Grace Perry is a Chicago-based writer. She covers comedy and city life for Time Out Chicago and writes jokes for Reductress and The Onion. She’s also written for McSweeney’s and BuzzFeed, as well as sketches for the iO Comedy Network. If you like her work, Grace humbly requests you send her whale videos (humpback or right whales preferred).
This week, Grace talked with me about white men named Matt, empathizing with the “glam celesbian lifestyle,” and, surprisingly, not whales.
surrounded by straight women talking about engagement rings so I’m just spewing hurricane statistics just to get participation credit— grace perry (@perryjetaime) September 10, 2017
I spent a lot of 2017 surrounded by straight women discussing wedding plans, bachelorette parties, engagement rings, etc. I don’t have wedding opinions ingrained into my bones like the straight women around me appear to—the gay wedding industry wasn’t really a thing yet when I was growing up, so now I’m just like, “Uhhhh cool ring I guess?? Hope you cherish each other???” This tweet was the result of my misguided attempts to say something, anything during this kind of conversation. I tweeted this literally mid-discussion because I had truly nothing to contribute to the group.
That’s hilarious. In the spirit of this, do you ever live-tweet awkward or uncomfortable situations?
I definitely try not to live-tweet real situations! It’s rude as hell, but sometimes social anxiety gets the better of me. Oftentimes, if I think of something potentially tweet-able, I’ll make a quick note then go back and write the tweet later.
“White men are allowed to do anything in Hollywood” is a spectrum with TJ M*ller at one end and the Matt & Matt Wine Show at the other — grace perry (@perryjetaime) July 25, 2017
If you’re unfamiliar, actors Matthew Rhys and Matthew Goode starred in a docu-series The Wine Show in 2016, where they toured Italy, drank wine, then talked about wine. I’m pretty sure that’s it. Which sounds delightful! But is something you can really only pull off if you’re a charming white man named Matt. Like, who pitched this? Who thought, “Yes, this is just the kind of content the people need” and poured money into it? The Wine Show is confounding and steeped in privilege. I wrote this on a day where T.J. Miller was trending for being terrible.
Do you like writing more topical or evergreen jokes on Twitter?
I prefer evergreen tweets, definitely. With the insane news cycle, it’s really tough to get an original quip out that hasn’t been tweeted to death already. Some people are amazing at doing so; I’m not. I never want to have a take for the sake of having a take, so I instead write frigid cold takes about moody bands that were popular in 2004.
INTERVIEWER: your resume tells me you havent worked since 2014? ST VINCENT: I was dating a string of impossibly hot & famous women I: ah yes— grace perry (@perryjetaime) January 18, 2017
This came from my own impatience for a new St. Vincent album, paired with an insane jealousy for her newfangled glam celesbian lifestyle. Sure, three-and-a-half years in between albums is a while—Who gets to take that much time off?, my petty side asks. But like, girl was busy! If I were dating a revolving door of insanely beautiful superstars, I would be in no damn rush to create music for snarky jagwagons on Twitter. Anyway, Annie Clark released Masseduction nine months after I tweeted this, so I can only assume this tweet lit a fire under her ass. (You’re welcome.)
Have you ever made a friend via Twitter?
I’ve made friends on Twitter! I definitely appreciate Twitter as a weird place where you can find people with the same weird pop culture interests and/or sense of humor as you. I’ve actually reconnected with people from high school and college over Twitter, too—like, “You were always so cool, funny running into you on this garbage website!”
How have your tweets changed over time?
I’ve tried to step away from #hot #topical #takes over the past year—it’s exhausting. I’ve also gotten way gayer on Twitter over time! Over time, I’ve followed a lot of super funny queer folks who have seriously upped the ante for niche lesbian jokes. Expect my tweets to get even gayer in 2018. You heard it here first.
Karen Chee is a is a writer/performer who contributes regularly to The New Yorker and McSweeney’s.