Friday, June 03, 2011

Summer syllabus

The calendar may not officially declare summer here, but going by the academic calendar at my place of employment, it's less than a week away. My job doesn't necessarily change, but matters on the whole should be less urgent than they can be in the midst of the terms. There's no question that I live the year according to the rhythms of the university, and I like it that way. Perhaps it's what I'm used to, but it provides a seasonal structure to work that I don't know other jobs have. If you're working in an office, is any week drastically different from another based on where you are in the year?

So, with the summertime mindset taking over, I'm considering what to do as "projects" to fulfill myself during these months. I'm not necessarily talking about what to knit, although that can be entered into the mix, but what I want to read and watch. Now's the time for catching up on things I haven't had time for or never gotten around to.

Approaching television shows as something worthy of study isn't unusual among many I know, but I realize it might sound ridiculous to some. In other words, I won't apologize for what I intend to do. TV has been incredibly rich over the past decade--yes, in spite of plenty of garbage--but there's a fair amount I haven't seen, especially the HBO series. (I've never seen an episode of The Sopranos, for instance.) For starters, I've decided to plow my way through all three seasons of Deadwood, if for no better reason than I found a great deal on the complete series on Blu-ray.

I've been feeling the itch to rewatch Veronica Mars, and The A.V. Club's summer-long revisiting of the first season seems like a good enough reason to return to it. I've had a love of mysteries for quite some time, but somewhere along the line I sort of lost that stuff to read or watch. Veronica Mars hits a sweet spot for me, and I'm curious to revisit the high school noir. It took me until the first season came out on DVD to catch onto the show, but it quickly became a favorite that I wish had lasted more than its three seasons.

I was a big fan of Alias when it was on the air. Since it's getting The A.V. Club treatment too, I might try to take another look at it if time permits.

As for books, I've decided to dive into the young adult The Hunger Games trilogy. Maybe the choice is due to sheer bombardment of information on the upcoming films' casting. I'm a chapter into the first book and am interested enough that this seems like something worth reading.

I've had my eye on The Complete Calvin and Hobbes for years and finally picked it up when spotting a deep discount on the hefty set's price. And I'm not joking about hefty. The three-volume set is heavy. The comic strip is one of my all-time favorites, if not the favorite, so it will be fun to flip through these pages.

I made it about halfway through the graphic novel Bone last summer and then got distracted, so I'd like to finish it. There are recent books (or two) by favorite authors that I bought but haven't read. Such is my inconsistency as a reader. In keeping with my love of mysteries and childhood fondness for Agatha Christie books, maybe I should re-read some of them. I probably haven't picked them up since junior high or high school.

Obviously I could go on and on, but it will be ambitious to get through everything I've listed here. What do you want to read and watch this summer? Or am I just weird for planning these like assignments?

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At 10:13 AM, Anonymous LittleWit said...

I love Veronica Mars. :) They have it on instant for Netflix. Several of the shows may be on Netflix. We just started watching Cheers from the beginning last night. That should keep us busy until the next seasons of The Office, 30 Rock and Parks & Rec come out. :D

Oh and at some point we will need to finish The Wire. I have that on DVD if it catches your interest.


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