The Power of TK

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See Also

100 Things About Me
The Bull's Testicles Project
Russia Trip: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5
Best of 2002: Movies, Books, Music.
Best of 2003: Movies.
Best of 2004: Movies, Books.
Best of 2005: Theater, Books.
Best of 2006: Theater, Books, Television.


Other Sites

My Slate archive
Day job podcasts
YST Movie Madness
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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Keeping Track of 2005
I’ve always been a bit embarrassed by my compulsion to keep track of the movies I see and the books I read. My dad, who has always had food issues (if I’d never left England, no doubt that last clause would’ve read “who’s a fat bastard” or possibly, if I were feeling kinder, “who’s a greedy bugger”) has this thing about writing down everything he eats, so my own semi-compulsive list-keeping has always struck me as a bit dysfunctional or maybe just embarrassing. Nevertheless, I do it, as do many other fully functional humans, so rather than hide and deny, I should just be cop to it—and at least get some blog posts out of it to help with the New Year resolutions.

In 2005, distractions at the beginning of the year (you know, the whole packing up and moving 3,000 miles from Seattle to New York thing), missing SIFF, having a later-ending workday, and the endless alternative options here meant that I saw fewer than half as many movies in 2005 as I did in 2004—42 as compared to 106. (I don’t care how good televisions get, I only consider myself to have “seen” a movie when I watch it in a movie theater—if you can pause or do a so doku while you’re watching, it’s just not the same.) Books were comparable—28 in 2005 versus 30 in 2004—but once again I only counted books that I finished; I often read almost all of a book, usually for work purposes, but if I don’t read every last word, it doesn’t make the list. This is a shockingly pathetic total, but I suppose that’s the price of podcasting and hour upon hour of television every night. New in 2005, I attended 29 theatrical productions—mostly what Variety would call “Legit” theater, but I cheated slightly and included the four operas that I saw this year—Seattle Opera’s magnificent Ring cycle.

Tomorrow (or soon thereafter), I’ll offer my bests and worsts of the year, but for now enjoy the list of movies, books, and theatrical/operatic works I experienced in 2005. Later I'll get to the media that I'm not so compulsive, though no less enthusiastic, about: television and music.

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Celebrity Sightings, Part 4
Phew! To hear my fellow Park Slope-dwellers tell it, it’s almost impossible NOT to run into Jennifer Connelly and/or Paul Bettany in our neighborhood. Obviously, I was doing something wrong until this afternoon, when, in a bit of a post-haircut fuzz, I popped into Loom on Seventh Avenue (there’s something irresistible about a shop that fills its window with $500 bags and its shelves with $5 stationery). I’m in some kind of ungainly crouch when I hear an English accent—no matter how hard I try not to, I always have to look up and check out their dentition. The guy is having a playful argument with his partner (and manfully driving the stroller); as they squeeze by me to leave, I realize the faux-bickering family consists of an Oscar winner, a London Critics Circle Film Awards winner, and their no-doubt gorgeous offspring. His hair was unnaturally blond—is that one of the clues in the Da Vinci Code?

Now I'm just missing Heath and Michelle for my Park Slope Celeb-Spotting badge.

Earlier: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.



Monday, December 26, 2005

Celebrity Sightings, Part 3
We had a traditional New York Christmas Day, complete with Chinese food and a movie on the Upper West Side. At the movie (Mrs. Henderson Presents), we shared air with Michael McKean (it seemed weird his watching a movie starring his longtime collaborator Christopher Guest at the same time as the regular peeps), as well as Frank Rich and Alex Witchel of the New York Times. A three-fer!

Earlier: Part 1; Part 2.



Thursday, December 15, 2005

Whither Junio?
I wouldn't want you to think I've been sitting at home eating bon-bons. Well, much of the time that's exactly what I've been doing. If I'm not at the movies, the theater, or recording a podcast, chances are I'm watching TV and eating some variation on the bon.

But some of that TV watching paid off last week with a Slate piece about TV's high-school homos, that kids on shows set in high-school who are gay or questioning. (And boy is the questioning on South of Nowhere watchable.)