Welcome. I’ll admit I’m attracted to the new “dreamy-looking cans, in sherbet and pastel hues” of expensive wellness drinks proliferating in my local market’s beverage aisle. I bet they look good in a sun-bleached tableau on Instagram, but do they “transcend stress, and open a portal to peace”? Dani Blum looked into it, just in time for happy hour.
Happy Friday, again. Temperance is on the rise and with it, entire stores devoted to zero-proof beverages. This T Magazine story from 2018 advises against using the quaint portmanteau “mocktail” to refer to alcohol-free mixed drinks, which seems like sound counsel. If you prefer your 5:00-or-thereabouts refreshments a little harder, Eric Asimov has some recs for good Greek reds and some thoughts on Chablis versus other Chardonnays. Mark the end of the week somehow, even if it’s just shutting down your computer and taking a few deep breaths. Tiny rituals.
“Succession” returns on Sunday night. James Poniewozik calls the show “both an addictive spectator sport and one of TV’s great horror stories” and says the new season is “scabrously funny.” Mia Hansen-Love’s new film, “Bergman Island,” looks like an excellent choice if you’re thinking of going to the theater. If not, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Penny’s new thriller, “State of Terror,” sounds pretty cinematic. Sarah Lyall calls it a “romp.”
Here’s something to ponder: your weekend’s “at home” and “away” balance. It’s a mix (not a mocktail) we have to recalibrate from week to week. I read with interest about the woman who awoke to find a meteorite “the size of a large man’s fist” had crashed through her ceiling and landed beside her pillow. I wrote a couple days ago about the allure of metaphor in making sense of our lives, and I won’t belabor the point, but if you were inclined, you could look at this story in a bunch of different ways. Is there enough adventure at home to keep you entertained forever? Are the heavens beckoning you outside and away? Is the world off-kilter, the stars out of alignment? Should you book a ride on a rocket? You decide.
Your list of lists.
What is the best book that’s been published in the last 125 years? The Times Book Review is seeking your nominations on the occasion of its quasquicentennial. Yup, that’s the word for a 125th anniversary — try to use it in conversation this weekend.
Love listening to New York Times podcasts? Help us test a new audio product in beta and give us your thoughts to shape what it becomes.
And you can always write to us with questions, suggestions, recommendations, musings or concerns: email@example.com. Be sure to include your full name and location and we might feature your response in a future newsletter. We’re At Home and Away. We’ll read every letter sent. As always, more good ideas for what to do this weekend appear below. I’ll see you next week.