Here for It w/ R. Eric Thomas, #161

Hi! It's R. Eric Thomas. From the internet?

This week: Goodbye to The Good Place, Michael Bloomberg doesn’t know how dogs work, and PETA is really trying it.

I really like how sometimes dreams are evening-length works and sometimes they’re a collection of unrelated shorts. It’s like a film festival programmed by my brain worms. Last night, I had a full-length dream about walking all over London. (In the mornings, if I remember my dreams, I play dream detective to figure out what errant piece of my subconscious the worms decided to latch on to as their theme. This brings me deep satisfaction. The London aspect was fairly easy to figure out as I had talked yesterday about teaching at a playwriting retreat in London this August put on by Jacqueline Goldfinger. Mystery solved! Try harder, worms!) In the dream I was very frustrated that I wasn’t wearing my FitBit because I was doing so much walking and we all know that if it doesn’t go in the Bit you must Quit. I wanted my completely meaningless computer points! I was reassured by the knowledge that I had my phone in my pocket during the dream and giddily anticipated sitting down in a little British coffee shop, giving everyone a dirty look about their treatment of Meghan Markle, transcribing my phone computer points into my FitBit app, and winning… something. Can I tell you what I saw and what I did in the dream? No. This was about the pyrrhic victory of an app telling me “Good job” for moving.

I woke up this morning and my legs hurt like I had actually been walking. An immersive show! I briefly entertained the idea that I’ve been sleep-walking but I think I am just aging. Same thing! I wasn’t wearing my FitBit to bed, though, so I guess we’ll never know. I actually don’t know where the FitBit is right now, which is causing a small-to-medium panic. I’ve stopped wearing it on occasions when I’m pulling a look, sacrificing computer points for fashion, which is a troubling development. My FitBit doesn’t match anything and it’s a real crisis all-around over here. I went to a reading in Brooklyn with my friend Jackson, a chic book editor and hip millennial. At one point, prior to the reading, I tapped my FitBit to pull up the time and he stared at me aghast. “What is that?” he cried, manifesting the disapproving energy of Shuri beholding T’Challa’s sandals. Yes, I was sitting in a room with all of Brooklyn’s coolest queers about to hear Garth Greenwell give an extraordinary and very sexy reading and yes I had attempted a look for this occasion (albeit a very minor one) but I wasn’t about to go wasting all those computer points! I’d had a 17,000 step day! That’s gold! And I am a prospector!

I have considered carrying my FitBit in the pocket of my cropped pants to get the best of both deranged worlds I’ve decided to inhabit. Will report back on this.

Speaking of worlds: let’s talk about the scenic design of this “London”. Terrible. In the dream, it really looked like one of those low-budget movies where Prague stands in for London and everybody knows it but we watch anyway because we want to see who killed the Earl of Drandinghamshire. Though I’ve never been to London, I am aware of what London looks like so it’s confusing to me that my brain worms were like “Sorry, we couldn’t get enough tax credits to film on location.”  We have to raise some money for my brain worms, folks.

In this week’s newsletter, Alicia Keys wins the Grammys, The Good Place says goodbye, and PETA has a fish take the knee. But first… what’s going on with Michael Bloomberg?

Help! Has Michael Bloomberg Ever Met A Dog Before?

Okay, I'm just going to relay the facts as they present themselves in the video. Michael Bloomberg was in Vermont, shaking hands with Vermonters, wiping maple syrup on his pants leg, shaking more hands, et cetera. A dog was also there. Bloomberg then decided that the right thing to do would be to grip the dog’s snout and shake it, handshake-style, and, unfortunately, I believe that we need to lock the man in Arkham Asylum immediately.


The Grammys Really Needed Alicia Keys' Weighted Blanket Energy

When we think of awards show emcees, we often think of the funny and slickly-produced hosting of Ellen DeGeneres, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, or Tracee Ellis Ross. Alicia Keys hosted the Grammys like she was hosting a graduation cookout at her house, and it was the best thing to happen to the show.


The Good Place Finale Reminds Us It's Okay To Go

The Good Place's finale was striking in its audacity. After four years of the meaty and meaningful work of creating comedy out of moral philosophy, creator Michael Schur and the brilliant team behind the show came back to the question, posed early in the first season, of what we owe to each other.


PETA's Super Bowl Ad Claims That Fish Can Take A Knee Like Kaep

PETA has a new ad out and it's a doozy. You may want to sit down for this. Or, perhaps, take a knee for this. Me? I've had it. This is it. The living end. Ferry me home to the Good Place, Tahani. I cannot abide these humans and their troubles anymore. PETA released their Super Bowl commercial in advance of Sunday's game and it is, to put it mildly, unhinged. Let's take one last look before turning off the lights on humanity and letting the animals retake the world, Planet of the Apes-style.


Project Runway Season 18 Episode 8 Recap: See Right Through You

During a challenge in which the task was to create sheer editorial looks that tastefully showed off the bodies of the models, it was the designers themselves who ended up being revealed. As someone who is obsessed with a) therapy and b) telling people what I think they need to do to get their lives together, this was deeply satisfying to me.



Here for It, or How to Save Your Soul in America comes out in TWO WEEKS! And there’s still time to win a souvenir church fan! All you have to do is go to this link, upload your preorder confirmation (if you preordered yesterday or months ago, it all counts) to be entered to win!


Let’s Hang Out!

Written by me! Produced by Single Carrot Theatre! - January 31 - Feb 23 (Half the run is sold out! Don’t delay!)

February 5 - Hosting The Moth Mainstage in Mesa, AZ

February 8 - “Celebrity” guest judge at the Small Foods Party at the American Visionary Arts Museum in Baltimore, MD

Book tour!

Click for more info

Random Thing on the Internet

This video of what happens when you put a tomato in the fruit bowl is so odd and so wonderful. Couldn’t not share it.

It’s a real crisis all-around over here,