Thursday, January 01, 2009

Welcome to 2009

But before we march so blindly into this new year of unknowns, let's pause and look back (probably briefly knowing me) on the known quantity that was 2008.

I ought to spend lots of time breaking down the most important stuff that happened to me this past year, but it's a holiday after all and I've got my whole family here. That probably means that I won't have lots of time (while the sun is up) to tap away at this sort of thing.

So, let's break it down category & list style . . . and if you are lucky, I might get a little bit of explanation thrown in here and there.

Best Person of 2008: My dad might humorously accuse me of putting Barack Obama here or we could pick any number of people that did good works and helped people through the year. But this is my blog and therefore it tends to be David-centric.

So, I'll pick my youngest daughter Hannah Martin as the Best Person of the past year. She certainly added the most to my life and will continue to challenge and enrich it for many more years to come. But don't get cocky Hannah. You get a freebie in 2008 because you were a newborn. Forever after, you've got to earn this honor.

Best Book of 2008: Back in 2007, I would have picked Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows but I didn't do this for 2007. Now, in a post-Potter publishing cycle, what am I to do?

After reviewing the books I checked out from the library and the books that are stacked on my end table, I choose My Stroke of Insight as the Best Book I read this past year. It certainly was the most unusual. It detailed a neuroscientist's experience with a brain hemorrhage and the spiritual understanding that she gained from it.

Best (theater) Movie of 2008: I break this category into parts to acknowledge the reality that I don't get to the theater very much. I see a lot more movies on DVD. But that will come next. This entry is for the best movie that I went out of the house to see.

And that movie was Forgetting Sarah Marshall. I could have picked The Dark Knight, but that was the spectacle movie that I tried to get everyone to go see and treat as an event. FSM was a random movie that I just really enjoyed with Lynda. I could say the same about Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist but FSM was funnier.

Best DVD of 2008: So. like I said earlier, I watch most of my movies on DVD--and not that many when it comes down to it. And this won't necessarily be the best DVD of 2008 that I saw, but simply the best one I saw IN 2008. (I fall further and further behind the times as I get older.)

So, given that qualification, I pick The Prestige as the Best DVD I saw in 2008. It was dramatic, fun, well shot, well acted, had twisty logic, and was just plain great. (The fact that it was actually released in 2006 should not be held against me.) To be more recent, I'll say that Iron Man was thoroughly fun to watch and I'll admit that I haven't enjoyed a Superhero movie as much since the glorious day that I watched Spiderman II.

Best Podcast of 2008: I have grown to rely on podcasts quite a bit in the last few years. But the one I liked the best this past year was WYNC's Radiolab. Always informative, always smart, and always inventive. (Look them up with a web search and subscribe!)

Best TV Show of 2008: LOST is always my first choice in this category, but I'm not going to award it this honor this year. My reason? Partly because the start of this season was a bit slow and it didn't REALLY become awesome until the second half began. But make no mistake that I continue to love the show and will never give up on it.

No, my favorite show of 2008 was NBC's Chuck. It hit my sweet spot of funny/sexy/spy/nerdy and I love watching it each and every Monday. Rent season 1 on DVD and try to catch up on the ongoing season 2. What else is there to do on Monday nights?

Best Web site of 2008: I'm not enough of a jerk to nominate my own and I know I don't deserve it, even if I didn't consider all the other much more professionally done ones out there. James Lileks keeps pounding out funny stuff every day and is always finding humorous nuggets from the past.

But I guess I have to choose between Facebook and Twitter this year. I embraced the idea of Web 2.0 and though it hasn't enveloped me or anything, I have found it possible to track down some old friends and do a better job of glimpsing their lives now through these Internet portals. So, that is a good thing.

Best WWYG?! Post of 2008: I'd have to pick this one. But feel free to search the archives (using the calendar function to the right) to nominate your own.

1 comment:

Grace-face said...

A category I should have included is Best Randomly Great Thing of 2008 and that would definitely be Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog.

I wrote about it many times during the year, so you've already heard my opinion about it.

Just great, funny, clever, and most welcome.