I watched five movies, four on DVD, one in the theater. Last Sunday’s filmed entertainment was 21 Jump Street. I never saw the original series, so it had no nostalgic appeal for me, but I remembered it getting good reviews, so I gave it a try. Very funny! The appearances by cast members Monday night was This Is 40 in the theater, which I’ve already discussed, but I’ll add that the scene in the principal’s office was rather disturbingly classist. I know that the current trend in entertainment is to treat the lower class as figures of fun (e.g., Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, Hillbilly Handfishing, etc.) but it makes me uncomfortable. Tuesday night I watched Here Comes Mr. Jordan. Claude Rains was wonderful, of course, but Robert Montgomery’s voice grated on me, and by and large I think the remake, Heaven Can Wait, was better. Wednesday evening I watched Young Adult. Charlize Theron and Patton Oswalt really impressed, and I was entertainingly by how horrible a person Theron’s character was. And last night I watched the older-but-not-really-that-old movie Enchanted April, which was a lot funnier than I expected, though a little thin on plot.
Man, that’s a lot! The holiday season and UW-Madison being on recess has left a lot more of my evenings free than usual, so once things get back to normal I imagine the number of movies I watch each week to drop.
In printed media, I finished reading – rereading, really – Pride and Prejudice. Toward the tail end of last year, I decided I would watch one adaptation of a Jane Austen novel every night, and did, starting with the 2008 BBC miniseries adaptation of Sense and Sensibility and working backwards in production order to the 1995 adaptation -- the "real version," as one friend calls it – of Pride and Prejudice. And having finished that, I decided it was time to reread the novels themselves. The Kindle edition I downloaded also contains her unfinished works and her juvenilia, which I haven’t read, so I expect to be Austening away for a good many weeks to come.
I also read some good longform articles online that you may want to check out:
- New York Times: "For Poor, Leap to College Often Ends in a Hard Fall"
Poor students struggle as class plays a greater role in success
- New York: "Blues Cruise"
A dispatch from the National Review's post-election cruise
- xojane.com: "How a Gun-Loving West Texas Girl Learned to Fear Assault Weapons"
For every outraged indigence about "trampling" on the second amendment, with every word and breath, I am that young woman again, sitting in her truck in a parking lot, alone except for a 911 operator.
- Harper’s: "Mississippi Drift"
River vagrants in the age of Wal-Mart
Aside from watching or reading things on screens, as previously mentioned, I attended my first collegiate hockey game. (Speaking of which, having thought about it for a while, I've decided I did in fact attend a Northwestern University football game with my high school marching band in 1982 or 1983. All I remember about it is that my feet really hurt from marching on the artificial turf, and I'm pretty sure I came home with at least one souvenir cup from the game. It's weird what sticks with you.)
Beyond all that, I've decided that I'm going to try to start making regular posts to my LJ again. This may have been self-evident to a certain degree, but I'm explicitly mentioning it so as to make clear that this is intended to be a sustained effort, not just a transitory spasm of posting. We'll see how well I do at keeping up with it.