Friday, February 26, 2010

? of the Week

Ok guys it has been a while since we had a ? and so I thought I would post one. Ok here it is a simple ? from me for once barely any thinking to do. You can answer as much or as little as you want. I am going to call this ? The Roll Call.

What are the last books, CDs & movies you have read, listen to or seen? And what did you think about them? Or what are you in the middle of right now?
I will post my answer tonight, but I love to know what people are in the middle of so that is my ?.

ABBEY. Oh em gee, stop the presses, I am blogging. My brain has been back on static mode and I can't see through it to think about much. It's tuning back in though, so, phew. Here we go *rubbing hands together*:
Books: Slashed through the Vampire Diaries books finally, and I thought the books were lame. The show is 1000 times better, I hate Elena way less on the show than I did in the books. Cdub did a fantastic job with this one, I heartily commend all the (numerous) changes they made. I also read a book my mom gave me a yearish ago called the Whistling Season by Ivan Doig. The writing was probably some of the best descriptional work I've ever read, and I felt myself swooning as I do when I listen to piano music. It was magical to read. The problem was that the story was boring. So boring. Conflicting feelings on this one because it was so great to read, but I wished the entire time there was a little more action. If you're hungering for lovely reading though, then I recommend.
Movies: Saw Couples Retreat, hahlarious. Vince Vaughn is creeping up my list of favorite comedians, I love all the words and the smart stuttering. Plus "There isn't much to say" is probably one of the best lines I've ever heard. The girls were good on this one too, I thought Kristen Bell (new fav girl) was great as a neurotic organized person. I got to see When in Rome (with Kara!), and it was super cute. Josh Duhamel is super cute and a great comedian as well. Plus I enjoyed the return of Napoleon, and Dax Shepard was totally awesome as someone suffering greatly from narcissism ("I'm going to have to say I didn't really learn much from this experience, but I'm glad I got to help you grow!..."). Nice abs too, Dax. Mmmm.
Music: Adam Lambert is still unreachably high on my playlist, and if my computer hadn't contracted a virus no antibiotic would touch, I would also do that review right now too. But since I have a sad pathetic memory, I'll have to wait until I have 3.7 hours to put my music back on this machine. I just moments ago downloaded Ray LaMontagne, and I fully recommend taking a listen to him on iTunes. I don't know why, but I am a super fan of the breathy, raspy men (Matt Wertz is a frickin' fantastic example of this, do yourself a favor and check him out as well). I totally just want to chill whilst listening to my new best bud Ray. I feel calm. Now if my husband were home, we'd totally pull a 1950's married couple and dance together swaying in the middle of the living room.
I need recommendations for books girls, so get 'em up here!

Ok here we go on the nightstand at the moment The Historian digging it greatly, hardly in but this story is mesmerizing. And all the little European towns in it are very enchanting love to read about places where old meets new. It is also about vampires, but so not! More of an academic mystery. Vamp D books I heard were awful so sorry you had to go through that Abbey. 2 fave authors I recently rediscovered were Alice Hoffman and Billie Letts so check them out as far as recommendations go.

I know I did not say but TV, add that in. Ok I am currently obsessed with Supernatural. I always wanted to watch it but never got the chance, but since there is now cable & syndication & the lovely DVR!!! I got my chance and I am loving Jensen Ackles his whole cocky but actually really sweet guy thing works for me in all the right ways.

Last movie I watched was Kinky Boots a British comedy about a shoe factory that starts to make ummm shoes for men who dress like women. Because it is a market they can sell too and also it might keep their factory open. Besides they too need well made shoes in the latest fashions As always the people in it have more layers than thoughts and the human spirit wins so yay! I also saw When in Rome and agree with all of Abbey's comments. Kristin Bell will always be my girl because of Veronica Mars.

