2012 Music & Book Review

I always make a year-end playlist of my favorite songs from the year.  While I would venture to say most of my readers don’t like my style of music, I still wanted to share.  You can listen to any of the tracks free on Spotify, here is the link for this playlist:  2012

2012

 

I only read 33 books this year, way down from last year.  My reading goal for the year was to read or re-read the classics.  I think I did a pretty good job on those:  The Fountain Head, The Great Gatsby, To Kill a Mockingbird, A Confederacy of Dunces, Tom Sawyer & Huck Finn, Catcher in the Rye, 1984 and The Stranger.

My favorite book, besides maybe The Great Gatsby or the Catcher in the Rye, was The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.  I cried approximately 7 times and finished it in about 4 hours, staying up until almost 3 AM.

fault

Gone Girl and Defending Jacob were also very good reads, although none of them particularly happy stories.

I read several I didn’t care for, so in 2013 I need to decide not to waste my time finishing a book that didn’t resonate with me from the beginning.  I can stop watching a horrible movie, why do I feel I need to finish a book?

Books, Music & Movies

With treatment being pretty spread out now, there’s not a lot to blog about as far as that goes.  I still go in once a week for blood work to check my counts, I take Mercaptopurine chemo pills daily and Methotrexate pills weekly.  We are currently on day 21/84 of the second round of maintenance and the next big event is on day 29- another spinal tap to give Methotrexate to my brain and spinal cord,  my monthly IV chemo – Vincristine, and the start of another 5 days of Dexamethasone.

I find I’ve been spending most of my time reading, in fact I’ve already finished 8 books since the start of the year:  The Hangman’s Daughter; Are You There Vodka, It’s Me Chelsea; The Bedwetter:  Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee; How to Be Good; My Horizontal Life; Chelsea, Chelsea, Bang, Bang; Heaven is for Real and finally Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption.  The best of these by far was Unbroken, it was probably one of the best books I’ve ever read.  It came recommended by my cousin Drew and I recommended it to my book club as one of next selections.  If you’re looking for a great book to pick up, this needs to be your next one!

Congrats to Arcade Fire on their Grammy win for Album of the Year!  If you remember my post Lists for 2010, I listed this as one of my top 5 favorites for the year.  Facebook was abuzz that night with people angry about this Grammy win, I’m guessing because most people haven’t heard of them.  A while back I had posted a link on Facebook to an interactive Arcade Fire video which uses Google maps to show your home town in parts of the video, pretty cool.

I'm gonna write a letter to my true love
I'm gonna sign my name
Like a patient on a table
I wanna walk again gonna move through the pain

Now our lives are changing fast
Now our lives are changing fast
Hope that something pure can last
Hope that something pure can last

Lyrics to "We Used To Wait"

Thinking of the Grammy’s makes me think of the upcoming Oscars.  Back when I was in high school and worked at the movie theater, every year I would have seen all of the best picture nominees (and I believe there were fewer nominees then too).  Life is a little more complicated now and opportunities to go to the movies are far less frequent. As of right now I’ve seen half of them:

  • Black Swan
  • The Fighter
  • Inception
  • The Kids are Alright
  • The King’s Speech
  • 127 Hours
  • The Social Network
  • Toy Story 3
  • True Grit
  • Winter’s Bone

It would be unrealistic to see the rest of them before Sunday, but of the ones I’ve seen I’d have to go with Black Swan with Winter’s Bone a close second.  I think the win will go to the King’s Speech. I think Ryan’s pick would be Toy Story 3.

My Lists for 2010

I’m a huge geek when it comes to end of the year lists, I love ’em!  Here are my own Top 5 lists for albums, songs and TV shows.  They are not in any particular order nor did they necessarily come out this year, it’s just a few of my favorites I discovered in 2010.

Top 5 Albums:

  • Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros with Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. Favorite Track:  “Home”
  • The Black Keys with Brothers.  Favorite Track:  Sinister Kid”
  • The Arcade Fire with The Suburbs.  Favorite Track:  “We Used To Wait”
  • Avi Buffalo with Avi Buffalo.  Favorite Track:  ” What’s It In For?”
  • Mumford & Sons with Sign No More. Favorite Track:  “The Cave”

Top 5 Songs:

  • Rill Rill” by Sleigh Bells on Treats
  • “Islands” by XX on XX
  • “Help I’m Alive” by Metric on Fantasies
  • “This Too Shall Pass” by OK Go on Of the Blue Colour of the Sky
  • “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence + The Machine on Lungs.

(I’m a little embarrassed by the last two, but with everything I’ve been through this year, they just kind of inspire me.)

Top 5 TV Shows:

  • Modern Family
  • Dexter
  • Weeds
  • Arrested Development (defiantly not from 2010 but I watched the whole series this year)
  • 30 Rock

In closing, here’s a fun little ditty that deserves an honorable mention.