If you do one thing during quarantine…

Credit: Tara Gandhi

Culture Editors

Quickfire recommendations from our Culture Team.

Well, it’s been an interesting week hasn’t it? The sun finally came out at the weekend but now we’re all stuck indoors in social isolation due to coronavirus – the universe really does work in mysterious ways. It’s easy to let everything get on top of you at a time like this, what with a constantly changing news landscape and a lot of disruption to daily life; but whilst it’s important to stay informed it’s equally important to take a break from the constant updates and devote some time to yourself. Here are some quick recommendations from our culture team to help keep you sane whiling away the hours at home (in between uni work, of course…).

Here at The Glasgow Guardian we are committed to promoting small businesses – particularly at a time like this when so many are facing financial uncertainty. If you’re able, we’d recommend that you find a way to support the businesses that you love and that make Glasgow such a cool and cultured place to live in any way you can at the minute. Consider using any take-away or at home services they may be offering, or buy a gift voucher for when things have blown over. Unfortunately, the reality for a lot of our favourite businesses in the city is that if they don’t receive help and support from us now then they won’t be around for when we can all go out, eating, drinking, shopping and socialising again – and that would be a horrible loss of the independent spirit that keeps Glasgow’s cultural scene thriving.

Attend a concert… from the comfort of your bed. Obviously physical concerts are a no-go at the minute, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out hearing some of your favourite acts perform live online. Dropkick Murphys streamed a live show for St Paddy’s Day, and lots of others are following in their footsteps – just check out your favourite artists social media for details. If comedy is more your thing, The Stand Comedy have also started live streaming their Saturday night shows – check out their facebook for more information (https://www.facebook.com/StandGlasgow/).

Running out of recipes? Order in instead. Our favourite restaurants have had to close this week, but that doesn’t mean you have to forego all the joy of good food and not having to cook for yourself. Lots of restaurants have started offering some, if not all of their menus for take-away or delivery – including GWR favourite The Hug and Pint, which is even offering booze for delivery (https://www.thehugathome.co.uk/) – perfect if you need a pick me up while studying at home.

Get crafty with at home pottery painting. The Craft Pottery in the city centre have been forced to close their doors for the next wee while due to the public health crisis, but have decided to offer take-away pottery painting kits instead. You simply choose your pottery item and paint colours via the website (https://www.thecraftpottery.com/takeaway-pottery-kits), decide whether you’d like to pick it up from the shop or have it delivered to your door, and then once you’ve painted it you drop it back off at the shop and it’ll be fired and glazed as normal. Items are ready to collect a week after you drop them off, and they are then all food/drink and dishwasher safe. This is a great option to promote some creativity in these stressful times.

Read a book – but don’t buy it from Amazon. Reading is a fantastic mode of escape in these trying times, and we know it’s tempting to get everything for next day delivery on your student Prime account, but we’d really advise you don’t. Independent bookshops are struggling with falling customer numbers due to social distancing – so to support them and their ability to stay open, why not order a book online from an indie shop? Check with your local bookshops about whether they offer an online service, but some Glasgow recommendations we can give are Category is Books – an LGBTQ+ bookshop in the southside of the city (https://www.categoryisbooks.com/book-orders); Good Press on St Andrews Street (http://goodpress.co.uk/) and Calton Books for all your political reading needs (https://www.calton-books.co.uk/)

Take a virtual tour of a museum. Your travel plans for the immediate future may have been scuppered, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still brush up on your culture by visiting a museum – virtually. Some of the world’s most famous museums have put virtual exhibitions and tours of some of their collections online, including Paris’s Louvre (https://www.louvre.fr/en/visites-en-ligne) and Musee d’Orsay (https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/musee-dorsay-paris?hl=en), the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C. (https://artsandculture.google.com/partner/national-portrait-gallery), and the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, which is the second largest museum in the world (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49YeFsx1rIw). 

Set up a cinema in your living room. Yes, we’re aware this isn’t a particularly original idea, but hey – if you can’t have a guilt free TV binge during enforced self-isolation, when can you? To save you trawling the listings for hours, here are our film recommendations for each streaming platform – so that you’re covered no matter which you subscribe to. On Amazon Prime we’d suggest Booksmart, living out all of the chaotic adventures you currently can’t do outside from the comfort of your living room. On Netflix give The Social Network a go to remind you why social media isn’t always all that great (very topical for our current situation). And on Kanopy you should watch Boyhood – which is just a really great touching story which was filmed over an unprecedented 12 years.

Get out and go for a walk. Social distancing means not undertaking unnecessary social contact with other people, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay cooped up indoors the whole time. It’ll do your body and your mind a whole lot of good to get out for a walk every now and then – it breaks up the day and reminds you that there are still some semblances of normal life left, especially when the weather is this good. Trust us – it’ll make you feel much better.


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