Stuff I Like Right Now

Lately I’ve been noticing that I have a tendency to spit out quick lists of things I don’t like via social media. I tend to type things like “What’s the deal with Corn Nuts?” into my iPhone and post them to Twitter, thinking my little negative observations are hilariously astute. Who cares? Not you, probably. I’m trying to cut back on my random internet whinging, so I thought I’d create a list of things I’m really into right now instead. This is the part where you skip straight to the comments section and berate me for being wrong about all of it

Music

Iron & Wine, Kiss Each Other Clean – I’m only a couple listens into this album, but I really like it so far. It’s nothing like his previous efforts, which has caused music snobs to run into the streets and riot. Get over it, jerks. Can’t a guy hire a horn section without a bunch of hipsters piling into their Jettas and protesting it? I don’t even know what that means. Anyway, give this one a listen.

Daemon, Unreleased album – Being friends with a musician has its privileges. The follow-up to Background Processes is in production now. I’ve heard the rough cut and it’s good. That’s all I can say now.

Cfcf, Continent – This is not a new record, but it’s fairly new to me. Can’t stop listening to it. Imagine if a bunch of keyboards and drum machines went into a rainforest, smoked a bunch of pot, and made an album. THAT WOULD BE AWESOME.

Books

The Art of Cycling, Robert Hurst – Anyone who ever rides a bike in America should read this book. Warning: If you’re a pretentious anti-car commuter or a fixie-riding punk, this book might piss you off. And it should. This is Zen on two wheels, as practiced by an experienced bike messenger who also happens to be a great writer.

Little Brother, Cory Doctorow – This sci-fi writer and Boing Boing contributor is one of my current literary idols, and I’m enjoying this novel a lot right now. It’s quite different than his short story work, which is how I got into his writing. But it’s sharp, intense and packed with great San Francisco flavor. It’s a bit heavy-handed in parts, but that’s partly due to its perspective. Pissed-off teenage boys tend not to be subtle.

Television

An Idiot Abroad – Some friends pointed me toward this Gervais/Merchant production that sends “average guy” Karl Pilkington across the globe to see the Seven Wonders of the World. It’s on the Science Channel for some reason. Best not to know too much about it before you watch it. Just watch it.

Web Sites

Electronic Frontier Foundation – There’s so much going on behind the internet scenes right now, it’s scary. Seriously. If you give a damn about freedom, access and fairness online, become an EFF member and take a position on net neutrality, censorship, digital rights management or anything else you care about.

Wormworld Saga- You’ve probably never seen anything quite this online before, unless you’re super into online comics, in which case you are probably yelling “OLD” at your computer screen right now. Oh well. I tried.

Swackett – Alright, so this isn’t a web site. It’s a free weather app from the Mac App Store. It’s an interesting way to look at the weather forecast. Rather than spit a bunch of numbers at you, it suggests clothing based on what it knows about what you consider to be “cold” or “hot.” It’s not perfect, but it’s cool. Because weather is usually boring as hell.

Diaspora – Sorry to get your hopes up, but this idea isn’t quite viable yet. I should know. I stare at the web site every day hoping it will suddenly flip over from alpha to beta and let me in. Diaspora is an open-source attempt to out-Facebook Facebook. It will probably never work, but I intend to help it try. Because Facebook, despite its laudable ability to help Egyptians kick out dictators, is not your friend.