Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Back when I used to keep up this blog I had an annual tradition where I'd add another entry to my 'life lists' of books, film, and music. (If you are seeing this it probably means you still check in and, thus, already knew that!). Someday I just might fire up this blog again, so I figure I'll keep those lists active. So without much fanfare or further adieu, here are the 36th entries on my lists. Just my way of expressing gratitude to those things which have been a big part of my 36th year.

Albums I've Lived By

Arcade Fire - Funeral

This will forever be remembered as the year I (along with many) discovered Arcade Fire (a little later than most). I got the whole discography at once and though I loved them all and really enjoyed 'The Suburbs' it was 'Funeral' which resonated with me most both lyrically and musically. Already this album has ingrained itself upon my psyche to such a degree that I can hardly believe I hadn't really heard it until this year. When I saw the band live in Glasgow it was unforgettable. Between Laika and Wake Up, Rebellion (Lies) and Power Out, this album's songs carried the night for me.

Favourite Fiction

Richard Adams - Watership Down

For some reason (I don't know what compelled us) I picked this up and started reading it to my oldest this year. We were absolutely enraptured with it. One of the best books I've ever read, hands down. One day I was sick but he wanted to read it so bad he worked his way through a whole page reading to me aloud in bed (this book is full of very big words and he did very well).

Influential Non-Fiction

Willie James Jennings - The Christian Imagination

I wrote about this book at length in various places on the blog, such as here. I read a lot of great books this year, but this one triggered my thinking in new ways the most.

Possible runners up this year:
Karl Barth - The Epistle to the Romans
John Howard Yoder - Body Politics

Films that Stuck With Me

Gone Baby Gone

I would love to write about this more one day. I did so on facebook one time but can't figure out how to find it. The acting was brilliant. The story had twists and turns but still felt real and was gripping without being over the top. The sense of place was profound, and the storyline tugged at the mind and heart. I thought the end was poignantly filmed. Casey Affleck's character turns out to be something of a Christ figure, I think, and as he gives of him self one more time for this forgotten young girl the camera pans behind the TV that he's watching and we sense that the onus is on us if this world is going to get any better.