It’s interesting to be living through this time right now. I rarely leave my house these days unless it’s to go to the local market or to grab a quick coffee and even then, I return right home. Someone that I follow on Instagram has been venturing around different neighborhoods in New York City to capture the emptiness. I think about this a lot too and in a way, want to be able to take these shots of the most quiet San Francisco has ever been. While I may be a bit, risk averse, I am glad to know that others are capturing these moments so that we can always look back on them.
This video, taken in Los Angeles, was actually made in 2014 and is not current.
Putting together “The Closet” this month hit a little bit differently than usual. With everything going on, the desire to shop or spend money on non-essential belongings just isn’t a priority. However, I don’t want things to stop entirely. The Closet has been a regular post since the very beginning. We can’t help that through this, we’ve now entered spring. What I decided was that it’s important to have choices and to allow all of us to make our own decisions. Me not spending money right now is a personal choice, but for all of you that maybe lean on shopping as a distraction or to have a little joy (like I’ve done before) by all means, go ahead!
As much as possible, I want to try and keep some kind of normalcy during this quarantine. Sundays are my days for unwinding so that usually means being in my lounge wear, running errands, getting ready for the week, catching up on new music and television shows. Aside from running errands, we can do almost all of that. I’m also aware that having more time now, I’m able to create new routines for myself. I can spend more time on making a Sunday dinner that will set me up for the week once we return to work. Hopefully that’s not too ambitious!
In the last week five new albums came out that I was anticipating. Technically The Weeknd was the week before, but whatever. Dua Lipa’s album was released a couple weeks early due to it being leaked. I saw that she was upset at the news, but on the upside, it’s truly a bop and one of my new favorites.
If you’re looking for some new music to fill your time, here is what I’m listening to:
During the award show circuit this year, there were constant conversations about how the Oscars continue to be so white. Two pieces of criticism involved both “The Farewell” and “Parasite.” Awkwafina and Lulu Wang didn’t deserve to be snubbed for their work in “The Farewell.” For Parasite, why could they only be recognized for Best Picture, Director or Ensemble and not for the work that the individual actors and actresses did in this film? It was a mystery.
Be Kind Rewind is a YouTube channel that focuses on Hollywood history. In this particular episode, they explore why Asian actors and actresses continue to struggle in 2020 with recognition, but that there has been a long history of it prior. In order for us to change and move forward, we have to understand how it started.
We made it through two full weeks of working from home with shelter-in-place. It also happens to be the amount of time I would’ve been in self-quarantine regardless after getting back from Thailand. There is still a long road ahead of us. Throughout the two weeks, friends have been checking in with me constantly. Because of my living situation, it was assumed that I’d be lonely or stir-crazy. In reality though, we’ve sort of been built for this.
In the days leading up to today, I noticed a change in myself. The jet lag has come and gone so I knew it wasn’t that. I found that my productivity was dropping. I could get through an hour-long meeting, but find that I needed a break right afterwards. In a normal work day at the office, I could have back-to-back meetings with almost no breaks from start to finish and move to my evening plans with ease. These days, I’m exhausted for no good reason. I should be getting the best sleep of my life at this point now, but I’m not. A few friends described it to me recently: you feel this overwhelming sensation of dread, confusion, sadness, exhaustion, but you don’t know where it comes from and it’s not impacting you directly. You read the news, but it changes constantly and your mind is consumed with information.
It’s unexplainable, but I know this to be true. These aren’t normal work from home days. We are working around a pandemic and yes, in some cases we are lucky… privileged to be able to work from home, have a job, have a home, etc. But our minds go elsewhere.
This morning, I woke up to my Twitter feed as I usually do and I caught this segment of Hoda Kotb on Today. I didn’t even catch the whole segment, just this clip. Upon watching it, I found myself in tears as well. What she expressed on the air is exactly how many of us feel inside. I haven’t cried in weeks, but I recognized that same feeling almost immediately.
There are many long days ahead of us. We are three months in, but already this is the longest year. I hope that all of you can be safe during this time, but to take care of your families and more importantly yourself.
With everything happening with Covid-19, there is no shortage of things to watch. Though movie releases are being pushed back, some television series like our favorite “Killing Eve” is releasing their 3rd season two weeks early. It’s nice to see some small upside in the gloomy times we’re living in. I caught wind of two new movie trailers yesterday though that feature Asian leads.
Sometimes if I share the synopsis, I feel like I’m giving too much away so for now I just want to plug the trailers. Something to look forward to! I think both films will be extremely relatable and I’m excited to watch both.
I’m not sure when I was made first aware of this, but I’ve always been a routine person. I love the idea of having a schedule that I can follow and getting competitive with my own to-do-list. In these times of uncertainty, creating a new routine for myself was made a priority. Honestly, last week was a wash. I was coming off of travel fatigue and adjusting to shelter-in-place while trying not to panic shop at the grocery store. Now halfway into my second week of working from home, I still don’t quite have it down.
The second day into my work from home last week, one of my favorite artists Ben Gibbard announced that he’d do a Facebook live every day at 4PM and perform songs for an hour. This didn’t exclude weekends! There were no shortcuts. Sometimes he includes The Postal Service! He has stayed true to his word of showing up at 4PM every day and actually, so have I.
In fact, I’m so committed that I have a standing event on my calendar from 4-5PM that I hold myself accountable for and don’t book over. In a working from home situation, it’s so easy to get carried away with things you have to do. Of course, we all know this; there’s always something to do. This 4-5PM time is time for myself. I can choose to work if I want, but I’ll have the stream going on my second laptop so that I can still watch. Or if I decide not to work, I’ll spend just this hour watching in solitude. In an hour, Ben performs about 6-8 songs, does a Q&A with fans, and shares an organization that he wants us all to give back to that day.
I haven’t seen Death Cab for Cutie perform since I was living in Seattle. I’ve got the same excuses as all of you. Sometimes there isn’t the time or the money. For this, we have no excuse. It truly is like watching the real thing, but in a way even better.
If you’re up for joining me tomorrow, feel free to visit this [link] at 4PM. I’ll be here regardless. And if you’re not ready to commit yet, here’s a video from his first stream published on YouTube afterwards.
I’m starting to wind down for the night, but I wanted to make sure I ended the night on a high note (literally!) “Love on Top” is one of my favorite feel-good songs. I can’t wait till I’m able to sing and dance to this one again at an upcoming wedding. Good night!