#58: The Drunken Canal

Claire and Gutes on Cupping, Hydro Flasks, Day Old Acai Bowls, Bath Pillows, and more!

Cool people like cool things, which is why we asked Claire Banse and Gutes Guterman to come on Perfectly Imperfect & spread the hot rec wealth.

These Lower East Siders have been bringing print back from the dead with The Drunken Canal, an unhinged monthly newspaper servicing the area of “Dimes Square” and beyond. It’s chock full of inside jokes, cultural trends, love letters, essays, recipes, and gossip, all written in a hilarious & sorta messy yet totally authentic way. If it reads like a bunch of friends having fun, that’s because they are! Before we dive into the recs, here’s a lil lede straight from The Drunken Canal girls~

A Guide for Good Fortune, Good Luck, and Good Looks. 

Recommendations are crucial to the history of the Drunken Canal. For issues 01 through 03, we scoured the town and our brains to bring downtown’s denizens the best of the best. While we may have seized publishing our brilliant advice, that doesn’t mean we haven’t spent the days musing on what the people need next. 

In the past, we’ve suggested anything from transatlantic accents and dirty chai lattes, to dates (both the fruit + the activity) and performative methods of communication. But now, as far as our spirit is concerned, we are on the path to ultimate health and salvation. Let’s just say the gals might be undergoing a Renaissance. In the following document, you’ll see a list of Drunken Canal approved tips, tricks, and hacks to help you live prosperously. So think of this as a little cheat sheet to bettering yourself, brought to you by two girls who really love life. 

- The Drunken Canal 

Claire & Gutes are veterans of the rec game and lucky for us, they’re here to talk about what they’re been into.

Without further ado

Claire Banse (instagram)

🐉 Cupping (via Groupon)

The other day, I met up with a pal to get some coffee, I began to tell her all about the spring weather induced “health kick” I had enacted upon (which entails solely swapping breakfast pastries for acai bowls). I then fell into complaining about my back and somehow found myself saying, “I don’t know man, maybe I should get like cupped or something.” The moment the words left my mouth, I knew I was onto something. In another subconscious act of genius, my thumbs typed in groupon to my phone. I quickly navigated the mobile site (I haven’t used Groupon in years of course I don’t have the app) and found myself a coupon for a 16$ cupping session in Chinatown, 2 minutes later and a slightly confusing phone call later, I was scheduled for an 11:30am appointment the next day. I arrived at a terrifyingly tiny office on the second floor of a condominium building, filled with dozens of tiny old ladies speaking Mandarin. Eventually I was led into a tiny cubicle where hot glass vases were suctioned on to my back for ten minutes in order to move my chi( ?? ) After the treatment was over I began a plethora of google searching to understand what magic had just been enacted upon my mortal corpse. I’m still not quite sure what cupping is suppose to do but it did leave chic little octopus kiss-esk bruises on my back which make everyone think I’m an athlete. 

💸 👟 Investing in Jordans

A month or so ago, I was with my good friend L.A. at a (party) non-super spreader intimate gathering where we discovered we were the same shoe size. At that exact moment (around 3 am probably), I was wearing Uggs and L.A. a pair of Kelly Green low Jordan 1s. The saying is true you know, that the grass is always greener on the other side, so we swapped shoes. The minute I put on the J’s something within me changed. The womb like body of the shoe around my feet, the effortlessly cool attitude, the feeling that I knew something other girls didn’t. I couldn’t take them off. I held on to them for a sheepish week before handing them back to their rightful owner and embarking on my search for my own perfect pair. It took me a while to learn the ins and outs of jordanism and to really pin point which style would really reflect my inner soul, but last Monday (March, 8th, 2021) I received my Air Jordan 1s SE Voltage Yellow sneakers from GOAT.com and ever since I’ve been standing taller and balling harder. 

🍌🍇🫐🍈🌝 Day Old Acai Bowls

As I mentioned in my Cupping rec, I am on a health kick. The warm weather and sunshine has me ready to shrug off my winter slump and emerge a hotter, springy-ier version of myself. An important fact to note about me is that I suffer from an intense addiction to sugar, I eat baked goods pretty much exclusively till 3pm. I got breakfast with someone the other day and by breakfast I mean I went and got a chocolate chip cookie across the street while they ordered a carob acai bowl from Dimes. Curious and enamored with the stylish plating of the acai, I asked for a cheeky bite. Needless to say, I was delighted. It was sugary sweet and refreshing, but was disguised in a health fad facade. The next day I got my very own acai bowl, which was too big and I couldn’t finish it, (cookie breakfast fit much easier on an adderall stomach) So I stuffed it in my fridge to munch on later. To my surprise the bowl congealed during its refrigerated hours into a delicious mush like gruel of granola and almond butter and fruit. I was comforted by the baby food esk consistency of the concoction, charmed by the banana now coated in toppings, my palette purred at the way the now frozen almond butter was washed down by the melted acai. Cheese, wine, acai… some things are better with age, I stand by this fact now. 

