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When I first started rock climbing in early 2020, I was startled by the inaccessibility of the lingo—a constellation of modern English words that signify one thing to climbers and another to those who don’t choose to while away their precious days on earth caressing rocks. The disorientation was reminiscent of when I began writing copy for tech startups. But instead of listening to founders wax on about MVPs and KPIs or repeatedly ask for the "high-levels," there were a bunch of dirty, chalk-covered people yelling things like "Send it, dude!" “Stay tight, bro!” and “Everything is choss.”

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Long before there was a worldwide pandemic and “rations” was a common part of everyone’s daily vocab, I began watching Survivor. Well, my roommate started watching it. Which meant that I would arrive home from work to see a bevy of dehydrated adults playing oversized golf with a huge slingshot and trying to fish with their hands. Within weeks, the words “betrayal” and “alliances” began to make frequent cameos in my dreams and my appreciation for dry grains skyrocketed. Yet it wasn’t merely the premise of the show that captured my interest—it was its host, Jeff Probst. 

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Once I decided I wanted a dog, it turned out I had a lot of things I wanted. I wanted a big dog, a dog so large I could ride it. I wanted a huge horse-dog that would allow me to save money on subway fare but would also fit unobtrusively into a fist-sized NYC apartment. I wanted an uber-fluffy dog that didn’t shed, a super-friendly dog that would leave me alone all day, a lazy dog that didn’t need walks but would be happy to pull me along on limit-pushing runs. 

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The audiobook was nearly 12 hours long but I listened to it in a day, pacing around Brooklyn wearing a face mask decorated with flying pigs.

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Experts say that in times of crisis, it's important to stick to routines.

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"I haven't been tested, but I know I don't have it."