The continuing adventures of Beau Yarbrough

iPod Top 100: 2013

Wednesday, January 1, 2014, 15:35
Section: Arts & Entertainment

A little later than usual this year, but here’s what I was listening to the most in 2013.

Previous editions can be found here: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.

There’s probably something a psychologist could tease out of the number of female rockers on these lists, which seems to be the only consistent element over the years.

1. “Party Kids” – Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside
2. “The Sword By My Side” – The Thermals
3. “Awkward” – San Cisco
4. “Black Sheep” – Gin Wigmore
5. “They Told Me” – Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside
6. “Holy Roller” – Thao & The Get Down Stay Down
7. “Summer in the City” – The Eels
8. “Island Song” – Zac Brown Band
9. “Slyd” – !!!!
10. “Water” – Brad Paisley

Books read, 2013

Tuesday, December 31, 2013, 8:00
Section: Arts & Entertainment

Bad Monkey coverSo, by any measure, I improved on the 12 books I read in 2012 and 2011: I read 13 or 14, depending on whether you count me giving up on one book in eye-rolling disgust. (Failure to “end” a short story once might be interesting, doing it for every story in a book is a ridiculous affectation.)

Here’s what I read in 2013, including my periodic re-reads of the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy series (Mostly Harmless will get polished off in 2014):

Feb. 5: Swords Against Death by Fritz Leiber
Feb. 15: Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman
March 21: The Bible Repairman and Other Stories by Tim Powers
April 21: St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell (abandoned)
May 20: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
June 2: The Old Editor Says: Maxims for Writing and Editing by John E. McIntyre
June 10: The Restaurant at the End of the Universe by Douglas Adams
July 10: Bad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen
July 30: The Ocean at the End of the Lane: A Novel by Neil Gaiman
Aug. 24: Life, the Universe and Everything by Douglas Adams
Sept. 29: The Elements of Style Illustrated by William Strunk Jr.
Oct. 29: Can Journalism Survive: An Inside Look at American Newsrooms by David M. Ryfe
Nov. 30: Year Zero: A Novel by Rob Reid
Dec. 22: So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish by Douglas Adams

I’m currently reading Top Secret America: The Rise of the New American Security State by Dana Priest and listening to the audio book of Dimension of Miracles by Robert Sheckley.

Review: “Hawkeye, Vol. 1: My Life as a Weapon”

Wednesday, March 6, 2013, 9:02
Section: Arts & Entertainment

Truthfully, after decades of comics, I’d gotten a little jaded with straight-up superhero tales, with sky-high stakes and failure not being an option.

Then, I came across “Hawkeye.” Like a lot of people, it took the recent Marvel movies (specifically “Thor”) to make me take a second look at the third-string Marvel hero. I’d read comics of his in the past, and they were more of the same, albeit with a terrible costume (and a wife with an even worse one).

Not Matt Fraction’s “Hawkeye.”

Here’s a book with stakes that shrink from the cosmic down to a single apartment building in an outer borough of New York City, where Hawkeye’s costume is the work uniform doffed when Clint gets home and where the stakes are having a good relationship with his neighbors or being able to set up his DVR.
The book is light, breezy, fits well into actual save-the-world Avengers continuity but requires no knowledge or caring about such things (the tagline is that this book is what Clint Barton does when he’s not off being an Avenger), and gorgeous to look at.

The best superhero comic book in years seems almost parachuted in from some other, better-written, more engaging future.

Whether you bleed in four colors, or don’t know your Earth 616 from your Earth-2, “Hawkeye” is a must-read for every sort of superhero fans.

Books read, 2012

Tuesday, January 1, 2013, 11:22
Section: Arts & Entertainment

The Influencing Machine: Brooke Gladstone on the MediaAnother year with only a dozen books read, but still, that’s a pace that, after the birth of my son, was hard to maintain even recently. (Ignore how quick and easy many of these books would be for more voracious readers, please.)

My goal for 2013: At least 13 books read. Dare to dream.

(Last year’s list.)

Jan. 26.: I Shall Wear Midnight (Discworld) by Terry Pratchett
Feb. 27.: Raylan by Elmore Leonard
March 23: Snuff by Terry Pratchett
May 6: Flashman on the March by George MacDonald Fraser
June 9: Storm Front by Jim Butcher
July 29: Headless Body in a Topless Bar by the Staff of the New York Post
Aug. 18: Last Call by Tim Powers
Sept. 30: Swords and Deviltry by Fritz Leiber
Oct. 20: The Influencing Machine: Brooke Gladstone on the Media by Brooke Gladstone and Josh Neufeld
Nov. 22: Write More Good by The Bureau Chiefs
Dec. 31: The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

iPod Top 100: 2012

Tuesday, January 1, 2013, 10:55
Section: Arts & Entertainment

That’s an increasingly inaccurate title, but “iOS Top 100” sounds like something that ought to be sponsored by Apple, and until such time as it is, the name stays as it is.

(Previous editions: 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.)

