W42ST Daily 8/13/2020

I woke up this morning at 6am to look at the “What we’ve been reading” list that Sandra compiles overnight for us. Her comment on the list was: “The news is all pretty downbeat today.”  I replied through my sleep haze: “Yep. It’s going to be a struggle to find the happy stuff for a while… It will come back though.”

You can read more below about comebacks. But we all know that when Broadway comes back, and it will be a while, it’s going to be amazing.  Sue Frost from Come from Away told me: “It’s a show that people see over and over again. So many people have said to me, ‘I cannot wait to be in that house when you guys come back, because we need this show. We need the message of the show.’” It will be back!

Yesterday, I was out and about. I was looking for hope. I found it where you would least expect it — in local hotels. One told me the story of health workers who had come to help in the crisis, and are now staying for good.  They’re using their rooms as a base while they look for an apartment. Another had found an uptick last week as power went out in Westchester, and visitors were finding fun in the city (and telling their friends).

They’re my reasons to be cheerful. What are yours?  W42ST wants to wake you up with more upbeat messages every day. We need your stories.

The first time I experienced the “Broadway Whisper” was at Bettibar back in early 2017.  The word was out: Come from Away was going to be a huge hit. “Get to see it in previews, get tickets for the run, tell your friends,” I was told (in the hush tones of an insider trader). 

I did just that, even though my logical brain said: “What the hell does ‘Come from Away’ mean?  This could be awful.” And: “Really? I’m being recommended to go see a musical about 9/11?” The rest is history. The show recouped its $12 million investment after only eight months, and it’s been playing to full houses for the last three years. As COVID struck, it was touring North America, had productions in London, Toronto, and Melbourne … and was on its way to China this summer.

Ironically for the producers of a story about lives re-routed over the Atlantic, the producers were on a flight back from London to New York when Broadway closed on March 12.  Sue Frost talks to us about Broadway on pause.

I’m not really a shopper (even though my newsletter yesterday focused on my new toaster oven). But I’ve been tipped off that there is a new local Facebook Group called Buy Nothing

The idea of the Buy Nothing Project began with two friends in Bainbridge Island, WA, in 2013. Since then, it has become a worldwide social movement, with groups in 30 countries. Locals form gift economies. People join because they’d like to quickly get rid of things that are cluttering their lives, or simply to save money by getting things for free, and in the process build community.

Worth a try?  I saw someone giving away a piano, and someone in need of a tennis racquet when I last popped by. LMK how it works?

An epidemiologist explains how to safely ride the subway. Watch…

Why national chains are waving goodbye to New York. Shop local…

There’s more severe weather on the way for today and tomorrow. Keep safe…

Thomas Keller’s two Hudson Yards restaurants have closed for good. Open tables…

22,000 public workers could be laid off October 1. Enough…

W42ST continues to do everything we can to support local businesses who are opening up in new and imaginative ways. Each day we trawl Instagram (with the help of readers adding #w42ST to their posts) and sort through the new offers from our neighbors. Please bookmark “Hell’s Kitchen is OPEN!”, discover what to explore in the neighborhood, and join us in supporting these businesses.