Every Saturday, we're each picking our favorite non-pencil, at-home activity from the week to share with you! We'd love to hear what you've been loving this week in the comments.
Alyx: I have found myself a member of a number of Zoom clubs during social distancing, including a Monday Night Lecture Club, started by some of my grad school friends. Every Monday night, one of us gives a short PowerPoint presentation on a topic we find interesting. It's my turn to go this upcoming Monday, and I have been researching the Bagel Bakers Local 338, a labor union that existed for about sixty years in the 20th century.
They were a small but powerful union that was difficult to get into (you had to be a blood relative of a member and fluent in Yiddish, among other things) and they were responsible for a number of "bagel famines" during the '50s and '60s. The photo you see above of their 1940 Executive Board comes from Jason Turbow, whose great-grandfather is pictured in it. Jason also wrote a really good piece on the Local 338's skirmish with the Mafia in the last 1960s. I have had a wonderful time researching this union and putting together a presentation--it feels like I'm using my brain in a different way, and that's a nice feeling these days. I suppose I am endorsing both Lecture Clubs and the Bagel Union, and overall deep dives into curious topics you find interesting.
Esther: My mini playlist-making is still going strong! This week's mix is self-explanatory– it's called "Happy, Plain and Simple." I tried to round up songs that offer all different flavors of bright, bubbly, refreshing energy, so in terms of sound, it bounces around a bit.
For my Reading Rainbow fans out there, I threw in an 8-bit/chiptune version I really enjoy. Maybe the nostalgia factor will help lift your spirits! I'm fairly sure this original version sung by Tina Fabrique (found above) is what I grew up with as a 90s baby, but maybe others remember the 2001 revamp sung by Chaka Khan– both are good! If you're ready to get happy, tune in here.
Caroline - Yesterday it was announced that in NYC, all curbside food waste pick ups will be suspended until further notice. This is a problem for me, because I'm in the habit of keeping a bag of veggie scraps in my freezer, which I drop off at the bins around my neighborhood every couple of weeks. So, with a little extra time on my hands and a freezer full of scraps, I did some research and made my own bin. I found a rubbermaid container with a tight lid, drilled some holes into the lid and lined the bottom with some shredded paper (shredded from old bank statements I needed to shred anyway, so win-win for me!) and mixed it all up with my food waste. I am fortunate to have an outdoor space with a garden in my apartment, so I stuck the bin outside and will keep adding to it and turning it. Now I'm just wondering if I need to find a way to acquire some worms...
Julianne:No sad poetry this week. It may have taken me a half dozen YouTube videos to get the hang of things again, but I have successfully revived a childhood pastime. Friendship bracelets! This time around I decided to go for a color palette that felt more suitable to adult me. It's pretty relaxing to have something to pick up and work at while I'm FaceTiming my partner or catching up on Schitt's Creek. Just don't look too closely at those knots.