30 November 2009

Pop Culture Roundup

With the release of The Gathering Storm a few weeks ago, I decided it might be time to journey into The Wheel of Time yet again. For those who haven't heard of it, The Wheel of Time is a multi-volume fantasy epic conceived and largely written by Robert Jordan. Jordan died recently, and the final three volumes are being ghost-written by folks within his inner circle: Jordan dictated the overall plotline and they are writing out the story itself, from what I've heard. The Eye of the World is what Stephen King's The Dark Tower could have been before he wrote himself into it, but that's another story. Anyway, when all is said and done in 2011, the epic will span 15 volumes and over 3 million words. And it just might take me that long to finish it again. But it is good reading for those of us who like swords, magic, chivalry, ancient codes of honor and legends rising out of the earth.

While waiting to get to the next book in the WoT series, I'm going to indulge a bit in a fascinating new book/movie mix. Cathleen Falsani wrote The Dude Abides: The Gospel According to the Coen Brothers, which is a funny title since the Coen brothers were raised in a Jewish family and Ethan Coen wrote that belief in God is "the height of stupidity" in his master's thesis. Irony, thou art the most delicious of all spices. Anyway, my plan is to watch each of the Coen Brothers 14 movies before reading the chapter Falsani has dedicated to it. Should be a lot of fun, starting with Blood Simple, which should arrive from Netflix in time for a viewing Thursday night after the girls are in bed.

I'm listening to a lot of Wynton Marsalis on Pandora recently. I'm not yet in the mood for holiday music - usually I start getting ready for Christmas music about the time Christmas actually arrives (imagine that!). So it's jazz with a little Bach thrown in on the side. And, of course, there's always the Chieftains channel on Pandora and Johnny Cash from Folsom Prison if I'm wanting to get a little funky.

I don't know if I mentioned this earlier on the blog, but Beloved and I went to see "2012" at the theater last week. It's one of those movies you have to see on the big screen to really enjoy; had we waited until the DVD comes out, it would have been much more disappointing. So much nicer to watch people getting crushed by buildings in 70mm widescreen goodness, dontcha know? Nothing too surprising here: basic plotline is "we're gonna die - ooh, we almost died!" a few times over and then the happy ending for everyone for whom the happy ending could be happy (and unfortunate accidents for everyone whose continued presence could muck up said happy ending). That's not really a spoiler unless you were surprised at any point by any of the following movies: Transformers, Independence Day, and The Day After Tomorrow. Just sayin'.

That's what I'm reading, hearing and seeing lately. Later!

Grace & peace,

Edited later to add: I'm a frigging moron. I've finally gotten the most recent draft of my sister-in-law's book, and promised her I'd read it. So scratch The Dude Abides for the time being. I can't say much more than that about the book, but I'm glad to finally get my chance to read it!

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