Saturday, January 13, 2007

KT's Best of 2006 (etc.)

I guess technically, that should read "Best of (etc.) 2006": some bests, some worsts, some miscellaneous mentions of note. Unlike Rebecca's post, you won't get to vote on the nominees. Fortunately, none of you seemed to want to do that anyhow. Without further ado, the highlights and lowlights of my past year:

Best Concert: Sufjan Stevens, 9/15/06 (Against all odds! While I'm a big fan of the "Illinois" album, I wasn't expecting much from this show. Had anyone warned me ahead of time that his 15-piece backup orchestra would all come out wearing giant strap-on butterfly wings, and the entire show would be accompanied by psychedelic patterns alternating with grainy home video projected onto a giant movie screen behind them, I'm pretty sure there isn't a chance in hell I would have gone. But I did, and it was wonderful. "The Predatory Wasp..." {see amateur audience footage of that song from a show in Berkeley on that same tour... he seems to have a backup choir that he didn't have at our show, but the quality of this video far exceeds the Milwaukee one that I originally posted} made me choke up, and it's DAMN hard to get to me to cry at a show. Contrary to what anyone who's seen a Tracy Grammer concert with me between July 2002 and December 2003 may have been led to believe.)

Best Places Visited: American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore; Josephine Tussaud Wax Museum in Hot Springs, Arkansas; Santa Fe, New Mexico; and Balboa Park in San Diego (All special in their own special ways.)

Best Culinary Discovery: Quinoa

Best Convention: Southwest Texas Sacred Harp Convention, spring session.

Least Favorite Form Of Pestilence To Be Afflicted By: Three-way tie between ants, cockroaches, and Richard's mysterious hives.

Runner-Up: Fleas (Those were so 2005.)

Worst Social Event: Staff holiday party (One of those unfortunate circumstances in which six people with completely different social chemistry get together and the entire evening bombs. I'm pretty sure Richard is still mourning the loss of those three hours of his life.)

Best Movies: "Brokeback Mountain," "Little Miss Sunshine," "The Departed" (I undoubtedly saw other movies, perhaps even ones I liked better, but I can only think of five movies I saw in the theater in 2006, so these are the winners. Sorry, "Memoirs of a Geisha" and "Superman.")

Worst Job: Babysitting on Sunday mornings at the church in Round Rock (I just got my W-2 from them and all the memories came rushing back. At least I only stayed long enough to earn $410...)

Musical Discovery Of The Year: Fats Domino's cover of "Frosty the Snowman" (Thanks, Dad.)

Celebrity Sightings/Encounters Excluding All Musicians: Sarah Weddington, Jim Henson's daughter, Liz Carpenter

[Editor's Note: And now we come to clearly what is my favorite part of this list.]

Favorite Books: Three Junes by Julia Glass (recommendation from Lauren), Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke (recommendation from Kate P.), Singing in the Comeback Choir by Bebe Campbell (oh how much I am a sucker for inspirational novels about cleaning up dangerous neighborhoods and making the world a better place through music)

Honorable Mentions: Hard Love by Ellen Wittlinger, Cheri by Colette, Zenzele: A Letter for my Daughter by J. Nozipo Maraire, Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood,

Classics (And I Use That Term Loosely, Mr. Crichton) I Finally Got Around To Reading In 2006: Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg, And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

Books You Shouldn't Touch With A Ten-Foot Pole: Plenty Good Room by Cheri Edwards (I was going to re-direct you to my Amazon customer review of said book, in which I gave it one star and discussed its many shortcomings at great length, but it seems to have been deleted {!!!!!!!!!!!!!!}. Can they actually legally DO that?)

Okay, those are all the bests and worsts I can think of at the moment. I'll add more if I think of anything...


  1. you nerd! you underlined all the book titles!! I wouldn't resort to namecalling, but I'm so sad - i thought they were all links at first.

  2. And sorry to disappoint you, Columbus, but I'm pretty sure quinoa was first cultivated in the Lake Titicaca region about 9,000 years ago. Nice try.