Actually, the hospital I endowed...

Martha Stewart, a pretty great ‘ackshually’ moment, credit where it’s due, and 7 — no wait, 11 — other things worth your time.


Imagine if you ranked everyone sheltering in place right now in NY/NJ/CT, in order of whose house you’d choose to stay in if you had to, for the next 14 to 45 days.

My guess… Martha Stewart might have to be be pretty near the top.

She lives in Connecticut, and she has a heck of a nice house — really more of a farm, in fact. And making her house enviable is her whole brand. Her Instagram feed backs it up.

Now, there’s a bit of reputational risk right now in posting how great your home is, when we’re in the middle of a global pandemic.

I mean, did you see what happened to David Geffen?

In Stewart’s case, there’s more than meets the eye. She was called out by a commenter, after posting photos of her house—and her Aston Martin that spends most of its time “covered in the carport,” and her pets, among other things.

But, her response might be one of the great, “Well actually (or if you’re really into Internet memes: ‘ackshually’)” replies of all time.

“So what are you doing to help New Yorkers?” she was asked, leading to:

Actually the hospital I endowed at mount Sinai in New York, the center for living, is being used as the uptown testing center for the uptown campus of mount Sinai. My sincerest thanks and best wishes to all those medical workers who are laboring tirelessly to help the afflicted during this horrible time.

I love that: “Actually, the hospital I endowed…”

I’d never had any occasion to check out Stewart’s Insta page before—actually pages, with an “s,” since she apparently has a more on-brand corporate one, plus this one that’s much less filtered.

(Also, hat tip to Kate Taylor of Business Insider for coming across this exchange to begin with.)

I’m not going to spend the whole morning on this, but I think it’s relevant.

Because it’s easy so to ascribe motives or make assumptions in these crazy times. It’s easy to assume people are going to disappoint you, and that they’ll be 100 percent out for themselves.

But every once in a while, so to speak, the person who literally paid for the hospital is just spending a few days at home.

It’s something I need to be a bit more mindful of, too. We’re in a strange, scary time — well, at least part of the country is — and a little bit of expecting the best in people until proven otherwise, might go a long way.

Credit where it’s due

Last week I got deep into advocating for the use of the Defense Production Act to light a fire under industry and hopefully start closing the gap on the ventilator shortage.

On Friday, President Trump did just that, ordering GM to start building.

There was some back and forth between GM and the president afterward, but that’s three day old news now at this point. But I am very happy to give credit where it’s due.

Living in the NYC area, it’s so strange here now. One the one hand, looking out the window or going for a walk, it seems like little has changed except that we’re all staying home.

If you look at the stats and the trends, however, and if you have friends or neighbors who work in health care—actually putting full days in hospitals around here—it starts go get scary pretty fast.

On ventilators, I can’t tell you for sure if using the act will work. But I think people want to know that we’re using every possible tool. So, thanks for putting up with my obsession about this.

7 … no wait, 11 … other things worth your time

  • President Trump: Give it another 30 days. Forget about hopes of having the country “opened up” by Easter; the president announced federal social distancing guidance will stay in place through April 30 at least. (The Washington Post, should be free)

  • Top U.S. government health official #1: Expect between 100,000 to 200,000 deaths and “millions” of infections in America. (Associated Press)

  • Top U.S. government health official #2: 'We don't think any city will be spared.’ (Fox News)

  • My colleagues over at Inc.com have been working overtime on some features to help small business, including a webinar Friday that included info on how to land SBA loans under the stimulus package. (Inc.)

  • Who got special deals in the stimulus package? There are some real head-scratchers.

  • How the Chilean miners who were trapped underground for two months suggest getting through a lockdown. (AFP)

  • No dog-walking, no alcohol. Here’s what a very harsh lockdown is like, in South Africa. (BBC)

  • The last sports league on Earth: Belarussian soccer hasn’t shut down. (Yahoo Sports)

  • The Premier League floats idea of finishing the soccer season in isolation, with all 92 matches played in empty stadiums. Why? TV contracts—and a chance to give people a diversion. (Will the NFL do something similar?)

  • I wrote over the weekend about McDonald’s decision to scale back all-day breakfast, and why it might be a good model for people in other industries, too. (Inc.)

  • State trooper stops a speeding car and learns the driver is a doctor on her way home from the hospital. He lets her go with a warning — and gives her his full supply of N95 protective masks. (Star Tribune)

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