When I was asked to take over Man Repeller’s weekly email recommendation newsletter, MR Picks, I imagined it’d be fun, but I had no idea it would become my trustiest personal resource for finding great stuff. In case you’re not familiar, every week I ask team Man Repeller for their best recommendations, whether for perfect songs, incredible music videos, the best sneakers in the world, thought-provoking articles or, my personal favorite, cool events happening in New York that week. Even though I’m bumping up against my one-year anniversary in this city, I still feel incredibly new here and I’m like a bottomless pit for advice on how to do it right.
If you’re curious to get a taste before you commit to subscribing to yet another thing (the online dating generation and commitment issues, amiright?), we’re publishing this week’s edition of MR Picks on our real-life website! Just this once! If you’re sold — which I hope you are, but if you’re not that’s okay and we can still be friends — you can head right this way to find it sitting cozily in your inbox next week alongside the famous Harling Ross’s weekly shopping newsletter and our thrice-a-week round-up of our best stories. If that sounds like a lot, don’t worry: You can customize what you do and don’t get.
Okay, without further ado, let’s get into some picks.
Things to Listen To
Despite my reputation as someone who does nothing but gush over Britney Spears, I do listen to other music (sometimes). For example, I’ve been super into two new singles from The Lemon Twigs. They’re an ideal level of pep to get you up in the morning but won’t make you annoyed at an excess of pep, you know?
If your playlist is in need of a blast from the past that hits you right in the heart, Matt recently rekindled his relationship with Savage Garden and recommends you do the same. I just cued it up and it may Truly Madly Deeply affect the rest of this newsletter.
Last on the playlist, Childish Gambino just released quite possibly the song and video of the century. I’ve watched this video approximately 10,000 times since its Saturday night release, and it’s been recommended by Haley, Patty and all of my group chats. The internet has also spent that time dissecting the hell out of it, so let’s move on to our next section.
Things to Read
This piece in The New Yorker by Doreen St. Felix is an incredible primer on “This is America.” It analyzes Donald Glover’s place in the music world as well as the nuance of each scene in the video. This piece in The Atlantic dives further into the feeling, citing a neural study that describes empathy as “involuntary and automatic” and focuses on how Glover’s awareness of the viewer truly cuts to the video’s core.
While we’re still in The Atlantic, Haley sent over this piece by Ta-Nehisi Coates about the implications of Kanye West’s rejection of the black community. He writes, “It is often easier to choose the path of self-destruction when you don’t consider who you are taking along for the ride, to die drunk in the street if you experience the deprivation as your own, and not the deprivation of family, friends, and community.”
Conde Nast’s queer publication, them., reviewed Abercrombie’s new gender-neutral line and it’s not good. It should be self-explanatory, but I truly didn’t have a solid understanding of what a gender-fluid clothing line should look like and this review paints a really important picture of how far fashion still has to go.
Harling sent this piece over last week about a food writer with a contentious relationship with food. I particularly enjoyed reading about her interactions with other people and their interpretations of her weight. “I could have told her that I chucked that scale years ago. That I haven’t bought one since. That ‘thin’ isn’t a compliment. But all I said was: ‘I run marathons.’”
Things to Watch
While we’re on the topic of size and perception, Emily recommended this powerful spoken word piece from Rachel Wiley, author of Nothing is Okay. It covers the way society views size and how jumping to conclusions takes away people’s voices.
John Mulaney’s latest stand up special, Kid Gorgeous, was just released on Netflix and it may be one of the best I’ve ever seen. My attention span doesn’t usually lend itself to sitting through an entire special, but I ended up pushing back my precious bedtime just to keep watching.
For another dash of mesmerizing video, Rihanna just did a makeup routine with Vogue and I’m obsessed. This may be the closest I get to having a conversation with Rihanna, so I’m just going to keep watching it. Unfortunately, I imagine Rihanna would never approve of spending the weekend behind a laptop, so let’s hit the next section.
Things to Do
Gucci opened up its first ever Soho destination on May 6th. Both the brand and the neighborhood have been important hubs of art and fashion, so the combination is an inevitable celebration. Stop by 63 Wooster Street to live the experience. (In partnership with Gucci)
If you’re a squash lover but you’re also trying to spend as much time as possible in the sun this summer, rejoice. Edith has her finger on the squash pulse and there are a number of outdoor courts opening up around New York where you can squash (game) until it’s squash (vegetable) season.
Matt is heading inside to the Dream Machine. It’s an interactive museum, a.k.a. the best kind of museum, that allows you to really experience your dreams. It’s only open through the end of the month, so don’t let your dreams fall through the cracks.
If you’re ready for a snack break, Maman’s garden is opening up for the season and it’s a gorgeous place to grab a bite. And if you want something sweet, By Chloe recently collaborated with DŌ to make three flavors of vegan raw cookie dough. I’ve tried them all myself and they’re essentially magic in a tiny jar.
If you’re looking to get out of town, Matt also recently took a trip upstate to the Coxsackie Antique Center in Hudson. It’s a long but gorgeous drive to tchotchke heaven and frankly, it looks so worth it.
Things to Shop
Eliz also tipped me off to Cult Gaia’s first-ever shoe collaboration with Net-a-Porter. It just launched yesterday and it’s an effing dream. Sometimes you need a yellow shoe and the perfect one just falls into your lap, isn’t that outrageous?
Edith is attempting to pull off men’s swimming trunks as shorts and I could not be more supportive of this endeavor. She’s in a staring contest with the matching top and I’m rooting for her. The goal is to “fulfill my deep desire of dressing exactly like Timotheé Chalamet’s character in Call Me By Your Name in the greatest cinematic scene to grace this decade.”
That’s all for this week! Don’t forget to subscribe for a weekly flurry of gems, plus office secrets and important chats with the MR team. For example, did you know Harling’s favorite color is light blue or that Crystal has coconut chips on her desk right now? Thrilling stuff.
Feature collage by Emily Zirimis.