The Weekender is a special collaboration between OZY Tribe members near and far to provide delicious recommendations for your valuable weekend time.
Saturday, March 20, 2021
What does the perfect day off look like? Today, we take a stab at crafting one, mixing up a classic childhood tradition with some Japanese anime, sipping on fizzy gin and Hawaiian beers, visiting an Indian thrift store you can peruse from anywhere in the world and some physical (and mental) fitness to top it all off. Because we’re cool like that, we’ll even tuck you in with some cozy ways to get a perfect night’s sleep. Welcome to the Weekender. I will be your guide today, so please keep your hands and feet inside at all times … Just kidding! On this ride, you get to sprawl out as much as you like.
Joshua Eferighe, Reporter
your morning, early riser … or not (6 a.m. to noon)
Lying in bed on sleepy mornings, watching cartoons ungroomed and without a care in the world, was once a sacred childhood ritual. So for our perfect weekend, it only makes sense to bring it back, right? If you’ve been out of the animation game, Aggretsuko is the way to go. The Japanese anime is a spin-off of the famous Hello Kitty character Retsuko, who, in this telling, is a shy red panda miserable at her desk job. At night, though? Well, that’s when Retsuko transforms into a death metal karaoke superstar. Escape your workday blues with these trippy three seasons on Netflix.
2. sunrise yoga
Of course, some of you may not be content staying in bed. Early risers should consider joining yogi Adriene Mishler and her dog, Benji, for some sunrise yoga — although don’t fret if you’re reading this late, as her workouts are all archived online. The routine is 15 minutes of basic stretches and strengthening exercises for all skill levels. The actress and co-owner of Practice Yoga Austin founded Yoga With Adriene to make the benefits of yoga accessible to all with her free, high-quality sessions on YouTube. The entrepreneur also provides a monthly themed calendar with an accompanying playlist to make joining her online community of 9 million-plus even more appealing.
3. twinkies for breakfast
You can choose to eat right. Or you can embrace the weekend … by tossing out all thoughts of responsibility. If you are of the latter camp like me, then consider sleeping in and then crunching down on a bowl of Twinkies for breakfast. Yep, there’s a cereal for that. At nearly 200 calories per bowl, your diet may not appreciate this wake-up call. But while the mind may be strong, the flesh is weak, and these bite-size mini Twinkies are a delightfully surreal treat. Pick them up at Walmart.
If you missed them the last time around, the sneakers we can’t get enough of are back — and just in time for spring! These all-season low-tops are OZY’s favorite look for dressing up or down. But don’t wait around — these comfy kicks fly off the shelves and won’t be here for long.
Staying inside on the weekends should be a crime. But if you’re in a region where lockdown measures are still in place, virtual options abound. I suggest exploring the Dalí Theatre-Museum in Spain. With a layout and vision crafted by the surrealist Salvador Dalí himself, this museum is home to the single largest and most diverse collection of his work, ranging from holograms and sculptures to other artifacts representing his artistic journey. Among the many offerings are some of his most famous, such as Port Alguer, The Spectre of Sex-Appeal and Soft Self-Portrait With Grilled Bacon.Not in Spain? Check out the virtual tour here.
2. time to thrift
Ah, the chaos of the thrift store — a weekend staple. Any professional bargainer knows a trip to the resale store is a mission where your only assignment is to find deals and make it back safely to your family. While COVID has stripped this bargaining affair away in the physical sense, some store owners shifted online. One particularly fantastic one is the Indian-based online thrifting treasure The Fine Finds. Founded by Bengaluru-based entrepreneur Aparna Balasubramanian, you can find vintage options from ’60s-style floral patterns to jersey dressespopular in the aughts. Leave the anxiety behind this time — just go to Instagram for some stress-free shopping.
3. field trip to a brewery
Let’s face it, if you’re living in Hawaii, every day is a weekend. But a tour around Maui Brewing Co. will give even paradise a new edge. Beyond having a restaurant with fresh local food, beer tastings and souvenirs, this brewery is an island gem known for its unique flavors, such as the Pineapple Mana Wheat and the Pau Hana Pilsner. Not in Hawaii but wishing you were? Maui’s brews are in the mainland too — just put your ZIP code into this form and find the perfect restaurant or store selling the types of sips that will make you dance a hula and shout “Aloha!”
