2013 was a big movie year for me. In the five to seven years previous, I'd only see one or two movies in the theater each year. This year I saw a ton. Here they are:
Les Miserables, seen with Sean, May, and Carol (****)
Star Trek Into Darkness, with Jeff and Stephanie (****)
Star Trek Into Darkness, with Chris (*** 1/2)
Star Trek Into Darkness: 3D, with Mitchell and Tesa (***)
The Great Gatsby with Mitchell and Chris (*)
Man of Steel with Chris (**)
Wolverine: Japan Style with Chris (****)
World's End with Mitchell and Jennie (*****)
Hmm. I thought there were more than that.
Best Band, Live Edition: The Soul Rebels. I saw them twice, both times at Blockley. Man oh man do I love those guys.
I saw a lot of music this year. I attended two festivals (Tiny Rager in the Catskills in late March/early April, and The Big Up, also in upstate New York, in uh August I think.) I went to a bunch of shows at the Blockley, including the farewell show this past Sunday (December 29th.) The Blockley is a big reason why I saw so much great music this year, it's a fantastic venue, and it's a goddamned shame that they're closing their doors at the end of the year due to liquor license issues. Hopefully the people involved will be able to to open another venue soon, but also hopefully maybe we'll move soon so whatever. We'll see.
Highlights include seeing Ott in a tiny club in West Chester with Tesa, who had never heard of him before but had a blast; Kung Fu's Prince Tribute at the Big Up, which just a lot of fun, fun bootyshaking; The Naphrok! Allstars, which funked our (Chris's, Adam's, and mine) faces off at the Tiny Rager; seeing Deltron 3030 at the TLA by myself because everyone else is lazy; Moon Hooch opening for TMBG at the TLA, and playing what I can only describe as home-made dubstep; the first Soul Rebels show, to which we brought a bunch of friends; and the second one, which I attended by myself whilst Chris & Indiana napped in the car.
Music is important.
Best Book: The Dispossessed by Ursula LeGuin This was David's pick for Book Club. It was wonderful. I told Mordicai that it was my "Platonic ideal of a science fiction novel." I don't even 100% know what I mean by that, but I back myself 100% anyway. It stuck with me, I couldn't stop thinking about it.
I read 75 books in 2013. (I had read 71 total in 2011 & 2012 combined.) On the one hand I read a bunch of graphic novels at the beginning of the year, but on the other I tend to read super long books (and especially audiobooks) so I think it all works out to not cheating. I read at least half of Les Miserables in 2013, for example, and that thing is a beast.
Best Bird: Snowy Owls As you may have heard if you pay attention to anything, there was a significant Snowy Owl irruption this year, and there were more of them sighted in the US this year since a similar irruption in 1927. (I think I got that right.) Chris and I went to the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in Brigantine (where we got engaged one time) (I have to mention that every time I say anything about Brigantine) to see a pair of them, and were not disappointed. They seemed unimpressed with the scores of birders staring at them.