Hey, Friendmendation friends. Happy (?) Memorial Day (?) even though holidays mean nothing and time no longer exists. I hope you get a chance to rest today and take care of yourself. I have some fun things for you to click on.
I’ve been a big fan of Michelle Markowitz and Caroline Moss’s “Hey Ladies!” series, an ongoing parody of dysfunctional friend groups told via passive-aggressive emails, since it started at the Toast. I was delighted to see that they wrote a quarantine update! It’s a perfect standalone entry to the “Hey Ladies!” universe for the uninitiated and just as funny for those of us who have been following these terrible ladies for years.
Hot dates at T.G.I. Friday’s
I first learned that T.G.I. Friday’s used to be a hip singles bar from a 2015 New Yorker article, and then I promptly forgot that information. So I was happy to be reminded of the fact and get even more details from Aaron Goldfarb’s recent piece for InsideHook on the bars of the time and the men and women who frequented them. One quote explains my emphasis there: “These were women doing what men have done for a long time — they were getting a drink after work.” Revolutionary! I also love the fact that the original Thank God It’s Friday! was painted baby blue with candy stripes to appear “friendly to women.”
What’s cookin, good lookin?
I continue to cook near constantly, because of how I have free time and need food to survive and restaurants are closed. I made Chrissy Teigen’s spicy miso spaghetti, a carbonara kicked up a notch with Asian flavors, because I kept seeing it on Twitter, and I can now confirm that it is that bitch. If the idea of a carbonara with spicy chili garlic sauce, miso and scallions appeals to you, you’re not gonna be disappointed. (I used tempeh bacon because I don’t eat meat and I had to lower the spice significantly because I’m pathetic.)
I also made saag paneer for the first time in my life using this excellent recipe from Aarti Sequeira. I love how detailed it was, which made it feel pretty foolproof. My grocery store didn’t have paneer so I consulted the internet and landed on Havarti as a swap and it turned out VERY GOOD. I made this whole wheat naan with it and it turned out pretty delicious too. Please share any recipes you recommend because I continue to need to feed myself.
Natalie Wynn’s videos have the highest production value I’ve ever seen on YouTube. They also consistently make me think about the world in a different way, which is probably the highest compliment I can give. Her newer videos are quite long — the one I’ve linked above, on the always-relevant topic of getting cancelled online, is her longest at an hour and 40 minutes — but all of her work is densely packed with information, well-researched, and always high-concept. She’s particularly good at nuance and compassion in issues where I react only with anger or judgment, like her video on incels or her latest, on cringe. I like the way her videos challenge me to analyze what I think and why.
Or a short little happy nostalgia blast
I remember watching this behind-the-scenes footage on my Matilda DVD when I was younger, so I was happily surprised to see someone share this on Twitter. It was probably my first exposure to practical effects in movies. It’s clearly made for children, but I still recommend it if you loved that movie as much as I did when I was a kid because it’s so nice to see the care these kind adults put into about making something for children.
Okay. That’s all. It’s a holiday. You deserve “Kiss from a Rose” by seals.