Good morning on this (officially) summer Wednesday.
It’s the homestretch of Ramadan, the holiest month in the Islamic calendar.
The holiday requires Muslims to fast from the moment sunlight is visible on the horizon until dusk. Today, the longest day of the year, there can be no food or drink from just before 4 a.m. until about8:30 p.m.
We asked New York Today readers to share tips for fasting during holidays. The advice was both spiritual and, well, practical.
“Drink something with electrolytes and eat something with a lot of protein,” said Tremont Poole, 48, who is fasting for his 36th Ramadan. His go-to beverage outside fasting hours is coconut water mixed with a salt pill, and his dish of choice is eggs with diced chicken or ground beef, and a whole-wheat or whole-grain bagel.
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To go with the meals — “suhoor” in the early morning and “iftar” in the evening — H. Ali Mohammed, 64, offered these words for the soul: “Less materialism. More spirituality. Think and pray for the desolate. Give alms to the poor.”
Chanit Roston, who fasts on the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, engages her other senses to distract from the hunger pangs. “I smell fragrant flowers or essential oils and breathe deeply,” she told us, adding how she is also “grateful for being in charge of what enters my lips.”
A month before the Ramadan fast begins, Imam Khalid Latif, the chaplain for the Islamic Center at New York University, hosts workshops with nutritionists to teach congregants about what to eat (foods high in fiber, like fruits and vegetables, and high in protein, like nuts and dates), what not to eat (foods that are processed or oily), how to hydrate (more water, less caffeine and sugar), and why healthy sleep patterns are crucial.
“Take time to rest and ensure your sleep quality, because a lot of your hydration level is going to be tied to the sleep you’re getting,” Mr. Latif said.
Ramadan, which began in late May and ends this weekend, places added emphasis on the final days of the month, when Muslims engage in longer periods of prayer.
“There’s a night within those 10 nights that is said to have the equivalency of a thousand months’ worth of worship,” Mr. Latif said.
“It’s not about empty stomachs,” he said, “it’s about full hearts and how you get to a place where you’re limiting the consumption of your physical and you start to engage in the nourishing of the metaphysical, your internal.”
Here’s what else is happening:
It’s the solstice.
You might wish for better weather on the longest day of the year: We’re expecting some showers and thunder in the afternoon.
The high will be near 82.
Ah, summer in the city.
In the News
• Long Island Rail Road riders whose trains are diverted from Pennsylvania Station will receive an average discount of 25 percent. [New York Times]
• City and state officials want to end the use of mayoral control of schools as a partisan bargaining chip. [New York Times]
• Contrary to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s warnings, the last time mayoral control of schools lapsed, in 2009, chaos did not ensue. [New York Times]
• For NYC Pride, our reporters spoke about H.I.V., marriage and gender expression with several generations of people at the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center in Greenwich Village. [New York Times]
• In “About New York,” Jim Dwyer writes about police officers who went the extra mile for the family of a victim of the Times Square car crash. [New York Times]
• Two years after police officers used excessive force on retired tennis star James Blake, the city will create a legal fellowship in his name within the agency that investigates police misconduct. [New York Times]
• In 1975, the city promised to close its pension shortfall within 40 years. Today, that shortfall is still there. [New York Times]
• A United Nations economist was charged with overworking and underpaying a household worker from Bangladesh. [New York Times]
• The attorney general of New York, Eric T. Schneiderman, filed a federal lawsuit against groups that he accused of harassing women seeking abortion services. [Gothamist]
• One of the oldest orders of black nuns in the country is selling its Harlem headquarters after years of dwindling membership. [DNAinfo]
• Today’s Metropolitan Diary: “Overheard at the Strand”
• Scoreboard: Angels cleanse Yankees, 8-3. Dodgers sidestep Mets, 12-0.
• For a global look at what’s happening, see Your Wednesday Briefing.
Coming Up Today
• Make Music New York offers hundreds of free concerts, including a Bach marathon and an Ella Fitzgerald piano bar. Times and venues vary.
• New York City Dance Week continues with free dance, fitness and wellness classes. Times vary. [Register here]
• Early birds can celebrate NYC Pride at a morning dance party on a boat leaving from Pier 40 on West Street at 6:30 a.m. [$35]
• Ring in the summer solstice with the National Museum of Mathematics by creating a large human sundial at Flatiron Plaza. 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. [Free]
• … or welcome the extended sunlight with Mind Over Madness Yoga, featuring free classes and a pop-up “yoga village” in Times Square. 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. [Register here]
• Yankees host Angels, 7:05 p.m. (YES). Mets at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m. (SNY).
• For more events, see The New York Times’s Arts & Entertainment guide.
• Alternate-side parking remains in effect until Sunday.
On this week in 1946, a loudspeaker system was first tested on the subway.
The system, which was first installed in a car running along the Eighth Avenue line, was “of the most modern type,” The Times wrote, “with the conductor announcing approaching station stops through a microphone placed at his position just outside the car.”
The technology was later introduced at other stations, but not for the benefit of “the regular subway riders,” a Board of Transportation employee told The Times in 1950, adding: “It is the out-of-towner who has the trouble.”
Today, the voice that is often piped over the speakers belongs to Charlie Pellett, an anchor and reporter for Bloomberg News.
He’s the one who says “Stand clear of the closing doors, please!”
(He’s British, but learned an American accent by listening to the radio. He began doing the voice-overs for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority on a volunteer basis.)
Soon, though, we may go back in time: The M.T.A. announced this week that they plan on using more live announcements during delays.
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