Health & Wellness

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As the Pandemic Continues, Urban Gardening Is Growing on New Yorkers

Samuel’s Food Gardens (Photo courtesy of Samuel S. T. Pressman)

Samuel S. T. Pressman had wanted to build a food garden on the rooftop of his Clinton Hill apartment for years. The artist and sculptor had lived on a farm when he was younger and had studied Sustainable Environmental Systems at Pratt. But in a city with a “time is money” mentality, he never found the right moment to start his passion project. More →

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Covid-19 and Racial Justice Movements Show It’s Time for Black Food Sovereignty in Brooklyn

Sandy Nurse (via @SandyforCouncil/Twitter)

Black and brown communities in Brooklyn face an inordinate concentration of food deserts, where people lack access to healthy, affordable grocery stores and other nutritious options. And the number of Americans who experience food insecurity is only expected to grow in the coming months, with low-income people of color to be hit hardest.  More →

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Siobhan O’Loughlin Turned Her Quarantine Crush Into an Online Interactive Hit

(Photo: Brendan Leahy)

When New York’s stay-at-home order went into effect in March, Siobhan O’Loughlin immediately panicked. Since 2015, she had been touring around the world for her theater project Broken Bone Bathtub, which usually takes place inside of a bathroom in someone’s home for an audience of however many people can fit—usually, five to 12. How could an artist whose work hinged on such immersive experiences survive the age of Zoom? More →

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Bike Ridership Continues to Rise During the Pandemic, Despite Road Blocks

Photo courtesy of Rafael Daher.

If there’s one thing Cris Matos doesn’t miss about her life before the coronavirus pandemic, it’s the way she moved throughout the five boroughs of New York City. The subway, Uber, and taxis used to be her religion. “Now, I can’t live without my bicycle,” said Matos. “I’m afraid to use the subway and I’m still concerned about getting inside a car with a driver I don’t know.” Whenever she needs to leave East Harlem, the first thing she does is plot bike lanes. More →

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Behind Closed Gates, Brooklyn Community Gardens Continue to Plant Seeds of Change

(Photos: Marialexa Kavanaugh)

On the corner of Hancock St. and Marcus Garvey Blvd. is a small patch of earth called the Hancock T&T Community Garden. A wooden sign protrudes from behind its fence, displaying portraits of iconic Black change-makers like Angela Davis, Malcolm X and Frederick Douglass. In large, bold letters are the words “The Gateway To The Ancestors,” which hang above these lines. More →

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In Virtual Dungeons, Less Flogging and More Key-Logging

Charlotte Taillor. (Photo: Julia Assis)

I first met dominatrix Charlotte Taillor in February at her home in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn, where her male submissives were curating pastry spreads and rolling her spliffs. While she usually sports a leather catsuit, this day she wore sweatpants and a t-shirt reading “sex worker rights are human rights.” 

Charlotte runs The Taillor Group, a feminist kink collective that encourages explorations of BDSM and other fetishes. The operation is entirely female-centric, comprised of about 30 dommes, and rather an anomaly in the world of kink; dominatrixes usually fly solo. “BDSM is the only way I’ve found for women to achieve the agency we’ve been striving for,” Charlotte told me confidently, before bellowing at one of her subs: “Roll me more spliffs!”  More →

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‘Make It a Little Kinky’: City Updates Its Viral Sex Advice

As New York was hunkering down for the Covid-19 pandemic on March 21, the city Department of Health released a statement advising New Yorkers on how to have sex while saying safe and healthy. The guide, which advised residents to abstain from rimming and to engage in virtual sex, circulated widely on social media. Now, as we’ve entered phase 1 of reopening and New Yorkers are looking to restart their romantic and sexual lives, the Department of Health has updated those guidelines. More →

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These Bikers Wear Masks, and Distribute Them

(Photos courtesy of Engines for Change)

When Kirsten Midura started Engines for Change in 2019, she was merging her love for motorcycle riding and environmental activism. The nonprofit started off hosting beach cleanups. But as times quickly changed and the coronavirus pandemic hit New York City hard, Engines for Change volunteers began using their motorcycles to transport groceries to those who are unable to leave their homes, and they delivered Personal Protective Equipment to hospitals and health care centers across the city. With times changing yet again, the group is once again shifting gears – this time to support New Yorkers protesting police violence against black people. More →