September 28, 2007

The Weeklies #4

The Weekly Reads. Several years ago, I "discovered" Harlan Coben. His stand-alone mysteries and thrillers have been compelling enough to be entertaining, well-written enough to be more than trash yet fluffy enough to require much thought. All good things sometimes. Yet, because I'm not a huge sports fan, I never gave Coben's Myron Bolitar series - featuring a sports agent who solves crimes - a chance. I mean, how good could they be for someone like me who could care less about sports? Turns out? Pretty darn good. This week, I took the fourth book in the series - Back Spin out for a spin. It was fantastic. Coben has an insanely fantastic sense of humor and ensures his protagonist does as well. While the crimes are serious and the mysteries hard-boiled, I found myself laughing hysterically on the first page. And I don't ordinarily laugh at books. If you want some good thrillers, check out Coben. And Myron Bolitar, of course.

The Weekly Music. Since it was released earlier this week, I've logged a little time with the Foo Fighters' Echoes Silence Patience Grace. See, I happen to like The Foo. Frontman Dave Grohl is one of the good guys in the music biz and he's a damn talented guy. I'm actually of the relatively unpopular opinion that the Foo Fighters are better than Dave's original band, Nirvana. Anyway, Dave and company have put together something entirely wonderful with their latest release. It's strong - as any Foo release invariably is - and, at the same time, quite heartfelt. The Foos have, in short, pulled off another minor miracle of modern music. Also this week, Pearl Jam released their full show from Lollapalooza. I'm pretty sure its an iTunes only release but I could be wrong. Regardless, if you're a Pearl Jam fan (and I must be since I've talked about them or lead singer Eddie Vedder for the past couple of weeks), I can't recommend this enough. It's one hell of a show with a fantastic setlist. Finally, I'm not sure why David Gilmour - he of Pink Floyd fame - isn't a household name. If pressed, I'd have to admit that he's my favorite guitarist. So, I was happy when he finally released Remember That Night, a live DVD taken from his most recent tour. It combines a live performance of his new, terribly underrated album On An Island (which I wasn't originally thrilled with but grew on me) with classic Floyd material. Gilmour looks a little older than the last time we saw him...but he's never sounded better.

The Weekly Worst Moment. I'd have to say sometime around 8:00 on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday mornings, the time at which I'd made it to Monkeytown, felt like crap, and gazed in awe at the packed calendar before me. Not a good feeling.

The Weekly Best Moment. This morning, almost literally 10 minutes ago. Mia came into bed with us for a few minutes. I was showered with kisses and hugged incessantly. It was a wonderful thing.

The Weekly Schadenfreude. You couldn't have missed the fact that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad visited NYC this week. He came, he claimed, to open a serious dialog about the relationship between the west and the Middle East. Instead he denied the Holocaust happened, launched into a tirade about the imperialism of the west, and lobbied for the continuation of his country's nuclear program. The best moment, however, came when speaking at Columbia University. Ahmadinejad, whilst speaking about the sociological makeup of his country, insisted that there were no homosexuals in his country. And nearly each audience member simultaneously doubled over laughing.

The Weekly Picture. Have you seen my hairy nut sack?

Posted by Chris at September 28, 2007 7:11 AM

I stumbled upon Harlan Coben (Promise Me) while I was waiting on my husband to finish one of the Harry Potter books (yes, we jumped on that wagon several years too late!!) and it was really good.

I'd like to pick up the rest of his books. Promise me had me laughing out loud several times.

p.s. The picture? It is gafaw (is that even spelled right?!?) inducing. I saw it just as I was taking a sip of drink!

Posted by: Michelle at September 28, 2007 7:52 AM

I have Coben's entire backlist in my TBR pile. I should really move him to the top of my list.

Ahmadinejad's Schadenfreude at Columbia was darn funny.

Have a great weekend.

Posted by: Maria at September 28, 2007 8:08 AM

I'm one of those Foo Fighters > Nirvana guys too. Maybe we should start a support group?

Posted by: Pete at September 28, 2007 8:20 AM

i'm loving the new foo fighters...

Posted by: ali at September 28, 2007 9:00 AM

#1. Seriously, you can put other things in your box besides your nuts. Just ask Beth.

#2. I'm listening to the new Foo right now, and like you, I have the unpopular opinion that this music is better than Nirvana's. I don't think there's anyone quite as artsy as Curt was, or as good of a guitarist, because he was damn good at finding those chords normally unplayed on the radio. But as far as music goes? Yeah, Foo. And Dave G is crazy impressive with the talent. Who comes off drums to play guitar AND sing AND write? Just him.

