T LOunge for May 14th, 2021

Posted on May 14, 2021

Le Train Bleu Bar and Restaurant – Gare de Lyon, Paris, France


GRANDEUR, darlings! Pronounced the FRENCH way! That is what today’s LOunge is all about. Let the fabulousness and opulence wash over you like a fine wine or a good muscle relaxant. You’ve earned the luxury. No, really. Take it. Enjoy it. Feel no guilt whatsoever about it. You have our blessing to be as extra as you wanna be today. Why? Oh, we think you know why.

Today is FRIDAY. Blessings upon the all-mother Frigga for bestowing this day upon us. And for giving us Thor.

So, are we all masks-off today? Haha, just kidding. The CDC changed their guidelines yesterday and there was a 12-hour meltdown on social media. We gave our thoughts on mask anxiety and judgment in our newsletter this week, but we have to admit, we’re becoming a bit exhausted by the pockets of hysteria in any discussion of masks. It’s so tribal and politicized, and people are so traumatized after the last year-plus that it feels impossible to have any sort of productive conversation about it. We don’t necessarily consider the CDC to be faultless in its proclamations, but we’re going to continue to navigate the world according to our own mask guidelines. In talking about it last night, we realized we’re not both on the same page mask-wise (one of us wants to stick with it for a good while, the other keeps talking about all the studies indicating when they’re not needed), but that doesn’t bother us at all. That may not make much sense, to have people in the same household using different mask protocols, but after this year, we’re damn sure not going to argue about it. Our take on masks if you’re vaccinated: You do you.


Laura Dern On Jurassic World, Coffee With David Lynch, And Working With The American Lung Association
“Even pre-COVID, of waking up during the MeToo movement, and Time’s Up and gender disparity in workplace environments, I feel honored that Ellie Sattler has been brought into the room a few times with quotes. And it means a lot to play characters that reflect a point of view or a mission statement in the dialogue I’ve gotten to say.
And in playing her again, most recently, I feel proud to play strong women who, yes, are feminists, but more importantly are just standing up for what’s right environmentally, in terms of respect, with humility and with dignity. And even when I play awful and complicated people who are selfish and misguided, those characters also give room to learn from them in a varied kind of way.”


Men’s Diamond Rings Are Making Comeback
Why should women have all the fun?

When Tiffany’s announced earlier this month that it would sell men’s diamond solitaire engagement rings for the first time in the brand’s 184-year history, it caught everyone’s attention. That’s because, as America’s longtime authority on jewelry etiquette, Tiffany’s had never made big diamonds available for men, and this move reflected our changing times. Men are embracing statement jewels, and gender-free style is here to stay—along with same-sex unions. And shouldn’t men have an equal opportunity to enjoy great jewels?


Yes, There Is Such a Thing as Drinking Too Much Water
Read this before you chug a gallon of water in the name of health.

Giant water bottles have exploded on social media, with influencers often espousing how they’re in “water-drinking competitions” with friends or that their new goal is to drink multiple gallons per day. Which sounds great, honestly. Out of every nebulous wellness trend, “drinking enough water” feels more common sense than taking a new supplement each week or downing celery juice. Water is … water. No one can debate that, and plenty of people don’t drink enough of it. But overhydration—a.k.a. drinking too much water—is a real concern with real consequences.


You Should Freeze Leftover Wine
Can’t finish a bottle before it oxidizes? No problem. Pop that wine in the freezer and use it for cooking.

Even the most dedicated wine drinker runs into the bottle problem. You have a glass of wine, maybe two, but finishing the bottle isn’t a great idea if you want to wake up the next morning without a headache. It’s particularly true if you live alone, or with someone who doesn’t drink wine, thata whole bottle can be a lot to finish. Once you open the bottle, the wine begins to oxidize, and that means that having another glass from the same bottle a few days or a week later will be a completely different wine experience. There are various devices that can help with that, if it’s a regular problem. But if you’re stuck with wine leftovers now and then and don’t want to waste, what can you do? Simple: Freeze your wine.


Hacky Birthday Gucci! As the Brand Turns 100, a Look Back at Its Evolution
To hack it means to be successful, and Gucci—celebrating its 100 birthday this year—is undoubtedly so. What started in Florence as a small, family-owned business has become a global behemoth, experiencing exponential growth since the 1990s. When Alessandro Michele became creative director in 2015, he brought a new, more inclusive perspective. As the brand has noted, he has “introduced a new narrative, one that includes a remarkable emphasis on words.”


How the Spy Who Gave Away England’s Biggest Secrets Escaped From Prison
A new book examines the motives and secrets of George Blake, a British double agent who escaped to Russia after being caught for betray…

In 2012, the Paris-based veteran journalist Simon Kuper reached out to a friend in Moscow and asked if there was any way he could help arrange a meeting with George Blake, the English double agent who spied for the Soviet Union for 17 years. It was a long shot, Blake had been keeping a low profile for political reasons, but the answer came back yes, and not long after Kuper found himself in the backyard of Blake’s dacha near the Russian capital.


A Brief History of the Legendary Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc
The luxurious French Riviera retreat, which reopens post-Covid on June 4, is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year.

