You don't always have to be doing something


  • This wonderful Sonia Sotomayor profile is well worth your time. She is the last defense for the best ideals of this country. I was also really struck by what she said about growing up with Type 1 Diabetes: "the disease also inspired in me a kind of precocious self-reliance that is not uncommon in children who feel the adults around them to be unreliable." Read it for yourself. It’s very good.

  • A decades-long grudge + mental illness + weaponized online communication + massive regulatory gaps that ruin people's lives= my nightmare

  • "Perhaps the most striking thing about AOC’s broadcast was her willingness to admit that she had been frightened, that she had been hurt, without allowing the idea that this somehow undermined her claim to power." This essay is a brilliant articulation of why so many of us were moved to tears as the Congresswoman from NY shared her plea for accountability. Related: a smart take on why the Congresswoman’s distress inconveniences the right wingers and their fake call for unity.

  • "He is doing so many things, at 94, that many people without dementia cannot do. He really is the symbol of hope for someone with a cognitive disorder." This story about Tony Bennett is really lovely and heartbreaking at the same time and it's worth noticing the words that do NOT appear in it: "disappear" "fade" or "erase"

  • Dealing with some lower back pain so I’ve been thinking a lot about this story about what it's like to live in a world without pain.

  • The poet Maggie Smith says she takes some time alone each day to recalibrate. She calls it a "snow globe moment" — pressing pause on the outside world and spending time on things that make her feel most like herself.

  • One thing about me: if there’s a 5000 word bankruptcy story, I will drop everything to read it. If it’s a 5000 word bankruptcy story about an artisanal hipster food haberdashery, I will make sure everyone I know reads it with me!

  • Housing that is safe, clean, and affordable is a human right so I really appreciated this explanation of how background checks harm formerly incarcerated people

  • The inaugural episode of Sonos Radio’s Black is Black is very good and focuses on the diaspora of Black Social Dances.

  • The kids are saying under eye circles are cool now. Great news for me and Pete Davidson. The kids are so weird and it’s so extra weird how specific beauty standards are. That said I love that the kids are also into freckles and big noses over on tiktok. God bless the kids.

  • Pfizer is doing nasal swabs on vaccinated people to help answer a key COVID unknown—how often vaccinated people develop asymptomatic coronavirus infections and whether they can still spread the virus, despite getting the shot. There’s still so much we don’t know about this disease. Related: A good read from a physician who is about to get the vaccine and what behaviors we shouldn't change until we know for certain it protects other unvaccinated people

  • The Great Jenny Han came on the pod this week and it’s so extra cozy.

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TV I enjoyed watching

A soothing and charming British tv show about a 1930s vet || A French comedy about a Paris talent agency || A French political thriller that has no business being as good as it is but dammit! It’s so good. || The West Wing: Denmark but a million times better than the West Wing: USA || An irreverent, gothic take on Emily Dickinson || A mellow, meditative hang with John Lurie || A tv show about the burgeoning gay scene of early Eighties London || another great David Attenborough-led BBC nature documentary

Set your calendar for February 12: TATB 3!


  • You will always find the ingredients to this delicious feta salsa in my apartment. It’s a top 3 comfort food and lately I’m having it all the time. I know. I know. Some of you are thinking “girl, sun dried tomatoes? aka raisins for adults?!” Trust me. I too was skeptical but I’ve been eating this dip for 13 years and it really hits the spot. Also delicious as a sandwich spread.

  • Spanakopita is a dish I struggle with. Probably because I am not wild about phyllo dough but I truly love all the other component parts especially the spinach. I always find myself eating the filling and shamefully setting the flaky pastry aside. Enter this genius baked pasta brought to my attention by Ann. The recipe people suggest you use dill or parsley but my strong feeling is that you should use dill.

  • A man I used to eat meals with once told me that making tuna salad isn’t really cooking because you don’t use a stove. Sir, cooking is “the practice or skill of preparing food by combining, mixing, and heating ingredients!” Do not eat meals with men who don’t own dictionaries. Please. It’s the perfect lunch situation for me and I eat it year round. It’s also so deceptively “easy” to make that many idiots think you don’t need a recipe. I myself don’t generally follow recipes carefully. I read the instructions and I take them under advisement but I like to freestyle. I had been freestyling tuna salad for years and then I made a disappointing one. There is art to cooking but it is mostly science. Rules and order are still important. There’s no shame in going back to the basics. Tuna salad is a classic for a reason.

Things I bought

Whimsical jewelry with some edge || The perfect house dress || Fun candles || Dramatic sconces || my haribo flavor of the month introduced to me by someone who bakes the most delicious things || Delicious tropical fruit introduced to me by the most tasteful ladies.

Things I want someone else to buy

Life Pro Tip

I gave The Strategist my 2 eyewear secrets:

  1. turn fun sunglasses into eyeglasses

  2. for the perfect fit, go to a real optometrist instead of those online hipster eye haberdasheries!

Hang in there

“You don't always have to be doing something. You can just be, and that's plenty.” — Alice Walker

Let’s find some time to rest, OK? See you Wednesday.