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ICYMI: Men and Their Minivans, the Evolution of the Slim Jim and Your Doctor’s Gross-Ass Lab Coat

Back in my awkward years growing up in L.A., my parents hired this large-adult-son/UCLA student to babysit me. I’m at a loss to explain why—when I was in college, I was about as irresponsible as it gets, and I doubt he was any different. One day I was late to soccer practice, and he managed to complete a 15-minute commute in 6 minutes flat. Must have been going 80 in a 35. Thirteen-year-old me was pumped.

Anyway, I bring him up only because the guy’s daily driver was a minivan. Not just any minivan—like the kind your mother puts 200,000 miles on and bestows upon you when you turn 16—but a real-life shaggin’ wagon. There were no seats in it, save for the front two. He had literally installed shag carpeting. There was a lava lamp inside—I shit you not. And the tinted windows were fully illegal.

Thirteen-year-old me thought it was the coolest thing since Pogs.

To this day, somewhere in the recesses of my mind, there’s a part of me that still wants to own a “cool” minivan. You might even say I’m a minivan guy. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. The same goes for the four minivan guys below…

Must Read

Minivans and the Men Who Love Them
Minivans are “uncool.” They’re “for soccer moms.” And for men, the minivan seems to represents the neutering of “youth” and “independence,” and their transition into the irrevocable state of existence called “parenthood.” There are, however, a few men who exalt the minivan as the elegant choice for fathers, adventurers and pragmatists alike. Eddie Kim found four of these birds of a different feather, who explain in their own words how they fell into a love affair with the ugly duckling of the auto world. READ MORE

Touch of Grey

Is there a more painful “look” than the aged rocker?

Check out the ages of the Best Rock nominees from the recent MTV Video Music Awards as pointed out on Twitter by Pitchfork’s reviews editor Jeremy D. Larson:

  • Fall Out Boy’s Patrick Stump: 34
  • Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl: 49
  • Imagine Dragons’ Dan Reynolds: 31
  • Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington: Died last year at the age of 41
  • Panic! at the Disco’s Brendon Urie: 31
  • Thirty Seconds to Mars’ Jared Leto: 46

First off, allow me to editorialize for a moment: Fuck this list, and the shit music it represents. I hate it with the fire of a thousand suns. But it does illuminate the fact that popular rock music (barf) is getting… old. And, as Tim Grierson writes, that completely changes how we relate to them as listeners.

Time for the Meat Stick

Need a little excitement? Snap into this piece on the decades-long evolution of everyone’s favorite checkout-counter guilty pleasure—the Slim Jim. Oooohhh yeaaaaahhh!

The Fresh Cut Phenomenon

You ever get a haircut, and it feels like you need a few days to grow into it? My cuts never look good fresh out of the chair—an ex used to say it was because the lines were just too sharp, like it needed aging to reach its full potential.

Instagram-famous barber Adrian Fanus knows this pain all too well, and is sorry for anyone going through it. His tips to help can be found here.

Why You Will Never Smell as Good as Your Girlfriend

Let’s take a quick look at some of the stuff ladies use when bathing:

  • Soap
  • Bath bomb
  • Exfoliant (often a sugar scrub)
  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Moisturizer (lotion, oil or powder)
  • Deodorant
  • Perfume
  • Essential oils
  • Body spray

Uhhhh. I use like, half of that. On a good day. And, that’s just shower-related shit. If you ever ask yourself why women smell so good, and from, like 20 feet away, it’s partly because they put more effort into it than you do. But in addition to their 30-minute shower ritual, they also do something called “layering”—and it’s the main reason their scent lasts longer and smells better than yours ever will.

Demystifying Kink

Mistress Lucy Sweetkill is a professional dominatrix with a popular BDSM-themed livestream on Periscope. But don’t think you’re going to tune into some domination. Sweetkill’s show isn’t about arousal—it’s about education. As in, educating both clients and the public about the misunderstood and often lampooned world of bondage.

Fired Up

Youre Fired Donald Trump GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Been laid off, or worse, fired? Think there’s a chance you ever could be? Then you’ll want to check out this piece on how to explain what happened in your next job interview. You know, like you lost your job…

  • In a company merger (not your fault)
  • When new leadership came in (probably not your fault)
  • For not hitting your goals (your fault, but you’ve got some wiggle room)
  • Because you done fucked up (you’re a better person now)
  • For a reason you dispute (get ready to spin this shit into gold)

The whole thing is really helpful, but if I can leave you with one major takeaway, it’s this: Whatever you do, as cathartic as it might feel, DO NOT THROW YOUR FORMER EMPLOYER UNDER THE BUS. That is all.

Your MEL Public Service Announcement

Bad news, humans who visit their physician with any sort of regularity: Your doctor’s white coat is a gross, squirming bacteria factory. Now open wide and say “staphylococcus.”