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 LISTEN TO
My Favorite Murder — The Light (and Dark) Side of True Crime. With the true crime genre’s elevation to high culture (thanks, Serial!) has come a barrage of high-minded yet lurid narrative journalism focusing on murder, along with straight-up parodies like American Vandal. With this podcast, comedians Georgia Hardstark and Karen Kilgariff offer a chatty, unscripted look at whatever crime’s fascinated them that week, swearing and joking the entire way. True crime and comedy shouldn’t work, but it does, and the two women touch on their own personal histories and on self-defense and other safety tips. Perhaps the most important: Hardstark and Kilgariff don’t treat the victims they discuss like a headline of the week, but as real people deserving of empathy. (Recommended by Emily Hunt, Video Star)
Never Meet Your Super Heroes — A Comic Book Investigation. The whole Reveal podcast series of fascinating, deeply investigated stories is worth a listen. But if you just have time for one — come on, you have time for one — go with “Never Meet Your Superheroes,” an episode that dives deep into the relatively new world of alt-right comic books, which feature a superhero named Rebel and his Confederate flag. Reveal’s podcasts — hosted by Al Letson — take you beyond the stats and into real people’s stories for a show that’s the archetype of what audio creative nonfiction should be. (Recommended by Theresa Sun, Avid Listener)
On Being — Faith, Plus. Everyone has their own way of periodically grappling with the question of what it means to be a person in the world, whether that’s regular church sessions, philosophical discussion groups … or Krista Tippett’s weekly podcast. A classic of the genre — it’s been on the air in one form or another since 2001 — On Being has had all kinds of people discuss their views on how to live. In the space of a few weeks this summer, episodes ranged from Yo-Yo Ma to Alain de Botton to Cory Booker, so … yeah, it’s a range. Will it help you come to terms with life? Guess you’ll have to find out. (Recommended by Tenzin Seldon, Tech Warrior)
WHERE TO GO
Sardinia — Italy, But Better. “This land resembles no other place. Sardinia is something else,” the English novelist D.H. Lawrence wrote of the Mediterranean island during his sojourn there a century ago. “It is like freedom itself.” It’s a statement that still rings true today: The fiercely independent Italian island (the locals refer to the mainland as “the continent”) has a unique dialect, Sardo, and a unique vibe. Sardinia marries the rugged hills, rocky coasts, and sunny beaches of the Greek islands with the vibrance and culture (and food!) of Italy. You’ll find the vacationing billionaires and their super yachts mostly clustered around the fine-sand beaches of the Costa Smeralda on the island’s northeast coast, but if you go a bit further south to the Golfo di Orosei, including to the tiny, charming island of Tavolara — with its single restaurant and beach bar — you can still enjoy the unspoiled freedom and distinction that so enchanted Lawrence. (Recommended by Sean Braswell, History Buff)
Caño Cristales, Colombia — The Living Rainbow. Swimming in a rainbow river sounds like a Lisa Frank fantasy, but it’s also a Colombian reality thanks to a delicate little plant called Macarenia clavigera. It lives on the river bottom, and for a brief period in the autumn it gets just enough (but not too much!) water and sunlight to turn the river into a rainbow of red, yellow and blue. Caño Cristales has only been open to tourists since 2009 — before that it was closed owing to guerrilla activity in the region — and you have to get there on horseback. No rainbow-striped unicorns, just horses. You’ll also have to be really careful not to damage the local ecosystem, so swimming’s only permitted in certain areas, and you can’t wear sunscreen because it can harm the plants. But wear sunscreen the rest of the time — even the world’s best Instagram pic isn’t worth risking skin cancer. (Recommended by Andrea Bridge, Marketing Genius)
WHAT TO EAT
Loco Moco — Bring on the Spam. Screw trendy poké bowls, this is true Hawaiian food. Few Hawaiians really eat poké or pineapples, despite their fashionable mainland moment, but they definitely eat loco moco, which is hearty, savory, meaty and delicious. In true Hawaiian fashion, it usually comes with a heaping pile of white rice, topped with a burger patty, topped with an egg and finished off with brown gravy. Typically served as part of a “plate lunch” — a standard Hawaiian meal reportedly inspired by workers of different ethnic background swapping their packed lunches while working on Hawaiian plantations — loco moco is often paired with macaroni salad (or mac salad as they say) and yet another scoop of white rice (in case you don’t already have enough). Some versions also have Spam, which is beloved in Hawaii. The state consumes a reported 7 million cans of spam per year, more than any other U.S. state, after it was popularized by GIs during World War II.
If you can make it to the islands to grab a plate from an authentic counter like Manae Goods & Grindz on Molokai, do that — but otherwise, there are plenty of mainland eateries that have cottoned on, like Shopsin’s on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. (Recommended by Amanda Bungartz, So On Brand)
And whatever you do, don’t do this…
Send a cat photo by accident. The U.S. Embassy in Australia had to apologize this week after a reported “training error” to test their email platform sent out an invitation to a “cat pyjama-jam” along with a photo of a kitty in a Cookie Monster costume. Unfortunately, rather than covering up by actually throwing a cat pyjama-jam, they owned up to the error. (BBC)
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.