If you’re like us, you’ve gotten used to working from the comfort of home wrapped in cozy blankets and might dread the idea of putting on “real clothes.” With Outerknown’s Blanket Shirt, your problem is solved: It is rugged, sustainable and the coziest shirt ever. Don’t let its stylishness fool you: The Blanket Shirt can also stand up to the elements and function as an extra layer on chilly nights. And now its available in men’s and women’s!
With this recipe, there’s no excuse not to get a little creative in the kitchen. Shakshouka (also known as chakchouka) is a perfect entrée to experiment with, because it’s easy, fast and filling. The Israeli dish calls for pepper, onions, tomatoes and eggs, seasoned with rich, tangy spices of cumin, paprika and chili pepper. Usually served for breakfast, the recipe is so tasty you’ll find yourself craving it even in the dead of night.
2. watch, then change the world
You can’t fix the problems you didn’t know existed, and that’s why it’s time for some “Real Talk, Real Change.” The Carlos Watson Show special tackles the thorny issue of race in America’s health care system, asking why the majority of white doctors believe racist myths and addressing the unease Black patients face. While educational, the real power of the special is in the intimate discussions with everyone from Gabrielle Union and Sen. Cory Booker to Charlamagne Tha God and Rep. Lauren Underwood. The curtain really drops when OZY CEO and host Carlos Watson reveals his own mother may have passed away prematurely after her concerns were ignored by her doctor. Check it out now on YouTube.
3. catch up on some reading
The golden hours are the perfect time to cozy up with a book. OZY Editor-at-Large Christina Greer recommends When My Name Was Keoko, a work of historical fiction about Sun-hee and her older brother Tae-yul, who lose their identity — their language, flag, customs, even their names — when Korea comes under Japanese occupation. With family as her only sense of normalcy, Sun-hee is shocked when her brother enlists in the Japanese army to serve in World War II. Written by Linda Sue Park, the book touched Greer so much that she actually wrote to the author to send her regards.
And to inspire the kids? Michelle Obama’s memoir Becoming has now been adapted for young readers. Obama emerged from the South Side of Chicago to graduate from Princeton and Harvard Law School, later becoming an iconic nonprofit director and executive. The memoir offers a fascinating character study of a woman who had no interest in fame — then wed a man who would one day become the first Black U.S. president, a relationship that would need to evolve and adapt to their constantly changing circumstances.
4. fizzy gin
This thick, foamy cocktail can pass as a milkshake with its souffle-like finish, thanks to its egg white and heavy cream build. Named the Ramos Gin Fizz after Henry Charles “Carl” Ramos, who invented it in New Orleans back in 1888, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how well the gin, citrus and club soda complement some of those less traditional additions. The best part? You can easily make this from the comfort of your home.
This may be the only documentary that actually wants to put you to sleep — and you’ll be glad it did. TheScience of Sleep is a wonderful deep dive into the troubling effects of everything from sleep apnea to insufficient rest, exploring the causes of sleep problems in order to discover the solutions to stave them off. Led by Dr. Michael Smith, director of the Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program at Johns Hopkins University, it’s currently airing on CuriosityStream, a fascinating new streaming platform with thousands of nonfiction films and series covering everything from food and animals to space exploration. And you can use our code, “OZY,” to get all that for just $12 per year.
2. refine your atmosphere
Your bedroom is your sanctuary, a place of refuge. So there’s no enjoying a good weekend with it in a funk. Air purification systems remove allergens, dust and other particles that make breathing difficult. But more than just cleaning up your air, these devices give your space an energy boost too. Samsung’s Cube Smart Air Purifier is wind-free and virtually silent, making it a seamless decor addition. A couple of nights breathing this and you’ll never want to sleep without one again.
3. for side sleepers
Life can be painful if you’re a side sleeper. Pillows don’t naturally fit between your head and shoulder, leaving your neck slouching all night as a result. And while folding the pillow can work, who feels like doing bedtime origami? This contour memory foam side sleeper from Bed Bath & Beyond provides support that also cradles your head, solving those restless nights. Ain’t nobody got time for turning and tossing on their day off.
4. sleep smarter
There’s now a much easier way to fend off the Sandman. This SmartSleep light therapy lamp by Philips is designed to guide you to the best rest possible, using built-in sensors that monitor your bedroom’s temperature, noise, light and humidity levels to recommend your best sleep setting. Fall asleep with its light-guided breathing program and wake up naturally with its colored sunrise. Don’t you feel more serene just reading about it?