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Human Parts
A publication about humanity from Medium: yours, mine, and ours.

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In Human Parts. More on Medium.


As a compulsive minimalist, I can’t stop throwing things away — even when I know I’ll regret it

Photo by ÉMILE SÉGUIN 🇨🇦 on Unsplash

Content Warning: This piece discusses domestic violence and eating disorders.

A couple of years ago, my partner saved my cello from the scrap heap by taking it into the theater where he works. He must have known it was at risk. He knows how I am. I don’t think I ever said it explicitly, but I was on the verge of throwing the beautiful instrument out.

Well, not throwing it out. Giving it away. Donating it. Hastily. Maybe doing a Craigslist Curb Alert. I didn’t want to go to the trouble of finding and vetting a new owner for the…


Be prepared for a festive interrogation!

Love my place setting at the kids’ table. Photo: Debby Hudson/Unsplash

Being single around the holidays can mean your dinner table feels more like an FBI interrogation, so here are some common questions and uncommon answers to really spice up the gathering, while giving thanks to your on-brand life choices.

Are you seeing anyone?

I am! The 10 of you right before my very eyes.

Who is that nice-looking guy you keep posting pics of on your Instagram?

That’s my friend. He’s gay.

But who is the other nice-looking guy on your Instagram?

Another gay man.

Are they all gay?

If I had a nickel for every time someone asked if a beautiful gay man on my Insta was my boyfriend, I could buy a boyfriend.

Yikes, you would buy a boyfriend?

Perhaps to save me from this festive, overflowing cornucopia of interrogation.

When’s the last time you went on a date?

When I opened my front…


For the traveler who loves kombucha, free Wi-Fi, and viral onboard selfies

A Travel Bae in the wild. Photo: Marco_Piunti/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Thanks for choosing to fly with Millennial Airlines. We know you can add to your debilitating debt with plenty of other carriers, so we’re very thrilled you’ve decided to prioritize your FOMO with us. Our airline was founded on the ancient principle that the struggle is, in fact, real—which is why we offer a new kind of travel experience that values the Instagrammable journey just as much as the Instagrammable destination. Our mission is to encourage travelers to “Collect Experiences, Not Things”—a phrase you can buy on a crop top in our onboard pop-up brand-swag shops.

Like most legacy carriers…


More To That

Memories are unreliable, but that’s what makes them so useful

Illustrations: More To That

Sometimes a moment feels so significant that you’re acutely aware of its importance as it’s happening.

Maybe you’re celebrating the start of a relationship:


It’s time to stop living for the weekend

Photo: Priscilla Du Preez/Unsplash

For me, the perfect Saturday involves getting up early. Not disgustingly early, just early enough that the morning is still fresh and young. I get my son dressed and we go for a long walk with the stroller while my wife gets much-deserved sleep.

Taking our time, we cover a few miles as the sun comes up, and then we come back home. I do a few pushups on the porch before coming back inside. (My son tries his best to do the same.) By now my wife is up, and we have a nice breakfast together as a family…


That life looked pretty good until I realized what I was giving up

Credit: CSA Images/Getty Images

It was a joke. The kind of joke that’s actually true, but you laugh about it in the hopes of deflecting that truth. A thing you bring up first, before anyone else can. “Haha, she’s my trophy wife! Aren’t we funny!”

I was in my early twenties when we met; he was already over 40, 17 years older than me. And 17 gazillion times wealthier. He had a nice house and a lucrative business partnership and a 401(k) and an Audi. I had student loans and a toaster oven and two cats.

Well, I soon had just one cat. It…


I’m not #dead yet but I’m ready to be the first afterlife influencer

Millennial pink flowers only, TYSM! (Photo by Mayron Oliveira.)

Please arrange a wake, but call it a “woke.”

Don’t use a hearse to transport my body. Place me in an Uber, where I belong.

Hold my funeral on a Thursday, so the #TBT pics on display are noticeably on brand.

Photos of me used around the venue must be selfies with more than 200 Insta likes, or why even bother?

The memorial should not take place in a church but at my favorite rooftop bar — the one with frosé and that one hot bartender who can’t remember my name.

After any prayer, please shout “YOLO!” instead of “Amen.”


My shoeboxes of stuff allow me touch the past in a way no digital memory could

Photo: StockPlanets/Getty Images

I have a confession to make. I’m a pack rat, notorious for my obsession with memorabilia. I possess shoebox after shoebox of ticket stubs, art exhibit pamphlets, birthday cards, graduation programs, theater playbills, music festival wristbands, goofy photo booth pics — one shoebox might span several years’ worth of travel and adventures.

I’ve kept notes passed between me and my best friend during middle school science class, along with every single journal I’ve ever written in, including the ones I gave up on after a single entry. …


Two words. A one-dimensional view of my worth.

Photo: recep-bg/E+/Getty Images

I am always telling stories.

Some are long and convoluted. Some collapse inward on themselves like a dying star, imploding into greatness. Some meander and peter out without ever really going anywhere. My stories are lived and earned, and sometimes stolen. There are funny stories, and sad stories, and other stories somewhere in between. Words that fill, and float, and beat out a story onto the page. Words for days, words for years. Words stretched through all of time, sweet and ready to be plucked.

And then there is another type of story. A story told to me and to…

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