Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

Year in review blues

It seems like every blog and news site out there is currently stuck in the “year in review” and “new year’s resolution” modes. First, I have to say that being away from your usual routine of reading crap on the web has done wonders for showing me what bullshit some of my regular reads are. But the typical year-end dreck does the same. And it knocks away any desire to write similar stuff here. It would take me far too much work to dredge up a list of what I read in 2006, and a) nobody really gives a shit and b) you could go back and read the old entries and find out yourself what I read.

That said, I now have about 20 or 30 new books to read, and had to ship most of them back here, then had to carry them home on the subway today. In addition to having two wrenched-out arms and a neck injury from the strap of my overloaded messenger bag, I now have enough reading to last me a little while. I read Terry Southern’s collection, Now Dig This, which started with some very hilarious, Hunter Thompson-style stories, then slowly descended into overblown glossy mag pieces and overworded reviews of stuff I don’t give a shit about. Still, I should dig into his other stuff, when I need to buy more books. Right now, I need to find space for books. I hope when John is here for the start of his book tour, I can unload a dozen or two copies of the annotated Rumored on him as freebie giveaways, and I’ve probably got some reorganizing and skimming of old/redundant crap for the library donation pile.

Speaking of crap, I got the blurb.com book back from the printer, and it’s okay, but not for the price. The hardcover was $40, and the paper is not as thick as I would have liked. It had the sort of “ripple” effect in places that you’d see if you did a lot of color printing on standard photocopier paper. It’s not bad, but it’s not incredible either. Seeing it in actual dimensions and thickness (or thinness, rather) made me not love it. If it was half that price, I would totally be gung-ho about it, but I guess I’ll stick to text books from now on.

I’ve had a little more time to watch DVDs lately, for some reason. I really, really liked Talladega Nights, and now I have my own copy of the DVD, so I’m sure I will watch it a million times more. I never saw Canadian Bacon until the other night – first it was in only three theaters and/or I was too busy repeatedly watching Seven or whatever, and then later I was reluctant to see it because it was directed by Michael Moore. It was pretty damn funny, especially with all of the anti-Canada stuff, although toward the end it borrowed a bit too much from Doctor Strangelove. And I just watched the Tom Green Subway Monkey Hour (or whatever it is called), which is a one-hour special of his old show in Tokyo. Combining an abnormally polite society with Tom Green is not a good mixture, but it was hilarious. My favorite segment was when he went to a sushi restaurant with the rotating conveyor belt of sushi, and put a running vibrator and a digital camcorder on there, hilarity ensues. I still have the Beatles anthology unopened on my desk. And Guitar Hero awaits.

Time for supper. BTW, no I am not going to Times Square for New Year’s Eve. Nobody really does that – it’s an elaborate plot to get you to buy shit.