Thanksgiving Weekend Cultural Wrap-up


Thanksgiving means a lot of things. Giving thanks, gorging on turkey, spending time with in-laws, watching football. Also with basically 4-1/2 days off work, there can be lots of cultural goings on too. Here's a rundown of what I saw, heard, or seen this past week:

Movies. I had the unfortunately experience of seeing Ninja Assassin this weekend. Someone had to be the parent/guardian for a couple of teenagers to see this flick and I pulled the short straw. Totally predictable, unbelievably gory, badly acted. Heck this was so bad the film "makers" could even find the energy to throw in a gratuitous naked boob shot. It was bad, so bad you have to go to confession after seeing it. I still want to see 2012 (I know another bad movie) Where the Wild Things Are, Fantastic Mr. Fox (which I had to give up to see N A) and Avatar.

DVDs. Donnie Darko and Food, Inc. Easily my 8th viewing, Donnie Darko is a classic - make sure you get the Director's Cut. If you ever wanted to know what it's about here's a pretty good wrap-up. Food, Inc. Is a great documentary about all the bad things that are done to our food. I've been moving toward taking making better choices about what I eat ever since I read The Omnivore's Dilemma. After watching this I have to double my efforts. One thing I am doing is buying my meat from a local farmer who uses both humane animal husbandry practices and no pesticides/anti-biotics. (our 22-lbThanksgiving Day turkey was fresh, locally grown, and had no preservatives, antibiotics, etc., and brought tears to your eyes it was so good).

Books. I quickly finished The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell. A nice little book about how trends/fashions etc go "viral." Thing is he wrote this before the onset of Youtube so I would love to hear his thoughts on that. If you liked Freakonomics this is along the same lines, but better. I plan to read Gladwell's other books, Outliers and Blink. But next on the bedside table is a 1000 page tome on post-WWII European History. Should be a good winter read. I also have the latest Atlantic Monthly I need to slip in there.

Music. I didn't buy any new music lately but I did listen to a bunch of Pavement, Radiohead's In Rainbows, Whiskeytown, Decemberists' Crane Wife (which will be on my list of best albums of the 2000s -- if I ever make such list) and all 50 songs on Elvis Costello's Get Happy! For some reason I have a hankering for The Clash and plan to scratch that itch by listening to their first two albums.

Sports. Watched some football this weekend too but missed most of the Viking game. I like that the Vikings defense is coming around. I will definitely watch tonight's game as I am also a Patriots rube.

Well that's about it. What else is going on out there that I missed?


The best part of "The Tipping Point" was it gave you the feeling that little things can make a big difference. That is pretty empowering.

I thought it was interesting that authors of Freakonomics endorsed this book and he endorsed their book, but they totally contradict each other on the reasons for the decrease in crime in NYC.

I liked Tipping Point better than Blink. I haven't read Outliers yet.

What Pavement?

Algonad, I thought Freakonomics had a cool name for a book but was kind of a dumb. Crime went down in NYC because poor black women were aborting their unwanted babies? Give me a break.

E, I was listening to Slanted and Enchanted, Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, and Watery, Domestic.

Two thumbs up for Mr. Fox!

Skip Outliers. That one started to irk me a little bit even as I was reading it, and the more time I have to think about it, the less I buy what Gladwell was selling in that one.

Concerning movies, what about The Road? I'm excited to see it, but I may re-read the book first.

Outliers didn't click with me either. I also find that the less I see of Gladwell on TV hawking his books the better. I find some of his ideas intriquing but find him very irritating on a personal level.

Thanks for the advice on Outliers. I'll have to reconsider. I've never seen the guy on TV so no irritation on my part.

Big Mak, I should have included The Road. The wife isn't too keen on seeing it so it might end up being a rental. The book was great and I've heard good things about the movie. Not really a Holiday brightener though is it?


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This page contains a single entry by Freealonzo published on November 30, 2009 1:40 PM.

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