New Jersey gothic.

1. The man on the country road selling Jersey tomatoes and corn has piercing blue eyes that never blink and a wide toothy grin that doesn’t flinch. He never speaks. You always leave with more in your bag than you remember picking up. If you do not eat them by the stroke of midnight in three days, they putrefy, stinking of rotting flesh.

2. “What exit?” is not just an inside joke. Those who do not know their exit are trapped in a crack between dimensions, driving eternally on a Turnpike that never ends. They are never seen or heard from again.

3. There are diners everywhere. You see one on every highway, in every sleepy town, every bustling city center. It is the same diner. The customers sit in booths and at the counters, moaning as they pour scalding coffee down their throats with trembling hands. Enter, and the waitress at the front, with her sunken eyes and hollow cheeks, will say: “Room for one more, honey.”

4. On Memorial Day, people across the state load into their cars and head down the shore. They drive in a trance, as if guided by an unseen force. The highways are bumper to bumper for miles. Something is pulling them there. They flock to Wildwood, Seaside Heights boardwalk, Asbury Park. When they reach the sea, they abandon their cars and walk hand in hand into the ocean, toward the humming black orb that hangs in the sky.

5. Look outside your house in the winter and you’ll see a million glowing eyes staring back at you - hundreds of whitetail deer. Their jaws are moving, as if they’re chewing something. You think they might be speaking to you, but you are too afraid to open the door.

6. On the eve of their 18th birthday, every New Jerseyan is given: a copy of Weird NJ; a map of the state; a flashlight; and a crucifix. “Your journey begins at sundown,” their parents say, smiling with pride and worry as tears spill down their cheeks. “Godspeed, my child.”

7. On the Garden State Parkway, the radio plays only one song, no matter which station you flip to: “Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen. He is telling you to run, get out while you can. But once you can hear it, it is too late.

8. New Jerseyans are blisteringly proud, defiant in their love of their home state. The best pizza, best bagels, honest and tolerant people, especially compared to their neighbors in Pennsylvania. But there’s nothing to be proud of in crime, corruption, pollution, bigotry, ignorance - the things that make us change the channel when they come up on News 12. Scarier still than looking outside is looking within ourselves.

9. Everyone claims to know someone who knows someone who’s seen the Jersey Devil. The legend is laughed off as campfire talk. But when they remember the bright red eyes from beyond the trees, the inhuman screech coming from somewhere deep in the woods, the laughter turns to anxious silence.

fahc!geoff & jack playlist [x]


Trans FAHC!Jack backstory where she’d always known something was off about her. She’d always felt like an outsider around other guys, especially her best friend Geoff, who’d she known since second grade, and she had developed self-esteem issues because she hated the body she was in. She assumed she was gay at a young age and kept that secret to herself in fear of losing friends and family. But still, that didn’t fill the emptiness inside her. 

It was around the end of middle school when she learned about the LGBT+ community, specifically the T. She’d spend hours online researching what being transgender meant and she knew she’d finally found a word to describe what she was feeling. 

Gender dysphoria. 

A few days later, she decides on the name Jacklyn and starts to plan her future out if she were to transition. Still afraid of what others would think, she keeps this to herself but still does little things to make herself feel feminine. 

She’d spend night at home during middle school painting her fingernails and admiring how beautiful each color looked on her. Some nights she’d sneak into her mother’s bathroom and practice applying makeup. She’d sneak dresses into the changing room at the mall and admire how much more she loved her body in them.

By freshman year of high school, she had grown out her hair and usually kept it up in a bun. She had perfected what little makeup she had to use and her smokey eye was phenomenal. She still hadn’t come out to Geoff and it was starting to take a toll on her that she hadn’t told her best friend since childhood that she was transgender. It didn’t help that she had developed feelings for him.

