Starting to go a little stir-crazy? After four weeks in isolation, the reality is definitely starting to hit us, but you better settle in. Prime Minister Morrison has suggested we could be here for another four weeks at least, so it’s time to bust out the board games and make the most of the time that we have together. This week, the team at Man of Many has really focused on finding ways to embrace the lockdown period, whether that be through entertainment, creativity or fitness. Sure, it’s not ideal, but it’s important to take the time to slow down and be thankful for the things we do have.
Here’s What’s Keeping Us Sane this week – April 18 edition.
Nick Hall – Digital Editor
I’m the first to admit that the loss of organised sport is really starting to take a toll on me. I live in this swinging pendulum between AFL, Rugby League, Cricket, Basketball and Boxing, so there is rarely a weekend that doesn’t feature some kind of athletic competition. However, with COVID-19 essentially putting an end to sport, I’m really scraping the bottom of the barrel. This week, thanks to ESPN 8: The Ocho, I found myself enthralled in the world of Sport Stacking. Look, competitive cup stacking isn’t something I’d normally go for, but in the absence of any real competition, I took a chance and tuned in. What a revelation.
Something about watching a bunch of 14-year-olds invest all of their time, effort and concentration into a discipline that will surely add almost no value to their future endeavours struck a chord with me. This isn’t a competition about money, or fame, or prestige. This is about the cups, and nothing but the cups. Above, you’ll find a clip of the 2007 Sport Stacking World Championship final between arch-rivals USA and Germany, widely regarded as the peak era for the sport. Thank me later.
McMillions TV Series (HBO)
Scott Purcell – Co-Founder
After finishing Tiger King and Ozark, and while waiting for new episodes of Westworld to come out each week, I’ve been in search of the next thing to binge on TV. I’ve even turned to bloody Masterchef to keep me occupied but I feel like they always drag out their shows way too late.
Enter McMillions. A story about a mysterious “Uncle Jerry” who rigged the McDonald’s Monopoly game in the USA for a period of around 12 years before he was caught. Yes, that includes boats, houses and prizes of a million dollars in cash. It starts out pretty simple but gets very crazy, very quickly. My favourite person in the documentary by far is the FBI Agent Doug Matthews who is possibly the most entertaining bloke on the planet. Cya Tiger King.
Boxing Reflex Ball
Frank Arthur – Co-Founder
I’ve been boxing to keep fit for a few years now, but now that the gym is temporarily closed, I’ve been left with an insatiable desire to throw some leather and no outlet to get my fix. There is no space for a heavy bag in my humble apartment and with the social distancing measures, I’ve got no one to spar or hold pads with. However, I have found a fun little toy that allows me to sneak in a few punches from the comfort of my apartment. Behold the reflex ball.
The reflex ball is made up of a velcro headband tethered by a piece of elastic to a soft-ball. Once you strap the device around your head, the idea is to continuously punch the ball as you coordinate your strikes with the extension and retraction of the elastic, with the purpose of improving reflexes, hand-eye coordination and timing.
Whether you have the athletic ability of Anthony Joshua or Anthony Hopkins, you can still have fun with the reflex ball, you don’t need to be a boxer. Similar to a yo-yo or totem tennis set, it’s a simple game of repetition and coordination which serves as a fun and challenging way to pass the time.
1 Second Everyday
Denise Barnes – Native Content Manager
I’ve been trying to come up with good ways to document my own Coronavirus lockdown experience. You know, so that one day when I look back and I want to tell my kids and grandkids about it all, I have something to show them; something that will give a glimpse into what life was like for me during these unprecedented times. I thought about journaling or keeping a diary, but I know myself too well. I’ll start enthusiastically the first week, and then slowly I will slack off until I don’t write anymore. So, last weekend when I re-watched the movie Chef, I got the idea from Carl Casper’s (played by Jon Favreau) kid, Percy. During the time Percy spent on the road with his dad touring around in their food truck, he made a “1 Second Everyday” video to document their journey. And just like that, I had a lightbulb moment. And now, that’s what I do, every day. It’s ridiculously easy to use and such a fun way to keep a video diary. I know this is not a new concept, but it’s new to me and I’ve really been enjoying it. So much so that I might even continue using it long after lockdown has ended.
What’s Keeping Us Sane
While this week has been filled with McMillions and cup-stacking, one thing we do want to make mention of is mental health. Four weeks in isolation is tough, but with no end in sight to the strange circumstances we find ourselves in, it’s worth taking the time to assess your well-being. If you aren’t comfortable, or you just want someone else to talk to, there are a wealth of options and people out there willing to help. Check out the awesome online support sessions The Banksia Project and HUMEN are doing, and put yourself in the right frame of mind. Stay safe.