Week In Preface: 2011 In Review

Schott's Almanac

Back in July, I heard about Nick Felton, the creator of the Feltron Annual Report. In order to distill his life events of the previous year,   he qualitatively summed it up – from the amount of beers he consumed per diem to the total number of interactions with people. Much like Felton and the remarkable Ben Schott of Schott’s Almanac, I find it important to come to terms with and really analyze the past year – even though, unlike Feltron, I can’t fully create a whole report to the shareholders of my life (read: me), due to lack of the data and lack of want to compile them, and unlike Schott, I do not have the ability to sum up the year globally, nationally, or even locally.

I can only write what I fully (or at least mostly) know, which is my year. But I do want to first break down the numbers: I wrote and reblogged 971 posts on Tumblr, as seen by my 124 followers; sent over a thousand posts to my 145 Twitter followers (between the two follower-based schema, there’s a Venn Diagram of probably 20 to 25 mutual readers); went to twelve free concerts; visited the Museum of Modern Art for films approximately 20 times; wrote five letters to friends for birthdays and as general correspondence; gave blood five times, including once at Citi Field, at which there were the awesomest cookies I will ever have at a blood drive; read two John Green books (Paper Towns and Will Grayson, Will Grayson) each in one night, and am currently averaging 1.7 rides per day on the MTA.

This year meant so much more to me, though. I met an absurdly awesome group of people in the New York Nerdfighters, who (past the palpable homoeroticism amongst the females group, which is fine in its way, I suppose) represent the best of young America today: incredibly intelligent, incredibly thoughtful, incredibly passionate people who love conversation and making a difference. I became part of a great YouTube project in AccioNerds, and thereby formed what really is a great Internet family that goes across the country (and England, and Bulgaria). I not only appeared on a game show, but thanks to the winnings from the show, I more or less started a game show from my iPod.

I started watching Doctor Who and Arrested Development and sort of started watching Community, became a huge fan of Sufjan Stevens, Modern Skirts, and the Alabama Shakes; of This Nerdist, Radiolab, and 99% Invisible; and despite their respectively perpetually middling records, retained my allegiance to the Mets and Everton Football Club.

In short, this year, from the classes I took to the places at which I interned to the media I consumed to the products I launched (or am about to launch): I did the things that I love. I maintained and strengthened my existing passions (of history, of New York culture, of transit trivia) and added a few more. And I strengthened bonds and made new friends, with whom to share those passions and foment new ones.

And with this in mind, here’s this week’s posts and a brief announcement about the blog after the jump: Continue reading

This Week’s Musings

Hope y’all enjoyed Thanksgiving; I certainly did. It’s a podcast week – more on that in a bit – and here’s the rest of what I’ve got cooked up for this week:

  • Music Monday: This week I talk about the awesomeness that is Symphony of Science.
  • Wednesday Top 5: My five favorite skyscrapers in New York City. (The fact that it’s New York City keeps you from having to read another 900 words gushing about Marina City.)
  • Thursday Trivia: Five facts on primates.
    On the ThursTriv Podcast this week, a Grilled Stuft Podcast with 10 questions on Taco Bell and two songs. 
  • Friday Stuff & Things: This Friday, a Required Listenings Top 5 on Tom Lehrer songs.

I’ll see you all later for Music Monday, for now, enjoy Bryce and Aaron Dessner of The National with the American Composers Orchestra.

This Week’s Musings

As I noted last week, it’s going to be a somewhat abbreviated week here on the blog; I’m taking all of Thanksgiving weekend off, so no Thursday Trivia this week. (The podcast will return next week as well, with 5 questions on Taco Bell.) But here’s what I’ve got cooked up for the next couple of days:

  • Music Monday: This week, music from the much-beloved children’s show Arthur.
  • Tuesday Stuff & Things: Since I didn’t get around to it Friday, I reflect on The Show with Ze Frank.
    Also, due to a quirky schedule tomorrow, it’s a very early end to my day, so I might go to the Library to see the “Know the Past, Find the Future” exhibit again and write about that as well. Either that or I’ll just go home and hang around on Tumblr.
  • Wednesday Top 5: My five favorite TV episodes of the past year.

And of course the usual Tumblr/Twitter/AccioNerds madness.

I’ll see you all later tonight for Music Monday; until then, enjoy Aloe Blacc.

This Week’s Musings

I’m back after an unintended rest-of-the-week off for an abbreviated week of posts. (Next week’s going to be an abbreviated week as well. See a theme here?) It’s a podcast week – more on that in a bit – and here’s the textual posts I’ve got cooked up:

  • Required Listenings: Tomorrow, I discuss the surprisingly-genius William Shatner album, Has Been.
  • Thursday Trivia: Either 5 facts about the film The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh, or a 5 facts and/or anecdotes on said film. Depends on how much I can find.
    This week on the ThursTriv Podcast, 5 questions centered around the theme “30 Days Hath…”.
  • Friday Stuff & Things: I reflect on The Show with Ze Frank, five years later.
Plus the standard Twitter/Tumblr/AccioNerds madness. And pesto! (Damn, I love pesto.)
I’ll see you all tomorrow for Required Listenings; until then, enjoy Mayer Hawthorne.

