What we’re watching, reading, and listening too WHILE FULLY IMMUNIZED

Just got our second Pfizer shot today! Half the kids have had their first shot. We are so close. 

Today we’re wrapping up spring break by heading off to an art museum. (They’re taking reservations and limiting occupancy and requiring masks, so we feel pretty safe.) Cannot wait to start going places and doing things again! Cannot wait!

Before I run out, here are a few things I’ve been enjoying lately. We have begun severely limiting internet time, and especially social media, so if you have book and music and movie recommendations, I’d love to hear them! I’ll probably write more later about limiting internet, but so far it’s been ::chef’s kiss:: (except for how mad the kids are).

The Sopranos

Groundbreaking choice, I know. This is my second time watching the series, and it’s still the best TV that’s ever been made. That’s it, no debate. I cover my eyes for some of the more violent scenes, and we both cover our eyes during the graphic sex, but this show deserves all the accolades it’s gotten for writing, for acting, for musical score, for everything. If it’s been on your list, watch it!

Peace Like a River by Leif Enger

Terrible title, great book. The writing style is coming close to getting on my nerves this second time around, but I’m still 90% captivated. I guess it’s . . . Midwest magical realism? A highly original novel about love, family, revenge, justice, and miracles, and it’s SO hard to write about it without it sounding cheesy. Great, immensely believable characters, very moving and funny and has more than one passage that will make you gasp out loud. 


Any number of things:

Jade Bird

Kinda bluegrass Americana, but make it smart, and mean. This one’s pretty famous, but she’s really got something. Poke around a bit. 

also this guy, Charley Crockett, apparently, yes, a distant relative of Davey, super fun neo-honky tonk, who really knows what his gifts are and how to use them. Just a neat aesthetic all around, very appealing, even though he’s not exactly a skilled singer. Here’s “How I got to Memphis,” but do look around.  He’s got more than one trick. 

He’s black/Cajun/Creole/Jewish and I like his face a lot. Oops, I don’t think that video has his face! I’ll have to add another one when I get back home. 

From there I strayed into Kassi Vallazza. Her little intro to “Johnny Dear” made me not want to listen, but I’m glad I did:

Switching gears, here is Kimiko Ishizaka playing the Goldberg Variations, with the score highlighted in real time so you can follow along.

I still maintain that Bach is one of the funniest composers. He’s constantly setting you up and then pulling the rug out from under you. I’m not familiar with this pianist, but it’s a captivating and witty performance, and a good antidote if you need a break from Glenn Gould. 

I’m also revisiting Dire Straits’ Brothers In Arms and it holds up, which is always a relief when you really liked an album but haven’t heard it for a long time. 1985 was maybe a little better than you remember. 

The featured image is Corrie’s picture of Supereman, just because it’s cool. Truly he and curl, and his unibrow,

are the heroes we need. And here are his muscles:

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8 thoughts on “What we’re watching, reading, and listening too WHILE FULLY IMMUNIZED”

  1. I wholeheartedly recommend Kim by Rudyard Kipling. Don’t be put off by Kipling’s imperialist politics – this is a beautiful love letter to India which never condescends to its “native” characters. It’s wonderful simply for the prose and setting, but is also an entertaining adventure story and at times quite a profound meditation on spirituality, identity and belonging. Perhaps most appealingly, Kipling pulls off the feat of creating a character who exudes holiness without ever coming across as self-righteous, cloying or preachy.

    1. oh, I started this years ago and never finished it! Kipling’s prose is so wonderful. Thanks, I will hunt it up again.

      1. It’s worth returning to. I read it some years ago, thought it was good, appreciated Kipling’s love and knowledge of India and that was about that. Then listening again to the audiobook recently found myself really absorbed in it and understanding why so many consider it magical. Time to revisit the Jungle Book now…

  2. Woohoo Pfizer!! Did you know “hot people get Pfizer” is a thing with the gen z crowd? I don’t get it, but okay.

    Definitely want to hear more about the limiting internet thing. How, why, and should I feel guilty?

  3. I highly recommend reading and/or watching “My Brilliant Friend,” which is on HBO and Amazon prime. I started watching it to refresh my Italian, a task for which it turned out to be fairly useless, as the bulk of it is actually in Neopolitan dialect (roughly as different from standard Italian as Spanish is). However, I watched it anyways for the beautiful storytelling, outstanding character development, nuanced treatment of feminist themes (ie not done in an overbearing, moralizing sort of way), the gorgeous cinematography and the fascinating insight into life in 1960’s Italy. In fact, I was so taken that I am now reading the first novel on which the series is based (in the original Italian…so I still got around to the task of refreshing my Italian.)

    Husband and I have also been listening to Anna Kerenina….it undoubtedly is one of the greatest novels of time. Tolstoy’s understanding of human psychology is incredible and shines forth not only in his treatment of Anna and Vronsky, but of all the other 10 or so main characters as well. Plus a lot of fascinating commentary on religion, philosophy, politics, agrarian life, etc.

  4. Love the Sopranos! No one can believe that a little old lady like me could enjoy that series. The psychology is so interesting.

  5. If you like the Sopranos, you really should check out Ozark if you haven’t already. It very much reminds us of early Sopranos. We’re excited for its fourth and final season. Other than the first episode, not nearly as much sexual content as the Sopranos. Lots and lots of f bombs and violence though.

    Also, we really enjoy Condor. It’s a spy thriller – don’t know if that sort of thing appeals to you. There may be nudity but I don’t remember any. Of course, there are the obligatory homosexual makeout scenes and one or two heterosexual ones.

    We also enjoyed Who Killed Sara? It’s more of a Mexican soap opera meets Dallas (so not on a Sopranos/Ozark level) but we still like it. We’ve been working on our Spanish so it’s a good one for us, but you can watch it dubbed if you want. Warning: A lot more inappropriate scenes to fast forward through on this one.

    Last week we watched Mare of Easttown. It’s a detective drama. Only one episode so far, but it looks promising. Everyone around here is talking about Kate Winslet’s accent. Personally, I think it’s slightly overdone, but to her credit she does have the very subtle but distinctive Philadelphia A and O sounds down. I’ve lived here now for nearly all my adult life and I hear the sounds coming out of my husband’s and children’s mouths on a daily basis and I still find the sounds difficult to replicate. And the shows creators have certainly captured our area’s dress code. First episode dragged a little at first but by the end left us wanting more.

  6. Yay, I’m so happy for you! I hope your side effects from the second Pfizer aren’t too bad (although it’s not the end of the world to have some, because it’s proof of an immune response). I had my second Moderna last Saturday, and my only side effects were brief period of chills, and exacerbation of a headache situation that I’m currently in the middle of treatment for. I had read that two weeks after the first vaccine a person will have up to 80% immunity, so I actually started doing more things before I even got the second vaccine. I got my hair done (I did this last summer, but stopped when the infection rate got bad over the winter), went to the mall (and ate a piece of pizza INSIDE! for the first time in over a year), and went to Mass. Going to Mass was amazing. I went to outdoor Masses last summer, and since then have been watching the livestream and then going to the parking lot to receive Communion. Out of all the things I have missed, returning to Mass has by far been the most important (but no, I did not take a selfie of myself crying while receiving!). My husband has been fully vaccinated for a while, so now we just have to wait for a vaccine to be authorized for my 13 year old son’s agegroup. Even then, we will continue wearing masks indoors and take other precautions, but between being vaccinated and the warm weather, life is feeling so much more normal than it did over the winter. Praying hard for herd immunity!

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