This week: everything you generally avoid talking about gets talked about.
Monday, Sept. 15
Hot, Wet and Shaking: Talking About Sex with Kaleigh Trace
Kaleigh Trace is a disabled, queer, feminist sex educator with a mission: to promote “safe, shame-free and consensual sex people of all abilities, ethnicities, races, orientations, and gender identities.” Among other things, she co-wrote and appeared in the above music video in response to Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines.” Now, Trace is down from Halifax, Nova Scotia, to promote her new book. Hot, Wet and Shaking: How I Learned to Talk About Sex is “a book about having sex by yourself, with one person, or with twenty people if everyone is down.” It’s a memoir cum (ha!) manual that doesn’t skimp on risqué detail. If you still feel like an awkward teenager when it comes to sex talk, or if (god forbid!) you were under the impression that disabled people aren’t fucking, come along and wise up.
7pm, Bluestockings (172 Allen Street), FREE
Fiction Forum: Elizabeth Gaffney and René Steinke
Gaffney is the author of When the World Was Young and Metropolis, while Steinke has penned Friendswood, The Fires, and Holy Skirts. The latter’s articles have appeared in the likes of The New York Times, Vogue, O: the Oprah Magazine, and Bookforum, while the former is currently editor-at-large of literary rag A Public Space. Join the authors for a forum moderated by director Luis Jaramillo.
6:30pm-8pm, The New School’s Klein Conference Room in Alvin Johnson/J.M. Kaplan Hall at 66 West 12th Street, $5, Register here
Tuesday, Sept. 16
Just in Time: A Broadly Speaking Event
Increasingly, workers in the restaurant and retail industry are at the mercy of “just in time” scheduling: a system that might seem dreamily flexible for 9-5 jobbers, but in fact makes already struggling workers even more vulnerable to job insecurity. Such a scheme (in which shifts are scheduled with little advance notice, and are subject to last-minute cancellation) allows companies to boost profits while removing the possibility of steady paychecks for employees, and making childcare, further education and public assistance even more difficult to arrange. This New America NYC event brings together Jodi Kantor (New York Times correspondent), Liza Mundy (author of The Richer Sex) and Melody Pabon (a former Zara cashier and now retail union member and activist), to discuss the challenges inherent in the rise of “just in time,” and possible policy approaches.
6:30-8:15pm, 199 Lafayette Street, Suite 3B, FREE
Debt Jam: Student Debt Poetry Reading
If you’d rather rhyme about your money troubles than debate possible policy fixes for them, allow me to suggest Mellow Pages’ Debt Jam: a night of poetry and banjo to celebrate the recent announcement from Rolling Jubilee that they have purchased and abolished a portfolio of student debt. Brought to you by Strike Debt, the reading is designed to help young, immiserated (but educated!) persons to “speak out, rock out, and create beauty out of the wreckage debt has created in our lives.” Sounds like a jam to me.
7:30pm, Mellow Pages (56 Bogart Street, #1S), FREE
Wednesday, Sept. 17
Daphne Merkin in Conversation with Sasha Weiss
Daphne Merkin may have a chortle-inducing last name, but her often painfully personal articles for publications like The New Yorker and The New York Times Magazine tended to be more mortifying than mirthful. Subjects like her battle with depression, her spanking fetish, and her years of therapy have made up a good chunk of Merkin’s oeuvre, a fact belied by her latest book, The Fame Lunches. Lunches deals in less sensational Merkin material: 45 examples of her cultural writing stretching back to the 1980s. Billed by Kirkus Reviews as “Essays that go down like candy but nourish like health food,” the book has also been praised by Woody Allen for its “strikingly original take on the human condition.” Merkin will be in conversation with newyorker.com’s literary editor, Sasha Weiss.
7pm, McNally Jackson (52 Prince Street), FREE
Thursday, Sept. 18
What in the World: BuzzFeed, Mashable and Vice
If you’ve managed to miss the somewhat obnoxious Vice/You Tube advertisements plastered all over the city (“YOU don’t just watch the news,” apparently), then let me fill you in: Vice Media, erstwhile counterculture teen zine from Montreal, is now valued at $1.4 billion and radically expanding its international coverage. Their recent Islamic State video series quickly went viral, and no doubt there’s more where that came from. Meanwhile, BuzzFeed and Mashable are also looking to edge into the global space. Join Louise Roug (Global News Editor, Mashable), Miriam Elder (Foreign Editor, Buzzfeed), and Jason Mojica (Editor in Chief, VICE News), for a conversation chaired by Amy O’Leary of the New York Times innovation team.
6:30-8:15pm, NYU’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute (20 Cooper Square, 7th floor), FREE, RSVP here