Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Old Long Since - Remembering the 2000s

Enjoy this compilation of decade-in-review lists just in time to ring in 2010! I'll be spending New Years' Day further perusing reflections on 2009 and the 2000s from The New York Times, Time, and Entertainment Weekly. Here are some gems I've found so far:

Somber prose,

Intriguing pop cultural analysis,

The people who brought my favorite, television, and writing of the decade,

And the best music.

2009, with the works:
Josh Schwartz' cultural references set his teen dramas above others.

"For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we'll take a cup of kindness yet,
for auld lang syne."
-Robert Burns

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I wish you a relaxing and enjoyable Christmas weekend with your family and friends!
"Remember, no man is a failure who has friends." - It's a Wonderful Life

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Archives: Topping my List

As I look forward to the upcoming holiday season, I'm excited about the media's retrospectives on 2009. Toward the end of each calendar year, I immerse myself within the plethora of year-in-review magazine issues and television specials. I even incorporated my quirky interest into my college admissions essay, which remains my favorite writing piece of all time to this day. Read this updated version of the essay, and check back here for continued coverage of the Best and Worst of 2009 (and the Best and Worst of the 2000s!)

Friday, November 20, 2009

Holiday and "Best of the Year" Seasons Begin!

With the arrival of Thanksgiving next week, the holiday season begins! I'm so excited about all of the annual traditions to come in the remaining weeks of 2009. Among my favorite things to do at this time of year, I enjoy immersing myself within the plethora of year-in-review magazine issues released and television specials broadcast. I even incorporated this quirky interest into my college admissions essay, which remains my favorite writing piece of all time.

These past two weeks, Oxford University Press announced its choices for Place of the Year and Word of the Year. It's been a great experience interning at OUP, and being a part of the dialogue related to the company's choices for Word and Place of 2009 have been especially fun for this list enthusiast.

I'll share more links and commentary related to "Best of 2009" and "Best of the 2000s" compilations as they develop, and also choose my own picks for the bests and worsts of the year and decade. Until then, I hope you enjoy reading about Oxford's choices for Word and Place of the Year! Have a great Thanksgiving!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I Keep Writing

Dear Readers,

With Thanksgiving arriving next week, I cannot believe how fast the time has flown by. Ideas for posts, some latent for months, others drafted in fragments in a master topic word document, remain in my mind as I wait for the next moment when they will gain fleeting cultural relevancy once more. Hopefully that moment will fall on a day when I have a half hour to express my thoughts in a coherent, candid post.

This fall, I've started promoting this blog to friends and family. Sharing my writing can be challenging, because good writers by nature are required to reveal their deepest anxieties and dreams. As someone who has struggled with shyness over the course of my life, sharing these types of emotions has never come naturally. Writing has been my haven of self expression and comfort, dating back to those elementary school journals in which I described field trips and soccer games, then often experienced standing by the wayside. Over an adolescence, journaling has given me the confidence to think for myself, develop my own opinions, and voice those opinions to my family, friends, and, most recently, to my emerging professional network. Nonetheless, my personal writing has primarily served as a thought organizer for forthcoming conversations. Aside from term papers and scattered op-ed pieces for school newspapers and MFT, I've never shared it with anyone.

The fear that others won't like what I have to say, especially after the time I have spent writing and the courage I've garnered to publish my work, seems daunting at times. It's a fear that I feel has hindered my progress as a writer in the past, particularly within the blogosphere, where the condfidence of successful bloggers ranging from Arianna Huffington to Perez Hilton is evident. Nonetheless, I can't stop dreaming that some day others will identify with my opinions, inspired by them in a way similar to how my favorite writing has affected me. Therefore, I keep on writing.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Start Spreading the News...

Today as I sit at my computer, whittling away at my job and graduate school applications, I am in good spirits. I am certainly excited about all of the possible opportunities that could start just by clicking the "send" button on my computer. Yet the primary reason for my giddiness is the New York Yankees Game 6 7-3 win last night, which led my favorite team to their 27th World Championship!

Yankee Stadium - August 2009
Growing up in the greater New York area, I've supported the Yankees since childhood and was fortunate enough to watch them win 4 World Series between the years of 1996 and 2000. I've always felt so proud and fortunate to be a member of the Yankee community, given the team's rich (no pun intended) history, with such accomplished players as Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, and Mickey Mantle, and countless others who have shaped America's pastime.

My adolescent years as a Yankee fan were frustrating at times. After watching those late 1990s teams succeed so naturally, I experienced the first disappointments of a baseball fan whose team has lost year after year, not quite able to synchronize their playing. I understood what fans of other franchises had gone through, and my appreciation for my team's past accomplishments deepened. I continued supporting the Yankees when it was most challenging, notably, when they lost the pennant to the Boston Red Sox in 2004, a loss that transformed southwestern CT into Red Sox Nation just in time for my college years in Massachusetts.

For the record, I forged great friendships at Holy Cross with fans on both sides of baseball's greatest rivalry. It's interesting, though, that the Yankees did not win another World Series until after I gradauted and moved back to the tri-state area. Furthermore, they won in the final year of this decade, at their new stadium, inaugurated this season. Is this a sign I should stay in New York City? Is it safe to include Fairfield County in Yankees Universe again? What will happen in seasons to come? I wonder. I know for certain, though, while team destinies may come and go, team loyalties are forever.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Seinfeld on the Curb!

