Unsolicited Recommendations: Vol 1

Oh hello! There are some things I want you to know about. Some things that I think will make your life better – a few things to do, something to think about, and ultimately several things to talk about. And isn’t that what we need right now? Check out these unsolicited recommendations – you’re welcome!

Virtual paella class: There’s something about the holidays that makes me want seafood – maybe it’s the fact that my mom made her Italian seafood stew every Christmas Eve? So when we cancelled our flights to see my family bc of *you know what* we found a virtual cooking class for seafood paella. It totally took away some of the sting of not being with my parents last week. I’d never made paella before and had no idea how much of an art form it was and Chef Daniel made this class a total joy. While we have plenty of room for improvement – e.g. working on our soccarat which is a thing I now know about – Darrell and I had a freakin blast and it was so delicious! And Olive tried to scrounge up scraps from under the table. All in all it was a total success! (Don’t worry – Olive will get her scraps in the morning after Hadley eats the leftovers for breakfast.)

Made You Look: Over the weekend we watched “Made You Look” (Netflix) – about the largest art fraud in American history – and it was soo good! It was compelling and had an air of trashiness about the whole thing and if you enjoy art and art museums you are definitely going to love this! The whole thing is just unbelievable and because of the reputations of the people involved, the creators were able to get access to *so many people* involved in…the situation. Watch it, let’s discuss, please and thank you! Is there anything you’ve watched recently that I should add to my list?

14 Peaks: We watched this new mountaineering documentary 14 Peaks on Netflix the other night and just WOWOWOW! Have you seen it? It follows Nirmal Purja – a Nepali native – as he summits the fourteen peaks in the world that are 8,000+ meters in *7 months*, beating the previous world record by about 7 years. It’s filled with drama, intrigue, and epic views – what more could you want? Not to mention that they address head on the fact that a BIPOC has to do something infinitely more impressive than a white person to receive only a fraction of the acclaim. I mean, it’s hard not to think that if Purja was white, Netflix would have bought a whole series based on his expedition, rather than a 100 minute documentary. Instead, Purja and his team of fellow Nepalese mountaineers filmed all of the footage themselves and y’all the footage is breathtaking. Remember that photo on the front page of the NYTimes in 2019 showing the line to get to the summit of Everest, that was Purja’s photo!

This film was one of many reminders that representation matters and that the journeys we see (and that are invested in) are frequently white. But if you’re reading this you already knew that. If you’re looking for a spectacular way to spend 100 minutes this New Year, 14 Peaks on Netflix is IT. Let me know what you think!

NYTimes crossword app: My most exciting Black Friday purchase was becoming an all-access subscriber to the NYTimes – and therefore a user of the crossword app. I know. A little late to the party and also very nerdy. But hear me out. Having access to the puzzles is *so* worth it! (And it doesn’t hurt that the recipes are *fire*!) Darrell and I started racing each other in the crossword minis each day, as well as the daily crossword. While we seem to have the Monday crossword down, beyond that we have to team up to tackle them. Also we’ve had a lot of fun competing in the Spelling Bee game. So basically this is what we do while Hadley is napping. If you do the puzzles and want to compete, let me know and we can add each other to the leaderboard!

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