By Lilly Milman

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On Underdogs

My dad and I cried on the night that the New York Islanders lost against the Pittsburgh Penguins in game six of the first round of the 2013 NHL playoffs — their first flirtation with the postseason since 2007, and the first NHL season where I knew every playe…


On Affirmations

The first time I ran more than a mile — without taking breaks to rest my hands on my knees and pant and cough and take long, deep breaths — I thought it was a miracle. I was new to running, diligently training myself each day with an app that let me take walk…


On Serving

The first time I got home from serving a double shift, I made a beeline for the couch in my living room. Once I sat down, I realized I couldn’t get up — like, literally, I had to use my arms to press myself into a standing position, which hurt my feet and leg…


On Comfort

I don’t know how to talk about grief without mentioning Applebee’s.But let me rewind.I don’t know how to talk about my father without mentioning Applebee’s. For my family, 2010 was a rough year — followed by, like, 9 more rough years — but I’ll spare some det…


On Screens

For when you feel like celebrating for no reason, something needlessly festive:Kransekake, topped with sliced almonds and red sugarFor the cookies:500g almond flour500g confectioner’s sugar4 egg whites1 tsp. almond extractGranulated sugar, for sprinkling mold…


On Community

(Fair warning: This issue is going to be a little different from the last few!)Yesterday, the newsletter platform Substack announced a new initiative called Substack Local, “to foster and develop the local news ecosystem by helping independent writers build l…


On Privacy

I’ve always considered myself a private person. Not in the I-don’t-use-social-media way, but more in the… I-use-vagueness-to-dodge-personal-questions way. I’ve used what’s public — my social media, my journalism — as a way of hiding what’s private — mostly an…


On "Femininity"

As the daughter to Russian immigrants, my upbringing revolved around rules. The spoken: Do not receive below an A on any assignment; do not use swear words or Americanisms like “whatever” (essentially a swear word in my house); do not leave my room without fi…


On Not Feeling Hungry

Pre-pandemic, I loved the idea of cooking. I made casseroles for Friendsgiving parties. I taught friends how to fry an egg, or grill hamburgers at barbecues. Pre-pre-pre-pandemic, when I was a kid, I would, of course, shadow mom and grandma. Cut the vegetable…