Nick Girlando, Brooklyn, NY

Home Check-In: Nick Girlando

As we remain put in the comfort of our homes, we continue to flatten the curve of COVID-19. Staying home might look different to a lot of people, but for us, it means staying connected. Our “Home Check-In” initiative is encouraging individuals to contribute to the better well-being of the world by staying home and staying fresh. We’re asking you to showcase your favorite Nike fits in creative and original ways. Show off your Swoosh in style.

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

My name is Nick Girlando. I’m a New York native, born and raised in Queens and currently based in Downtown Brooklyn working as a full-time sales rep and photographer on the side. I’m also a sneaker collector with 20+ years of experience. Growing up by the beach in Rockaway, I started skateboarding at a very young age. Skateboarding was a gateway to the sneaker world, the fashion industry, and photography.

What has been your daily quarantine routine?

My daily routine has pretty much been wake up, make coffee and breakfast. I’ll turn on the news to watch Governor Cuomo speak and then jump into some work, make a few phone calls checking in on my clients, friends, and family. Maybe a facetime or two. I’ll cook lunch and then read or try to do something mellow for a few hours. I’ve been doing home workouts every day in the apartment or on the rooftop depending on the weather. I’ll cook dinner around 8pm and then wind down with some Netflix or a movie. In the beginning, I was a little bit shook on what I would do being home for so long but I grew into a routine that’s pretty much been the same every day. It makes time go by and keeps me from going stir crazy. 

What activities have you been doing during these times?

I’ve been able to do some things that I normally wouldn’t have as much time or energy for normal circumstances. I’ve been cooking a lot more than usual. Pretty much 2-3 times a day. I’ve had time to learn new recipes and try new types of food. I’ve been reading a little bit here and there. I’ve definitely watched more TV than I normally would. I have never really been a TV guy because I can’t sit still for too long. I’ve done a few jigsaw puzzles. I’ve been trying to go for the 1,000 piece ones the most but they haven’t been that easy to find. I’ve had time to work on a brand I am starting too. That’s always been a goal of mine but I haven’t had the time to get creative or focus on the mission and meaning behind it. Now has been a perfect time. I guess lastly, working out has been a big one for me. I was usually a gym person but I’ve had to learn how to adapt like all of us. I’ve taken up running and Higher intensity workouts. Man, those will whip you into shape if you do it every day. 

What kind of food have you been cooking?

I’ve been cooking a mix of different things and types of food. I’ve been trying to keep it healthy since we’re spending so much time being sedentary. I’ve put together a bunch of new salads and different vegetable dishes. A few chicken recipes. I think I’ve perfected Boneless wings now. I’ve done a few different steak options with different marinades. Also, I’ve been cooking a ton of Mexican food. I’ve always made different types of tacos but I’ve taken it a step further and made Enchiladas, Chilaquiles, and even Huevos Rancheros for breakfast. I try to save my Italian food nights for Friday’s or Sunday’s. Sundays have always been a tradition to make a good sauce. A Sunday Sauce. Nothing better than that. 

What are you currently watching/listening to? (Movies? Podcasts? Music?)

I was never really a podcast person before this and I still wouldn’t call myself one. Probably because I can’t focus on it for too long because of the lack of visual stimulation. But I’ve had a chance to listen to a few. I try to stay connected to what’s happening in Fashion, the Economy, and even Real Estate. Just to be informed and have a vision of how these things will affect our future. I breezed through season 3 of Ozark, it was fire. I binge-watched two seasons of Westworld and I am currently midway through season 3. MJ’s the Last Dance pretty much saved my Sunday nights. That has been incredible to relive his career and even see and hear those stories about that era of basketball that seemed like an urban legend until now. In terms of music, my taste is all over the board. My Spotify must be confused because they never know what I’m going to throw at them. I start my days with Coffee Shop mellow music and by lunch, I’m listening to Bad Bunny, J Balvin, Saint Jhn, Travis Scott, Post Malone or might even throw it back and put on some The Lox or Styles P. At night I’ve actually really enjoyed a few different Dj sets via Instagram Live. Questlove always kills it, I could listen to him spin all day. 

Any advice to someone who is having a hard time being productive?

Take a minute to slow down. Gather your thoughts. While the streets are quiet and your normal routine is thrown off, there’s still so much noise out there. Whether it be the news, Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. Sometimes you have to block it all out. I have found that I shut everything down and try to read or focus on something else. Maybe a puzzle even. Complete silence and a slower pace will get you grounded so you can get your head clear and ready to create a plan of attack. I do my best thinking at night when all the hecticness of the day has passed. 

Follow us on Instagram @dtlrvilla and @dtlrlifestyle for more news and updates.

Chris Cao

Chris Cao | Art Director at Villa and DTLR. Just happy to be here.

May 12, 2020

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