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Those who do not own a Roomba may not understand plunking down a small fortune for a robotic vacuum. But imagine it: a life without vacuuming. No more awkward tango around the living room, no more deafening roar. Instead, just program Roomba i7+ to remove every single speck of dirt from your floors whenever you leave the house. (Mine gets to work at eight a.m. each day, and it also serves as a reminder that it’s time to go for a run.) Operated by app, Roomba’s dock can be parked somewhere out of sight, and it even empties its own bin into an efficient bag that needs replacing only every few months. It’s an inspired act of outsourcing, and the minute that iRobot devises a way to scrub a bathroom, I’m all in. (Starting at $800, —Ashley Baker


The Rider

Nomadland, starring Frances McDormand, is being hailed as a major Oscar contender after winning the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival—the first film ever to take the top prize at both. From writer-director Chloé Zhao, the movie, and all the buzz around it, reminded me of her last work, a favorite of mine (and Barack Obama’s), The Rider. Far from a conventional cowboy adventure, it stars Brady Jandreau, a real-life rodeo star, as a young bronco rider coming to terms with his life after a major head injury he sustains in a fall. Described by the director as about half real, half exaggerated, the film uses first-time actors to play versions of themselves. It received less fanfare than Zhao’s latest release but was critically acclaimed, and for good reason: it’s smartly told and moving, and is a must-watch for anyone interested in Zhao’s work. ( —Bridget Arsenault


A24 Merchandise

You know you’re a film geek when you get incredibly excited about A24’s foray into merch. The production company—the one behind Uncut Gems, The Farewell, Eighth Grade, Lady Bird, and our most recent favorite, Minari—slings mesh gym shorts, discreetly trimmed with a logoed ribbon down the hem, which were my gateway drug. Now I’m in love with this well-priced cotton-jacquard throw blanket. At first glance, the pattern looks merely geometric. Upon closer inspection, it depicts aspect ratios. An ideal companion for a cozy night on the sofa, watching On the Rocks. ($120, —Ashley Baker


Lucky Chocolates

Rae Stang, founder of Lucky Chocolates, a small shop in Saugerties, New York, views her confections as tiny pieces of art. She’s not wrong—Lucky’s offerings are something more than delicious. As Air Mail’s photo director, Ann Schneider, says of her personal favorites, “the salted-caramel marshmallows make a person smarter. Their purity and perfect sweet-salty balance work directly on the part of the brain that controls problem-solving.” Lucky not only excels at transcendent sweets but also sustainability, doing its best to source fair-trade, local, organic ingredients. The marshmallows are not to be missed, but while browsing the site, or the store, you may also want to grab yourself an adorable chocolate bunny for Easter. (from $12.50, —Clementine Ford

Issue No. 87
March 13, 2021
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Issue No. 87
March 13, 2021