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Archive for the ‘entertainment’ Category

Books, the bodies of reading, were fascinating for me early in life, and I’m fortunate enough to have had parents who, after I left for college, saved many that I had as a kid. The oversized Dinosaur picture book, the scholastic book service biographies I ordered in school, the heroic war stories, the Vonnegut novels. The whole collection fit neatly on shelves built in over my bed.

The book shelves of my first apartments were also easily ordered. After a decade and a half in San Francisco, I moved, following a job across the bay that kept me busy for months. But one Saturday morning I woke with the usual to-do-list, which was interrupted by the realization I’d never properly sorted my books. Many simply came out of the boxes, which I’d filled by size and shape, not subject.

It was a nice weekend—my recollection is it was blustery outside, but inside I stacked piles of books, moving between bookcases in my living room, kitchen, and bedroom. American fiction, travel guides, a stack for Anne Tyler, movie references, et cetera.

I respect the decimal system of Dewey, but my categories are more organic. A History of Eating in America next to a Chinese cookbook; the collected Grantas shared space next to Graham Greene because they fit well.

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You, small male child: build things!

I got these Tinker toys as a Christmas gift, perhaps in the hope of encouraging my engineering skills. And there I was, with my nose stuck in a book.

Looking to pare down possessions, I look at this stuff now and wonder if anyone might want it, before I toss it out.

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We have two freezers: the bottom compartment of our kitchen refrigerator, and the larger one in our downstairs garage’s side-by-side fridge.

Containers abide in them so long we might well be preserving mammoth meat.

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Life, Itself

Last night CNN broadcast the movie Life, Itself about film critic Roger Ebert, focusing both on his career as well as the difficult final months of his life.

I greatly enjoyed the retrospective, and getting a stronger sense of his place within film criticism, particularly as a populist critic in counterpoint to cerebral critics such as Pauline Kael.

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 I e-mailed my friend who brews with me about the next beers we are going to make. “What,” he replied. “no huzzahs and hosannas for the World Champion Red Sox?!”

 He’s from Connecticut. I don’t blame him for being a Red Sox fan. But I do note that he’s singing a new tune. (more…)

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It’s morning in our Caribbean Beach resort hotel room, a gray day outside, which somewhat fits the mood as we pack and prepare for shuttle buses, airports, metal detectors, and long flights inside fancy aluminum tubes. (more…)

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Sure, we all complain about commercials. I channel surf away and still can’t escape them — this evening while I fiddled around online a rum commercial came on in the background that made me turn the TV off.

But not because I disliked it. Rather, I heard it through for the background music, Iggy Pop’s The Passenger, which made me want to hear that song again.

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