December 7, 2007

The Weeklies #14

The Weekly Worst Moment. I was sitting in my car, stuck in miles and hours of traffic on a snowy Wednesday morning. Sitting motionless on an on-ramp to the freeway, my car slowly started drifting to the left. On ice, I was powerless to stop it. It's a bad feeling, drifting out of control, however slowly, and being able to do nothing about it. Luckily, it stopped. Unfortunately, so did traffic. For about two solid hours.

The Weekly Best Moment. Well, my birthday of course.

The Weekly Font. I'm 35 and I'm going to take a stand - I'm a Verdana man, dammit!

The Weekly Reads. Sometimes the places written about in books become just as much characters as the individuals than inhabit the stories. James Michener has proven this countless times. In The Pinball Theory of the Apocalypse, Jonathan Selwood forces Los Angeles to center stage. The book itself is ridiculous, satirizing the art world and life itself. But, from the constant aftershocks of earthquakes and the ever-rising tide of tar, L.A. is the real star of the show. And while the book is good, it's not really the quintessential L.A. novel in my experience, at least. That title goes to A.M. Homes' This Book Will Save Your Life. Not only is the novel a great book about L.A., but it's one of the best books I've read all year. Selwood? Check him out. But check out This Book Will Save Your Life first.

The Weekly Music. I bought Billy Joel's Nylon Curtain and Glass Houses because Chuck Klosterman told me to. Not that I have extensive - or any - conversations with Chuck. Not that I'd jump off a bridge if he told me to. I was reading an essay of Klosterman's about Billy Joel, specifically about the uncoolness of Billy Joel. Personally I've always thought Joel was a pretty cool guy and a damn good musician but when Klosterman began an investigation in the two of Joel's albums, I realized there was just a lot of great music Joel made that I've never heard. We've all heard the hits but I'd never gone deep into the back catalog. So I did. Both are good albums. Nylon Curtain is heavily Beatles influenced. It's obvious. It's also terribly over-produced which is the album's only drawback. Glass Houses is strong as well, although there aren't as many standout tracks, ones that grab you by the throat. Joel might not be a cool guy in the traditional sense but he can write a damn fine song.

The Weekly Schadenfreude. Good old Kiefer Sutherland surrendered to police and entered jail peacefully. He's serving 48 days unless Chloe and Tony can bust him out of the clink. And I'm thinking, since they're CTU and all they can probably pull it off. In other news, the owners of a Manhattan grocery store really screwed up when they advertised "Hams for Hanukkah". Oops. Speaking of hams, George Dubya gave a press conference yesterday in which he offered suffering homeowners some assistance from lenders. Unfortunately he gave out the wrong telephone number. The number he gave? It belongs to the Freedom Christian Academy just outside of Dallas, Texas. Mistake or not? You be the judge.

The Weekly Question. You are given the opportunity to inhabit one fictional world - a civilization, time period, location, whatever - for one week. You can exist in Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind, Battlestar Galactica's future, or Friend's New York in which twenty-somethings can live in Manhattan on pretty crappy salaries. So, where - or when - do you go and why?

Posted by Chris at December 7, 2007 6:56 AM

That is an easy question. I would totally visit the fictional world of Star Wars. I would be a visiting out of town Jedi that came in for some consulting work. That would be awesome!

Posted by: Josh at December 7, 2007 8:10 AM

I have always wanted to be a teenager during the 50's. How fun would that have been?

Posted by: Dawn at December 7, 2007 8:23 AM

My literal fictional world would be hanging with JC from "Lamb:The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal" by Christopher Moore. Only if I get to be with Biff or JC though. Would definitely not want to be transported to "The Road" or "World War Z" not a good time at all.

Posted by: rwhgeek at December 7, 2007 8:31 AM

#1 I love Billy Joel. If that makes me uncool, so be it!

#2 The weekly font? haha

#3 Gone With the Wind. I've always had a fascination with the Civil War era. And Gone With the Wind is my most favorite book, EVER. I'm guessing I might not like it once I got there, but here in the cozy, modern present it sounds pretty exciting and romantic. Can I be Scarlett? Please?

Posted by: Alissa at December 7, 2007 8:37 AM

Sadly, Friends' NY. I have never been to NY, and well... I kind of miss being 20-something.

Posted by: sarah at December 7, 2007 8:40 AM

Early 60's in San Francisco.

Posted by: daisy at December 7, 2007 8:42 AM

There are WAY to many to choose from! I always get caught up in novels and feel as though I'm actually there.

I think I'd like to visit the school is Ender's Game, though. I think I'd like to meet Ender when I'm there. Maybe I would be Petra.

Posted by: Arwen at December 7, 2007 9:18 AM

I would exist in Captain Nemo's submarine and underwater city (I think this was a movie or was it a dream of mine?) in 20000 League's Under the Sea... b/c its just freaking COOL!!!

Posted by: Stephanie at December 7, 2007 9:31 AM

The Hundred-Acre Wood. Pooh. Piglet. Etc.

Seriously, it would be the most stress-free week of my entire life, as long as Tigger had toned down his cocaine use and stopped jumping on everyone.

Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' at December 7, 2007 9:48 AM

That's a hard one. There are so many places and experiences in this world that I still want to try (like a drag show!), giving me a choice only limited by my imagination, but I have to choose just one, harsh! Hmmm, I think it would be a compilation of all the fantasy books I've read, with magic, myth, and mystical creatures.