 Then one Friday night they were sitting in Geoff’s truck, listening to the football game from their high school’s parking lot. They had the windows down and they’d eaten three burgers each and had a jumbo coke in each cup holder. Geoff was going on and on about how if he was on the team, he would have doubled the score but all Jack could do was stare at him. In the middle on Geoff’s sentence on how the quarterback is a complete asshole anyway and cheats on all his tests, Jack leaned over and kissed him. She pulled away quickly and she could feel her cheeks turning bright red. To Jack’s surprise, Geoff wasn’t upset or shocked or anything. Instead, Geoff calmly looks over at her and says, “Look, you’re my best friend, and I love you, but I’m not gay dude.” 

“I’m not either.” 

Geoff’s head turned in confusion and Jack let out a shaky sigh. She explained to her best friend how she felt like a prisoner in her own body and that the reason she grows her hair out is so she can feel a little more feminine and sometimes she paints her nails bright red and that she feels more comfortable in a dress than a suit and tie. She told him that she was transgender and that all she hoped is that Geoff could just understand that she was the same Jack, just a girl and that he would love her.

“You’re my best friend, Jack. I love you no matter what. I’ll always support you.”

 That night, she felt so much weight rise off her shoulders. 

Geoff would take her to the mall to try on dresses and even bought one for her. He let her swatch makeup on his arms and store it at his house in secret. He even braided her hair, which she had no idea he could do so well. 

All was well and Jack thought it was time to tell his parents. So, one day over dinner, she came down in makeup and braids and her parents were appalled. They screamed and yelled and cried, saying things like “Where did my baby boy go?!” 

“Your baby boy was never here! I was never a boy and I never will be!”

 They kicked her out. She left that night and showed up at Geoff’s door crying. He held her and told her that she didn’t that in her life anyway. She was strong and that no matter what, he still loved and supported her. 

They started dating that night. 

They moved away from their small town and moved to Los Santos where Jack began her transition. Geoff had never seen her happier. In Los Santos, she was able to start over and express herself however she wanted to. She was finally happy. 

One by one, the couple took in other kids. The scrawny Brit who had arrived in Los Santos for a job just to find out he’d been tricked and had been robbed. Jack took him in and cared to his wounds and gave him food and a bed. Needless he overstayed his welcome but Jack and Geoff didn’t care one bit.

 Next, they took in a redheaded New Jerseyan who had come to the city to run from the law. They let him hide out in their place after he burst into their apartment thinking he was a floor above because the LSPD were on him again. Luckily, he was in their apartment that night because the people he was hiding out with ratted him out. They let him stay for as long as he needed. 

A few nights later Jack brought in a beaten-up boy who had been cut up pretty bad by a broken bottle during a bar fight. The guy was small and had bright orange and purple hair so Geoff had no idea why he was even trying to fight someone in the first place. Geoff and him talked for hours that night and Geoff refused to let him leave. 

Last, but not least, Geoff came in one night with a silent man with a dark skull mask covering his face. “Come on, take it off. She’s not going to judge.” He was hesitant but eventually he removed his mask to reveal a handsome face. Jack looked in awe at the fact that the face perfect for a magazine cover didn’t match the badass look the man had going for him. “Pretty sweet, huh?” Geoff exclaimed. “Now stop staring, I’m getting jealous.” Geoff never revealed where this man came from or how they had met but he would come over to the apartment every night for dinner and video games and eventually he just ended up staying like the rest. Jack never questioned it. 

Geoff and Jack had started a little family that eventually turned into a heist crew after Michael came home with a bag full of diamonds. “Well we can’t do anything about it now and if he takes them back he’ll be in the hole for life.” Jack just sat there for a moment thinking. 

“Fine. But this isn’t going to turn into a normal thing.” 

It eventually turned into a normal thing. 

Everyone began to get involved in Michael’s petty theft and it only escalated from there. Thus, the Fake AH Crew was born. The picture perfect, yet still dysfunctional family of six who no matter what, love and support each other. 

And it’s all Jack had ever wanted in her life. 

And it’s all she’ll ever need.

anonymous asked:

How did Woodrow Wilson become Governor of New Jersey, given that he grew up in the South? True, he was President of Princeton, but was that enough to gain the support of native New Jerseyans?