Music V.V. Brown has an amazing CD out it is upbeat and fun yet still smart and the more I listen the more I dig. Brenden Bensen also has a great CD, if you want a more alternative option. Plus I swear at times he sounds just like Paul McCartney which freaks me out in the good way. Ok that is all I got- what about the rest of you?

Books: I'm working through the collected works of Jane Austen this year. It started over Christmas when I began reading "Sense & Sensibility," but then forget it at my mom's house when I came home. Then I realized my grandmother had given me some of her old classics when she and my grandpa downsized to a smaller house, and she owned a book that has all 6 of Austen's novels. "Sense & Sensibility" was the first one, so I finished it and then kept going. My goal was to finish them all by the end of the year, but its the end of February and I've already read 4, so I may beat that! Although that means I've gotta get through "Mansfield Park" & "Northanger Abbey" before the baby comes . . . probably not going to happen. I love them, I think they're fabulous, but I constantly think, "My word, these women do nothing." Their entire lives consist of visiting people and planning picnics and playing the piano or drawing. It's absurd and totally confirms my opinion that for women, there are no good old days. So far "Pride & Prejudice" is my favorite. Nobody writes smart, opinionated women like Jane.
Music: I haven't been doing too much new with music lately, sad to say, but tonight on the way home from my friend's mom's funeral, I heard a wonderful Pearl Jam song that made me cry. The DJ said its called "Just Breathe," which is a lame title, but it was beautiful. I'm about to download it off iTunes so I can memorize it (and probably cry again) but the line I'm remembering right now that stood out to me was in the very beginning, and he sings something like "I'm lucky to be able to count the people I love on two hands, some people can do only one and some people have none."
Movies: Again, not too much new here, but Abbey and I had a much needed girl's night last week and saw "When in Rome" and I totally loved it. Jon Heder is a genius, and Dax Shepard's line "I'm glad I got to help you grow" (see Abbey's earlier post) still makes me laugh. I'm constantly on the lookout for a chance to use that quote in my life. This isn't particularly a review of one movie, but I'd like to give a shout out to Netflix for making my teaching life significantly easier this semester. Thanks to their vast selection of historical documentaries that are all available for instant streaming, and ASU Poly's super mediated classrooms I teach in, I have been able to stream said documentaries from my personal laptop into the classroom's computer system. This is fantastic, because it allows me to only lecture for 45 mins then do portions of documentaries for the last half hour, and thus allows me to eat on my marathon teaching day. God bless Netflix.

HEIDI - Alright I guess I'm just a massive slacker this past week.... but I'll try and make up for it.
Okay I'll start with Books. I've got nothing. Really in the past two and half months since Christmas I've only read the entire Percy Jackson series (this is really not that impressive because I think each book took me about 4 hours each....). Well I suppose I also read Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom and I totally loved(!) it. I start the Poisonwood Bible on my trip to D.C. and it's interesting but I just haven't been in the mood to read much the past few weeks. Cor told me I should read The Help though so I'll check into that.
Music, I've totally been digging Kesha. I know she's super dirty in most her songs, well the ones on the radio, but if you search through her cd to Boots and Boys and Blind then you'll love it. Her beat is so catchy and just fun to rock out to. I've also been Lada Gaga obsessed a little bit, especially Telephone. And of course Adam Lambert. And I've rediscovered my love of punk rock in the form of my "reject boy" playlist (yes Abbey I am playlist obsessed but this playlist combines my love of Fall Out Boy, All American Rejects, Bowling for Soup, Hawthorne Heights, Green Day, and many others). ya sad to say but the last movie I saw in theatres was Holmes. Totally loved it though! Oh wait haha just a couple days ago Ab, Ben and I saw Valentine's Day. I was all ready to be skeptical of this movie but it was actually super funny and I totally loved it. On netflix I recently got Gamer, which was violent but I really liked it. It made me think in the way that Law Abiding Citizen made me think and love that. Plus the guy who plays Dexter was so amazingly fantastic I can't even describe. So violent but really intriguing. Oh I also watched Couples Retreat and totally agree with Ab on Vince Vaughn. Funny guy. And I watched the end of the world movie with Keanu Reeves as an alien.... can't remember the name right now...dang. It was actually passable. It was definitely about how we're destroying the earth but still had it's interesting parts... Tonight and tomorrow I'll be seeing Shutter Island and Alice in Wonderland so we'll see how those go.
Alright tv shows, on Netflix I've been working my way through Moonlight which is about a vampire who is a private investigator. I like it. I think I may be becoming a genre person in my like of vampire dramas but really they just intrigue me especially the different takes everyone has on the same horror. The past two weeks was taken over by the Olympics and I had to forego all other shows in an effort to keep up with what was happening. It was fun but I will be happy to go home and work through all those shows I've missed. Although I did keep up with The Soup because I can't go without it for a week. Ya I think that's all.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Olympics

