a potpourri of Monday thoughts

You’ll have to excuse me if this post seems a little scatterbrained, but I’m not sure where we go as a society after last night’s episode of True Detective. I’m not going to spoil any plot details, but there is a tracking shot at the end of last night’s episode that was so brilliant I had to go back and watch it three or four times today. It was the kind of scene that recalibrates your expectations of what television, as a medium, is capable of. I felt that way about Breaking Bad’s masterpiece of an episode, Ozymandias, and I feel that way about what Fukunaga’s directing last night. I understand how people can have qualms with the writing and tone of True Detective, but if you don’t come away from “Who Goes There” blown away by the film making, then there may not be any hope for you.

It’s hard to believe we are already at the midpoint of the show’s eight episode arch.  I can honestly that I have no idea where the plot is heading. This show has it’s audience on a leash, and it’s dragging us all blindfolded further and further into the dark expanses of humanity. I come away away form each episode wondering just what kinds of horrors are we all capable of, and what keeps us from unleashing that horror out into the world. I’m the kind of person that likes thinking about these sorts of things. I’m not sure why, perhaps it was all the Kafka I read in college? This show is nothing if not Kafkaesque, it asks us to look at the monsters we are. Go ahead, take a good hard look.-

I had another rough day at the gym today, and it seems to be time to switch up my routine. I’m going to keep my running and weightlifting days separate, because doing both on the same day is impossible. On the bright side, I did set a personal best 225 bench press rep count. Ever since I was in high school I was obsessed with being able to bench press 225lbs, because that is the main strength workout they have for the NFL Draft Combine. It was around this time two years ago that I was first able to bench double plates, and now I can bench that much weight over ten times. In comparison, elite running backs in the NFL average around 20-25 reps at 225lbs and some of the big lineman have been known to get up to 40 reps, which I can not even articulate how insanely had that is. If I can ever get to 20 reps at 225, I’ll be a happy camper. The problem is, when I expend as much energy as I did today to lifting weights, I have a hell of a time finishing my Couch to 5K workouts. This is all well treaded ground by now, but this time I’m actually changing the schedule around to looks something like this:

  • Sunday: Run
  • Monday: Weights
  • Tuesday: Run
  • Wednesday: Weights
  • Thursday: Run
  • Friday: Weights
  • Saturday: Not a damn thing.

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I know I promised a review for The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao this weekend, and it’s in the works. I’ve been sidetracked the last couple of days with a couple of other writing projects, but I’m at the end of the book now, and I’m still loving it. I’m trying to get other people I know to pick it up, because it has such a great, unique style that I think a lot of people I know would enjoy. In my excitement to get people to check the book out I’ve let slipped that it happens to be a Pulitzer Prize winner, and for some reason that has only seemed to turn people off. I feel like there is a stigma attached the award that makes people think they have to be English Lit majors to be able to decipher a Pulitzer winner. Having read The Orphan Master’s Son, and now reading this, I can say that the award as of late has gone to highly entertaining books, that are accessible to any reader at even a high school reading level.

There is a line in which Diaz uses the word hit points to describe a beating one of the characters takes that was so cool it sent a shiver up my spine. There are also a ton of references to things like anime, The Lord of the Rings, and video games. There’s a combination of nerd cred, swagger, and overwhelming talent that makes Diaz as compelling an author as I’ve read in the last couple of years. So yes, the review is still coming. Stay tuned.