This Week’s Musings

To all the readers on the East Coast, that was some crazy snow, huh? Hope y’all without power get that fixed soon (especially you, Jeph Jacques). To those on the West Coast who lamented the lack of snow in lieu of 80s-and-sunny weather, I hate you. On to this week’s posts:

  • Music Monday: I originally wasn’t going to post anything tonight other than the Week in Preview, but I have a new recording for the Subway Music Archive, so I’m presenting that.
  • Top 5: The 5 Most Persistent Urban Legends, in my view.
  • Thursday Trivia: The nostalgia machine that is Random Musings rolls on with 5 facts on Winnie the Pooh.
    It’s also a podcast week this week, with 5 questions on elections.
  • Friday Stuff & Things: Some of my favorite “Thank You Notes” from Late Night with Jimmy Fallon lip-synching cold opens from The Late Late Show (these are more easily available).
I’ll see y’all later for Music Monday; until then, enjoy Fleet Foxes.

(The Rest of) This Week’s Musings

So after that 900-word contemplation on Marina City, here’s what I’ve got cooked up for the remainder of this week’s (much, much shorter) posts:

  • Top 5: Tomorrow, I present my 5 favorite movie musicals.
  • Thursday Trivia: 5 facts about the hilariously bad film The Room.
    The ThursTriv Podcast will return next week with 5 questions on elections.
  •  Friday Post: I look back at some of my favorite Jeopardy! categories.
Plus the usual Twitter/Tumblr/AccioNerds madness. Also, I’m probably going to record some more cover songs in the next couple of weeks (possibly individually, possibly as some sort of EP), so stay tuned.
I’ll see you all tomorrow for the Top 5 tomorrow; until then, enjoy Andrew Bird, again, this time in documentary form (apparently this is only going to be shown in festivals, so I’m really hoping for it to be shown at Tribeca next spring):

This Week’s Musings

After a fun-filled and somewhat exhausting weekend (Comic-Con was awesome, for the record – check out the photos I took on Tumblr and my videographic recap on AccioNerds), I’m back for another week of musings. It’s a podcast week – in this week’s installment of the ThursTriv Podcast, the 15th edition of the show, 5 questions and a song related to The Muppets – and here’s the rest of what I’ve got cooked up for the week ahead:

  • Music Monday: Later tonight, I present a few of my favorites among NPR’s Tiny Desk Concerts.
  • Wednesday Top 5: There’s been a pretty good deal of nostalgia on the blog recently (frankly, it’s one of the blog’s main commodities), what with the Thursday Trivia post on Carmen Sandiego; it continues forth this week on the Top 5 with my 5 favorite Humongous Entertainment games.
  • Thursday Trivia: This week in the textual post, 5 facts about things that start with the letter “x”.
  • Friday Post: I present some of my favorite “Thoughts from Places” videos on YouTube.

And of course, the standard AccioNerds/Tumblr/Twitter rigmarole.

I’ll see you all later for Music Monday; until then, enjoy Jonathan Coulton.

This Week’s Musings

Another week, another round of (ideally) fun and interesting posts, and here they are:

  • Music Monday: Later tonight, I present to you a classic from Nick Lowe’s catalog.
  • Wednesday Top 5: In honor of my penultimate scheduled blood donation on Wednesday, my 5 favorite cookies.
  • Thursday Trivia: 5 facts all about Carmen Sandiego.
    The Thursday Trivia Podcast will return next week with 5 questions on The Muppets.
  • No Friday post due to New York Comic-Con, but I will be doing a Saturday instead of a Friday video on AccioNerds, and expect heightened activity on Tumblr and Twitter during the midday hours, as I shuffle off to a place with free Wi-Fi for lunch or a snack.
I’ll see you later for Music Monday; for now, enjoy Andrew Bird.

This Week’s Musings

So we’re back from the 5-day weekend (nice time, very restful, great baseball, thanks for askin’) for a fresh week of posts. It’s a podcast week, which I’ll elaborate upon in a moment, but here are the textual posts for the week ahead:

  • Music Monday: Later tonight, I present a few songs from the supergroup Monsters of Folk.
  • Wednesday Top 5: My 5 favorite food trucks.
  • Thursday Trivia: 5 facts on Lincoln Center (including the somewhat strange history of its name).
    This week on the ThursTriv Podcast, 5 questions on defunct airlines, in honor of Pan Am. (I’ll be posting it as usual on the Tumblr and Twitter pages, and I’ll try to remember to post it here using one of those funky status posts.
  • This Friday, a Required Listenings Top 5 declaring my 5 favorite podcasts.
  • And on Saturday, my final video for The Macaulay Vlog.
I’ll see y’all later for Music Monday; for now, enjoy Seth MacFarlane (yes, Family Guy‘s Seth MacFarlane, whose album Music Is Better Than Words came out last week and is not just legit, but very, very good):

This Week’s Musings

We’re back with another week of posts. It’s a podcast week – 5 questions on Nintendo – and here are the textual things I’ve got cooked up:

  • Music Monday: I talk about Bon Iver briefly.
  • Wednesday Top 5: In honor of the upcoming Vendy Awards, my five favorite New York City food trucks.
  • Thursday Trivia: Again departing from the five-facts format, I present a brief history of TV musical shows.
  • No Friday post this week, but do expect a recap of the aforementioned Vendy Awards via the YouTube channel sometime this weekend.
And we’re talking about serious business on AccioNerds, getting nostalgic on TMV, and doing whatever I usually do on Twitter and Tumblr (meaning, not much).
See you in a bit for Music Monday, but first, here are a couple of videos I wanted to present on Friday but didn’t. The first is Hank Green’s song about quarks, “Strange Charm” (also the video that initiated me into Nerdfighteria), and the second is the downright awesome “mathemusician” Vi Hart talking about the science of sound (it runs a little long at almost 13 minutes, but it’s well worth it):