At Home Newsletter
What to Do This Weekend
Books, drinks, white noise.
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Welcome. I was chatting with a colleague yesterday about how loose our relationship to time has become over the past year. Last summer still feels weirdly recent; things that happened in November may as well have occurred a decade ago. The months are slippery, but March feels a bit more substantial: one year passed. The ground feels a little more solid as April approaches.
A foothold, perhaps, and a lot of promising books.
There’s “The Man Who Lived Underground,” a previously unpublished novel by Richard Wright. “Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty,” from Patrick Radden Keefe. Memoirs from Hunter Biden and John Boehner, essays from Rachel Kushner, stories by Haruki Murakami and a new novel by Jhumpa Lahiri.
I’m tearing through Becky Cooper’s “We Keep the Dead Close,” about a murder at Harvard in the 1960s, then it’s on to April’s bounty.
Ring in this final weekend of March with a honey-sweetened cocktail — the Atlanta-based bartender Tiffanie Barriere says using honey “makes it a dish more than a drink” — or try a zero-proof concoction. Pharoah Sanders and Floating Points could provide your happy hour soundtrack.
Why not have an at-home film festival of documentaries about women artists? “American Masters: Twyla Moves,” about the dancer and choreographer Twyla Tharp, premieres on PBS on Friday. HBO’s Tina Turner doc, “Tina,” arrives on Saturday.
Read Edmund White’s piece about Patricia Highsmith in T Magazine, then sign up for T Book Club’s virtual conversation about Highsmith’s “The Talented Mr. Ripley.” The conversation, which White will be leading, is scheduled for April 22.
Check out James Poniewozik’s ode to the forever GIF-able Jessica Walter, who died this week. (“Play Misty for Me” is streaming on all the usual platforms for $ 3.99. All five seasons of “Arrested Development” are on Netflix.)
And don’t miss Tara Parker-Pope’s investigation of a uniquely 2021 phenomenon: “How Did You Qualify?’ For the Young and Vaccinated, Rude Questions and Raised Eyebrows.”
Two recent tales of deception from Toronto Life are worth a read: “Heartbreaker,” about a dating-site fraudster, and “The Sting,” about an elaborate, failed scheme to nab a man suspected of murder.
I never met a creative white-noise generator I didn’t love, and “A Soft Murmur” is doing it for me this week. You can create your own custom mix of sounds: rain, crickets, birds, a coffee shop. Recommended for apartment dwellers with galumphing neighbors, parents who can’t seem to find a minute of quiet and other restless souls.
And the pianist and composer Tom Kincaid has created 20 free versions of “Happy Birthday” that you can download or stream as needed. There’s a theremin version, a ’90s TV version and one featuring “Unenthusiastic Colleagues Who Can’t Remember Your Name.”
A reader recommends
Paul Mougey in Grand Junction, Mich., has found inspiration in the Late Show archive.
My husband and I keep going back to the clip of Jennifer Hudson’s performance of “I Am Changing” on David Letterman from years ago. She is so clear, and so present, and so absolutely, optimistically rousing. The audience is jolted alive by how good she is, and so are we.
What’s helping you live well at home? Is it a movie or book, a recipe or tradition, a white-noise generator? Write to us: firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your full name and location and we might use your contribution in a future newsletter. We’re At Home. We’ll read every letter sent. More ideas for leading a full and cultured life at home or near it appear below. See you next week.