Rax King

Instructor & Writer
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Rax King is a James Beard Award-nominated bitch. Her work can also be found in Glamour, MEL Magazine, Catapult, and elsewhere. Look out for her monthly column Store-Bought Is Fine for hot takes about the Food Network, and her essay collection Tacky (Vintage 2021).


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Cover Photo: A black-and-white photograph of an office calendar laid open on a desk. A pair of hands is holding down a pink post-it note and preparing to write on it with a black pencil. The pink post-it note and the red fingernail polish on the hands are the only parts of the photo in color.
When Quitting Your Job Is the Answer to Everything

The email some anonymous stranger had sent to my boss was an agonizing reminder of how I lived, the choices I made, and the priorities I held close.

Jun 08, 2022
Cover Photo: A screenshot of the character Samantha Jones, played by Kim Cattrall, from the show "Sex and the City." She is wearing dark brown sunglasses and a white halter top. She is clutching the sunglasses on her face and her mouth is open in surprise.
Writing Sex Was Easy Until I Had to Read It Aloud

I had one male audio engineer in the room with me, politely waiting to hear me record a graphic essay about youthful sex.

Nov 02, 2021
Cover Photo: A photo of Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner leaning in close and looking at the camera. They are both smiling, but Carl's smile is one famously used for one of their comedy bits.
Jewish Comedy as a Love Language

It’s hard to say what about it is more charming to me, the hilarity of it or the inescapable Jewishness of it. Mel Brooks could be any man in my family.

Dec 15, 2020
Cover Photo: A screencap from Worst Cooks in America, in which a contestant is in an apron, holding a knife, trying desperately to scoop something out of a sliced red pepper.
In Defense of the Worst Cooks in America

The soundstage’s kitchen didn’t have a dishwasher, so he was forced to make dishwasher salmon in the oven instead—like some kind of hack.

Sep 22, 2020
Cover Photo: A photo of an old-fashioned bar. On a green awning over the bar, the words "DAVY JONES BAR" are spelled in gold letters across a green background. A sword, barrel, and tiny skeletons decorate its corners. Vintage tankards hang where glasses would be. A single man sits on a stool in front of it.
To All the Pirate Bars Ayye’ve Loved Before

Visiting a beloved bar is less about the bar itself and more an attempt to re-inhabit happy memories, to open a door that leads to them.

Jul 08, 2020
Cover Photo: A photo of Alton Brown on the set of Good Eats, holding a tiny avocado gently, like an egg or baby, looking at it pensively through his '90s glasses. (The avocado is small, but perhaps the size of his head in direct comparison creates an optical illusion?)
Alton Brown Made Cooking More Approachable, One Prop at a Time

It was a corny, educational joy, as if Bill Nye and Monty Python had teamed up to teach America how to cook.

Apr 20, 2020
Cover Photo: A screencap of Barefoot Contessa, in which Ina Garten, smiling as if the viewer is the only person in the world, holds up a plate of chicken wraps in offering.
How Easy Is That?: Chasing Ina Garten’s Perfection With My Mother

On other cooking shows, the cooks might make mistakes and laugh about them. Ina Garten has never made a mistake.

Feb 25, 2020
Cover Photo: photograph of cheese pizza
Why I Love Terrible Kosher Pizza, and Other Mysteries of My Jewish Life

I am no gentile, but a Jew, with chill Jewish parents, who loves the pepper-and-onion slice at Alfie’s.

Feb 05, 2020
Cover Photo: A photo of a woman's well-manicured hands kneading a piece of bread dough on a counter.
The Pioneer Woman and the Fairy Tale of Country Cooking

What does the word “country” mean? Does it mean anything on its own or does it just color in Americans’ fuzzy sense of what constitutes Americana?

Jan 22, 2020
Cover Photo: An image of Samin Nosrat in a white kitchen, smiling beatifically at someone just off-screen, as she adds herbs to a bowl of ingredients for a dinner on Salt Fat Acid Heat.
Samin Nosrat, Phil Rosenthal, and the Spirit of Eating with No Reservations

Do we hold the specialness of each meal at the core of our travel? Or is a meal that happens during a vacation a shadow of the memories it serves to create?

Nov 25, 2019