Well, Wilson was pretty established as a national figure by that time as an educator and a writer, but the Democratic political machinery in New Jersey elected him and probably could have elected anybody at that point. And they quickly regretted electing him because as Governor, Wilson stripped the political bosses of much of their power through strong, widespread political reform legislation. But, like I said, Wilson was already a national figure and seen as a future Presidential candidate. It was thought that the governorship could help launch his almost certain run in 1912.

55 Little Known People in Black History
  1. Elijah Abel- (1808 –1884)- The first African-American elder and seventy in the Latter Day Saint movement, and one of the few black members in the early history of the Latter Day Saint movement to receive the priesthood.
  2. Jordan Anderson- (1825-1907) - A slave who following his emancipation, wrote a letter to his former master offering to work on his plantation. The letter has been described as a rare example of documented “slave humor” of the period and its deadpan style has been compared to the satire of Mark Twain
  3. Josephine Baker- (1906 –1975) - Born in the US but spent most of her life in France, Baker was the first black woman to star in a major motion picture, Zouzou (1934), or to become a world-famous entertainer. She assisted the French Resistance in WWII, receiving the Croix de guerre and was made a Chevalier of the Legion d'honneur.
  4. Ebenezer Bassett-(1833–1908)- The first African-American diplomat, serving as US ambassador to Haiti.
  5. Mary McLeod Bethune- (1875 –1955)- Built schools for African-Americans in Florida. 
  6. Stephen Bishop- (c. 1821–1857)- One of the lead explorers of Mammoth Cave, the longest cave system in the world.
  7. Blanche Bruce- (1841 –1898)- The first elected black senator to serve a full term.
  8. Absalom Boston- (1785–1855)- The first African-American captain to sail a whaleship, with an all-black crew.
  9. Melvin “Mel” Boozer-(1945 –1987)- Activist for African American, LGBT and HIV/AIDS issues. In 1980 he became the first openly gay candidate for Vice President of the United States, running on the Socialist ticket.
  10. William Wells Brown- (c.1814-1884)- Wrote Clotel the first novel published by an African American
  11. William Harvey Carney- (1840–1908)- The first African-American to be awarded the Medal of Honor for his gallantry during the Battle of Fort Wagner in 1863. 
  12. Wentworth Cheswell- (1748 –1817)- The first African American elected to public office in the history of the United States, being elected town constable of Newmarket, New Hampshire in 1768.
  13. Fanny Jackson Coppin- (1837 –1913)- An African-American educator and missionary and a lifelong advocate for female higher education.
  14. Martin Delany- (1818 –1885) Abolitionist, journalist, physician, and writer, and arguably the first proponent of black nationalism. He was one of the first three blacks admitted to Harvard Medical School.
  15. Storm DeLarverie- (1920 –2014)- A butch lesbian whose scuffle with police was one of the defining moments of the Stonewall uprising, spurring the crowd to action. She was nicknamed “the Rosa Parks of the gay community.”
  16. James Derham- (c. 1757-1802?)- The first African American to formally practice medicine in the United States though he never received an M.D. degree.
  17. Father Divine- (c. 1876 –1965)- An African American spiritual leader from about 1907 until his death. Father Divine made numerous contributions toward his followers’ economic independence and racial equality.
  18. Mary Fields- (c. 1832–1914)- The first African-American woman employed as a mail carrier in the United States and the second woman to work for the United States Postal Service.
  19. Henry Ossian Flipper- (1856–1940)- The first African American to graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point
  20. Gordon- (dates unknown)- A slave on a Louisiana plantation who made his escape from bondage in March 1863.The pictures of Gordon’s scourged back provided Northerners with visual evidence of brutal treatment of slaves and inspired many free blacks to enlist in the Union Army.
  21. Samuel Green- (c. 1802–1877)- Minister who was jailed in 1857 for possessing a copy of the anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe.
  22. Nero Hawley- (1742–1817)- Slave who was enlisted in place of his owner, Daniel Hawley, in the Continental Army on April 20, 1777 during the American Revolution and earned his freedom.
  23. Jupiter Hammon- (1711 – before 1806)- The first African-American writer to be published in the present-day United States. He is considered one of the founders of African-American literature.
  24. Michael A. Healy- (1839 –1904)- Nicknamed “Hell Roaring Mike,” Healy has been identified as the first man of African-American descent to command a ship of the United States government. Healy patrolled the 20,000 miles (32,000 km) of Alaskan coastline for more than 20 years, earning great respect from the natives and seafarers alike.
  25. Hercules- (c. 1755-Unknown)- Slave who worked as a cook for George Washington. Hercules escaped to freedom from Mount Vernon in 1797, and later was legally manumitted under the terms of Washington’s Will.
  26. DeHart Hubbard- (1903 -1976)- The first African American to win an Olympic gold medal in an individual event; the running long jump at the 1924 Paris Summer games.
  27. Abdulrahman Ibrahim Ibn Sori- (1762-1829)- A West African prince who was brought as a slave to the US. After 40 years own slavery, he was freed as a result of negotiations between the Sultan of Morocco and President John Quincy Adams.