One of my anachronistic interests has become relevant again: The Seinfeld cast is reuniting on Curb Your Enthusiasm for the show's 7th season!

Anyone who knows me will tell you that
Seinfeld is my all-time favorite television show, and I still watch several reruns a week. Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David shaped my sense of humor and writing style. If you called this the blog about nothing, I would take that as a compliment. Whenever I feel stressed out, Seinfeld will put a smile on my face. It humorously portrays frustrating, relatable situations, such as unsuccessfully trying to meet friends for a movie or dinner at a Chinese restaurant. In doing so, the sitcom provides me with comfort that I am not alone in my neuroses and fears that I will claim "I'm unemployed and I live with my parents" well into my thirties.

As a disclaimer, I was a carefree elementary schooler during the 1990s, too young to fully appreciate the humor and themes of Seinfeld when it first aired. I came to love the show through reruns watched during my high school and college years, the prime era of insecurity in one's life. Seinfeld made me and I suspect countless others feel less alone in our anxieties. As Time reporter Bruce Handy wrote in anticipation of the show's conclusion, "Like the rest of us, the show's overly analytic foursome must pick their way through an increasingly chaotic social battlefield, forced to write their own etiquette for even the most insignificant encounters." 

I've often imagined what it would be like to have been in my early twenties during Seinfeld's initial run, navigating the adult world at the same time as the Seinfeld foursome. Curb Your Enthusiasm, Seinfeld writer and co-creator Larry David's solo project and makeshift spinoff, is one of my favorite shows, employing the same idiosyncratic humor as its predecessor. Nonetheless, I wonder what it would have been like to watch Seinfeld in prime time. 

This year, I finally get that chance. The Seinfeld characters are back to plan and stage a mock reunion in this season's plotline of Curb Your Enthusiasm. I'm sure the cast will be up to their same old hijinks. So far, Larry jeopardized the reunion show by complaining about that the free Lakers tickets NBC offered him were in a bad location, and had to save it through his signature groveling. Stay tuned for more commentary as the reunion develops, and in the meantime, watch this video from Funny or Die depicting a hypothetical CW remake of my favorite show.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Summer's Gone

"The summer's gone, and all the flowers are dying, it's you, it's you, must go and I must bide."
-"Danny Boy"

What a sad song. Having Irish descent, I grew up listening to "Danny Boy" and it still moves me every time I hear it. It's a particularly appropriate song right now, on so many levels.

We've lost what seems like especially many famous people this summer. Most recently, we've bid farewell to Senator Ted Kennedy and his sister Eunice, members of arguably the most influential Irish-American family. In addition, two of my favorite writers have passed away, journalist Walter Cronkite and screenwriter-director John Hughes. These public figures have served as role models to me and countless others for decades through their civic service and social commentary. Like Danny, they sought to achieve the American Dream, and they triumphed. As summer represents the intangibles of joy and youthful nostalgia, it seems fitting that we must say goodbye to these leaders as the leaves change from green to gold.

These farewells, and the summer's passing, have been especially poignant for me, signaling my own journey ahead. I don't know whether I relate more to Danny's father, as I think of my friends returning to college and entering graduate school; or Danny, as I embark upon a new life with these friends no longer a door knock away from support and comfort.

Despite my anxieties about the future, I am optimistic. I start a job as a freelance production assistant at my local news station this week. I'm excited about this new stage of my life. Because as much as I love daydreaming on the beach, I'd rather be at my desk with a mug of hot coffee, one step closer to achieving those dreams.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

My Story Thus Far

I grew up and currently live in Fairfield County, CT with my family. I just graduated from College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA. At HC I studied economics and sociology, did stage crew for the alternative theater group, wrote for the school newspaper, and spent a lot of time on Facebook. My summer jobs have been at Dunkin Donuts, Marine Money Magazine, and CNBC. This summer, I'm interning at Oxford University Press, in the publicity department. A lot of publicity occurs online, thus, through this internship I have been introduced to some wonderful blogs and finally started my own.

I wish that I had started blogging sooner so I could write about these events as they unfolded, but I know will I refer to them throughout my future posts. At least this entry will give you a sense of what I'm going to talk about.

I have a life list that spans several journals and includes movies, plays, and videos I want to see, albums I want to listen to, concerts I want to attend, books and articles I want to read, places where I'd like to travel and live, and people I'd like to meet, write to and visit. And, of course, career interests I'd like to pursue. I'm a daydreamer and fully believe in its power to help people realize what they want from life. Nonetheless, I'm trying to be brave and go for my goals. If I accomplish any of them, which I believe I can eventually, I will write about them on this blog - along with some lighter fare.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The First Mug

Dear Readers,
I am new to the blogosphere - I have always wanted to try writing a blog and have finally gotten around to starting it. After thinking about different possible titles and topics for my blog, I think I have finally created a forum for discussing some of my favorite topics - daily life, arts and leisure and entertainment, and current events. A coffee and tea lover, I use the mug as a metaphor that encompasses all of these themes (many of which I read/think/talk about over my morning coffee).
The blog is a work in progress, and I'd love to hear feedback from you about the blog or the topics I've discussed. Thanks for reading!