Mutual Aid Top 5s

What Kept Us Going This Year?

What are your top five things that have brought you comfort and/or joy during the past year? It can be anything: foods, movies, people, animals, thoughts, books, records, yoga positions, a particular hike, a new pen, 
an old friend, whatever!


Sam Smith

Perspectives copy editor & second reader

– The uncanny abundance of my tiny backyard garden in Brooklyn

– Unexpected letters from friends in far-away places

– Friendships struck up in the streets

– The often-murky Atlantic Ocean at Rockaway Beach, to which 
I’ve grown closer than ever

– Baking lavish desserts (even when my cat is the only one around 
to appreciate them!).


Hilary Lazar

Perspectives & IAS collective member

– Getting so much more time with my kiddo and partner that I wouldn’t have had otherwise (fuck the daily grind under capitalism)

– Feeling inspired and strengthened by all the amazing mutual aid projects and BLM uprising (another world is possible!)

– Slowing down, noticing the birds in our yard, taking neighborhood walks, and exploring local trails and lakes (reconnecting with nature and masked up adventures with friends can be pretty great)

– Finding my inner crafter, baker, and gardener (I’m a pandemic cliché)

– Working on Perspectives and the “Pandemics from the Bottom Up” online issue!



Maia Ramnath

Former Perspectives & IAS collective member, organizer, and author

– Reconnecting with bike riding

– Voices of hawks and crows outside my house in the morning

– Ben & Jerry’s

– Multiple Star Wars TV series

– Witnessing the collective will, imagination, and courage to change; the hope that since everything status quo has broken down anyway, how we grow back can be different


Charles Weigl

AK Press

– A new kitten

– More naps

– Restarting a writing practice

– Silence

– Never worrying about 
being somewhere



Theresa Warburton

Perspectives & IAS collective member

– Getting sick of and finally ignoring my phone

– Writing texts like letters

– The five-minute check-in with faraway friends, 
especially during uprisings

– Books about witches

– Movie franchises that prevent me from having to make 
decisions about what to watch next


Charles Overbeck

Eberhardt Press

– Comrades

–  Monster energy drinks (to survive night demos)

– YouTube videos (string theory, neurological disorders, 
Rachel Maddow, WWII tank battles, etc.)

– Gorilla Glue #4

– Gardening


This is from the Power issue (n.32) of Perspectives on Anarchist Theory, available directly from the IAS by clicking here!