best of

Weekly digest (4/29/11)

This week was jam-packed! I’m happy to say I’m still standing, but it was pretty close there.

  • Read it. My brother recommended the graphic novel series Blacksad to me, a noir collection where all the characters are different animals. It’s classic hardbroiled detective stuff illustrated by two former Disney animators so the visual style feels oddly familiar in contrast to its saucier content. Highly recommended!
  • Saw it. I caught not one but two concerts this week, which might officially be my limit for working weeks. First was the epic tUnE-yArDs at the Great American Music Hall, which was danceable and tribal. Mad did a great review! Then I saw the Head and the Heart at the Bottom of the Hill, which was so lovely and moving. Man, those guys can draw in an audience.
  • Heard it. Have you missed the dulcet sounds of the Fleet Foxes? Their new album is streaming at NPR….

Weekly digest (4/22/11)

Man, this week has really flown by. I’m still minorly sore from mucking at Pie Ranch. I started a photography class over at Root Division.  We celebrated Mad’s birthday with an awesome dinner at Foreign Cinema, and will have our first barbeque this weekend (assuming it doesn’t rain!).

  • Read it. I’m just finishing Louise Erdich’s novel/short story collection Love Medicine, about a Chippewa family in North Dakota, and I really enjoyed it. Also, with the posthumous publication of David Foster Wallace’s The Pale King, there have been all these articles by people close to him. The UK Guardian has a rare interview with his widow Karen Green, and Jonathan Franzen writes about his friend in the New Yorker. Both pieces are raw homages to the man behind the great writer, and how those he left behind are dealing with it all.
  • Saw it. KO read The Blind Side and so we rented the movie. I totally cried and rooted for that sassy blonde Sandra Bullock.  Thumbs up!!
  • Heard it. Been listening to some tUnE-yArDs in preparation for seeing them next week. What!!

Weekly digest (4/15/11)

My brother is in town this weekend, so I hope San Francisco is extra-fun! Also, I’m hoping to head down for a work day and barn dance at Pie Ranch. How much fun does a barn dance sound?!

  • Read it. The graphic novel Daytripper is really haunting. Fábio Moon and Gabriel Bá achieve everything you expect from a comic and everything you want from a piece of art.
  • Saw it. Lord Huron and Vandella on Tuesday night! Mad did an awesome write-up and I concur with everything. I had so much fun at that show.
  • Heard it. Unofficial Tina Fey week at Scenic World! But she’s on Fresh Air and is her typical blend of funny and classy. Also, I have been listening nonstop to this James Blake Joni Mitchell cover (courtesy I am Fuel, You are Friends) .

Weekly digest (3/25/11)

I have made the firm conclusion that Easter candy is my favorite seasonal candy. I may even invest in some before the holiday and do a little round-up.

  • Read it. Honestly? I read a lot of the NYT Style section as their pay wall is going up on Monday and I haven’t decided my subscription settings yet. Must keep abreast of trends and modern etiquette conundrums!! I’m also reading the Best American Comics 2010,  ed. Neil Gaiman.
  • Saw it. Finally caught The Fighter! It was pretty damn good, and some fine acting. Review to come.
  • Heard it. I’m listening to Lord Huron right now, getting ready for seeing them in April.

Weekly digest (3/11/11)

Time to stop and be grateful for more than just the weekend, huh? You have to admire Japan’s dedication to earthquake preparedness. It undoubtedly saved many, many lives. Happy Friday and pink and blue thoughts to all.

Weekly digest (3/4/11)

Morning! I’m off to sunny Palm Springs for the weekend for a bachelorette party. I’ll be sure to soak up some sun for you.

  • Read it. Miss Party Down? I sure do. Make sure to read the complete oral history, courtesy of Details magazine.
  • Saw it. Alright, we’re getting low-brow here, but how funny are the Family Guy characters as drawn by Disney? Yay for lazy reruns on a Monday!
  • Heard it. Lucinda William’s new album is streaming at NPR and it is worth checking out.

Weekly digest (2/25/11)

And a very merry pre-Oscar weekend to you! I hope you enjoy them and haven’t had to not eat for 3 weeks the way I imagine some nominees have had to.

  • Read it. Two Academy Award-themed reads: the LA Times does a check-in about the veracity of Exit Through the Gift Shop. I read it and it confirmed my take on the movie (real!), but I wouldn’t put it past Banksy for it to still be a hoax. And Deadline Hollywood recently circulated the script for The Social Network, if you feel like admiring Sorkin’s snappy dialogue on paper.
  • Saw it. I watched Annie Hall for the first time in ages this weekend, and was struck all over again at how good Woody was at his best.
  • Heard it. Rolling Stone‘s December 9, 2010 issue was their Playlist issue, which had famed musicians making playlists. Sounds dumb, but they have the actual songs on their website, where you can hear Jenny Lewis’ 70’s California Rock mix, Robbie Robertson on New Orleans music, and Mick Jagger’s fave classic blues.

Weekly digest (2/18/11)

Happy President’s Day (i.e. three-day weekend!). I’m pretty certain this day off is what the Founding Fathers were most excited about.

  • Read it. I read Steve Martin’s new book, An Object of Beauty, which was an engaging, slightly tragic tale of art collecting in the late 1990s and early 2000s. It comes with pictures! More books should come with pictures! (Also, is there anything Steve Martin can’t do?)
  • Saw it. This might be the first time I’ve ever said this, but I like the parts of the Grammys that I caught this year! Any Dylan in my life is a good thing, and it was great to see these young bands freaking out to share a stage with him.
  • Heard it. Still very much digging Mad’s Midweek Playlist.

Weekly digest (2/11/11)

I’m still under the weather, so it’ s been another mellow week. But time for weekend! On to feeling better! Huzzah! 

  • Read it. This issue of the New Yorker has a much-discussed article about Paul Haggis, the director, and his decision to leave the Church of Scientology. I heard the author Lawrence Wright on Terry Gross, and this thing was fact-checked for 5 months or something. Intense. I say heads will ROLL.
  • Saw it. I finally watched The Secret of Kells, a fantastically beautiful animated movie about the 8th century illuminated manuscript (see picture!). It was absolutely breathtaking, and all I could think about was how much FUN the animators looked like they were having.
  • Heard it. Happy Valentine’s Day from Tom Jones! The dapper Welsh crooner is over at NPR describing his favorite lurvve songs.

Weekly digest (2/4/11)

I was home sick yesterday, so I got even more reading (and sleeping, and lemon tea) in than I usually do.

  • Read it. Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom. I’d like to take a time machine back to the end of 2010, when everyone was raving about this book and I pooh-pooh’ed it. Yes, everyone! It is that good. Longer review next week.

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  • Saw it. I have been rip-roaring through Battlestar Galactica and I’m ticked off at how addictive it is.

  • Heard it. The Decembrists’ The King is Dead is far twangy-ier and honky-tonkin’ than I would have expected.  It used to be streaming at NPR Music but now you can find some tracks on their website.