What I’ve Been Watching, Reading, & Listening To

netflix_the-crown Having recently disconnected cable and having pretty much only exclusively watched baseball all summer, I was at first reluctant to try Netflix’s The Crown. I thought it was going to be a boring show that was kind of a documentary. I wondered how they could make an interesting show about the royals. But, boy oh boy, am I glad I watched it. It was electrifying from the very beginning. And the acting is fantastic! I won’t be surprised to see John Lithgow win an award of some kind, so brilliant was his depiction of Winston Churchill.

sjoberg_theflytrapIn reading, I’ve just recently finished Fredrik Sjoberg’s The Fly Trap. It’s an interesting mix of biography (Rene Mailaise, pioneering entomologist and inventor of an efficient flytrap), memoir, and natural history of hoverflies. As the jacket copy puts it, it is “a meditation on the unexpected beauty of small things and an exploration of the history of entomology itself.” It’s an absorbing book that really turns some ideas on their head: for instance, I would think a scientist would be very much in conservation of wild spaces, and that’s not to say that Sjoberg isn’t, but he’s most at home in nature that has been disturbed to some extent:

“the hoverfly hunter . . . spends his time in the border country, literally, between culture and nature, in a microworld governed by constant coincidence and incessant disturbance. Everything is changing, all the time.”

And music. Of course, I’ve been listening to Leonard Cohen, but just discovered this mash-up of Daft Punk and Beastie Boys courtesy of a Toronto-based DJ, Coins. Apparently it’s a few years old, but was shared about a week ago on a Daft Punk Reddit forum and has taken over the Internet. It’s great; have a listen!