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Editor’s Letter

August 2012: On the Road

When I left for the Rookie Road Trip in June, I expected everything to look like the above photo IMMEDIATELY. I also expected our van to be filled with bearded musicians from the ’70s, and for all billboards to suddenly show classily designed Coke ads instead of any for Attorney Peter Francis Geraci. Imagine my surprise when I realized that not everything looks like an old movie!

Of course, the scenery did end up being beautiful, and my fellow road-trippers were much better companions than any of the dudes from Almost Famous would’ve been, and I kind of got used to ignoring the billboards. But the memories that are most prominent to me now, the moments that most strongly satisfied the curiosity with which we faced this GREAT NATION OF OURS, are the ones that were just about the folks we came across every day—be they kindred spirits, or people with lives very different from our own, or dogs. (The dogs we saw were SO CUTE.) Staying with Olivia’s boyfriend’s family in Portland, with Joey and Mark in Omaha, and with Ira’s sister Randi in San Francisco; having dinner at Dylan’s mom’s house in Seattle, and with a family in Big Sur; a woman at a restaurant in northern California talking about the tiger she was planning to purchase and train; the family at a gas station in Nebraska that played a prank on Petra’s boyfriend, Avery; and obviously, all our meet-ups with our readers. It was comforting to find that no matter where we were in the country, there were people who made it feel like home, and that no matter how far we’d traveled, there were people who’d be unlike anyone I’d previously met. The country is very big and very small at the same time, and scary in all the right ways.

In that sense, this month isn’t really about being physically on the road; it’s about meeting strangers and hearing their stories, about memories and keepsakes, and about the kinds of secret discoveries that lie along the way to a final goal or destination. I couldn’t wait to get to California, but there were pockets of beauty and weirdness along the way that I found myself thankful we sought out.

I’m taking this chunk of space in my own damn editor’s letter on my own damn website to thank those who could make it to our events once again. Thanks to Urban Outfitters and Space 15 Twenty for their collaboration, for supporting our vision for the meet-ups and the installation, and for understanding why we needed a whole collection of Sweet Valley High books for the installation and miraculously finding them. During these events, Rookie felt like a real presence in the world, not just a corner of the internet. And that whole humans-connecting thing? That happened! Thank you again.

Oh, and we’ll be using this month to prepare for school starting again. Positive thinking and stuff.



  • guiltfreedonut August 1st, 2012 3:09 PM

    ugh, why cant everything be like an old movie?… ps i think some photos of grease lightnin’ (THE VAN) are desperately needed on rookie at some point…

  • Eryn August 1st, 2012 3:12 PM

    :) :) :) :) :)
    Well said. I’m excited for this month on Rookie (what’s new?)!
    :) :) :) :) (just happiness all around. And thank you for giving me reason to go on a road trip of my own. and just. :)

  • Susann August 1st, 2012 3:12 PM

    Until now, I didn’t quite realize that it’s already time for a new Rookie theme.. I’m sure this month will be great!

    Fashion in Pepperland

  • johnny boi August 1st, 2012 3:25 PM

    Is it too late to submit things for this month’s theme? I was thinking of sending something in!

  • whatnaomiloves August 1st, 2012 3:25 PM

    Your Editors Letters are the only ones worth reading.

  • 062131 August 1st, 2012 3:31 PM

    guys! i had no internet for a few days but i’ve been planning to send some collages for this month’s theme. is it too late??
    (it’s a great theme! oh the image of vans and weird people traveling…)

    • Anaheed August 1st, 2012 3:39 PM

      Not too late!

      • FlorenceEyre August 1st, 2012 9:06 PM

        I have send you something (I can’t find better name for it, but it’s something like text) about the meet-up in Chicago, but I am not sure if you received it. I know you don’t have much time for responding, but I wanted to make sure.


  • Fortune_Goddess August 1st, 2012 3:36 PM

    Tavi, you and Rookie are both so amazing. You’ve been such an influence in my life in the past year and I’m sure you will prove to be an even bigger one in the coming ones. Thank you for that <3 also I listened to Taylor Swift yesterday and thought of you

  • selinau August 1st, 2012 3:52 PM

    Ah, looking forward for this months Rookie! And preparing us to the whole school thing is great, just what I need, positive thinking and stuff ^_^
    I just sent you a question with e-mail and I’m waiting anxiously if I get an answer.

    You are doing a great job here in Rookie, *sending all of you a lot of respect*

  • indigosunday August 1st, 2012 3:52 PM

    I probably should wait for Sept 1st to say this but: i think Rookies birthday(Sept 5th) should be an extra special day where all Rookies should eat cupcakes, wear flower crowns, carry balloons, and wear Rookie membrobilia(i swear i spelt that wrong) anyhoooo we should party! Rookie love!!

    • Fortune_Goddess August 1st, 2012 4:28 PM

      AWESOME IDEA! I really wanna flesh it out now :)

    • August 1st, 2012 5:16 PM

      YESSSSSSSSS!!!!!! Oh My god a thousand times YES

  • kendallkh August 1st, 2012 3:57 PM

    I’m so freaking glad I have Rookie to psych me up for school, otherwise I would be cowering in the corner somewhere in the fetal position.

  • mymlen August 1st, 2012 4:01 PM

    Why am I always being glad while reading Tavi’s articles?

  • Pearl August 1st, 2012 4:45 PM

    I can tell that Rookie has a bright future ahead. YOU GAIZ ARE TOUCHING LIVES! Atleast mine & about every person I meet. Stellar job!

  • roosa August 1st, 2012 5:21 PM

    aw. I was accidentally listening to Strange by Galaxie 500 while reading this and the combination was very perfect, like, oh dear, what a lovely peculiar world!

