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  • Jason Haskins

December 2021: Going(s) on this month


Movies, television, music, books, and podcasts mean a lot of different things to people. Some enjoy aspects of each, while others may have only attention focused on one or two.


Each provides entertainment in their own special way. A means to escape into different worlds. A fun night out or something to simply listen to in helping pass the time or as background noise while other tasks are performed.


As we approach the end of 2021, I figured it was a nice time to take a look at a few items from each category that I'm currently enjoying. This is not a definitive list by any means and not a list of everything I'm currently watching. Mostly because I have a habit of settling into what comforts me, which means enjoying things from the above categories that I've watched and/or listened to for ages (some will be mentioned below).


Feel free to comment/suggest your own little joys of entertainment from the past year, whether it's something new or something that provides comfort to you.


Film


In the past two years, I've been to the movie theater a grand total of once. And that was to see Truman & Tennessee: An Intimate Conversation. (A nice little film, especially if you're fans of both or either of these writers.


Obviously for much of this time, movie theaters were closed as the world dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic. So while I still haven't made the return myself to seeing movies at a film house, which I need to do, I have enjoyed the benefits of watching at home. Here are a few I've enjoyed in recent months:

  • Tick, Tick... Boom!

  • In the Heights

  • Black Widow

  • The Beatles: Get Back

And, with it being the Christmas season and all, I've been watching a full slate of holiday related films. A few newer ones but mostly the classics (but no Hallmark movies this year, mostly because I don't have that channel anymore).


Television


Here, in the world of television, is where I spend the majority of my time. Well, streaming platforms, for the most part, but you get the idea. Here's a quick sample of what I've been enjoying:

  • Succession

  • Hawkeye

  • Saved by the Bell (Don't judge me)

  • AP Bio

  • Ozark

  • Wu-Tang: An American Saga

  • Superstore

  • The Wonder Years (the new one)

And of course, some of what I've been re-watching:

  • Friday Night Lights

  • Justified

  • Mad Men

  • Entourage

  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Books


It's been a steady diet of reading at least two books per month in 2021 (unless I'm on a play reading kick, then it bumps up slightly). Check out my Goodreads page to see what books I've read this year but here are a couple I'm currently reading or recently finished:

  • The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel

  • Know my Name by Chanel Miller

  • Wish it Lasted Forever by Dan Shaughnessy

Listening pleasures


Music really does feed my soul. Sadly, it's rare that I listen to a whole lot of new artists. I probably should start. I'll go through phases in which I'll seek out new music but most of the time I stumble across a song I like, forget to note to look it up later, and they disappear from my mind.


As with the film section, Christmas is on the mind at the moment. A lot of Christmas/Holiday music rotating through. I have also started digging into the library of Phoebe Bridgers.


Listening to podcasts has fallen by the wayside for me. There's just so much out there (everyone has a podcast), that I lost a little interest. This is compared to a few years ago, when it's all I did. I still hang onto a few, like Literary Disco, WTF with Marc Maron, or That Baseball Show, but for the most part, it's something I tend to forget about.


Writing updates


Back in November, I set out trying to once again finish NaNoWriMo. For the first 14 days, things were going well as I hammered out words on the beginning of a new novel.


Unfortunately, I stalled out in reaching my goal of 50,000 words. Knowing I'd have a busy month between the holiday week and working on Alley Rep's current holiday production, the goal was to at least write something every day. Which I did.


Though I didn't reach this goal, I have nearly 12,000 words of a new story (roughly 45 pages) and wrote nearly 30,000 words last month. Word counts have been a monthly goal for some time now, though it's not an "end-all, be-all" in my writing goals each month.


Managed to crank out a few posts over at Chowder and Champions and have also been posting more over on my blog The Journey of Now (mostly sports posts as of late, but there's usually pop culture musings mixed in).


And since it's the holiday season, a reminder to order a copy Of Snow Forts and Santa.



December: Around the Treasure Valley


- Boise Contemporary Theater opened their second show of the 2021-22 season on December 1 with All is Calm by Peter Rothstein. The show continues with performances until December 19.


- Alley Repertory Theater is back on stage after nearly two years with a production of Priscilla Queen of the Desert: The Musical by Stephan Elliott and Allan Scott. The show opened November 26 and continues until December 19 at Visual Arts Collective.


- Story, Story night will close out the year with "Going Home: Stories of Returning". This event takes places on December 28.


- Get into the holiday spirit with a drive-thru, animated light show at Expo Idaho. This runs through the end of the year, will times available from 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm nightly.


As always, these are just a few selected events happening around the Treasure Valley. Thanks for stopping by. Be bold. Be kind.




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