"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"

By Vocal Curation TeamPublished 3 years ago 4 min read
Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us ...

The above quote is, of course, from Dicken’s “Tale of Two Cities,” and while that is not one of Nikki Sanchez’s recommended books to read if you’re going through a crisis, it's an appropriate way to introduce this roundup. Our content is varied this week; from Black representation in punk music to Covid lingo you can add to your vocabulary, we have a little bit of everything to get you through these times, whether you’re in the best or worst of them. Let’s get started.

As always, you can leave your favorite authors a tip, and if you’re not already a creator, sign up here and start writing today.

Books to Read If You're Going Through a Quarter-Life Crisis

As a teenager, I was fairly certain that your 30s were "middle age," and that the only reason that age seemed easier was because people in their thirties worked all the time--of course everything feels easier. These grown-ups have no time to think about "real problems."


With a mix of palette-cleansing, American Dream-busting, stigma-shattering, and shamelessly self-empowering books from modern literature, “millennial blogger” and Vocal creator Nikki Sanchez is determined to help twenty- and thirty-somethings get through arguably the most tumultuous period of the human experience: the quarter-life crisis. If you’re knee-deep in your late 20s, or just need a healthy dose of self-help, Nikki has some great recommendations for your next weekend read.

Part-time Driver, Part-time Listener

It was the final straw for me.

In 2013, I decided to quit my job and work for a ride share service.

Many of us have reached the breaking point that Taylor M talks about here. Sometimes work is just too much, family pressures weigh on the mind, and by some ill-fated stroke of luck you find yourself single to boot. So, it's time for a change. In Taylor's case, she needed a job that would give her more freedom.

As it turned out, driving for Lyft allowed her to have some very poignant conversations with strangers — something she didn't know she would enjoy until the opportunity came along.

Black Punk Matters + 3 Black Punk Bands I Love

When most people think rock and metal music, or the alternative and punk look, people usually think of white people and popular bands like Iron Maiden or Green Day. ... Then in 2017, the internet had a big boom and goth POC started to be recognized more.

Representation matters.

For Annie Williams, that representation allowed her to feel like part of the punk music scene. No young person should feel like a genre or style of music is “off limits” because the creators are white, Black, or any race other than their own. If you love punk rock, but you want something other than caucasian-fronted boy bands, Annie has done her research. We’re excited to share her story with you, because representation matters. It always has, and it always will.

Granny, A Serial Killer?

Everyone loves true crime. Haven't we all binge-watched "Unsolved Mysteries" on Netflix by now? We're pretty sure that Vocal creator and freelance writer Jackson McCain has.

Shortly after [Dorothea] Puente started to rent out her space, strange things started to happen. A female tenant, 61 year old Ruth Monroe, was found dead due to an overdose. ... Just a few weeks later, pensioner Malcolm McKenzie accused Puente of drugging and robbing him.

This horrifying account of an elderly landlord kept us awake at night. If true crime is your fix, give it a read. On a totally unrelated note, I had a woodland cabin in Vermont rented for my girlfriend's birthday next weekend, but I might just go ahead and cancel that reservation...

Ten things Covid-19 has created that need naming

In the last few months, I have, (we probably all have) experienced several things, thoughts and feelings that are a direct consequence of this dick of a virus. While these experiences have been very real, I have lacked the vocabulary to describe them accurately because there aren't yet words to describe them ...

Ry Lewis is the hero we needed: he saw a problem, and instead of ignoring it, he fixed the problem. The problem was the lack of Covid-specific words to deal with the issues of "twentytwenty" — which, by the way, is now a word we will carry into successive years:

Twentytwentied / twɛnti’ twɛnt’tɪd/


Feeling thoroughly exhausted that this year and this shit is still happening.

If your vernacular isn't quite where you'd like it to be, let Ry assist you, and then see how many of his neologisms you can squeeze into conversation this weekend.

By Erik Mclean on Unsplash

These certainly are not the best of times. We know you’re “twentytwentied," but hey, as long as we’re all here, we might as well laugh, cry, and create together, right?

Stay safe. We’ll see you in two weeks with more of our favorite stories.


About the Creator

Vocal Curation Team

Collaborative, conscious, and committed to content. We're rounding up the best that the Vocal network has to offer.

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