Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Bands of the Decade

I could probably think of more, but here's a list of the bands I discovered over the past decade - the Oughts - which I came back to again and again. In simple, alphabetical order ...
  • Burial
  • Elbow
  • LCD Soundsystem
  • The National
  • M.I.A.
  • The Knife/Fever Ray
Song of the Decade
"Someone Great" - LCD Soundsystem or "Hey Yah" by Outlast (technically, André 3000). The latter must hands-down be the best pop song of the decade. An astonishing little atom bomb of a tune, that one.

What do you think? I'd love to hear about the bands - or the music, which left the greatest impression on you over the past decade.

Monday, December 28, 2009

My Favorite Flicks from 2009

Top 10
Fantastic Mr. Fox
In the Loop
Inglourious Basterds
Hurt Locker
Goodbye Solo
Silent Light
Sin Nombre

In no particular order really, tho Gomorrah was probably my favorite - at 2008 release in Europe, I think. Also, The Road probably figures into my top 10, tho I don't know which I'd drop. Update: having seen Herzog's Bad Lieutenant and Police, Adjective now, I'd probably squeeze them into the top 10, too, if I were allowed.

Favorite Documentaries
Food, Inc
We Live in Public
Art & Copy

- I didn't see Crude or The Cove yet, unfortunately

5 Which Would Probably Make the List If I'd Seen Them
A Serious Man
Up in The Air
Bad Lieutenant
My Son, My Son, What Have You Done
White Ribbon

Disappointing But Worth a Watch
District 9

As usual, I reserve the right to update or modify this list in any way, as the mood strikes or if I'm able to cram some more flicks in before the end of the year - or the few weeks that follow, for that matter.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


The reason the emoticon became popular is that with the advent of the Web, people began writing far more than previously, but not better.

So the emoticon replaced any gift for nuance lacking in their writing, which was always missing, but did not get nearly as much exposure.

Everyone is a writer now. For better or worse.

Those of us who think of writing as an art and therefore disdain "smileys" should remind ourselves that more people are writing more often than ever in the history of our species. It's no surprise they adopted the emoticon pretty quickly to fill in the gaps in their skillset, where writing and the art of letters is concerned.

Also, for what it's worth, most of us write differently in different arenas. I wouldn't the same way in an email, on Twitter, on IM, in a short story, in a music review, in presentation for work.

- In response to "Death to Smiley" by Mary Elizabeth Williams