The Weekender is a special collaboration between OZY Tribe members near and far to provide delicious recommendations for your valuable weekend time.
Saturday, May 15, 2021
It’s Saturday. You’ve tidied the house, the sun’s still out, and you’re free for the rest of the day. Only, getting back out there is not as simple as it seems. A 2021 study found that social anxiety symptoms significantly increased during the COVID-19 shutdowns. I’ve felt the same myself these past weekends. Well, it’s time to break free. With many countries looking for ways to ease regulations safely ahead of summer and vaccines becoming more accessible, there’s no reason to feel stuck. In this edition of the Weekender, we’ll give you some tips for how to relax before leaving the house, places to go and new apps to find the friends to go there with. This weekend, you’re breaking out of your social distancing funk!
If going out in public still makes you uncomfortable, there’s a quick and easy fix for that! Americans 12 and up are now eligible for vaccines, with many places offering walk-ins. “The more people you get vaccinated, the more people you protect,” White House medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said recently.NBC even has an online “Plan Your Vaccine” tool that tells you where to get vaxxed by state, so there’s no excuse for not posting that essential selfie of you getting your shot!
2. CBD Gum
Another way to take the edge off this weekend is chewing your way to calm with some CBD gum. CBD enthusiasts swear by the stuff, saying it helps with anxiety, depression and even acne. Try popping a stick of this vegan, sugar-free, mint-flavored gum before going out and you’ll soon feel more at ease. If you’re wary about ingesting CBD, an alternative is to rub a CBD oil on your pulse points for a mellow chill.
3. Breathe Before You Leave
Some quick 15-minute breathing exercises can do wonders if you make them a habit before leaving the house. When we take intentional, deep breaths, our blood receives oxygen and releases carbon dioxide, promoting relaxation. Inhale, exhale and calm your mind before heading out to face the masses.
It’s time for #RealTalkRealChange. OZY and Chevrolet are teaming up for a discussion on racial disparities in America’s health care system, taking on one of the most urgent questions we face today. Hosted by OZY co-founder and Emmy Award–winning journalist Carlos Watson, who is joined by key leaders from across the country, we’re having pointed conversations to identify problems and equip you with solutions. Put aside the shouting matches and talking heads and be an ally: Join us now on YouTube for a real conversation you won’t want to miss.
Restarting your social life doesn’t necessarily mean heading straight back to packed and pumping clubs — not when botanical gardens are reopening across the country just in time for spring. These massive greenhouses not only offer a walk through exotic plant collections from all over the world, but they’ve also been found to improve mental health. Studies show that people who’ve spent 90 minutes in a natural area, as opposed to bustling urban streets, are less likely to feel depressed. So, go get some flower power.
2. Art Exhibits
These are also a great baby step if you’re antsy about getting out. Singapore has a round of upcoming showcases, like the large-scale glass sculptures of renowned artist Dale Chihuly, and London’s major galleries and museums reopen May 17. Stateside, Chicago’s Womanish exhibit offers an interactive journey through the female experience from 10 different points of view. With galleries shuttered for over a year, artists are among the professions that have been worst hit by the pandemic. Show them some love and get your culture on at the same time.
Though things are opening up, it might still be months before big outdoor festivals return, but this weekend you can do the next best thing — and avoid the line for the portaloos! Have friends round, shake up some summer cocktails and party like it matters with some of the biggest names from pop to politics at our very own OZY Fest. Described as “TED meets Coachella,” there’ll be appearances by artists H.E.R. and Sevyn Streeter, comedians Tig Notaro and Aida Rodriguez, and discussions with Dr. Anthony Fauci and Malcolm Gladwell, among many others. You can cook along at home with some top chefs, learn to meditate with Deepak Chopra and even meet your potential match on our live dating show! It’s all happening today and tomorrow, so join now.
You don’t get a profile picture on this app, as its aim is to connect like-minded strangers based on common interests alone, not looks. Using a sophisticated algorithm, it automatically connects you with people according to your hobbies. Once two users both agree to UNBLND, they can then connect and chat. As Lady Gaga sings, “We’re far from the shallow now.”
You can only meet friends of the same gender and in groups of three on this app, which is centered around the philosophy that this is the optimal number of people to create a new friendship group. The, um, threesome model also eliminates awkward silences or unwanted advances. Once matched, users must swipe through statement cards and decide whether they agree, disagree or stay neutral on each card, thus determining their tribe.
This app is great because rather than people, it pairs you to events — and ones that are aligned with your hobbies at that. It’s as simple as picking your location and interests, then you’ll be shown all the nearby happenings. You can even personalize and schedule events yourself, as well as share photos and start discussions to promote them.
You certainly won’t be a wallflower in this patchwork silk caftan from Dolce & Gabbana, which will turn heads wherever you go. Its flowy, kimono-style cut and vibrant colors will have you itching to ditch your lockdown leggings. Best of all, the piece is a natural conversation starter, so your social skills won’t look as rusty.
2. Sun’s Out, Feet Too
Show off your new pedicure this summer with these Valentino Garavani atelier leather sandals. They come in two colors, white and rose, and are a kind of haute couture spin on your favorite comfy old Birkenstocks.
3. Hater Blockers
These shades will shield you from the public gaze after a year at home, while also allowing you to surreptitiously check out the scene. The old-school look provides a unique vibe that only a few can pull off, and will give you a boost of sophistication when your social battery is running low.
If you’re not meeting friends just yet and feel weird hanging out at a cafe alone this weekend, why not look cool by donning some headphones and learning something new while you’re at it? You can listen to Malcolm Gladwell at OZY Fest this weekend, and if you like what you hear, check out his new audiobook, The Mafia Bomber. Investigating whether technology can make conflict more humane, Gladwell tells a riveting tale of obsession, innovation and the moral dilemmas of war.
2. Big Freedia
She helped popularize the New Orleans sound called bounce and notched a famous Beyoncé sample along the way. Now, the Queen Diva is bringing her sound to OZY Fest, showcasing her newest singles, “Rona Rona” and “Strut,” featuring Elohim. You won’t have trouble wooing friends with her on your playlist — or feeling free for that matter.
3. Funniest Podcast
It’s well known that laughter triggers endorphins, so if you want to get rid of the pandemic blues before you get out there again, what better way than with a funny podcast? Tig Notaro, who you can also catch at OZY Fest, has one, and so does Curb Your Enthusiasm’sJ.B. Smoove. Have a look at our list of comedic podcasts and see who tickles your funny bone!