Our Favorite Stories About Preparing for Summer

The Medium universe knows how to brace for the unofficial start of a new season

Each week on Medium Rare, I’ll be sharing stories you might have missed that are definitely worth a second look. Got a suggestion for a piece we should feature? Pop it in the responses below!

  • Memorial Day once marked an important turning point of the year, when bougie elites of yore were free to start spilling food on their crisp, white shorts or cut out from work early to escape to their weekend beach houses in the Hamptons. Stephanie Buck tells the story of how the tech industry destroyed the once-beloved summer Fridays. But hell, maybe all it’ll take is a pandemic to bring them back.
  • Indeed, it is still possible to achieve the enviable sun-kissed summer glow without becoming a beach-going #covidiot. John McDermott has a step-by-step guide for how to layer on that (vaguely artificial) color that works for life in lockdown.
  • For those who are craving a little physical contact once social distancing blows over, The Apex has tips for daydreaming about a new post-pandemic hobby.
  • Few things can make stay-at-home orders feel any more unbearable than the prospects of being trapped indoors, without A/C, during a heat wave. Luckily ThunderPuff has a survival guide for some of those less-than-conventional coping strategies, like: “Make a pair of pants entirely out of Otter Pops.”
  • Barnaby Page revisits a summer film classic, and how no matter how many times you’ve seen it, Jaws “still makes you jump.”

Thought leaders debate the long-term effects of the pandemic

The Long Now Foundation gathered insights from 14 thought leaders from around the globe for their predictions on what a post-Covid world may look like. The experts come from backgrounds in neuroscience, design, philanthropy, tech, and more, with many sharing degrees of cautionary advice and optimism for the future.

Here’s what Stewart Brand, co-founder and president of the Long Now Foundation, had to say about the new outlook on addressing climate change:

I see the pandemic as practice for dealing with a much tougher problem, and one that has a different timescale, which is climate change. And this is where Long Now comes in, where now, after this — and it will sort out, it’ll take a lot longer to sort out than people think, but some aspects are already sorting out faster than people expected. As this thing sorts out and people arise and say: Well, that was weird and terrible. And we lost so and so, and so and so, and so and so, and so we grieve. But it looks like we’re coming through it. Humans in a sense caused it by making it so that bat viruses could get into humans more easily, and then connecting in a way that the virus could get to everybody. But also humans are able to solve it.

Well, all of that is almost perfectly mapped onto climate change, only with a different timescale. In a sense everybody’s causing it: by being part of a civilization, running it at a much higher metabolic rate, using that much more energy driven by fossil fuels, which then screwed up the atmosphere enough to screw up the climate enough to where it became a global problem caused by basically the global activity of everybody. And it’s going to engage global solutions.

Editor/writer. Words in GEN, The Atlantic, Glamour, The Intercept, MSNBC, NBC News, NYT, Vice, Vox, and more.

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