Today in Tabs: The Oregon Tabs Generation

Plus ca change, the less we as a people blog.

Today in Tabs: The Oregon Tabs Generation
[Photos: Flickr users LWYang, Matt Turner, a4gpa, theNerdPatrol]

The “Oregon Trail Generation” is as good a name as I’ve ever heard for my post-Gen-X but pre-Millennial age/social class cohort. We were “the first children to grow up figuring [technology] out,” argues Anna Garvey, so we experience a simultaneous attraction and loathing for technology, the way you feel when you hear there’s a new Tom Cruise Mission Impossible movie coming out. Let’s take a specific example: The Apple Watch. Business Insider’s fundamentally Millennial response is: “here are several boxes with a neat techno-watch inside them!” Meanwhile, my fellow Oregon Trailer Matt Haughey wrote an exhaustive but also self-critical (but also completely earnest) critique of this first-generation Watch’s failures and shortcomings while admitting that of course he’ll keep using it. We’re fundamentally conflicted, and always feel like we have to figure out the new thing. But I would like to propose that we should stop, because everything is a mess and we’ll never figure it out.


EVIDENCE: Business reporting via customer service chatbots. The rise of the emoji race thinkpiece. Revenge porn sans actual “porn” protested by sharing nudes. “What Was Satire?” chapter 264: the “Brogrammer” sticker. EDM Snapchat Spiderman, NBD. Did you even understand that sentence? I doubt it. But Snapchat just hired CNN political reporter Peter Hamby as “Head of News.” A Chinese human gene “editing” experimentfailed, in precisely the ways that had been feared.” (I.e.: Supervillans). People are somehow still using the CueCat??

We don’t really have blogging anymore as a forum to try to figure things out. Heather Armstrong is just the latest in the steady drain of OG bloggers. Maybe everything keeps changing, but I’m going to suggest we should quit trying to figure it out. After all, everything has always changed fast and no one ever needed a bunch of self-conscious special-snowflake ninnies like us to figure it out before. Let’s try to live by Paul Ford’s posthumous cyber-thought-radio’s nanobots’s last words: “All. Data. Perfect.

Read This Stuff: Is murder ever the reasonable result of a series of deliberate choices? “Have You Ever Thought About Killing Someone” by Rachel Monroe, in Matter. Alan White, Tom Phillips, and Craig Silverman investigated the agency behind a lot of our “too good to check” bullshit news stories for Buzzfeed. Anil Dash wrote about what it’s like to have an enormous number of Twitter followers but not be anyone special. Previously on unearned Twitter fame: Michele Catalano and Michele Catalano. Alexis Coe reporting from the douche-mines of San Francisco: “’Do you realize,’ he sneered, ‘that I could charter a helicopter right now, and we could be having dinner in Napa?’” We could be having dinner in a rolling doughnut! We could be having dinner on the moon!

May Intern applications are closed! Thank you all who applied, and if you haven’t gotten a transparently copy-pasted response from me yet then I haven’t seen your application so please make an enhanced effort to bring it to my attention.


After months of ghastly speculation, Bruce Jenner officially came out as a transgender woman in his interview with Diane Sawyer.

Bruce asked, in the interview, to still be referred to by male name and pronouns for the time being (further guidelines on how to talk and write about this story have been suggested by Media Matters and GLAAD. I’ve seen a few people on my Twitter feed confused by this, as they’re (rightly) used to the idea that if somebody is trans, you should use pronouns appropriate to their true gender.

That’s an important general rule, but it’s more important to call people what they ask to be called. Transition doesn’t happen at the flick of a switch, and changing names and pronouns is one of many small steps that come in many different orders.

When I came out as a transgender woman, I asked friends to start calling me Avery and using she and her pronouns, but said that I’d allow a grace period during which it was okay not to. I wanted to give the people in my life time to get used to how their interactions with me would be changing. (It was pretty much the one time in my life I’ve been at all considerate to other people. Usually I’m a huge jerk.)

Maybe that’s why Jenner is holding off, too. We’ll find out for certain when his E! reality show airs this July.

I don’t know how much Avery’s Twitter feed overlaps with mine, but people in my timeline were pretty shocked and horrified that Jenner admitted to being a Republican. I mean, do whatever you want in your own home, but, like, gross.

Today in I’m Not Gonna Do All the Work For You: The new Joker


Today’s Song: Kanye West “Runaway” (IT REALLY HOLDS UP)

~I don’t know what it is with Gmail… but I’m not to good at that shit~

Today in Tabs is the moment you finally take your fancy shoes off after the big high school dance. Dance with Fast Company, if that’s that one that brung ya. Otherwise save the last dance for TinyLetter. And I know I did damage, ’cause the look in your tabs is killing me.

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