I’ve been in a contemplative mood lately, and I started thinking about the things we carry with us. I’m not talking about memories or influences. Those are things that we have little choice in. I’m talking about the constant barrage of media we inflict upon ourselves, and specifically the gems that we pull from that never ending mudslide. I’m a fan of all forms of entertainment, and I’ve probably spent too much of my life in front of a screen or behind a book. I regret none of it, because every now and then something come along leaves it’s mark on you.
I’d like to share a few examples. A rare glimpse into the inner mechanism of FC113. Here are some songs that resonated in my soul, some written words that rewrote themselves on my heart, and few kick ass movies and TV shows.
Igor Stravinsky, master of the tone poem. Stravinsky’s music in The Right of Spring is raw emotion. It wasn’t well received in it’s time, but thanks to Fantasia, you can see dinosaurs stomp around to it. His Firebird Suite is also one of my favorites.
Carl Sagan put a face on astronomy for a generation. His books and TV show opened up the universe for the average person. His one fiction book, Contact, opened my eyes to my own soul. It helped me with my struggle between my passion for science and my Catholic beliefs. They would no longer be mutually exclusive, and I find new relevance every time I read it. By the way, his son Nick isn’t a bad writer either. Check out Idlewild and it’s two sequels.
Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere. Listen, just read it. I promise you’ll never look at a subway the same ever again. If you long for a bit of fantasy in your everyday life, then this will do you wonders. After all, What if?
Vampire$ by John Steakley. This isn’t some glittery teen vampire novel. These guys suck, bite, and utterly ruin you life long before they finally drain you. It’s a good thing there are people who kill them for lots of money (I mean why else would someone do something that stupid?). Be prepared to hate vampires as a species, but love the genre.
Watchmen, the graphic novel and the movie. I’m going to commit blasphemy by saying that the movie’s ending worked better than the book. Both were supremely dark and did a fantastic job of stripping the glossy veneer off the super hero’s image. It pretty much shows you what kind of person in this world would put on a costume and fight crime.
The now finished Battlestar Galactica. Last night was this amazing show’s series finale. I’ve got say, it was like saying good bye to an old friend. The fact that this show was science fiction was besides the point. It could be any group of people in that situation. It was gritty, unapologetic, and intensely emotional. I’m considering giving up tv now that’s its over.
Other notable mentions. Jasper Fford, read anything he writes. Richard Strauss, fantastic composer. U2, Queen, Flogging Molley, The Tossers, you can’t go wrong give them a listen. The movie Equilibrium, imagine Orwell’s 1984 and The Matrix combined. Garden State, Finding Graceland, and Almost Famous if your feeling a bit lost.
If you have suggestions, send them my way. I’ll read, watch, or listen to anything at least once.