Friday, May 07, 2010

Pop Culture Roundup

I continue meandering through Walden, which I think is fitting. He tells a story of being arrested one day while spending the day in town, and he shares these lines which I find still incredibly relevant:

"But, wherever a man goes, men will pursue and paw him with their dirty institutions, and, if they can, constrain him to belong to their desperate odd-fellow society. It is true, I might have resisted forcibly with more or less effect, might have run 'amok' against society; but I preferred that society should run 'amok' against me, it being the desperate party."

I've also just started In It for the Long Haul by Glenn Ludwig. It's the second of my three sabbatical books, and all about sustaining longer-term pastorates. I'm not too far into it yet, so I don't have much to say about it other than it's only 130 pages or so; it may not take that long to read.

We watched Sherlock Holmes this past week. I confess that I haven't read any Holmes stories save the play by William Gillette, which showcased/reinforced the well-known cultural aspects of Sherlock Holmes, i.e., "Elementary, my dear Watson" and the deerstalker hat, that aren't actually in the books. The movie, I presume, is more true to the books as well and thus doesn't make use of these elements either. In fact, it's a very gritty portrayal set against the backdrop of a gritty London. Holmes is played by Robert Downey, Jr. as nearly antisocial, even savant, in his powers of observation and desperate need to have a case with which to preoccupy himself. Jude Law plays Watson, as his friend and assistant, but also as his foil and keeper. The plot was also good, but I just found myself taking in the whole Holmsian world.

The 150th episode of Family Guy aired this week, which is significant if only because Fox cancelled it twice, but brought it back after realizing how popular it was on DVD and reruns. Now if only that worked with Firefly. Well anyway, the story was very simple, featuring Brian and Stewie visiting the bank so that Brian could work with his safety deposit box, to be ultimately trapped in the vault all weekend together. Some usual awkward, gross-out, "that's-just-wrong" humor for which FG is known happens, along with some more serious moments as the two work out issues in their relationship. It was a very uncharacteristic episode, which I know turned a lot of fans off, but it worked at a different level. If people tuned in expecting the madcap stuff and the non-sequitor flashbacks, they were bound to be disappointed. But I thought it was very well-done.

I ordered two Jennifer Knapp CDs through the library this past week, Kansas and The Way I Am. Kansas is the music for which I remember her from my college years...I like the music itself more than most of the lyrics, which are full of the stock Christian cliches that largely turned me off to the genre. She grew up by the time she recorded The Way I Am: certainly still a Christian focus, but now she's using her own words.

I may actually go see Jennifer Knapp in concert this next week. I also got my Dave Matthews Band tickets in the mail the other day. So, like, go me.

Here's a song from Phineas and Ferb, the Spa Day Rap:

Also, here's a creative way to announce that you're pregnant (no, not Coffeewife):