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Story Spotlight

To believe that age is just a number is so tempting — but it’s not quite as simple as that

Age, in many ways, is an invisible matter. It’s how many winters and springs one has seen throughout her life, how many years of knowledge one has to share with others, how many struggles one has fought on her path to the present. But age is also physical — it’s the wrinkles, wounds, and scars one wears proudly in private but often tries to hide in public. The more years behind you, the more marks your body exhibits.

This is what Caitlin Vestal captures so perceptively in her heartfelt essay “When Dry Skin Is So Much More Than Dry Skin”.


It’s time we all stop taking the foul awards show seriously.

We have the first contender for the Controversy of the Year Award. Surprise, It’s GRAMMYs! Okay, no one is surprised. No one, probably, even cares.

Still, the awards season has officially begun, and GRAMMYs has just announced nominations for its 63rd trophies' distribution night.

The list this year looks like someone put it through a randomizer of some sort. Beyonce’s leading the pack without even releasing an actual album this year. Coldplay‘s getting an “Album of the Year” despite not being relevant anymore. Why? Maybe it’s a tradition. Like royal privilege, or something. They’re British, for all that.

No Lady…


The only problem — they all look like variations of the same one.

Positions are like fingerprints you leave at a crime scene — they can tell a lot about you. The political you. The social you. The physical you.

Positions can be…no, positions are the basis of your identity.

What’s your position right now?

Mine is me sitting on a couch, listening to Ariana Grande’s new album “positions”, and trying to figure her out. It’s challenging, but it seems that for Grande positions are mostly about sex.

Why?

It’s a guess. 10 out of 14 songs on the album are directly or indirectly related to love-making — so, yes, my guess is…


For her new video, the singer assembles the white house in which everything looks beautiful and nothing feels true.

Ariana Grande is an enviably talented singer, and, seemingly, hardworking one — in the last few years she released two highly-successful albums, and her new long-play is on the way. The pop star has also been quite outspoken about supporting women rights and fighting against social oppression, both in her music and social media posts. Her song “God is a woman” — alongside its music video — is probably the most striking feminist anthem of the decade.

Last week, Grande released the new single “Positions” together with a politically-charged music video in which she appears as the commander-in-chief residing in…


Have you heard all of them?

It’s almost five years since Adele released “25”. She has been away for so long, and so many things have changed for her along the road. I wonder if it had much of an impact on her storytelling.

Now she’s back, hosting “Saturday Night Live” this week. Does it mean a new album is on the way? Are we getting more powerhouse ballads? Or less? Maybe she made a disco album like her fellow brit Jessie Ware?

Rumour has it she might drop new music this Halloween.

Whatever it is, Adele can surprise us. She did before.

Yes, she might…


I don’t think I could be at any time.

There’s something quite incomprehensible about war. We all are against it per se. Yet, when the possibility of armed conflict becomes seemingly imminent, we suddenly change our discourse from civil to militaristic. News become sensationalist — war becomes the only solution.

Is our army big enough? When will the enemy attack? Do we wait or go on the offensive? Can I choose not to fight or is my will decided for me?

It’s frightening how easily people’s sentiments can change.

The last few days have been frustrating. There are 100 000 Russian troops at the border with Ukraine. Many analysts…


It all starts in a “Sad Dance" and ends with a “Scandal”

To escape in the past has always been a matter of special interest for artists of any generation. Maybe such reflection is indispensable for anyone who tries to define the new reality. Ukrainians, in particular, have been feeling quite nostalgic for 90s music in the last five years or so. The parallel between now and then is not precisely identical but it does have many points of similarities. When The Soviet Union collapsed it was a time of great turbulence for everyone living there but also it had us see the surge of creative energy. …


Moving to London was the worst decision of my life. Moving out was the best one.

London is a true gentleman: it politely warns you of danger every time you take a step into the stuffy space of its underground trains.

“Please mind the gap.” “Please mind the gap.” “Please mind the gap.”

Who knew that this lethargic female voice could leave such a bitter aftertaste lasting for years after? I couldn’t. But it did. And it wasn’t accidental.

Londoners — alike moles — spend a good portion of their daytime below the ground. Not by a choice, really. …


Featuring pearls of wisdom from Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, Ray BLK, Jamila Woods and India.Arie

Do you ever feel like half of your life is being spent on reliving past experiences?

I do.

To dwell in the past is, probably, a bad habit to have, but I can’t help it: a tiny curator in my head likes to play old movies for me. Today he’s playing “Teenage Memories” — my coming of age story. The soundtrack to the film features five women. Confident, unapologetic women with a strong sense of self-worth.

These women taught me some important life lessons.

Here are five of them.

1. Your apples are as good as anyone else’s — they’re just different.

“Appletree” by Erykah Badu was the first soul song I’ve ever…


A short note on Angel Olsen’s epic record

On the ride back home from Odessa, I was scrolling through my Spotify to find something cheerful to play to keep me awake but I ended up looping “All Mirrors” by Angel Olsen for two hours.

Not like I’ve never done it before but that night Olsen’s apathetic chanting felt extra-special because that night I was losing beauty together with her.

It’s always quite unpleasant, to be losing beauty. One moment you feel cathartic — on the highest hill of your emotional well-being — but then suddenly the earth starts melting right under your feet. All hills are gone. …

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