil Woods ft. Iordanis Tsomidhs is a piece I would put on while drinking wine at sunset with a lover. Ça plane pour moi by Plastic Bertrand is one of my favorite party songs. It’s wild. My favorite dreamy song before bed is Albatross by Fleetwood Mac. And of course, Lana del Rey has been on repeat for the past few weeks. Bless her. Otherwise Viva Radio and Dub Lab are my favorite online radios to set and forget. I think people forget about online radio but its been crucial to me getting any writing done.

    Olivia Starkie

    Writer, Food Columnist

    What is your favorite substance?

    My favorite substance is the hummus at Ya Hala, a Lebanese restaurant in Portland, Oregon. Unlike many hummuses that I have tasted, which are often loaded with roasted garlic or cumin or other unnecessary flavors, this one is more subtly garlic flavored with a tart, lemon juice punch, balanced nicely by a drizzle of really good olive oil. It’s incredibly smooth and creamy, and although I have tried to replicate it a thousand times at home with a recipe from the chef at the restaurant, I still can’t get mine to taste as good.

    Sean Ebert

    Filmmaker, August Cover Model

    What are you looking forward to this August?

    This month, I will be heading out to Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey. The most predominate reason being that riding as many roller coasters as I can in one day somehow lets me blow off some steam. I'm also hoping to get to the beach this month. I tend to leave all the important summer activities until last minute – I should start earlier next year!

    You’ve probably got a summer obsession too, right? Well what is it? Let us know on Twitter or Instagram. Also, if you like what our contributors have to say, you’ll probably love the features they’re working on. To read them, make sure you grab a subscription (they start at $2 a month – cheaper than stamps!) and follow us on Facebook.

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