1. “Howlin’ for You” – The Black Keys
2. “Victory Song” – Scott H. Biram
3. “Devil’s Right Hand” – Johnny Cash
4. “Get You Some (feat. Brit Lauren)” – Captain Planet
5. “Hold On” – Alabama Shakes
6. “Do It Anyway” – Ben Folds Five
7. “Ho Hey” – The Lumineers
8. “A Little Revolution” – Firewater
9. “Curse Me Good” – The Heavy
10. “Devil’s in the Detail” – Ian Segal & the Youngest Sons
11. “By Your Hand” – Los Campesinos!
12. “The Only Place” – Best Coast
13. “Lonely Boy” – The Black Keys
14. “Underdog” – The Dirtbombs
15. “Journey of the Sorcerer” – Eagles
16. “La Grande” – Laura Gibson
17. “Make the Money” – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
18. “Bugs” – Wavves
19. “Tighten Up” – The Black Keys
20. “California” – Delta Spirit
21. “Cult Boyfriend” – Jeffrey Lewis
22. “I’m Gonna Leave” – Levee Town
23. “The Diaz Brothers” – The Mountain Goats
24. “We Are Young (feat. Janelle MonĂ¡e)” – Fun.
25. “Bright Whites” – Kishi Bashi
26. “Sinnerman (Felix Da Housecat’s Heavenly House Mix)” – Nina Simone & Felix Da Housecat
27. “Looking for Love” – Anuhea
28. “Run Right Back” – The Black Keys
29. “Pharaohs of Elysium (Danny Massure Remix)” – Cascadia ’10
30. “Roman Tick” – Fergus & Geronimo
31. “Same Love (feat. Mary Lambert)” – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
32. “Love Don’t Wait” – Michael Franti & Spearhead
33. “Time Bomb” – Old 97’s
34. “Dreaming” – Seapony
35. “Holy Moses” – Washington
36. “Sweet Emotion” – Aerosmith
37. “Dirty Money” – Antibalas
38. “Bedroom Eyes” – Dum Dum Girls
39. “Bust-Out Brigade” – The Go! Team
40. “(If) You Want Trouble” – Nick Waterhouse
41. “I Will Dare” – The Replacements
42. “Isoprene Bath” – Reptar
43. “Teardrop Windows” – Benjamin Gibbard
44. “Mr. Eastwood” – Dead Combo
45. “Pitch In on a Party” – DJ Quik
46. “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings” – Father John Misty
47. “Winds of Change” – Fitz & the Tantrums
48. “October” – The Helio Sequence
49. “Andrew in Drag” – The Magnetic Fields
50. “Everything Dies” – Mariachi El Bronx
51. “Some Place” – Nick Waterhouse
52. “Stay Away From Downtown” – Redd Kross
53. “Blank Maps” – Cold Specks
54. “Bad Thing” – King Tuff
55. “San Francisco” – The Mowgli’s
56. “I’m Not Your Man” (Single version) – Tommy Conwell & the Young Rumblers
57. “Baro (feat. Bertrand Cantat)” – Amadou & Mariam
58. “Live and Die” – The Avett Brothers
59. “What Did the Hippie Have in His Bag?” – Cornershop
60. “Masochist” – Devin
61. “Gun Has No Trigger” – Dirty Projectors
62. “Electric Fever” – Free Energy
63. “Cold Shoulders” – Gold Motel
64. “The House That Heaven Built” – Japandroids
65. “Mud Flap Momma (feat. Slash)” – Leslie West
66. “Dotted Line” – Liz Phair
67. “Stubborn Love” – The Lumineers
68. “Polish Girl” – Neon Indian
69. “People In Her Mind” – Poor Moon
70. “Closer I Get (feat. John Popper)” – Rebelution
71. “Punjabi Wedding Song (Balle Balle)” – Red Barat
72. “Romance” – Wild Flag
73. “Railroad Track” – Willy Moon
74. “Marathon Runner” – Yellow Ostrich
75. “Caught Me Thinking” – Bahamas
76. “Dance With You” – Black Lips
77. “When the City Lights Dim” – Cold Specks
78. “How They Want Me to Be” – Best Coast
79. “Dawned On Me (iTunes Session)” – Wilco
80. “Beggar in the Morning” – Barr Brothers
81. “Better Girl” – Best Coast
82. “The Ride of the Valkyries” – Chicha Libre
83. “Misty Mountains” – The Dwarf Cast
84. “Take Me Home Country Road” – Israel Kamakawiwo’ole
85. “Rockin’ in the Free World” – The Moog Cookbook
86. “The Wind” – Zac Brown Band
87. “V-12 Cadillac” – Jewel
88. “Black Hole Sun” – The Moog Cookbook
89. “Theme from ‘Endless Summer'” – The Sandals
90. “Telstar” – The Tornadoes 74
91. “Summertime” – B.B. Seaton
92. “Change” – Churchill
93. “Ace of Spades” – Eli “Paperboy” Reed
94. “Mud Football” – Jack Johnson
95. “Revolution Girls” – Mariachi El Bronx
96. “Breakfast at Tressels” – Rhythm Rockers
97. “Man of Constant Sorrow” – Soggy Bottom Boys
98. “Screenwriters Blues” – Soul Coughing
99. “Funkytown” – Toucans Steel Drum Band
100. “No One Like You” – Best Coast


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Veritas odit moras.