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Voting For Pedro

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This Week In Mash-Up America

The week of June 15, 2025 was taking the Hot Rodent Man too far; spending our money on personal fitness, kindof; and eating while driving


We still have to pinch ourselves when we remember how lucky we are to get to share your stories. It’s an honor and a delight, and during Pride month, we’re extra appreciative. We remember one Queer-Trans-Waspy-Jewy-West-Coast American’s journey to naming himself Finn, one gay and very mashy couple’s story about becoming a family, as well as our interviews with Fatimah Asghar and Miguel Gutierrez. Thank you for being you!


Nourishing Queer Hospitality

One writer looks at the role that spaces like gay and lesbian bars play in the big picture: “Love is really a big tenet of queer hospitality. Making a space that’s hospitable to that is what queer hospitality is to us.” Reminds us of our talk with Pierre Thiam and his custom of “extreme hospitality.” More of all of this.

How Mexico’s Cartels Infiltrated the Tortilla Business

It would almost sound funny if it weren’t so brutal and terrorizing. “At least 15 percent of tortillerías — about 20,000 storefront businesses — are regularly extorted. Tortilla shops that refuse to pay are set on fire or riddled with gunfire.”

Don’t Call It an ‘Ethnic’ Grocery Store

We love conversations like this. When Asian groceries like H Mart and Patel Brothers are reshaping American eating habits, does it make sense to pigeonhole them one way or another? (Just take a look at how they’ve influenced Trader Joe’s.)

These Disabled People Tried to Play by the Rules. It Cost Them Their Federal Benefits

What happens when a disabled person does the responsible thing and buys life insurance to ensure they can one day pay for their funeral? Turns out they lose access to benefit checks through a program with antiquated rules.

What Will Become of American Civilization?

Phoenix, Arizona, America’s fastest-growing city, has also become the barometer for how we’ll survive as a nation. “Growth keeps coming at a furious pace, despite decades of drought, and despite political extremism. And because a vision of vanishing now haunts the whole country, Phoenix is a guide to our future.”

At Home with Chef Eric Adjepong

Raised in Yonkers by Ghanian parents, Eric Adjepong’s cooking often references his West African heritage but his influences are clearly global. This interview gives a peek into his pantry, his cookbook shelf, and the dad life.

Why Is Everyone Talking About Matching Their ‘Freak’?

It sounds freakier than it is: Put wholesome feelers out on TikTok using a clever twist on the viral line from Tinashe’s earworm Nasty. Alternatively, go on Feeld, an app “for a new type of human belonging to a new world, one of creativity, openness, respect and exploration.”

Sandy Hook Shooting Survivors to Graduate With Mixed Emotions Without 20 of Their Classmates

Twelve years later, the Sandy Hook shooting is still as tragic as ever. “Many of the survivors said they continue to live with the trauma of that day: Loud noises still cause them to jump out of their seats, and some always keep an eye on a room’s exits.”

American Cricket Found a Star. He’s a Silicon Valley Tech Worker.

And he plays the ukelele too. People are excited about Saurabh Netravalkar, the Mumbai-born, US-based cricket star, but a bigger question remains: Will people in the US really get into cricket? Signs point to yes, but we’ll have to wait and see.

Napoleon Dynamite‘s ‘Vote For Pedro’ T-Shirt: A Definitive Oral History

On the 20th anniversary of Napoleon Dynamite’s release, GQ cobbles together the story behind the Vote for Pedro tee, as told by the filmmakers, the cast, crew, former executives, Hot Topic employees, and the shirt’s licensees. Yessss.

How the Sports Media Is Manufacturing Consent Over Gaza

Why is the sports media in the United States is so quiet in the face of Israel’s war on the civilians of Gaza? “Instead of challenging the status quo, [their silence] is manufacturing consent.”

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