  28. Thomas L. Jennings- (1791–1856)- The first African American to be granted a patent for his invention of a dry-cleaning process
  29. Anthony Johnson-(c.1600 –1670) - An Angolan who achieved freedom in the early 17th-century Colony of Virginia, where he became one of the first African American property owners and slaveholders.
  30. Matilda Sissieretta Joyner Jones- (1868/1869 –1933)- First African american to sing at Carnegie Hall.
  31. Barbara Jordan- (1936 –1996)- The first African American elected to the Texas Senate after Reconstruction, the first southern black female elected to the United States House of Representatives, and the first African-American woman to deliver a keynote address at a Democratic National Convention.
  32. Henrietta Lacks- (1920-1951) - An African-American woman who was the unwitting source of cells from her cancerous tumor which were cultured  to create the first known human immortal cell line for medical research.
  33. Edmond Lewis- (1844 –1907)- The first African-American woman to achieve international acclaim as a sculptor.
  34. Henry Berry Lowrie- (c. 1845-Unknown)- Robin Hood style outlaw who targeted the Confederate government of North Carolina during the US Civil War and the KKK after it. He was never captured although many believe he died of injuries sustained in a 1872 robbery.
  35. Mary Eliza Mahoney- (1845 –1926)- The first African American to study and work as a professionally trained nurse in the United States, graduating in 1879
  36. Jean Saint Malo-(Unknown-1784)- Escaped Spanish slave who led guerrilla attacks against the Colonial Spanish govemrnt of Louisiana
  37. Hattie McDaniel- (1895 –1952)-  First African-Americna to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress fro her role as Mammy in Gone with the Wind
  38. Doris Miller- (1919 –1943)- The first African American to be awarded the Navy Cross. During the attack on Pearl Harbor Miller, then a cook on the U.S.S West Virginia, manned a gun tower, firing until he ran out of ammunition. He became an icon for African-American serving in the war.
  39. Tom Molineaux- (1784 –1818)- An African-American bare-knuckle boxer. He spent much of his career in Great Britain and Ireland, where he had some notable successes.
  40. P. B. S. Pinchback- (1837 –1921) - The first person of African descent to become governor of a U.S. state, serving as Governor of Louisiana for 15 days.
  41. George Poage- (1880–1962)- The first African-American athlete to win a medal in the Olympic Games, winning two bronze medals at the 1904 games.
  42. Bass Reeves- (1838-1910)- First black Deputy U.S. Marshals who arrested over 3,000 felons and shot and killed fourteen outlaws in self-defense. It is believed that he may have been the inspiration for The Lone Ranger.
  43. Hiram Rhodes Revels- (1827 –1901)-  The first African American to serve in the United States Senate, and was the first African American to serve in the U.S. Congress.
  44. John Rock-(1825–1866)- First African-American man to earn a medical degree and the first black person to be admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of the United States. He coined the phrase “Black is Beautiful”
  45. Robert Smalls- (1839 –1915)- Slave who commandeered a Confederate transport ship, CSS Planter, in Charleston harbor, and sailed it from Confederate controlled waters to the U.S. blockade. he was later elected to the South Carolina State legislature and the United States House of Representatives
  46. D. Augustus Straker- (1842-1908)- Barbadian who immigrated to the United States to educate former slaves. In 1890, he became the first Black lawyer to appear before the Michigan Supreme Court, arguing that "separate but equal" was unconstitutional according to Michigan law
  47. Augustus Tolton- (1854-1897) - First African American to be ordained a Roman Catholic priest. In 2011 he was named a “Servant of God” one of the first steps toward sainthood.
  48. Alexander Twilight- (1795–1857) - The first African American elected as a state legislator, serving in the Vermont General Assembly.
  49. Colonel Tye- (c.1753—1780)- New Jerseyan slave who escaped to fight for the British during the American Revolution. He was one of the most effective guerrilla leaders opposing the American rebel forces in central New Jersey.
  50. Moses Fleetwood Walker- (1856 -1924)- The first African American to play Major League Baseball. After leaving baseball, Walker became a businessman and advocate of Black nationalism.
  51. Robert C. Weaver- (1907–1997)- The first African American to be appointed to a US cabinet-level position, serving as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development from 1966-1968.
  52. Phillis Wheatley- (c. 1753 –1784)- The first African-American poet to have her work published.
  53. Cathay Williams- (1844-1892)- The first African-American female to enlist, and the only documented to serve in the United States Army posing as a man, under the pseudonym William Cathay.
  54. Marcos Xiorro-(Unknown-1821)- An African slave who, in 1821, planned and conspired to lead a slave revolt against the sugar plantation owners and the Spanish Colonial government in Puerto Rico. Although the conspiracy was unsuccessful, he achieved legendary status among the slaves and is part of Puerto Rico’s folklore.
  55. York- (1770?–1822?)- Slave who was part of the Lewis and Clark expedition. He gained the respect to the rest of the expedition and is believed to have been given his freedom or escaped to freedom following their return the the US. 

