Ten Things, 2022-50

These pins have seen some shit, man

Here are ten things.

  1. It's the most wonderful time of the year. That's right, it's end-of-year list season! So to help you get into the holiday spirit, here are my 20 favourite albums of 2022. (here's a text version of the list)
  2. I also made a companion playlist of my favourite tracks of the year. That's 90 whole minutes of bangers for your ass (if your idea of “banger” is “bitchin' power pop and/or sad songs about feelings”). Most of the albums on my top 20 are represented, but also represented are singles that either don't have a parent album yet, won't have a parent album, or whose parent album I have simply missed.
  3. Winter has arrived in full force, greeting the city with heaps of cloudy, fluffy snow. There's just something about seeing cars and apartments and trees covered in pristine, white snow that just... makes me real happy.
  4. Workplace extracurricular #1: The first official office Christmas party since 2019. Libations were consumed, karaoke was sung (I went with an old standby), astrological charts were pored over and parsed. It turns out there are way more fellow Pisceans at work than I thought.
  5. Workplace extracurricular #2: laser-lightshow duckpin bowling, QA vs. Scheduling Edition. I am frustratingly bad at bowling (why blame it on my mechanics when I can blame it on the Jack and lemonades?); Steph, on the other hand, bowled five straight strikes to start off her final game and ended up with the second-highest individual score of the day.
  6. A further experiment in adornment: I bought some fake nose rings on the internet and test-drove a different look.
  7. My three hottest movie takes.
  8. At long last, PlutoTV has landed in Canada, and has so far done an incredible job of replicating the peak-cable feeling of programming movies that are fun to dip in and out of, a veritable murderer's row of rewatchables. A sampling of what I caught, like, 30–45 minutes of this week: Coming to America, Zodiac, Days of Thunder, Collateral, School of Rock, and The Untouchables. The one movie I did watch in its entirety was the Robert Aldrich prison football movie The Longest Yard (capsule review: right up there with Slap Shot in terms of bawdy fuck-the-Man macho 70s bullshit), so now I have a better idea of what the whole Burt Reynolds thing was all about.
  9. RIP Angelo Badalamenti. I've seen his work with David Lynch get praised, and rightly so, but seemingly no one has brought up his sweeping, Cooder-esque score for the sorely underrated Lynch joint The Straight Story. Floodgates: open.
  10. “The Necklace” by Osip Mandelstam (translated from Russian by Christian Wiman) (via Laura Esckelson):
    Take, from my palms, for joy, for ease,
    A little honey, a little sun,
    That we may obey Persephone's bees.
    You can't untie a boat unmoored. Fur-shod shadows can't be heard, Nor terror, in this life, mastered.
    Love, what's left for us, and of us, is this Living remnant, loving revenant, brief kiss Like a bee flying completed dying hiveless
    To find in the forest's heart a home, Night's never-ending hum, Thriving on meadowsweet, mint, and time.
    Take, for all that is good, for all that is gone, That it may lie rough and real against your collarbone, This string of bees, that once turned honey into sun.