Portuguese News » Coronavirus in Portugal » Porn, Tarkovsky, Sea Lions, and Other Free Ways to Self-quarantine with Meaning

April 1, 2020 by Bogdan Kamuta

Porn, Tarkovsky, Sea Lions, and Other Free Ways to Self-quarantine with Meaning

It’s official: out of the roughly 7.8 billion humans on the planet, almost 2.6 billion are now on lockdown. That’s a third of the Earth’s population. If you’re reading this, then chances are that you too are a locked-down human, and fortunate enough to have internet.

“Lockdown Sun” by Bogdan Kamuta.

But even with internet and relatively good physical health, not losing your sh.t during a pandemic with a tentative expiration date can prove tricky. Recently, we compiled a list of things you can do to help pass the time; fortunately, thanks to the human spirit, countless generous souls the world over, and the internet, this list keeps growing. Here’s some more uplifting free stuff to give your life meaning while you self-isolate indefinitely.

So, first things first. Porn. Everybody does it, and everybody knows that. And, with a little bit of patience, there’s plenty of ways to do it for free. In the olden times, however, not all humans were created equal when it came to the quality of available content (because, you know, capitalism…). Enter Pornhub, who in a selfless act of social justice, and to “help flatten the curve,” have recently made all their premium content free worldwide until April 23d (for now). No credit card is needed, and we have verified with, let’s say, a trusted source that there are no strings attached. You just have to be old enough. And, you know, wash your hands.

Now that that’s done, you can move on to something a little more refined in terms of film. Yes, there’s Hulu, Netflix, Youtube, and whatever pirating website you use, which are all great. But now you can also enjoy Tarkovsky’s entire collection, 75 short films from SXSW, 200+ picks from the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival, as well as countless other flicks, free at and courtesy of openculture.com. Head to the aptly titled Documentary Heaven for — you guessed it — hundreds of free documentaries. Or check out a 117-year-old version of Alice in Wonderland and 15 other obsucre freebies at MUBI.

If literature is more your thing and you’re tired of just staring at your bookshelf in self-disgust, the recently launched non-profit National Emergency Library offers you free access to 1.2 million digitized books, all donated from libraries and universities around the world. And nothingintherulebook.com also has a hefty list of free sites for you to download a century’s worth of novels, short stories, plays, poems, sonnets, and whatever else people who still read like. Oh, and speaking of sonnets, here’s an upper: the talented Sir Patrick Stewart is treating the internet to some Shakespeare, with a new sonnet freshly delivered to Twitter daily.

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If words, porn, and cinema are not enough to keep your anxiety at bay, Google Arts and Culture offers you hundreds of unique virtual tours around the globe and beyond. Explore anything from Anne Frank’s house to the International Space Station, the Stonehenge, famous castles, royal palaces, the world’s top museums, art galleries, national parks, ancient ruins, volcanos, glaciers, etc. — all without having to put your pants on. Get all Indiana Jonesy and click your way through the beautiful ancient city of Petra (“The Rose City”). Or virtually dive with some sea lions thanks to the U.S.’ National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

A lot of us have been using the extra time at home to make stuff, learn stuff, and/or learn to make stuff. There’s plenty of free resources out there to help with that too. Artsy.net wants to encourage you to make art that doesn’t suck by offering 10 free university online classes. Thinking about your CV again? Coursera is another online platform that lets you join for free and choose from hundreds of courses from top universities in a number of fields that might help you live through the impending economic sh.tstorm. If you’re feeling fancy, Quartz has organized a list of 450 Ivy-League-level-but-free courses from the bigwigs at places like Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Cornell, and Columbia University. Or you can brush up on your Portuguese, Russian or, say, Mandarin, with Duolingo, whose motto remains “Learn a language for free. Forever.”

Finally, learn how to impress (or maybe further isolate) your friends when this whole thing blows over by picking up some card tricks and magic at Good Tricks. Prepare a badass dinner for one, perfectly style your hair for that neighbor you’ve developed a crush on, make your own beehive to harvest bees during the apocalypse, and acquire a bunch of other random skills and life-hacks at the wonderfully strange DIY Youtube haven that is Videojug. Or master the art of the universal language with one of these 20 free music-making websites, courtesy of hiphopmakers.com.

In other words, have fun but stay the f.ck home. There’s plenty you can do to keep sane and help each other maintain during all this madness, and remember that this, too, shall pass. In the meantime, though — be safe, be kind, and keep your heads up and your hands clean, Lisbon and beyond.

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“It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.”
William Shakespeare.

And now, without further ado, Sir Patrick Stewart.

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