At the White Rose Diner in Linden, N.J., owner Rich Belfer tosses a dozen round, thick slices of processed pork to sizzle on the grill. To Belfer, it’s beyond dispute that those are slices of Taylor Ham.

“It’s pork, it’s spices, it’s salt, it’s water. It’s common ingredients,” Belfer says.

But the flavor is more difficult to explain. “I don’t know if anybody can really describe it,” he says. “It has a little smoky flavor. It has a little spice. It has a little original Jersey flavor in it.”

Whatever you call this product, it’s ubiquitous on diner menus from Cape May to the George Washington Bridge. The two main companies that make it — Taylor Provisions and Case’s Pork Roll — are both based in Trenton.

As much as New Jerseyans might love this homegrown product, they simply cannot agree about what to call it. In North Jersey, it’s called Taylor Ham; in South Jersey, it’s known as pork roll.

New Jerseyans Chew Over What To Call Their Favorite Pork Product

Photo: Joel Rose/NPR

Why I’m Proud of the 15ers

Before jumping into my story, I have a small PSA:

For anyone new to the USWNT, Heather O’Reilly - or HAO - has had a long and successful career with the team aside from this past World Cup: Handpicked as Mia Hamm’s “replacement” and asked to wear her number. Well over 200 caps. 3 Olympic Gold Medals. Newly added World Cup Champion.

Now that that’s all cleared up…

When I was just beginning 4th grade at Saint Bartholomew’s School in East Brunswick, NJ (circa 2004), one of my first assignments was to research and write about a famous New Jerseyan. After turning in my paper, I had to dress the part and do a presentation to the class and their parents. While my friends were writing about “The Boss” and Bon Jovi, my mom forced me to do my project on Heather O’Reilly. At the time, I didn’t understand why I would do my project on my sisters’ friend and teammate, a family friend I often saw at church. “Mom, she’s not famous - no one knows who she is” I told her. Unfortunately, I was right. Although she was from my town, a local hero fresh off of winning her first Olympic gold medal with the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team, none of my friends (and most of their parents) had a clue who she was.

