April Media Journal 2020

During this pandemic, I’ve spent less time than I thought in front of the boob tube. But reading is a challenge. We’ve been painting our house, which has helped to distract. And then some life challenges for a friend of mine have also become a factor. All in All, April was and continues to be, the weirdest month in all of my life.

Books
I don’t know about you, but reading has been tough during this time. I finally finished American Gods. I had to renew it a few times. It’s a long book, but the virus made it longer! I may never finish Bag of Bones, because it’s long and I find myself reading paragraphs over and over and over because my mind drifts. I will probably finish Chelsea Handler’s little, semi-funny memoir in a second sitting. 

Bag of Bones | Stephen King
Still in the first 100 pages, but have probably read 500 pages, because my mind wanders and I have to reread so many pages/paragraphs.

Are you there Vodka, It’s Chelsea | Chelsea Handler
Semi-funny telling of what seems to be an unbelievable life … prison time? I’m just going to finish it to feel like I accomplished at least ONE book reading in a month. 

American Gods | Neil Gaimon
I wouldn’t say I loved this book, but it was distracting enough and okay enough to finish. 

Movies
Much of my movie watching experience has been guided by having a buddy of mine stay with us due to a coronavirus-induced decision by his wife to leave. I’ve seen all of the below over three times a piece. 

My Blue Heaven
“What’s an arugula?” “It’s a vegetable.” No one should go to sleep until they’ve watched this movie at least one time. 

The Jerk
Endlessly funny. Great, great bits. Highly quotable. 

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Third viewing. I’m fascinated by this piece of cinema. Soundtrack is nothing short of amazing. I love the performances. Andy McDowell’s daughter is a treat. 

TV
In the weirdest time in modern history, the live shows have to be the most notable achievements of my media diet. 

Righteous Gemstones
A must watch, in my opinion. A great exposé on the possibility that the megachurch is as corrupt and out of control as any crime syndicate. Danny McBride is damn near genius. Fun show! And yes, I know it’s fiction. 

Great News
Surprisingly funny, entertaining show. 

Ozark
Haven’t finished this, but I LOVE Ozark. Ruthie is my dream girlfriend (don’t tell Tina!) and Darlene is my arch nemesis … and they’re just characters in a brilliantly dark show. 

Tiger King
The podcast was good. The show is better. 

The Young Pope
Slow burn. Well done. Liked it better than I thought. The pope’s form of Christianity is something to consider. Loved it by the end. 

SNL
Awesome to see what the virus is doing to TV. The first one they made since lock down was hilarious. 

Seth Myers
Good on Seth for figuring his show out. It’s not great, but it’s watchable. 

John Oliver
I’m not watching every one of Oliver’s episodes, but man, he’s probably got the best production values of all the self produced shows I’ve been watching. Which aren’t many. 

Radio

Winston-Salem NPR, WFDD
Quiet, non-screaming, sobered news is extremely welcome during this time. I’ve seen some moving pictures and my anxiety goes up. In the broken record world of incessant covid-19 news, I’ll take voice over picture + voice any day. 

Public Radio Classical Music | Winston-Salem
Surprisingly nice to put on during this time, especially in the mornings while I’m journaling. 

NOVA.fr
My favorite radio station for music streaming. 

France.info 
The equivalent of French PBS news … And it’s far superior as it’s not in English, it’s more calm, but the international news roundups are incredible and enlightening. 

I want to see this film: “Pick of the Litter” (a film about seeing eye dogs? yes, please!)

PICK OF THE LITTER follows a litter of puppies from the moment they’re born and begin their quest to become guide dogs for the blind. Cameras follow these pups through an intense two-year odyssey as they train to become dogs whose ultimate responsibility is to protect their blind partners from harm. Along the way, these remarkable animals rely on a community of dedicated individuals who train them to do amazing, life-changing things in the service of their human. The stakes are high and not every dog can make the cut. Only the best of the best. The pick of the litter. #IFCFilms #PickOfTheLitter #Dogs #Puppies