COVID

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Birders Watch Warily as Parks Become NYC’s Living Room

Birdwatchers in Central Park. (Photo: Ralph Hockens via WikiCommons)

Late last month, video of a confrontation between an avid birder and a dog walker in the Central Park Ramble went viral. While Twitter and the op-ed pages rightfully prioritized the degree to which white privilege, prejudice, and misplaced fear motivated the dog walker’s more than inappropriate response, the exchange also underscored long-standing tensions between birders and dog walkers in the Ramble, and sparked broader conversations about city park usage in general. That conversation has become all the more timely now that parks are playing host to massive protests against police brutality and systemic racism. More →

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Doulas Take Deep Breaths Before Heading Back into Hospitals

(Photo: JennaRich via WikiCommons)

Three weeks ago, Anna Dejesus’ water started leaking. It was two months before her due date, so she was rushed to the nearest hospital. Her medical team immediately began trying to halt her premature labor, with hopes of keeping it on pause until it was safe to give birth. Her hospital stay was expected to stretch up to a month, and with the Covid-19 crisis restricting visitors, she was told it would be a solitary one. In search of solace, support, and skills for braving the weeks to come, she decided to call her birth doula, Melissa Murphy. More →

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Is It Really a Rare Book Fair Without the Smell of Old Books?

March 7 was the last time Will Baker went out to dinner. It was the weekend of the International Antiquarian Book Fair, which went off just before the city’s official “pause” order on March 20. The owner of W.C. Baker Books and Ephemera recalled an off feeling in the air. “There was this sort of unease,” Baker said. “People didn’t really realize what was about to happen.”  More →

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Sex Workers Tip-Toe Back to Business, With Renewed Focus On Fighting Oppression

International Whores’ Day, 2018. (Photo: Mistress Blunt)


As thousands protest in the streets against the police killing of George Floyd, sex workers in New York rose in solidarity during a livestream to mark International Whores’ Day. The virtual rally came this afternoon, hours before they were to head to Stonewall Inn to speak out against police violence against black transgender people. More →

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NYC Might Expand Outdoor Dining, But What Would That Look Like?

(Photo: Fuzheado via WikiCommons)

With the weather warming and restaurant owners becoming increasingly desperate for guidance on reopening, the City Council introduced new legislation Thursday requiring the Department of Transportation to identify streets, sidewalks, and other public spaces suitable for outdoor dining. During a virtual roundtable discussion Friday, council members discussed the measure with over 200 small business owners and concerned citizens. More →

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Bars Are Now Selling NYC’s Favorite Illicit Street Drink, Nutcracker

After a high-profile crackdown last summer, nutcracker has made a return. But not necessarily on city beaches, where crowds have been sparse due to poor weather, a swimming ban, and concerns about public transportation. Instead, the highly potent fruit punches– sold in 8-ounce or 16-ounce bottles– have crept onto the menus of local drinking establishments. With restaurants now allowed to serve booze to-go, several licensed establishments have started appropriating a drink usually sold illicilty out of coolers on the beach, in the subway, or on street corners. To find out whether bar-bought nutcrackers and their frozen counterparts, phrosties, pack the same punch, we uncapped a few. More →