Fast forward to her second and third Olympic gold medals: most people in my town have either heard of her or the “Heather O’Reilly Outstanding Athlete Award,” an award given to 4 varsity athletes from our high school each year. If they were lucky enough, they might’ve caught an autograph or picture when she was in town - which, as the years go by, become fewer and far between. At this point, she was a name people knew but a person many didn’t, much like our other famous alumni. [I now feel obligated to mention, however, that Heather is the epitome of hometown pride. Everything she does and in every interview she gives, she is sure to mention the town she grew up in. I personally feel as though she is as proud of our town as our town is of her…She comes back as often as she can, runs soccer camps for little girls most summers, meets with our high school sports teams, and will always sign autographs and speak with anyone willing to approach her without ever tiring of it.] Even with her hometown and national fame - she was still only thought of when big games or tournaments came around. Not today.

It’s been a long time coming, but today, I can proudly tell you that Heather and the talented, hard working and successful female athletes on the USWNT are finally getting the attention and recognition they deserve and have deserved for many, many years. It’s been a long, tough and underrated journey, but this country and the opinion and stigma surrounding women’s sports are heading in the right direction. Everyone mocks me and wonders why I’m so personally proud of the USWNT, but this is why:

I can look back to my 4th grade self - dressed in a blue soccer uniform with “O’Reilly” and “17″ (her old number) taped onto my back - presenting to a crowd of people who didn’t recognize or understand my “famous New Jerseyan.” And then, I can look ahead to these past two weeks. And I can embrace this time of national celebration and recognition. And I can feel myself getting emotional at the NYC Victory Parade. And I can well up with pride and utter happiness when I see Heather on her own float, getting presented a key to New York City, winning an ESPY on national television, or having her own Sports Illustrated cover. And I feel sorry for those who still don’t understand why I’m so personally proud of this team and this sport. 

That is why I’m proud of this team. That is why America should be proud of this team. I may only be 20 years old, having only caught a glimpse of the progress, but I am honored to have been a part of such a journey, and I look forward to experiencing what’s to come. 

If anyone took the time to read the longest post ever, God bless and good night. I love my USWNT family. ❤⚽

What You Gave To Me

Well this took on a life of its own. This is my contribution to Sexy Sunday, although I think it’s slightly more fluffy than sexy. I’ve never written anything like it before, so please be kind. Any and all constructive criticism is appreciated.

Pairing: Valdaya

Summary: After Zendaya, at the age of twenty-two, wins an Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, she chooses to go see Val instead of attending the after party. 

Disclaimer: This is fiction, not reality.

Keep reading


Indiana governor Mike Pence signed a bill into law today that will change the name of the state to Newest Jersey. In a press conference held shortly after this historic signing, Pence said “our state and New Jersey share many things in common. We both border a state with a city that affects the world economy a great deal, and the regard in which we are held by Chicagoans is a similar one to which New Jerseyans are held to by New Yorkers.” After the press conference, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel was seen giving Pence a wedgie.

I was thrilled that my mother is still alive and can share this with me. And I can claim representation in so many areas. I’m a Midwesterner, and everyone in Ohio is excited. I’m also a New Yorker, and a New Jerseyan, and an American, plus I’m an African-American, and a woman. I know it seems like I’m spreading like algae when I put it this way, but I’d like to think of the prize being distributed to these regions and nations and races.
—  Toni Morrison, Nobel Lecture

Two brand new Inhumans introduced in yesterday’s 13th issue of Ms. Marvel (by Wilson & Miyazawa).  First we have ‘Kaboom,’ an electrically charged nardowell with bigoted issues toward regular humans in general and New Jerseyans in specific.  KK puts her in her place right quick.

And then there’s also the ever-dreamy Kamran…  It’s not clear yet what his new powers are (possibly something to do with water).  And he and Kamala have some serious googly-eyes for one another.  

woot, indeed, Kamala…