In my neighborhood Starbucks, I’ve watched Hasidic Jews study and argue over the Torah together and homeless people come in for free ice water and internet. Kids get bananas after school while their mom gets a latte. Once, a woman plunked herself down next to me and spent about half an hour calling her congressional representatives over a political issue.
A similar atmosphere pervades Whole Foods cafés in New York. Even if Whole Foods has an elitist reputation, it provides bounteous seating, water fountains, microwaves, and bathrooms with little staff policing. I’ve watched board game clubs meet to play the Settlers of Catan for hours, homeless people charge their phones, a knitting circle gather and gossip, and tutors meet with students to do homework. Of course I’m glad for local businesses, but some corporate giants do make the city just a little more hospitable.
Worth your time:
Meet perhaps the only man in the world who knows how to clean IMAX screens.
This week I learned:
New York–based ride-sharing company Juno filed for bankruptcy, citing “misguided regulations” the city imposed this year that required a minimum wage for drivers.
“The wage regulation pushed customer prices up by nearly 20%, bringing Juno’s rides per day down to 25,000 immediately before the chapter 11 petition from 47,000 per day in 2017,” The Wall Street Journal reported.
A court case you might not know about:
People at the New York attorney general’s office enjoyed themselves in naming this case: “Operation Greased Runway” is an investigation into corruption at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport, and it just resulted in the indictment of a former British Airways executive for bribery.