Why you should care
The Weekender is a special collaboration between OZY Tribe members near and far to provide delicious recommendations for your valuable weekend time.
WHAT TO WATCH
Salt Fat Acid Heat — Slow Food Porn. This isn’t a cooking show exactly — though you’ll see lots of cooking going on from chef and host Samin Nosrat, there’s no traditional instruction. Rather this Netflix show reminds you how to enjoy and love food, as Nosrat so obviously does. Lovingly shot, this four-episode treasure follows Nosrat on her travels to find the best of the best, offering tips about cooking, eating and tasting … and generally proving that Nosrat is the heir to Anthony Bourdain. (Recommended by Chris Kim, Eater of Snacks)
Kika — Rogue Spanish Melodrama. Nobody does trashy, flashy black comedy like Pedro Almodovar, and Kika, released in 1993, is a high-wire act that follows an escaped rapist/porn star, a tabloid journalist, a serial killer and make-up artist Kika. Almodovar’s zany, colorful film — which doesn’t shy away from violence, so consider yourself warned — doesn’t make much sense, but who cares? That was never the point. (Recommended by Eugene Robinson, Foreign Film Enthusiast)
Samurai Champloo — Classic Anime. Even if you’re not an anime fan, this classic series, available on Hulu, is worth watching an episode. If you do, you’ll no doubt watch the other 25 episodes, refusing all food and contact with the outside world until you are done. The set-up: A tea shop waitress ends up on an inadvertent samurai adventure, with a stylish mash-up of hip-hop and Edo-period Japanese history. Keep your eye out for the classic fight scene situated in a burning field of marijuana. (Recommended by Sean Culligan, Art Connoisseur)
WHAT TO READ
Beartown — Small-Town Drama. Swedish author Fredrik Backman is most famous for New York Times bestseller A Man Called Ove, but don’t underestimate his other work. Beartown and its sequel, Us Against You (released this year), are extraordinary character-driven novels focused on a small hockey-mad town, its teenage team … and the violent assault that threatens to bring it all crashing down. Did you love Friday Night Lights? This explores some of the same issues surrounding small towns, sports loyalty, gender, trauma and conflicting loyalties, but it doesn’t require committing to five entire seasons, and it’s not about American football (hockey is way more exciting as a spectator sport). Bonus: Beartown’s sequel answers all the unresolved threads from the first book, so you’ll also get some closure. (Recommended by Nicole Locantore, Team Player)
Winners Take All — Eat the Rich. Is there such a thing as a good billionaire? This fascinating analysis by author Anand Giridharadas argues that a privileged class of do-gooders is actually reinforcing an elite system without doing much to help those who need it. In an era when young people join profit-making startups spouting platitudes about “doing well by doing good,” there’s a lively debate to be had about whether billionaires spending a tiny fraction of their cash on philanthropy — while simultaneously reinforcing a system that perpetuates inequality — are really helping anyone else in the long run. Instead of relying on wealthy people whose motivations are a bit more self-involved, perhaps we should take a second look at who’s really benefiting … and what they get away with. (Recommended by Tomas Alvarez, Changemaker)
WHAT TO PLAY
Donut County — Wacky and Delicious. Look, we all have an urge to destroy and create. Maybe that manifests in insulting the people who love you, knocking down children’s block towers or using way too much unrecycled plastic. But when you get that destructive urge (or just are bored, no judgment) may we suggest Donut County, the weirdest and yet best game of the moment? In it, you play … a hole. Which eats things.
There’s a whole story alongside that, of course, involving an app that creates holes, a donut shop and a talking raccoon name BK. But mostly it’s about a beautifully designed madcap fantasy world that you proceed to swallow and destroy gleefully by solving a series of cool in-game puzzles.
While Donut County’s world is inhabited by talking animals and cartoons, it’s apparently based on Los Angeles and inspired by creator Ben Esposito’s life. When he began creating the game, it was based on Native American myth and imagery (now totally absent from Donut County), and he’s said it took years for him to come to terms with the fact that he was appropriating someone else’s culture and to do the necessary work to change the game’s design. That’s reflected in the game by talking raccoon BK, who’s unable to accept that his own behavior destroyed society — and his own life above ground. (Recommended by Ned Colin, Game Master)
And whatever you do, don’t do this …
Punch zombies who are actually just teenage girls in costumes. Police in Park City, Utah, arrested Drew Stephen Hyde, 56, after he punched and shoved five teenage girls who were dressed in costumes to promote their dance company’s spooky Halloween production. Hyde allegedly pushed some of the girls down stairs, but none suffered major injuries. (KSL)
SLIDE INTO OUR DMS
Do you have a killer potato salad recipe that you’d like to share? Think you discovered the next great jam band? Share your suggestions with us here at OZY! Email us: Weekender@ozy.com.