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"Before you know it as the years go by, you're just like other people you have seen, with all those peculiar human ailments. Just another vehicle for temper and vanity and rashness and all the rest. Who wants it? Who needs it? These things occupy the place where a man's soul should be." -- Henderson the Rain King

Friday, November 30, 2007

Death By Black Hole

Book #46 on my reading list was Neil deGrasse Tyson's essay collection Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries.

Unless you're an astrophysicist or you've got too much free time you probably don't keep up with the latest findings in the cosmology field. No worries, Neil deGrasse Tyson's got your back. This excellent collection skims a wide swath of fascinating topics and puts them all into an entertaining and educational context that us laymen can understand. Exactly what a good science book should be.

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Thursday, November 29, 2007

ZIPSkinny

Stat junkies rejoice, get the skinny on your zipcode's demographics @ ZipSkinny. Seattle's some edumacated mo-fo's...my home town not so much.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Films #1-60

I've sailed well on past my 50 movie challenge for the year. Here's a recap of the 60 films I've seen so far.

  1. Curse of the Golden Flower
  2. Talladega Nights
  3. The Devil and Daniel Johnston*
  4. Little Miss Sunshine*
  5. Murderball
  6. Trekkies
  7. Scoop
  8. Da Ali G Movie: Indahouse
  9. Beerfest
  10. Reno 911: Miami
  11. Jesus Camp*
  12. Strangers with Candy
  13. 300
  14. Syriana
  15. An Inconvenient Truth
  16. Children of Men*
  17. Blades of Glory
  18. Babel*
  19. Match Point
  20. Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters*
  21. What Happened To Kerouac?
  22. Stranger Than Fiction*
  23. Searching For The Wrong-Eyed Jesus*
  24. King of Kong*
  25. Fearless
  26. The Fever of '57
  27. Big Rig
  28. About a Son
  29. The Fountain
  30. Idiocracy
  31. Pirates of the Caribbean 3
  32. The Pervert's Guide to Cinema
  33. American Shopper*
  34. Knocked Up*
  35. Pan's Labyrinth*
  36. Letters From Iwo Jima*
  37. Scratch
  38. Mulholland Drive*
  39. 21 Grams
  40. American Splendor*
  41. Once in a Lifetime
  42. The Simpsons Movie
  43. Hot Fuzz
  44. 28 Days Later
  45. An Unreasonable Man
  46. Superbad*
  47. Infamy
  48. The Good Shepherd
  49. Human Nature
  50. A History of Violence
  51. Death Proof
  52. You're Gonna Miss Me*
  53. Darjeeling Limited
  54. Broken Flowers
  55. Punch-Drunk Love
  56. Capote
  57. Beowulf
  58. No Country For Old Men*
  59. Air Guitar Nation
  60. Paris Je T'aime*

* - Highly recommended

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Paris, Je T'aime

Film #60 of my '07 list was Paris, Je T'aime.

My NetFlix rating: 4 stars
Jamie says: Coulda used a little more editing but includes some phenomenal shorts including the stellar closer '14ème Arrondissement', Natalie Portman's 'Faubourg Saint-Denis', the always wonderful Maggie Gyllenhaal in 'Quartier des Enfants Rouges', and ''Place des Fêtes'. Odd that this ended up being sort of a urban film compendium to Winesburg, Ohio
RIYL: Paris, short films, ensemble casts

Official Site
Rotten Tomatoes reviews
Wikipedia

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Monday, November 26, 2007

Winesburg, Ohio

Book #45 on my '07 reading list was Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson.

Clocking in at #24 on the Modern Library's 100 Best Novels of the 20th century I was expecting a lot of this one. Unfortunately I found it to be a bit bland. The characters are interesting and they piece together to form one kooky little town, but it just didn't do it for me. Also felt a bit gimmicky a la Sufjan's 50 state project. I'm sure I totally missed it and that it's a classic, but alas I'm moving on.

Wikipedia page
Read the whole thing online


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Air Guitar Nation

Film #59 of my '07 list was Air Guitar Nation.

My NetFlix rating: 3.5 stars
Jamie says: Make air not war
RIYL: Spellbound, Wordplay, Mad Hot Ballroom, School of Rock



Official Site
Rotten Tomatoes reviews
Wikipedia

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No Country For Old Men

Film #58 of my '07 list was No Country For Old Men.

My NetFlix rating: 5 stars
Jamie says: Best movie I've seen in the theater this year
RIYL: Fargo, Resevoir Dogs, The Departed


Official Site
Rotten Tomatoes reviews
Wikipedia

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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Beowulf

Film #57 of my '07 list was Beowulf.

My NetFlix rating: 3 stars
Jamie says: Better than the book! Okay, not really but wouldn't that be an awesome review? Still can't believe they filmed the whole thing in Old English...what's that you say? New English...ah well never mind.
RIYL: Angelina Jolie, Angelina Jolie, Angelina Jolie, Old English poems, Old English 800


Official Site
Rotten Tomatoes reviews
Wikipedia

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Capote

Film #56 of my '07 list was Capote.

My NetFlix rating: 3.5 stars
Jamie says: Thought the movie was so-so, but that Philip Seymour Hoffman fella's not a half-bad actor.
RIYL: In Cold Blood, Magnolia, Shawshank Redemption



Official Site
Rotten Tomatoes reviews
Wikipedia

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Flight of the Conchords

This just in...Flight of the Conchords is frickin' hilarious. Hey, not all of us have HBO you know? Catching up on the DVD's now and realizing that I've been missing out.

NPR World Cafe
Sub Pop page

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Monday, November 12, 2007

War's End

Book #44 on my '07 reading list was Joe Sacco's War's End: Profiles From Bosnia 1995-1996.

Consisting of two stories, "Christmas with Karadzic" and "Soba", War's End is a behind the scenes look at the Bosnian people and the journalists there to report on the war. It's also pure Sacco goodness.

Bookslut review
Powell's review
Village Voice review

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Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Best American Comics 2007

Book #43 on my '07 reading list was The Best American Comics 2007.

This is a case where you can actually judge a book by its cover. The Best American Comics 2007 is in fact a collection of some of the best comics published in the last year. Shocking, I know. Some of my favorites from this volume, numero dos in the Best American Comics series, included:


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Punch-Drunk Love

Film #55 of my '07 list was Punch-Drunk Love.

My NetFlix rating: 3.5 stars
Jamie says: Adam Sandler is hilarious...oh wait wrong movie
RIYL: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Magnolia, Lost in Translation


Official Site
Rotten Tomatoes reviews
Wikipedia

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Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I Am America (And So Can You!)

"Book" #42 on my reading list was Presidential candidate Stephen Colbert's Colbert Award winning I Am America (And So Can You!).

Already read America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction? If so congratulations you've pretty much got this one covered. Colbert's book is basically more of the same shtick, but with his Colbert Report character filling in where Jon Stewart left off. Granted it's still funny, but it'd be funnier if we hadn't seen it once already


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My Date With Satan

Book #41 on my '07 reading list was Stacey Richter's short story collection My Date With Satan.

Highlighted by the outstanding intro story "The Beauty Treatment", Richter's debut shows the promise that would later fully blossom in her wonderful second collection Twin Study. Richter's style falls somewhere in the George Saunders, Ryan Boudinot, Aimee Bender vein of absurdist realism, taking everyday situations and giving them a surprising twist. Dig it.

MySpace page

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