Jacques Le Corre
Jacques Le Corre

My Week in New York: Adele Season Approaches

Email sent: Oct 16, 2021 8:30am
A week in review, from the people who make New York Magazine. This week, New York’s Megan Paetzhold.
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October 16, 2021:
‘Easy On Me’ on repeat, a rainbow-sprinkle scandal, and remembering a giant of the food world

A visitor at the unveiling of “A Fountain for Survivors,” an installation in Times Square by artist Pamela Council.    Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images

Megan Paetzhold is a photo editor at New York who has strong opinions about mozzarella sticks and holidays, and is mostly undefeated at Mario Kart.

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Hello, happy Saturday, and welcome to the beginning of my favorite time of year, which I lovingly call “Adele season.” It is that crisp and moody window that stretches from the middle of October till just before Christmas, when her songs are the only music I will listen to, and the only drinks I can tolerate are red wine and spiced cider. After six long years the queen has dropped her newest single, “Easy On Me,” and I have listened to it 60 times in the last 24 hours. I appreciate the early birthday present from Adele, who definitely knows who I am. (Please don’t burst my bubble, it’s my birthday after all.)

Perhaps it’s the cloudy weather here in New York, but I’ve found myself drawn to somber and thoughtful reading this week. I was absolutely riveted by Greg Donahue’s reporting on a series of murders at the Woodson Houses, a public-housing facility for seniors in Brownsville, Brooklyn, where Myrtle McKinney, Jacolia James, and Juanita Caballero all lived before their tragic deaths. The story chronicles years of heartbreaking neglect by the NYPD and NYCHA that forced residents to fend for themselves while a murderer lived among them. I am proudly out of my true-crime obsession phase, but Donahue’s empathetic reporting and Corinne May Botz’s striking photography crystalize the importance of advocating for the most vulnerable members of our society. Equally thought-provoking was Deborah Chasman’s essay about her family’s decade-long struggle navigating U.S. immigration law. Both stories lay bare the cruelty that results when we dehumanize people by wrapping them in bureaucratic red tape, and offer an opportunity to reflect on and reassess our broken systems.

To decompress, which we all desperately need these days, I’ve been spending my afternoons watching this dude on TikTok paint corners. Sounds boring, but he’s REALLY good at it.

One Thing I Loved This Week

I’ve gotten really into West of Loathing, a comedy RPG video game where you play an adventurous young stick figure who leaves the family farm for a more exciting life out on the frontier. Along the way you encounter nefarious characters, demonic cows, and so many corny jokes. If you don’t like having fun or slapstick humor, you can probably skip it.

Three Things I Did Not Love This Week

Trick-or-treating is officially back, according to Anthony Fauci. I know I should be happy about this, and I am, but I’m also not looking forward to competing for Halloween candy with children again.

Bloomberg reported that for the first time ever, the top one percent own more wealth than the entire middle class. Not a surprising milestone, but it is a depressing one.

The unexpected passing of Anne Saxelby hit the food world hard this week. Her recent book New Rules of Cheese has so much humor and heart, full of wisdom about both cheese and life — just like Anne.

You Really Should Be Reading

The Grub Street Diet — but not just for the great food stories. When the pandemic first hit, we had to shift our visual strategy for this column from photography to illustration, and it worked so well we made the change permanent. It’s always a treat to see how each artist tackles the challenge of merging food and the subject’s personality. My recent faves include T-Pain thriving with burritos and Champagne and drag icon Steak Diane surrounded by doting shellfish. Sometimes, though, it’s hard to see people live better lives than you, like comedian Grace Kuhlenschmidt living my dream of floating in a pool of vodka sauce on a kale leaf.

What I’m Grooving to This Weekend

Did I mention it’s my birthday? In typical Libra fashion I will be going all out at the “Mean Girls versus Clueless”–themed roller disco in Prospect Park. Nothing says “staring down the end of your 20s” quite like dressing up like the Burn Book and skating to late-’90s and early-2000s pop music.

This Made Me Cringe

Literally everything about Megan Fox and Machine Gun Kelly’s relationship. The idea of introducing yourself to your future partner by saying “I am weed” will probably haunt me forever, and the description of their first “kiss” made my skin crawl.

This Sent Me Down the Rabbit Hole

Sprinklegate: A story of illegal rainbow sprinkles and a U.K. bakery whose Facebook posts are just as colorful.

I’m Not Convinced

That elbow is the best pasta shape for macaroni and cheese. I will not elaborate nor will I be taking questions at this time, thank you

What I Added to My Cart

Speaking of the significance of pasta shape, I am eagerly awaiting the Pasta Tarot deck that I just preordered. The art is gorgeous, and once it arrives, I’ll finally be able to live my life according to what the pasta divines, which is peak goals.

If I Had to Rank

Sour Patch Kids flavors in order of objective superiority:

1. Red
2. Green
3. Blue
4. Orange
5. Yellow

Next Week in New York

Next week’s newsletter will be helmed by the Strategist’s Dominique Pariso, who most recently wrote about the essential gear for making pasta at home and the best beauty advent calendars to buy this season.


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