🏓 🏅 Group Athletics/Activities

Sometime in 2018, back when the world was our oyster and NYC offered a Cheesecake Factory length menu of places to drink alcohol with friends and strangers alike, I lost interest in activities. ‘Activities?’ You may ask, ‘What do you mean by that?’ I’m talking card games, tennis, gingerbread house making, dodgeball, chess, you name it.  Now that bars slam their doors shut at 11 pm, I have been forced to refind the joy of games, crafts, challenges and group athletics. A game of pickup sticks among friends is actually an exciting change of pace from spending too much money on martinis till too late at night. Thursday afternoon kickball is a great way to get some sun and take out some pent up aggression. Activities forces you to put in effort and organize with friends as well as frequently pits you against them, strengthening bonds and competitive tension in a way that adds a little spice into your social life.

🤼‍♂️ Street Beefs

 All of my life I have underestimated the thrill of watching someone get the shit kicked out of them. Blood, battle scenes, and boxing were things I would flinch and close my eyes when exposed to. But on one fated movie night, someone decided to throw the Youtube channel Street Beefs on while we were waiting for snacks to arrive. The thrill! The passion! The lack of actual skills or athleticism! I quickly found myself unexpectedly invested in the combat of opponents with names like “Kumquat” or “Prodigal Son”. Entranced by unlikely pairs like charming 4’11 ‘Baby Hulk’ and the unexpectedly sexy blonde ‘Viking’ enter a caged ring in the middle of a field in bumfuck nowhere to kick the shit out of each other with little to no rules or regulation. With all the spins, curb stomps, and many semi-erotic tackles, it’s impossible not to find yourself yelling at the screen. If you are interested in potentially creating our own Satan’s Backyard in Tompkins Square Park, please don’t hesitate to reach out

Gutes Guterman (instagram)

🍷 🦐 🎾 The Sunday Special: Wine, shrimp, tennis.

Here ye, here ye, we at the Drunken Canal have figured out the ultimate formula to a Super Sunday. It’s like the Superbowl Sunday, but better, because there’s no football it’s tennis, and instead of beer and chicken wings, it’s wine and a shrimp cocktail! 

Grab your friend, grab your racket, and enjoy the summertime sun!

🛁 Bath Pillow (or otherwise, baths)

Ah, the bath pillow, brought to me by Amazon’s, “You might also like” section. It was true, I did “might also like” it! So much so that I’m recommending it here. Anyways, after contracting the horrible, evil, and annoying Covid-19 novel coronavirus disease, I found my bones aching in a way they never had before. Every few hours I would plop into a steaming hot tub, and this bath pillow made it possible to soak and soak and soak without feeling a crank in my neck. And if you don’t take baths enough to warrant this kind of purchase, may I suggest trying some to start? 

🌬 Antihistamines

Allergy season is upon us, and joining her is Mother Nature’s favorite little trick — wind. As the trash forms tiny tornados all down Essex Street, and takeout containers, plastic bags, and other rubbish turn into tunnels sending dust, dirt and pollen straight into my eyes, I can’t help but reach for my trusty antihistamine to prevent my face from blowing up like a balloon. My mother swears by Zyrtec, I’m a Claritin girl, but really I don’t know how much it matters. Also, a great party trick if you feel your face getting red after a crappy Chardonnay, pop one of these and you’re good to go. 

🍾 Hydro Flask

YOUTH IS WHAT WE AIM FOR, isn’t it? At least it’s what all the products in my medicine cabinet tell me they’ll help me with. While I can’t get the days of being so underage that my body doesn’t even process hangovers (I am not condoning teenage drinking), I can totally pretend I am a high schooler with the metabolism of an athlete. The key? The Hydroflask. Nothing screams, I’M 14 YEARS OLD AND FROM ARIZONA (neither one of these are true for me) like a steel water bottle that BANGS and GONGS against every surface. I ought to add, it is particularly good at keeping your beverages the same exact temperature at which they entered the vessel, but that’s just a bonus honestly. 

💄 Pat McGrath Lip Fetish Balm in Flesh 3

I have gone through four tubes, a package change and even an entire formula revamp of this thing and I still swear by it. It’s the perfect shade of brownish-red, it’s shiny, and it moisturizes your lips. It’s not perfect for wearing masks, but it’s oh so great for leaving kiss marks everywhere you go. 

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