An end-of-year message of hope from Dann

December 2020

Hello all,

Raise a glass. We did it. We made it to the end of 2020. And I’m feeing cautiously optimistic about 2021.

Also, I highly recommend that everyone does a year-end review of some sort. I did mine and published it on my blog. It doesn’t need to be as formal or structured as mine, but you may be surprised at how much actually happened.

What was the best thing that happened to you this year? What accomplishment are you most proud of? What were some things you wanted to do but didn’t? When did you have the most fun?

As for the future of New York City (and society in general), I’m still feeling bullish. Call me old fashioned, but I don’t think work-from-home will ever wholly replace office working. That’s just way too optimistic of a take on remote work. People were also extremely optimistic when the internet first went mainstream (equal access to information means truth will prevail!) and look what happened there. I think remote work will have a similar reckoning.

It’s going to get harder before it gets easier. Especially as we near the one-year anniversary of the lockdowns. But things are going to get better and better as the year progresses. And one year from today, lockdown will be just a memory. I really do believe that. So here’s to 2021.


Attention, Shoppers

🛒I worked retail throughout high school, parts of college, and a little bit after. I’ll never forget the endless playlist loops — songs from that time period are seared into my brain. I’d count the passing of time with the number of songs I heard repeated in a single shift.

This Kmart audio tape collection tickles both my nostalgia and my data-hoarding tendencies. scored big here, IMHO.

OK, I have to admit this this is a strange collection. In the late 1980's and early 1990's, I worked for Kmart behind the service desk and the store played specific pre-recorded cassettes issued by corporate. This was background music, or perhaps you could call it elevator music. Anyways, I saved these tapes from the trash during this period and this video shows you my extensive, odd collection.

D’s T

☕️Fall/Winter is typically peak cold/flu season, and I wondered what that’d look like with everyone quarantining through the pandemic. Turns out people still get sick (I know I did). When I feel under-the-weather, one of the few things that brings me joy is Gypsy Cold Care tea. I’m not going to make any bogus claims about its healing properties, but I definitely find it soothing.

Eye Spy

🎥HBO’s How To With John Wilson is an absolute treasure, which particularly tickles those feels if you have any sort of connection to New York City. It’s so brilliant that of course it’s executive produced by Nathan Fielder (Nathan For You). Both John Wilson and Nathan Fielder team up for the featurette Anatomy of a Scene - The Bread Scene which is worth watching through to the end. 

We’ll give you the world

📻I’ve always preferred talk radio over music when driving, and nothing beats the gold standard of 1010 WINS in the New York Metro area. But when I sold my car about two years ago, I also stopped listening to 1010 WINS completely. I didn’t realize how much I missed it until I downloaded a Radio app for my phone. Now I tune even every week or two, and it makes me happy. Are there any radio stations you used to listen to that you haven’t check in a while?

Conspiracy Inception

👽As of right now, it appears as if we may kick Covid’s ass in 2021. But there’s no vaccine for the other virus that’s been taking away friends and relatives over the past year. It’s a virus of thought, and it’s spread much quicker and more efficiently than I ever thought possible. This piece by Ryan Holiday really hits the nail on the head and, I don’t know about you, but hit me quite close to home.

Pay Dave

💵I vividly remember the surprise I felt when Dave Chappelle quit his amazing and popular Chappelle Show. I also remember all the rumors about how he’d gone crazy, because I believed them at the time.

Now that I’m older, I realize just how messed up the situation actually was. It’s heartening to see streaming services such as Netflix and HBO Max removing his show from their platforms at Chappelle’s request.

If you’re still wondering why this is all happening, you should hear it from Dave Chappelle in his own words. He explained it all in a free 18-minute routine on Instagram. It’s called "This is why."

100 Million Dollars

🎧In a bit of zany news, my wife Avi has been working on a radio play that’s a parody of a Jerry Lewis telethon since the beginning of the pandemic. It was finally released last month. It’s a light, fun story with some great musical acts and a feel-good ending. You should definitely listen to Tonight for the Tapir.

End note

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Also, if you find anything interesting this week, send it my way.

Thanks for reading. Until next time,