Guest Recommendations: Nicole He

Nicole He, art and fashion community manager at Kickstarter, wants you to play Sportsfriends, throw away your forks, and lift some weights.

Lifting weights as a woman

I have always hated working out. The peak of my athletic career was in 7th grade when I went to a long jump meet and came in last place. So I’m not sure what kind of secret brain injury caused me to start lifting weights last year, but it happened and now I can more easily do important things like carry cat litter up the stairs.

But even better than that, I realized that lifting has actually shifted something in how I perceive myself in the world around me. For the first time in my life I feel strong, and I can’t overstate the power in that feeling. Maybe I should describe it this way: it feels like you’re Link after he gets the Power Glove — the world hasn’t changed, but now you interact with it differently. The boulders (or Craigslist coffee tables) that once stood in your way are no longer obstacles to you. It doesn’t even matter if you move them or not. Just that you know you can.

nicole_he

Illustration for The Bygone Bureau by Hallie Bateman

Except in real life there is no Power Glove. There are literally just your guns.

Unfortunately, physical strength is still mostly a male pursuit. Since no one tells women that they can be strong, it’s hard for us to even imagine that it’s possible to have the biceps and back strength required to, say, lift a couch. I suppose dudes find comfort in the idea that the ability to move heavy shit around is the one remaining thing that belongs exclusively to them in a world where women gain power in every other way. Poor dudes.

Women can and should lift weights. Join me, lady lifters, and together we’ll squat in unison towards a more beautiful future.

西红柿炒鸡蛋 (Tomatoes fried with eggs)

This is straight up Chinese comfort food, and it’s my go-to meal because it’s so fast and tasty. Give it a try!

Serves 1

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tomato
  • 2 scallions
  • a little bit of vegetable oil
  • cooked white rice
  • pinch of sugar
  • salt n pepa

Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat them with a fork. Just kidding, throw all the forks in your house away and use chopsticks. Salt and pepper the eggs.

Slice the tomato into small-ish wedges. Chop the scallions into smaller-ish pieces.

Because you don’t have a wok, heat the oil in a normal pan over medium heat. Throw the tomatoes in there and let ‘em cook for 2-4 minutes until they get a bit juicy. Transfer the tomatoes and juices to a bowl and return the pan to the heat.

Pour the eggs in and let it sit for a bit until you start to get nervous, like, a minute and a half, and then break it up into large-ish curds. When they kind of start to solidify, put the tomatoes back in, along with the sugar, scallions, and more salt and pepper, and cook together for another minute.

Serve over rice with Netflix in front of your computer.

Sportsfriends

Last night I was sitting on a couch with friends, cry-laughing with a PS4 controller in my hands. I was clumsily trying to move a ball across the screen with a fleshy, floppy pole, and I was doing it so hilariously that tears were streaming down my face. We were playing Super Pole Riders, one of four wonderful games in Sportsfriends, created by Douglas Wilson, Ramiro Corbetta, Bennett Foddy, and Noah Sasso.

The games are all beautiful and evoke the competitiveness, spectatorship, and sometimes homoeroticism of sports. But what’s really fun about them is they’re videogames that you’re required to play in person with your friends. They don’t let you to hole up in your room alone, or even with faceless assholes on the internet, making them the opposite of my personal game nemesis, Dark Souls II.

Phallic pole-riding aside, there’s BaraBariBall, a buoyant game where you kick, jump and dunk a ball into a pool; Hokra, which feels like a somehow more dramatic air hockey; and Johann Sebastian Joust, a game without graphics that can be described as “polite wrestling” with your friends as Bach plays in the background.

I love all four games, and they’re a steal at $15. Get them now on PS3 or PS4.

Nicole He is the art and fashion community manager at Kickstarter. She recently raised a Tamagotchi named Jennifer for twelve days.