Friday, May 29, 2020

Sam's Weekly Quarantine Digest #12, May 28, 2020

Hi all,

This week, my thoughts have been filled with one overwhelming emotion: gratitude.  Reading stories like this one have made me grateful for so much in my life, including much that we normally take for granted.  I am grateful for my husband (who has been putting up with my quarantine self with no breaks and has been my tether to sanity), my family (some of whom have been lucky enough to recover from Covid-19 and all of whom have been supporting me since long before this virus showed up), my friends (so many of whom are receiving this email and have taken the time to talk to me on Zoom or over email recently), my job (which is interesting and challenging), my colleagues (who are supportive and brilliant and have quickly become friends as well as coworkers), my past experiences (which have led me to so many opportunities), my apartment (where my husband and I can both work comfortably), my kitchen (where I have spent so many hours over the past few months), my collection of jigsaw puzzles and video games and books (which have made me smile and helped me relax), the sunlight streaming through my windows, the many communities to which I belong, for Amazon and FreshDirect (without which I would not have been able to quarantine as safely as I have), for Zoom (for connecting me with my family and my friends and allowing my work to continue seamlessly from home), for everyone who has continued to work during these crazy times to provide so many different services and goods for those of us who are lucky enough to be able to stay at home, for the doctors and scientists who are working on treatments and vaccines so that this crisis can finally come to an end, and for so very many other things.  All of these roses have thorns as well, but I've been taking a minute to focus on and appreciate the beautiful side.

These are crazy times - everything seems off-kilter, and it's easy to feel unfulfilled at the end of another nameless day (this email is late this week because I honestly didn't realize it was Wednesday last night).  But we have so much to be thankful for.  Take a moment to pause and look around you.  Think about those you love.  Even if you're going through difficult times right now, even if you're struggling with loss or uncertainty or fear, there is so much around you that is wonderful - don't forget to look for it.  Whether you call the glass half-full or not, remember that it's never truly empty.  If there is anything I can do for you, please don't hesitate to reach out - I'm always here for you to lean on.

If you have suggestions or would like to stop receiving these emails, just let me know.  Previous digests can be found on my blog at


Because you're free
  • We are all lucky enough to be able to vote.  New York's presidential primary has been rescheduled for June 23rd.  Be sure to request your absentee ballot (or register if you haven't already).  The deadline for registration is Friday, May 29th; for requesting absentee ballots, it's June 16th.  You can request your ballot here (check "temporary illness" as the reason for your request - it's allowed under a recent executive order from Cuomo).  You can register here.  See here for other deadlines and instructions (such as change of address).
Because you're hungry
  • Cooking at home?  Try this Shake Shack cheeseburger pasta recipe
  • Looking to take your cooking up a notch?  Michelin-starred chefs across the world are sharing their favorite recipes!  Follow them at #MichelinGuideAtHome, or see here for a few examples if you're not on Instagram.
  • Looking for snacks on the way to your next socially-distanced picnic in a NYC park?  Check out these recommendations near the most popular parks in the city.
  • Last month, the Department of Education launched a grab-and-go lunch program for children who relied on school meal programs since schools are closed.  Now, the program has expanded to include three free meals a day for ALL New Yorkers in need - not just students.  See here for details about the 435 locations across the city where you can pick up meals if you need them.
Because you're bored
  • Have a talent you want to share with the world?  Some people have found the quarantine to be a time of great creativity, from garage bands to armchair artists.  Since the small venues, galleries, and theaters Time Out would normally visit to discover underground talent are all closed right now, they've invited up-and-coming stars to share their best stuff on social media (Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and Twitter) with the hashtag #TOinsidevoices.  If you're lucky, you'll book a showcase at the Time Out Market stage when they reopen!
  • 14 New York Times writers have shared 14 ways we're getting through these terrible times and even finding some JOY.  I hope it makes you smile as much I did when I read it!
  • Friday, May 29th, from 5-10pm is the final part of a three-day livestream to raise awareness about mental healthStronger Than You Think will cover a wide range of topics and provide support for younger generations struggling during this unprecedented time.  Performers will include stars like Glenn Close, Adam Lambert, and Liam Payne.
  • The Nerve Tank will be presenting interactive performance theater every Wednesday in June, from 12-6pm (with a recording aired every Sunday).  You can influence the performance by sending messages through their digital platform.
  • Looking for book recommendations?  Check out these selections from indie bookstores across the city.
  • Need a reminder that People Are Awesome?  Check out this YouTube channel full of videos showcasing all the amazing things we are capable of.
Because you want to give back
  • On Saturday morning, the pastry chef from the downtown restaurant Crown Shy, Sumaiya Bangee, will be hosting a cook-along brunch session.  The $5 ticket fee is a donation to Rethink Food, which helps repurpose excess food to fight both food waste and hunger.  Get your ticket here.
  • The Public Theater's fundraiser, We Are One Public, is on Monday.  Check out the online auction here (including coffee with Liev Shreiber and a cooking class with Andrew Carmellini), and tune in Monday night to see a truly incredible cast of performers!
Because you want to get fit
  • Check out these fun ways to get the whole family motivated and engaged with your workouts.
Because you want to go to law school
  • Starting law school this fall?  Harvard Law School has made its "Zero-L" online course for incoming students available to other schools for free this summer.

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