In the opening lines of his fourth and final novel, Tender Is The Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald describes a “large, proud, rose-colored hotel” nestled on the French Riviera between Marseilles and the Italian border and about five miles from Cannes: “Deferential palms cool its flushed facade, and before it stretches a short dazzling beach. Lately it has become a summer resort of notable and fashionable people…”
What Fitzgerald called Gausse’s Hôtel des Étrangers was of course modeled after the Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc, a glittering refuge for the one percent since 1870. For 150 years, the property has served as the sun-kissed home away from home for titans of literature (Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Stefan Zweig, Noël Coward), film (Marlene Dietrich, Alain Delon, Elizabeth Taylor, who brought all of her husbands there, and every Hollywood A-lister in town for Cannes), art (Chagall, Picasso, Matisse), music (John and Yoko, Jane and Serge, Ella Fitzgerald), politics (Churchill, De Gaulle, the Kennedys), and high society (Russian aristocrats, the Duke of Windsor and Wallis Simpson).


How Andrew McCarthy Became the Movies’ Favorite Rich Kid
In his new memoir, the actor recalls surviving life as a member of the 1980s most infamous celebrity clique.

There’s a lot wrong with the world, but, thankfully, Andrew McCarthy is still very good looking. That’s probably of little surprise to those that saw him in 1980s classics like St. Elmo’s Fire or Pretty in Pink; he has the sort of face that should age gracefully, with sweet blue eyes and the head of hair is still perfect. But, like any dad, the 58-year-old actor, director, and writer still has to convince his kids that he used to be cool.
“It’s so funny to see my kids wearing these massively oversized clothes, the way Billie Eilish is now. And I’m like, See! That was me in 1982.”


The New Rules Of Weddings
Slashed guest lists, lateral flow tests with your blinis, upcycled dresses, vaccinated nans going wild, back garden parties and a whole lot of love. Welcome to a new era of matrimony.

Change is coming, but for those who have weathered planning hell – cancelled, rebooked and then cancelled venues again; invited, then uninvited guests; and downsized a sumptuous baroque extravaganza into a back garden shindig for their nearest and dearest – there is a unique camaraderie and depth of feeling that will prevail. And the wedding, in whatever contorted, creatively reimagined shape it takes, will probably be one of the most heartfelt and fun the lucky guests will have ever attended. But there’s no doubt that we’ve had to adapt, so here’s what weddings look like now…


A TikToker made a wall of color with 1,000 free paint-chip samples from Home Depot, and people are loving it
In the video from May 5, Capri thanks a Home Depot employee who she says let her take home 1,000 paint-strip samples to cover her wall. She then shows a quick montage of the installation process and the end result, which made for a mural-like rainbow of color.
The very first step of the hack, which Capri leaves out, is to convince a Home Depot employee to let you take 1,000 paint samples for free.
“I work at Home Depot,” one user commented. “I wonder how many people are going to come in and do this now.”


Bringing Challah Into the Mainstream
Dolly Meckler, of Challah Dolly, ships loaves nationwide; Erez Blanks, of Parchment, in Brooklyn, offers bread boxes that include Israeli-inspired salads, sides, and dips.
In March of last year, Dolly Meckler, like so many others, decided to try her hand at sourdough. “And then I read a recipe,” she told me the other day, “and I saw this thing called starter, and I was, like, ‘Hell no.’ I was not about to grow something in a jar for two weeks.” Her thoughts turned to sweet, egg-rich, braided challah, which she hadn’t made since Jewish summer camp but remembered as being easier.
Indeed, for challah, she didn’t need a starter, but she did need yeast, which was scarce across the country; Meckler had recently moved to Los Angeles, from her native Manhattan, to look for jobs in social-media marketing. An odyssey, on foot, through the grocery stores of West Hollywood, which she documented on Instagram, finally led her to leavening. Not long after posting pictures of her first loaves, she began to field orders from followers impressed by her plaitwork. (She watched multiple YouTube videos.) Soon she was selling dozens a day.


YouTube’s kids app has a rabbit hole problem
The company says it’s adding more control over autoplay in the YouTube Kids app.

YouTube Kids is a colorful, stripped-down version of YouTube, full of animations, bright colors, and cartoon avatars meant to keep the youngest internet users engaged. When scrolling through the app, kids can see everything from Nickelodeon song mashups to prank series to baking videos — a cheerful-seeming microcosm of actual YouTube.
But child safety advocates and some members of Congress say there’s a problem with the app and corresponding website: an autoplay feature that keeps one video coming after another with no pause or interruption. When one video ends, another video selected by YouTube Kids’ recommendations algorithm automatically plays. Right now, autoplay is on by default, and there is no way to turn off autoplay, so YouTube Kids will continue to feed children algorithmically curated videos that run indefinitely unless someone happens to show up and intervene.


In the Virgin Islands, Fungi Tells a Story
Once a staple on dinner tables, the cornmeal-based dish is becoming harder to find on restaurant menus. These chefs are working to preserve it.

Since 1970, the Petite Pump Room has been a meeting place, offering a menu of local favorites — stewed conch in butter sauce, fried local snapper with a Creole sauce of tomato and bell peppers — alongside typical fare like sandwiches and salads. But the restaurant’s fungi, a side dish made of hot cornmeal that’s easy to overlook, is cherished by those from the islands but remains unfamiliar to most visitors.


What American kids need this summer
To help students recover from a pandemic school year, experts are prescribing fun.

For kids across the country, the 2020-’21 school year has been difficult, to say the least.
Many have attended class from their bedrooms, seeing their friends and teachers only on Zoom. Others have been unable to access even that much instruction because they don’t have a computer, an internet connection, or a quiet place to study. Even those who have returned to in-person school have faced a host of new stressors, from distancing requirements to fears of getting Covid-19, that can make the classroom an anxiety-producing place. And experts are worried that some students — especially Black, Indigenous, and other students of color, and those from low-income families — have lost countless hours of instructional time, a loss that could worsen educational inequality and put them at a disadvantage down the road.




[Photo Credit: le-train-bleu.com]

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