Weekend Shut-In Worksheet: Watch “Nymphomaniac I,” Read The Flamethrowers & Listen To Pharrell Williams’ GIRL

Activities are wonderful, but sometimes, it’s fine to want to shut the world out for a couple of days, and make some serious time for you. Don’t be afraid of FOMO, either. There will always be another party, another pub crawl, another picnic. The time you’ll spend indulging in the things you want to do, alone, are well worth it. Here’s a handy list of awesome things to do this weekend!


  • You know, I think I enjoy Lars Von Trier’s movies so long as no one gets their balls smashed with a rock, which explains why I can’t bring myself to watch “Antichrist,” but happily sat through all four hours of his latest Charlotte Gainsbourg-starring film, “Nymphomaniac.” (Part one is available on video on demand, and part two, uh, you can find streaming online or wait to see on video on demand next week.) It is, like the best of Von Trier’s movies, weird and brilliant and depressing and darkly hilarious and fabulously acted and terribly unsatisfying all the while. Part one is much “lighter” than part two, which is when the movie’s nymphomaniac protagonist, Joe, starts getting deeper into more violent aspects of her sexuality. Not for the faint of heart, that’s for sure. Anyway, if you’re dying to see Shia LaBeouf’s probably fake cock and taint, this movie’s for you. I can’t promise you’ll like it, but it raises some interesting points about female sexuality. – Amelia
  • I have every intention of spending the rest of the weekend bingewatching the BBC series “Orphan Black,” which starts its second season in April. All I know about it is that it’s a science-fiction-y narrative about a cloned woman. Or something. I shall report back! – Amelia
  • Lastly, I’m still in the same ayahuasca research wormhole that I mentioned last week, so I want to find time to watch this documentary, “DMT: The Spirit Molecule,” about dimethyltryptamine (DMT), the powerful psychedelic compound which is naturally produced in humans and scores of other species. These are the things that interest me, what can I say? – Amelia


  • My 30th birthday present — a Kindle Paperwhite — has arrived, but my cruel and terrible husband has hidden it from me somewhere in the apartment. I vow to snoop all over and find it this weekend and also to look at this epic list of free eBooks gathered by Open Culture, one of my favorite blogs, to find a good one to start with. – Jessica
  • I started reading The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner and I’m already obsessed. There are motorcycles and there is art. A winning combination. – Ami
  • In preparation for Sunday’s “True Detective” finale, I would like to — at the very least — skim the book The Yellow King by Robert W. Chambers. You can read it for free online– Ami
  • I love perusing the books that people sell from tables set up on the sidewalk here in New York City — you never know what book you might find. Last weekend, I picked up a copy of Adrienne Rich’s The Dream of a Common Language. I’ve read some of the poems in it — “Power” is referenced a few times in Cheryl Strayed’s memoir Wild – but I plan on diving in on this blessedly sunny 50-degree Saturday! – Amelia
  • A New Yorker essay written by Anna Holmes (founder of Jezebel) about Harriet the Spy, Scout Finch from To Kill A Mockingbird, and the “Good Bad American Girl”? YES PLEASE. – Amelia
  • I just finished (and highly recommend) reading Gillian Flynn’s murder mystery/thriller Dark Places. It’s a bit twisted and dark, but there are lots of interesting shockers that will keep you turning the pages. – Katie


  • Pharrell Williams’ solo album, GIRLis finally out and it is gooooood. Pharrell is doing a modernized funk/soul thing right now and it is on point. I’m really into the album’s first track, “Marilyn Monroe,” as well as the songs “Hunter” and “Come Get It Bae.” – Amelia
  • I watched “Cabaret” for the first time this week (why did no one show me this movie sooner?!?!) and now I’m nerding out hardcore to the Broadway soundtrack on Spotify. It’s perfectly marvelous! – Jessica
  • Somehow I missed that M83 released a new album. I’ll be listening to You And The Night while I (hopefully) clean my closet. – Ami
  • Into that old soul sound with a modern hip-hop/R&B infusion? I’m LOVING Aloe Blacc (you might know him from “The Man” or “Wake Me Up”) but his 2010 album, Good Things, is truth. Think smooth Usher-like vocals with a Motown vibe. “I Need a Dollar” is by far my favorite. – Katie
  • On that note, I’m also loving David Nail’s new country album, I’m A Fire. “Easy Love” has a great windows-down, top-down vibe and “The Secret” is jaw-droppingly beautiful. Definitely worth a listen. – Katie


  • It blows my mind that this girl is knitting using her body instead of needles. I would never vagina knit, but I would try arm knitting– Sophie
  • I just learned that if your nails get stained from dark nail polish (as mine often do), you can scrub the color out with whitening toothpaste on a nail brush. Good to know! – Jessica