  • jill August 1st, 2012 5:33 PM

    what was the prank the nebraska family played on avery? :)

  • SFclaire August 1st, 2012 5:56 PM

    Hey Rookie,

    I sent in a few things for July’s theme but I never heard back.
    I think it would be cool if once a month there was a post dedicated to submissions. Just a thought :)


    P.S. I had soooo much fun at the sf meetup!

    • Anaheed August 1st, 2012 6:08 PM

      Hey, Claire — this summer was rough because of the road trip and editing the yearbook. But now that I’m back home I’m slowly making my way through that submissions box again. Sorry, EVERYONE, for my tardiness on this. The submissions box is my #1 guilt in life!

  • sweetsweetsweat August 1st, 2012 6:23 PM

    i love this website and all that it stands for… so
    thank you.

    • Abby August 1st, 2012 6:53 PM

      Amen, sista! Sorry… That was just me turning into a soulful black woman for a moment there. Anyway, I totally agree. I wish I could sing the praises of Rookie to everyone everywhere.

  • ivoire August 1st, 2012 8:15 PM

    hey guys. i want to send in something but im not sure what. i suck at writing and i cant take photos.

  • GildedLocks August 1st, 2012 11:23 PM

    Yay Rookie! I wish I could have been at that installation. Actually, I wish I could have been at basically every stop; but seeing all the photos every step of the way was almost as good.

    Oh, and you know, writers, it would be really cool if there were some kind of “How to be a College Student: A Guide 4 N00bz” article, since it’s back-to-school season…. *hint*hint*

  • sylvie August 2nd, 2012 7:23 AM

    Thank you Rookie!! I am super excited for this month! I love travelling and last month I was on the road in America with my family. I kept getting little snippets of people’s lives and because I’m from England it was all like OHMYGUSHHSOAMERICUHHHNN (like the dude we saw in LA last year who was in a white patent SUV listening to gospel music) :)

  • eliselbv August 2nd, 2012 8:07 AM

    I think I’m gonna love this month with Rookie. When I read last month that there was a Rookie Road Trip , I was really disappointed to live far away from USA. And then I realized I could have my own road trip and now I can say this summer was the best I ever had!
    I took the plane from Gabon to Paris and then the south of France, I went in Normandie and Netherlands. Every time I stopped to see some friends and now my head is just full of great memories.
    I’m really looking forward for this month!


  • seaira August 2nd, 2012 10:30 AM

    Not going to lie, I’m still really confused with all the promotion of Urban Outfitters by Rookie. You know the head of the company is extremely anti-gay and donates lots of money to fund anti-gay movements, right? Because, uh… he does.

  • Soymilk August 2nd, 2012 3:18 PM

    oh gosh, as I was reading the opening paragraph a peter francis geraci commercial came on!

  • stylelinguist August 2nd, 2012 5:06 PM

    Tavi, congrats on your success. I thought about attending your Seattle event, but as I was heading out the door, I remembered that I’m a 34-year-old dude. Interloper I am not, so, yeah … Anyway, you’ve been an inspiration to me since I learnt of you a few years ago. THANK YOU. Oh, I spotted you at the checkstand at my co-op grocery store yesterday, on the cover of BUST. Sigh, you rock.stylelanguage.wordpress.com

  • unefillecommetoi August 2nd, 2012 9:04 PM

    will a future rookie road trip come to Mexico City PLEASE? (Any rookie readers en DF?)

  • Lucille August 3rd, 2012 9:29 AM

    Gosh, I wish I was there.
    love your writing Tavi!

  • Maddie Rackerby August 4th, 2012 5:15 PM

    Dude, I just want to say that Freedom was such an inspiring issue of Rookie. I absolutely loved it, so thanks! Rookie seriously just makes my life so much better haha.

  • caro nation August 6th, 2012 1:02 AM

    Hanging Out With Travis and Hunter playlist. PLEASE.

  • Megangib August 7th, 2012 12:27 AM

    Tavi, you are SO amazing.

    For the back to school stuff can you do “asian stationary” writing. Stationary is like any girls best friend/love.

  • smashedtiara August 8th, 2012 12:44 AM

    Hello Tavi! I’m 17 years old and I discovered your blog a few years ago and couldn’t help but be super jealous of you for the fact that Kathleen Hanna gave you her famous “feminist” sweater. I had been listening to Bikini Kill for about a year when she gave you this sweater so you can’t blame me for being envious. But you deserve it. Also, I am a huge Courtney Love fan and Hole is my favorite band. So I love you for the fact that you love the same things that I do. I also listen to That Dog and when I saw you post an article featuring their Totally Crushed Out album, I wanted to give you a big hug. By now it is probably obvious to you that I am a practicing feminist (why does that sound so weird?) so I am happy to see you doing the things that you do with this magazine. It is the closest I will ever get to reading current issues of Sassy magazine, so I thank you for that. Just like you I live in the Chicago suburbs. It’s weird to think that someone who I idolize lives so close to me. Maybe, just maybe, one day we’ll be friends… wow, I sure am lame.

  • Horea August 8th, 2012 1:57 AM

    I’d like to believe that I can one day embark on such a journey with people whose presence I enjoy as much as you all seem to enjoy each other’s. Until then, I’ll just vicariously live through Rookie :)


  • Han August 12th, 2012 11:18 PM

    Tavi, congrats on your BUST cover! I was so proud to see you and I’m so happy that you’re carving a way out there for young feminists like myself. FIGHTING! love ya

  • Maialuna August 12th, 2012 11:52 PM

    On the road is exactly what I have been this month. But always in places without a computer or internets, so I can’t read Rookie enough. *cries silent tears*