Recommentunde: Let's Use This Moment | 24 Mar 2020

it's the latest edition of

The Recommentunde Newsletter

Sent on 17 March 2020 Edition

You can find this on my Instagram. It's a quote from an interview I did with Rahaf Harfoush in France

I’m shifting the balance in the newsletter to include a lot more ways people are surviving, creating, and laughing because we need that too.

This morning I spoke with a neighbor two doors down. We both had been feeling some chest tightness and shortness of breath. Not enough to warrant going to a hospital but enough to have doubts. Is this coronavirus? Or is this anxiety? Are we stressing ourselves into all the symptoms? Could we give ourselves the virus just by thinking about it all the damn time?? Ah!! Pandemics are confusing!

I also want to note the fact that walking in public is increasingly like an awkward junior high school dance. You see the other person. You want to make contact. But you’re afraid, so you hug the edge of the shared space to keep a distance, but not too much lest they think you don’t like them at all. Ahh! Pandemics are confusing!

I’m continuing my experiment with live shows on Zoom, and this morning I broke out Chefatunde on IG live to show folks how I make my cold-fighting brew. Best way to get alerts when I go live is to subscribe to my texting thing.

Let's breathe everyone (but not on each other!). We get through this with patience, compassion, and forgiveness. Also science, grocery store clerks, and postal workers. Thanks for reading these emails. Write me back anytime.

And now for some irregular-content:

“Even the 1% are not immune when the 99% is suffering”

Clip from Bernie Sanders stream featuring Saru Jayaraman

who is helping lead an emergency fund for tipped workers.

“I’m saying stay home if you can so that the people that have to go out are protected”

My interview with Rahaf Harfoush in France

Another interview from the future from my Live On Lockdown show which include some easily digestible personal tips for navigating this.

Full Interview with Shaka Senghor

This is a 20-minute interview I did with Shaka Senghor.

Shaka served 19 years in prison with many of those in solitary confinement. He wrote this piece offering advice based on that experience. I haven't cut the video yet, but it felt important to get out sooner because Shaka talks about what considerations our society needs to make for those who are incarcerated during this time. Shaka’s main advice for all of us is a thought I won’t make you sit through the 20 minute interview to find:


one of the things that has stuck with me to this day from my moments in solitary confinement is I realize that if I can get through the pain of the moment, I can come out on the other side. And so this is a moment to moment thing, there's gonna be moments when you're gonna feel so overwhelmed, especially parents who have children at home, parents who are caring for elderly, people with loved ones who have been sick, but if you can get through the moment, the pain of the moment, you can come out on the other side. And it's just a moment by moment thing, it's not a day thing. You can't get through the day if you can't get through the moment. Check in with yourself, "hey, how am I really feeling?"


Coronavirus Can Be Stopped Only by Harsh Steps, Experts Say

Dire article from NYT

If there’s one piece of major media to have in mind, it’s this. We got work to do.

Coronavirus: We Can Lean Something From The People Of Wuhan

Article and Guide by Tricia Wang

Tricia studied how the people of Wuhan built resilient hyperlocal text networks, and she replicated that model in Brooklyn and the Mission in SF. Elizabeth and I started one for our part of Northeast LA, and Tricia has written this article and put together a guide so you can make your own. I can’t tell you how meaningful and connecting it is to have people actually close by on a text thread. We are delivering groceries, sharing news and Sudafed, offerings tips on homeschooling, and supporting local businesses.

Family Quick Guide-Creating a Visual Schedule

Google Doc created by the Autism Spectrum Disorder team at NYU

Speaking of home schooling, the ASD team at NYU offer these tips on making a schedule at home for you and your little ones. Not just for those on the spectrum!

Be Mindful, Be Present, Be You: How to Handle Crisis Anxiety

Article by Becca Lory Hector, CAS, BCCS at Spectrum Women

Also from the ASD community, also full of practical advice that applies beyond that community.

My Corona by Chris Mann

Music video. Happy feels.

Here’s a joy break. This is my favorite parody song of the pandemic era so far.

Why D-Nice’s “Club Quarantine” Matters - Culture Signals (The Authenticated Newsletter)

Newsletter by James Andrews

in which he breaks down the biggest cultural moment of the pandemic so far. DJ D-Nice reaching 100,000 views on his live stream DJ set.

Pluto addresses the internets in this time of crisis

Another LOL video

Bob texted me this video and I actually LOL’d. A lot.

How to do a social distancing hike with others

Happy story from Facebook

Martha Ture is one of my text network subscribers. When I put out a call for ideas on how people were managing this situation, she shared this beautiful story of a hike she took with a friend, but separately.


I like the tone my mayor, Eric Garcetti, is setting in his press conferences and other communications. He explicitly asked the people of LA to register to volunteer and be called on when needed. Do it! Find a local version to you, and if it doesn’t exist, consider creating it. We have a great opportunity to help one another through this and beyond.

Census 2020

Ok so you’re sheltering in your safer at home suggested quarantine, and you’ve watched Contagion five times, and you’re an expert on exponential growth and ICU bed capacity in Northern Italy. Now what? How about you complete the Census form. You can do it online, and the more people who do that, the fewer census workers have to come knocking on your door. This is how you help your country. Spending time on this website will save lives and bolster our democracy. This video says it best: Everybody counts!

Peace amidst COVID-19 social isolation | Just B Yoga

Dope article by MY SISTER BELINDA

who runs a donation based yoga studio in Lansing Michigan.

CORONA VIRUS is real - YouTube

Shadyvill08 channels Cardi B in this short, epic, laugh out loud video. You’re welcome in advance.

Italian Mayors losing it at people violating #Covid19 quarantine

Video on Twitter. LOL

So I have been sharing stories from Italy since they are our future in many ways. If that’s the case, we can look forward to our mayors also losing their shit on video, and I personally cannot wait. Thanks Sia for the link. Oh here’s another video too.

Watch this with sound on and full attention. Powerful video visualizing a poem by Kristin Flyntz. Take deep breaths. It is healing.

Recommended Twitter Lists

You do not need a Twitter account to read them or even have to follow these people. It’s a filtered view through expert science writers and scientists.

  1. list of fewer than 10 accounts I made. very u.s. centered.

  2. A bigger list of 79 a dope science lady made . more global in scope.


I've been adding to the Recommentunde YouTube playlist and Spotify podcast playlist just for you.

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Peace and Love.