Posted by: Brad at September 28, 2007 9:46 AM

Thanks for the heads up on the Foo Fighters...I had no idea they were even in the studio again. Big fan. Ditto on Pearl Jam. You're Johnny-on-the-spot with the musical updates.

For the sake of hygiene, you might consider at least giving the sack a little trim now and then. Especially if you're going to post pictures of it. I mean, really.....

Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' at September 28, 2007 10:03 AM

You are *so* 12 years old.

Posted by: alison at September 28, 2007 10:20 AM

I agree on the Foo album, I think it is their strongest album to date, the lyrics are strong, and they have really branched out.

If I could hang out with one celebrity for 24 hours, it would be Dave Grohl.

Posted by: Slinger at September 28, 2007 10:57 AM

I am also a fan of Harlan Coben. When I "found" him, I checked out all of his books that the library had...some were better than others, but all pretty decent.

Sorry, not a Foo Fighters fan.

I am seriously cracking up over here over your photo....hahah. get it? cracking up...hardy har har.

Posted by: lesley at September 28, 2007 11:52 AM

I've been digging the Foo Fighters new stuff this week as well.

I really need you to to stop talking up the PJ stuff though. I immediately went to iTunes and coughed up the $10 for the Lollapalooza set. I didn't know about it and of course had to have it!

Posted by: dee at September 28, 2007 12:21 PM

Heh heh heh... you said Hairy Nutsack...

Oh... and took a picture of it. I can't believe that beautiful little MiaBean came from something so nasty. :)

Hey! Wait! I've got a new complaint Forver in dept for your priceless advice

I agree the Foos are more talented than Cobain and Crew but they just don't seem to have the same knack for hooks that Nirvana did.

Posted by: Johnny Smoke at September 28, 2007 2:11 PM

I agree on the Foo Fighters. Shall have to check this one out.

Posted by: Heather at September 28, 2007 3:03 PM

I, too, like Harlan Coben and have read them all. Maybe not the latest. I'll have to check...

The rest? Typical good Friday stuff. I refuse to even comment on the picture. I SAID I refuse...

Posted by: sue at September 28, 2007 3:45 PM

Followed the link to remember that night.. yeah, I'll be buying this. Thanks..

So, what does Mia listen to? I just downloaded a few songs from eMusic for my kiddos and I was just wondering what Mia's tastes in music revolve around?

There is a GREAT DVD by They Might Be Giants something about their ABC's my kids have loved this dvd from the time they were two, and my 8 year old still gets up and dances to it..

Also Justin Roberts and the Laurie Breckner band are popular in our house!

Posted by: molly at September 28, 2007 3:51 PM

You just had to bring the nuts picture into it again ;-) And Iran guy (whose name I can't spell :P) is an ass. Which I guess is the definition behind schadenfreude, really, but geez.

Posted by: Heather at September 28, 2007 4:20 PM

Nice nut sack!

Must write down the author Cobden eh?

Rushing out to get Foo-ed

Posted by: Nat at September 28, 2007 4:55 PM

i just threw up a little in my mouth

(am with you 100% on the foo's and i was a huge nirvana fan, i saw their last tour with my now hubby, he rolled a joint standing up in the dark, i'm pretty sure I was wearing a thrift store dress with long johns)

Posted by: Pamalamadingdong at September 28, 2007 11:08 PM

I saw your (pic of) hairy nutsack in my contacts on Flickr the other day and figured you'd get that reference in somehow... I just wasn't sure exactly how. And now I know.

As G.I. Joe says, "Knowing is half the battle."

Now, please excuse me whilst I try to expunge that image from my already delicate mind.

Posted by: ironic1 at September 28, 2007 11:45 PM

I saw that Iranian president on the news. He needs ot have his head examined. My question though was who the hell let him speak in this country? In fact, what moron let him in?

Posted by: Phoenix at September 29, 2007 12:06 AM

I went on a Harlan Coben tear last year and liked the vast majority. Just popped over to Amazon to see which ones I've missed, and it looks like I have some reading to do. Based on some past purchases, Amazon helpfully suggested I'd like Cruddy (Lynda Barry). They're right. I read that a few years ago in one sitting. Excellent book.

Posted by: Melissa at September 29, 2007 9:23 AM

I am in awe of your lightbox images.

Posted by: Kara @ Fear and Loathing in Stepford at September 30, 2007 10:54 PM