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Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Year/Decade That Was

Well, it's that time of year again, when we trot out endless "Best of" lists and try to make sense of the cavalcade of pop culture and insanity that we are literally drowning in every year. This year has an additional element, though, because it is also the end of a decade so the lists have to be more expansive and philosophical and stuff.

Rather than try and come up with a "Best of" list that would entertain y'all I'll just offer you a list of "Best of" lists.

For starters here is Hannah Miet, a poet from NYC, ruminating on the meaning of resolutions and offering some of her own anti-resolutions in her brilliant, flowing poetry/prose. While you're there take some time to peruse her other posts. She's a great writer.

Time gets the award for the broadest Top Ten list: The Top 10 Everything of 2009.
The New Yorker's got the Best Films of the decade here.
Paste deigns to choose the Best Albums of the "Naughties" here.
Natch Rolling Stone has to add their two cents here.

If websites are more your thing then Time lists the 50 Best of 2009 here. I'm not on the list...I already checked.

Salon takes a stab at choosing the Best Books of the decade.
So does the Guardian UK.

The AV Club focuses on TV here.
And Variety here.

Alright...that's' enough. Find your own darn "Best of" lists people! See y'all in 2010. Be safe and have a good time ringing in the new year/decade. It's gonna be a good one...I can feel it.

Word of the Day!

presage [pres-ij; pri-seyj]
1. An indication or warning of a future event; an omen.
2. A feeling or intuition of what the future holds.
3. Prophetic significance.
4. Archaic: A prediction; a prognostication.transitive
1. To indicate or warn of beforehand; to foreshadow.
2. To have a presentiment of.
3. To predict; to foretell.
-intransitive verb
To make or utter a prediction.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Magical Mystery Tour: A Beatles Odyssey

As most of you probably know by now The Beatles recently released two massive collections that have quickly become must-haves for any Beatles fan. The first is the fully remastered stereo recordings for all 13 studio albums released between 1963 and 1970. This includes:

Please Please Me
With The Beatles
A Hard Days Night
Beatles For Sale
Rubber Soul
Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Magical Mystery Tour
The White Album
Yellow Submarine
Abbey Road
Let It Be

Plus Past Masters Volume I and II which includes every non-album single released during the same period. So effectively this collection includes a remastered stereo version of just about every note The Beatles put on record and released in the 1960s.

Word of the Day!

largess [lar-zhes; lar-jes; lar-jes]
also largesse
1. Generous giving (as of gifts or money), often accompanied by condescension.
2. Gifts, money, or other valuables so given.
3. Generosity; liberality.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Writing Guide

Here's a cool blog from Craig Gaines, a freelance editor and writer in LA with more than 10 years' experience in the business of making words do what they're intended to do, i.e. convey meaning. He doesn't post all that regularly* but when he does the subjects he tackles are always interesting and informative.

You can check out the blog here.

*Compared to me, at least.

Word of the Day!

diaphanous [dy-af-uh-nuhs]
1. Of such fine texture as to allow light to pass through; translucent or transparent.
2. Vague; insubstantial.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Song of the Moment: Girl From the North Country

Bob Dylan is one of the most prolific songwriters in the history of modern popular music and so it is easy to lapse into superlatives when trying to describe any of the hundreds of great songs he’s written through the years but, all reservations aside, none of his songs have affected me quite so fundamentally as “The Girl From the North Country.” Written in 1962 during Dylan’s first trip to England the song is classic Dylan, sad, world-weary, and irrepressibly gorgeous.

Featured on Dylan’s second studio album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, “Girl From the North Country” has lingered for years as a sort of peripheral track, never widely praised on its own yet used often to buoy the reputation of Dylan’s dynamic repertoire. While nowhere near as famous as it’s Freewheelin’ set-mates (“Blowin in the Wind”, “A Hard Rain’s A’Gonna Fall”, etc.) “Girl” resides in the twilit nether region of album cuts which rather than drag down the overall composition instead become part of the milieu that makes a good album great.

Word of the Day!

embonpoint [ahn-bohn-pwan]
Plumpness of person; stoutness.

What a relaxing holiday!

Hey everybody, I hope you had a wonderful holiday and are rested and relaxed. I used the time to catch up with my rapidly increasing family and spend some well-deserved time with my baby. Now it's time to get back to the grindstone.