Music + Culture

What I’m Listening To, Volume 4

Summer is winding down which makes me feel a little low key #blessed. No more looking like a sweaty tomato all the time. No more feeling uncomfortable in my own skin because I can layer upon layer my clothes. But no one wants to hear about that so onto the music. I set out to make another blissful summer playlist, but just didn’t have the heart to finish it. It just never felt right when I would listen back to it. So instead I went with a trusted go to: what I’m listening to right now.

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(Some Of) My Favorite Design Books

When it comes to books I’m pretty selective. I’m not much of a fiction person because sometimes it’s hard to focus and use my imagination. I tend to like nonfiction books where I can learn about a lot of different things. One of my favorite subjects to read about is design or architecture. I’ve accumulated quite a few design books over the years and even my design textbook ended up being one I kept around. Of course, that’s also because my professor wrote the book and my school is really keen on not buying those back at the end of the semester. At least it’s a useful book to have around right?

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So, I Tried Filmstruck…

Streaming films from the Criterion Collection was previously a bit scattered. A couple were on Netflix for a while, and then they exclusively began streaming on Hulu. You don’t know panic until you’re trying to stream as MANY Criterion selections as you can before your Hulu free trial runs out (I watched quite a few). But, by the powers that be, Filmstruck was created.

Filmstruck is a streaming service that offers “contemporary and classic art house, indie, foreign, and cult films.” It was created by the film lovers at Turner Classic Movies and the Criterion Collection. There’s a pretty well stocked library of options across multiple genres, and even just scrolling genres seemed endless. Their partnership with the Criterion Collection gives a more immersive viewing experience to movie loves by offering their exclusive special features. This includes commentary and even exclusive curated programming made by guests in the film world and beyond. There’s 4 types of subscriptions (regular, regular + Criterion, annual, and even student), and they give a really substantial 14 day free trial.

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Music Monday: Arcade Fire

If I had to choose one of my favorite bands of the last 15 years, Arcade Fire would probably be one of those bands. Okay just kidding. They are one of those bands. So forgive me if this post gets a little wordy or in-depth. Once you pop you just can’t stop sometimes.

Arcade Fire was formed in 2001 in Canada, and they rose to prominence with their 2004 album, Funeral. They have a core group of members who play a variety of instruments including guitar, drums, piano, xylophone, and even glockenspiel (among others). They have created a short film to accompany their album, The Suburbs, and even contributed a song to the Hunger Games soundtrack. Arcade Fire have won plenty of awards for their music and other technical/creative aspects. These include Brits, Grammys, and two members (Will Butler and Owen Pallett) even received an Academy Award Nomination for Best Original Score for Her. Everyone surely has heard of Arcade Fire or at least their most popular song Wake Up. Wake Up was featured in Spike Jonze’s Where the Wild Things Are and commercials for the NFL in 2010.

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Throwing a Bachelorette Viewing Party

Watching The Bachelorette or even being considered part of Bachelor Nation might feel a little embarrassing. What really helps the shame factor is having a crew of people to (ironically) enjoy the insanity with. It’s more fun with friends who listen to the same podcasts (Rose Buddies is a good one) and who will play with you in a fantasy league (not for the faint of heart). So naturally when you’ve got a crew in this with you, a viewing party is a necessity especially when it comes to finales.

Tonight Rachel Lindsay will pick her future husband (she claims she’s still engaged), and that might not seem like enough time to toss together a finale party, but it is. There are about 6,000 elaborate ways to celebrate the Bachelorette. I’ve seen everything from date card invitations (which can be cute), sending actual roses to your friends, having them dress up in unfortunate looking prom dresses, filling out dating applications, and plenty of cupcakes. Even on the season finale of the Bachelor last season they visited viewing parties where people had trophies and even cardboard cut outs of Nick. It might be a little too much, so I’m sharing some easier and more low-key ideas. A couple from our own viewing party.

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Links I Love 003

Ah, the weekend. The time where I should be doing a whole lot of nothing, but I’ll likely end up stressing about everything I haven’t done. You know, the stuff I keep saying I’ll do tomorrow or the next day, but then eventually run out of days to do? I feel like I constantly need to be productive or I’m a complete sham of a person. Yikes. Hopefully sometime this weekend I’ll manage to binge watch Wet Hot American Summer: 10 Years Later.Β 

Whatever I manage to do I’m sure it will be fun or at least productive, but I did put together some other cool things from around the internet to share. So enjoy!

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The Time I Tried to Make a Summer Reading List

When I was younger one of my favorite things to do in the summer was join the library’s summer reading program. Typically there would be a little Candy Land board inspired map with small checkpoints on them. We would check out as many books as possible to meet the checkpoints and receive the prize at each one. They were little dumb things like bookmarks or the highly coveted Pizza Hut personal pan pizza coupon. Flash forward to full on adulthood and the summer reading list just becomes a thing of the past, something you do on an airplane or while sitting on the beach. I mean there’s nothing wrong with those things, but where is the gratification? Do I have to pay for my own personal pan pizza (do those even exist anymore?)?

Every summer there’s a thousand summer reading lists where people tell us what we should be reading. Everything from the hottest fiction book (which is apparently Rich People Problems) to those books that are supposed to make our lives better. I mentioned in my summer bucket list my intention to read 3 New York Times Best Sellers so, of course, that meant making a list of books I want to read. Here we are, it’s nearly August, and I have yet to finish one. See, my intentions were good, but I have to try harder to accomplish this. Below you’ll find some of the books I still plan to shove into what’s left of my summer vacation.

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