I don't know if this counts as a tv show or not but....I don't know what else it would be. Special feature maybe? Oh well, anyway, since my entertainment life has been entirely taken up by the Olympics in the past week and a half I thought I would mention a few of my thoughts about it.

 - While I love the Olympics and can't wait for every other year when they come around, is it really necessary for all my other shows to quit for two weeks (or in the most grievous case a month and a half)? Trust me, my tivo can handle it!

- Cross country. Honestly I think it's on every day. And to me it all looks like the same event. I can't tell the people apart, much less if they're men or women, and it just looks so unbelievably hard. I commend them greatly on their endurance (my Heaven their endurance and leg muscles!) but really I find you boring cross country. A contributing factor to this may also be the fact that the United States is really terrible at it. However, the announcer for cross country events gets SO excited about everything that is slowly happening, that each time I'm sucked in thinking it's interesting, and then I realize I don't know who he's talking about because he's using the people's names, and I need him to bring it down to my level and use the colors of their uniforms and poles. And the mass start biathalon is just sheer chaos! You have 20 people at one time on the shooting range and people are missing you don't know who's who and you just really need to give up.

- Men's figure skating. I'm curious as to when this sport changed from something that really strong, small men did, to where it's now somewhat of a make-up and costume competition. Don't get me wrong they're still amazingly strong but it just seems there's a higher percentage of guys batting for the other team then there used to be....

- Ice Dancing. Really this is a cool sport. I think that it flows really well and I like watching dancing on ice because the moves and turns seem so much smoother and just generally prettier. But the woman announcer just about drove me to insanity. She was a little to intense about her sport and how it is harder than any other Olympic sport....rrriiiiigggghhhhtttt. I think I should just watch it on mute. And the Russian pair really scared me. They are not people I'd like to meet in a dark alley because they strike me as completely psychotic. Did you see their creepy facial expressions while they were doing the weird Aboriginal dance????

- The snowboarders are my absolute favorite. Watching their interviews is just awesome because they're all so laid back and happy! You kind of wonder whether they care about winning or if they're just happy they found some snow they can ride on. Shaun White is AHmazing. And Johnny Moseley (yes I know he's skiing) is my Olympic crush....

 - I love Chris Collinsworth. He's my favorite NFL announcer and every fluff personal piece he does on random athletes I have to watch. I love his voice and he's just a funny guy. And Steven Colbert makes me laugh out loud. Especially with his moose.

- Why do they have to show the qualifying rounds of some of these sports? I honestly don't really care and isn't there other sports you could put on that aren't qualifying? Like a curling match or a hockey game.... I don't need to watch the quarters, semis, second semis, and two final rounds of short track speed skating (I'm not kidding that's how many rounds there was). Just give me the finals. Maybe this makes me impatient but I'd rather see a short time of a lot of different events then just one for 2 hours.

Okay this probably sounded like a lot of complaining. It really wasn't, just some observations I had and ideas on how to make it better. Because we all know the IOC and NBC wants my opinion. I do love the Olympics and will be sad to see them go for another two years....but happy to have my other shows back too :).