The Tragedy of Monica Geller

I graduated high school in 1998, either (depending on which arbitrary marker you choose) the last of Gen-Xers or the first of the Millennials. Like so many of us who came of age in the 90s, Friends was a delightful, aspirational glimpse of the future. (I had no perspective to realize that my friends of color weren’t represented. A TV show featuring six friends in one of the most diverse cities in America, and not a hint of melanin among them. But hey, Joey just said something funny and Ross is stressed out! Pass the Jamocha Almond Fudge ice cream, because I am 18 and impervious to calories and my own privilege.) One day, I was going to live in New York and drink coffee constantly and have a huge apartment.

I’m now nearly 40, and none of those things came to fruition (not even the coffee), but I still

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