Dec 302011

End of the year is always a great time for sex bloggers to pretend that they are pop culture bloggers and make a list. Or it is a great time to just gab about things that they love.

Ryan Kickland is a talented songwriter and composer with a terrific range but his 2010 album “Wood Carvings” is an awesome bit of folk perfection. Although there are songs about criminals unjustly imprisoned and the revenge they plan on the warden, there are also songs about a woodcarver who would love to carve some bizarre grotesque shit but all the people will buy from him is boring boring ass carvings of animals. It is the kind of album I suspect that will resonate more with creative types than anyone else, but it also contains universal gems like “Homesick” that will make a grown man weep for his mom’s Sunday dinner.

“Drood” by Dan Simmons is a book about Charles Dickens’ best friend, Wilkie Collins, who comes to suspect that Charles Dickens might be a criminal mastermind who murders people for kicks. The genius of the book is that halfway through, you are wondering if Charles Dickens really is a murdering bastard who kills people for fun and mischief.

It is a 700 page monster of a book but thanks to the wonder of Dan Simmons’ skill, the pace is blistering. I put off reading this book for awhile because I feared that anything that happened during Charles Dickens’ lifetime was going to be a slow ponderous affair. I couldn’t have been more wrong. It is a joy to watch a master writer pump so much historical and literary information out and yet still construct a gripping and entertaining story.

“Justified” is a series on FX about a marshal, Raylan, who killed a criminal in Florida in a perfectly legal if slightly trigger happy way and is sent back to his home state of Kentucky as punishment/protection. Raylan might be the greatest gunslinger of the modern world. The problem is that even though his kills are always justified and legal, they make for a shitload of headaches and paperwork.

What makes this series perfect is it goes elbow deep into the white trash criminal underworld of Kentucky. As a North Carolina boy, I never understood why people like “the Sopranos” but man, when I watch “Justified” it is like seeing all the people I knew from home fucking up exactly like I expected them to. I get these people. The only way to make good money is either dangerous back breaking work in the mines, or dangerous but thrilling work for criminals.

Raylan himself is a force of fucking nature. When we watch westerns and tv shows, we suspend belief to allow the hero to do cool action hero things. What makes “Justified” so awesome is that Raylan is a fictional western hero in the real world. People keep fucking with him and he keeps shooting them dead. His boss admires him and hates him at the same time. There is no shortage of scumbags for the meat grinder that is Raylan.

Shrimp Scampi – Take half a stick of butter and a splash of olive oil. Heat up in a pan and add half a pound of shrimp. Cook shrimp for a few minutes and then remove shrimp. Put shrimp in the toaster oven at the lowest heat. Really you just need to keep them warm.

Add another half a stick of butter to your pan along with half a cup of chicken broth and 1/4 cup of white wine. Bring to a boil. Re-add the shrimp again. Add enough crushed garlic to kill a vampire, lemon juice, salt and capers. Cook for another minute or so. Add to pasta. Soak in adoration of spouse.

  4 Responses to “A Few of My Favorite Things Part Two”

  1. Oh, no. No, no, no. One of the best ways to prepare shrimp: Toss whole into the wok with the right amount (judged my nose) of gin and soy sauce. Cook until pink. Toss into mouth and enjoy, spitting out the hard bits quite unceremoniously. Another: A slight tempura, similarly whole, again with the spitting.

    And I’m surprised that my wife doesn’t like shrimp?

    (Crud. Now I want fried goodness. Think I might head over for some fried artichoke hearts.)

  2. Jason – I notice your recipe has no garlic hence, it is inedible by Puerto Rican standards :)

  3. I’ve been watching Justified since episode 1, and a guy with kin in Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, and other points south, I feel like I know all of those characters as well. In addition to that, I’ve been an Elmore Leonard fan from way back, and the writers for the show have captured the surrealness of that universe – Marshal Givens is a fictional character in a very real world, which is why he gets away with all sorts of stuff.

  4. Malcolm – I am amazed by how often relate to the character in Justified. It made me realize just how many desperate people I have known.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.