A brief rundown of what my life looks like these days. Last updated January 30, 2020.
Our family — or rather, our family’s bank account — isn’t off the hook once Christmas is past, because we head into birthday season immediately afterwards. While birthdays have looked very different during COVID (e.g., no birthday parties), we still try and find ways for each kid to have some sort of celebration, even if it just an extended Zoom or FaceTime session.
But the biggest news of this birthday season is that we are now officially parents of a teenager. Thoughts and prayers are certainly appreciated, but at the same time, I’m excited about this new stage that our family’s entering.
Renae and I finally finished New Girl, which was our default “now that the kids are in bed” viewing material. The final season, which was a truncated eight episodes long, ended the series on a good note. Looking back, New Girl is a show that I probably should have hated, but its humor had just enough lunacy and absurdism mixed in to make it feel different and far more enjoyable (e.g., the Prince episode). Some episodes had me laughing harder than I’d laughed in a long time.
The weirder the MCU gets, the more I enjoy it. So needless to say, I’ve really enjoyed WandaVision so far, and its references to television series and aesthetics of the past. (The second episode, which culminates in Wanda and Vision performing a magic act while the latter is incapacitated by a piece of chewing gum, was particularly delightful.) While I certainly have my theories, I really have no idea where it’s going, and I love that.
I watched the first episode of Netflix’s Lupin and enjoyed it a lot. However, my wife is a huge fan of heist titles, so I’m holding off on the rest until we can watch it together.
And of course, once all of the new season’s episodes have been released, we’ll binge our way through The Expanse (aka, the best sci-fi show on TV right now).
Finally, I’m trying to be more deliberate about tracking my movie watching, so I’ve resurrected my Letterboxd account after years of neglect. As much I’d love to fill it with arthouse titles, you can definitely expect plenty of “B” grade direct-to-Netflix titles because most days, that’s about all I have the capacity for.
I don’t believe in guilty pleasures, but if I do have one, it’s action/espionage thriller novels. (Don’t judge me. It’s just a sign that I’m solidly in the “middle age” bracket.) My most recent title was Brett Battles’ Shadow of Betrayal, which I picked up from our local Little Free Library. It’s clichéd and pretty cheesy in places, but I also devoured it in, like, three days. Next up will likely be Prodigal Son, the latest in Gregg Hurwitz’s “Orphan X” series.
I bought a copy of Wingspan for my wife’s Christmas gift, and it’s since become our family’s new favorite game. (Indeed, they’re playing a round even as I type this update.) The premise is that each player is a bird enthusiast trying to attract a diverse variety of birds to their own nature preserve. The gameplay’s a bit daunting at first — it took several rounds before we finally figured out the rhythm — but the game itself is beautifully designed with lush artwork, and as a bonus, it contains lots of educational information about our feathered friends.