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End of Summer, Divine

Infinite Summer ended early for me this year. I haven’t read much lately, aside from the first 400 pages of IJ and an electronic copy of Ask Dr. Mueller I found on OpenLibrary.

I’ve been on a little bit of a John Waters kick. Female Trouble is a movie I need to remember to watch anytime I’m in a bad mood. All I need to see is Divine dancing down the street to feel better.

Books and Television: Drug Addiction, Families, and Tennis

I haven’t been watching too much TV this summer, mainly because the few shows I do watch are on hiatus. However, Season 5 of Breaking Bad started up a few weeks ago. Best show on television right now, in my humble opinion. It’s definitely in my top five all-time favorite TV shows. Are you watching? If not, you’re definitely missing out.

Last month I decided to participate in a global community reading project called Infinite Summer. The challenge is to start reading David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest on June 21st and to finish it by September 21st. But it’s not as easy as it sounds. Infinite Jest is roughly 1,000 pages long with 388 footnotes. Some of the footnotes have endnotes to them. One does not simply read Infinite Jest. I recommend having a dictionary handy. A scene-by-scene guide is also useful. So is a map of Boston as depicted in Infinite Jest. And for all things IJ, there’s a wiki for that.

[EDIT: And how could I forget to mention the music video of The Decemberists' 'Calamity Song' that depicts the Interdependence Day game of Eschaton!]

What is the book about? Wikipedia’s description: “The lengthy and complex work takes place in a semi-parodic future version of North America, and touches on tennis, substance addiction and recovery programs, depression, child abuse, family relationships, advertising and popular entertainment, film theory, and Quebec separatism, among other topics.” So, yeah, there’s a lot going on here.

At the moment, I’ve read 40% of it so far on Kindle. And I’ll deserve a merit badge to sew on my Girl Scout sash when I cross the finish line, that’s for sure.

Nobody puts Baby in a corner…but they do put him in adult-sized diapers!


I’ve been in a rather dark mood lately. So, when Netflix suggested the category ‘Horror Movies from the 1970′s’ in my queue, I thought, Oh Netflix! You just looked right into my eyes and saw the depths of my soul!

In honor of my birthday, I decided to watch something from the year I was born. The first one I watched was Tales That Witness Madness. While the scene with Joan Collins getting mauled to death by a tree did put smile on my face, what really warmed the cockles of my heart was the discovery of The Baby.

I vaguely remember trying to watch The Baby sometime in the early 80′s when I was a kid. It was re-run on a local TV station and the cattle prod scene freaked me out enough to get me to change the channel. As an adult, I can now appreciate the humor of this twisted shit. Thank you, Netflix, for bringing this masterpiece back into my life!

Television Without Cable: Apple TV, Roku, Netflix Instant, and Hulu Plus

I’ve had an Apple TV for awhile now, but I wasn’t using it because I was having problems with the connection. I was thinking about selling it on eBay, but I thought I’d give it one more try. I really like it when it’s working properly and I’m able to sync with iTunes or download directly from the Internet. Last weekend, I finally got everything to work! Once I created an open network to use, everything fell into place.

As nice as it is, I use my Roku box to access Netflix Instant and Hulu Plus much more often than my Apple TV, mainly because I pay a flat-rate for their services. With the Apple TV, I have to pay for programs individually and they have the restricted encoding that’s typical of Apple products. But there are many programs available on iTunes that aren’t on Netfilx Instant or Hulu Plus, so there you go. I don’t watch that much TV, so it’s not that big of deal. I’m just happy I can avoid getting cable or satellite TV. Now, if only I could access Apple products through Linux…(sigh).

Links:
Hulu Plus (First two weeks are free)
Netflix (First month is free)
Apple TV MC572LL/A (2010)
Roku HD Streaming Player