Issue #72: The One Word I Picked to Guide This Year
Plus a recap of my trip to Costa Rica!
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📺 “Kindred” on Hulu: In playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ contemporary adaptation of Octavia E. Butler’s 1970s novel, Dana James has recently bought a home in 2016 Los Angeles when she begins having hyper-realistic nightmares that she is in pre-Civil War Era South. Except that it’s really happening: Dana keeps toggling between her life as an aspiring television writer and a violent existence as a slave in the early 19th century, vanishing before others’ eyes each time she does. She quickly discovers that her parents, who she believed to be dead, have been in the Antebellum alternate universe too, setting the tone for a chilling time-travel mystery. Watch if you enjoyed “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
📚 Your Table Is Ready: Tales of a New York City Maître D by Michael Cecchi-Azzolina: I expected this memoir to jump straight into the nitty gritty of the author’s three decades working in the restaurant industry. Instead, it begins with his childhood in Brooklyn, a ‘Goodfellas’-reminiscent stream of Italian mobsters, warming us up for the “sex, drugs, and an array of misbehaviors perpetrated by both staff and guests” at some of New York’s finest establishments. But have no fear, this memoir has all the juicy satisfaction of the best accounts of working front of house, like the 2009 memoir Waiter Rant and Stefanie Danler’s novel Sweetbitter. A fun, quick read to kick off your year!
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