Great question!

Posted by: SassyPants at December 7, 2007 10:17 AM

I'm a Verdana person too. Is there a controversy I don't know about? I did read an article about fonts sometime back. They were panning Verdana; I don't know why.

Where would I go? It's a tossup between present day London and Sydney. I'd say Canada (probably Alberta) but I'd want to stay.

Have a great weekend.

Posted by: ann adams at December 7, 2007 10:18 AM

Wow... this may be a bit revealing... but I think I'd enjoy spending some holodeck time with a few of the members of the Enterprise D.

Posted by: Brad at December 7, 2007 10:20 AM

Um, I have to confess, I read This Book Will Save Your Life and didn't like it. I found it overblown and incredible (in the true sense of the word) - could it be maybe that being Scottish, the world of LA it describes is so far removed from my experience that I didn't think it even vaguely realistic? Or is it just that those damn donuts made me hungry every time I picked it up?

As for the place to live/person to be? Got to be a Literatec with Thursday Next in the Jasper Fforde books - the ability to jump in and out of any book ever written and interact with its characters? I'm in.

Posted by: Loth at December 7, 2007 10:28 AM

Star Wars is too obvious. I would say either turn of the century Sicily to see what life was like for my grandmother, or New Jersey during the depression to see what life was like for my other grandmother when the family decided they might be better off leaving Brooklyn for a farm in Jersey.

Posted by: laura at December 7, 2007 11:12 AM

I have a lot of faith in Tony's abilities. I give Jack 3 days before he's broken out of the slammer.

Posted by: She Likes Purple at December 7, 2007 11:48 AM

My answer to the weekly question: Why would I want to go to any of those places? They're all awful! :D

Posted by: Poppy at December 7, 2007 12:06 PM

i heard the hanukah ham thing on the radio this morning. i thought it was funny...:)

Posted by: ali at December 7, 2007 1:05 PM

I'd go to Jasper Fforde's 1980s England, home of Thursday Next, where blimps replace airplanes, dodos are reactivated, and fictional characters vacation in reality via Character Exchange programs. Being able to jump into books would be pretty wicked, if you ask me.

Posted by: GreenCanary at December 7, 2007 4:58 PM

Dude! I just saw Loth's comment... RIGHT ON! I shan't be alone at Jurisfiction :-)

Posted by: GreenCanary at December 7, 2007 5:03 PM

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. duh.

Posted by: jodi at December 7, 2007 5:05 PM

I would go with Friends, because you mentioned it, it's now in my head, and I'm not-so-secretly obsessed with that show.

*Pets her DVD seasons*.

Posted by: Cassandra at December 7, 2007 6:37 PM

I'm sorry I missed your birthday. I hope you had a great day!

Posted by: kimmyk at December 7, 2007 7:54 PM

Hmmm... I'm thinking I'd go to Wonderland.... Should be coo....?

Posted by: Haley-O at December 8, 2007 12:37 AM

Well, if I could live in Manhattan in an apartment the size of Monica's and spend most of my days hanging out in a coffee shop, I think I might just be in heaven and therefore I'm going to have to say Freinds' New York.

Posted by: suze at December 8, 2007 6:34 AM

i would totally dig being a fly on the wall during Richard III's reign.

question... am i the only person who bought The Killers 'Sawdust'? it's good, real good... like jammin' good.

Posted by: monique at December 9, 2007 10:18 AM

Whenever a Billy Joel song comes up on my iPod (and it happens frequently), I tell whoever is willing to listen that "I am going to marry that man someday." Thank goodness my SO would understand if I ever had the chance :P He actually used the video from "Allentown" to introduce his history class to the industrial revolution (although he did apologize beforehand for the flamboyantness of the video. You don't want highschoolers thinking you're not cool, now, do you?)

As for when I would want to live... possibly in Harry Potter's time, back when I was twelve or so. Currently, I think this life is about as good as it gets ;)

Posted by: Angela at December 9, 2007 3:59 PM

I'm cheering for you being a Verdana man! It's my font of choice. :o)

I would zap myself to Gone With the Wind. This is sort of like the Titanic answer - they wore pretty clothes and talked nice and stood around all day and fanned themselves. Something about that just seems neat.

Posted by: Emily at December 9, 2007 8:41 PM

A friend of mine went 9 miles (of a 25-mile commute) in THREE HOURS on that day last week that it snowed. She finally got fed up and turned around. Insanity!

Happy belated birthday. :)

Posted by: Zandria at December 9, 2007 9:46 PM

Well...the Algonquin Roundtable of New Yorker fame would be my first choice, but "Friends" New York is a close second. No contest.

Posted by: Anastasia Beaverhausen at December 10, 2007 12:32 AM

Hope you dont mind but ive tagged both you and your lady as i love reading both of your blogs!

Posted by: Pol at December 10, 2007 6:17 AM

Hmm. I'd like to jump into the ashram from Eat, Pray, Love or the chalk drawing from Mary Poppins.

Posted by: Amaya at December 10, 2007 5:57 PM

Just realized this was supposed to be fictional. Forget the ashram and take me straight to the races!

Posted by: Amaya at December 10, 2007 5:58 PM