Ten Things to Read, Watch or Listen to This Tuesday

by Lian on September 20, 2011

Consider this post a Curated Media Guide for Fall. Or, just consider it another list of Enjoyable Things to read, watch or listen to as the days get cooler, the leaves turn and you spend more time inside than out. Sound good? Here goes:

Aryton Senna, the last driver to be killed on track in Formula One racing.

Watch: Senna This documentary about Ayrton Senna is getting rave reviews and winning awards at Sundance and other film festivals. You don’t have to be a Formula One fan (Or married to one, in my case. I remember vividly the day Senna was killed while we sat in our living room and watched the race live.) to appreciate this  fascinating and exhilarating film about the Brazilian race car driver who died in an on track accident in 1994. My sister Monica emailed me after taking in the doc, raving, “He was like a real life Steve McQueen!” Indeed.

Read: Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson This well-written novel is set in the  New York  area  in the 1980′s, so many of the references were familiar to me have come of age at the same time and place, even though I did not participate as fully in the sex, drugs and rock n’ roll era as these characters. Okay, I didn’t participate at all– but I did have a subscription to Details Magazine as early as 1980 whn it was a ten-page publication printed on newsprint, so that should qualify me for something.  I loved this book. At the heart of this novel, besides music and and generational differences,  are family relationships, sharply rendered, heartbreaking and transformative. A terrific Fall read.

Listen: Freakonomics on Parenting Many in the Chaos Crew have sent me the link to this podcast, so it’s on my list, too! Click here to download the podcast, then we can discuss.

Listen: Laura Marling “A Creature I Don’t Know” Recently break up? Sorry to have celebrated another birthday with diminishing returns? Need a really contemplative cd to get you through a solo road trip across Wyoming or a plane flight to your grandmother’s funeral? Than look no further than this wistful, melodic, heartbreaking- in- a -good- way album by British Young Joni Mitchell Laura Marling. She can totally relate: her long-term relationship with one of the Mumford & Sons ended just before recording these tracts.

Read: The Broken Teaglass by Emily Arsenault I picked up this charming, best-selling novel on the Recent Paperbacks table and I’m glad I did. Sign me up for any piece of fiction that features a Lexicographical Romantic Comedy: Two geeks who write dictionaries meet cute and solve a literary mystery. Brilliant. Then, after I finished the book, I did a little research of my own because the author’s name sounded SO familiar, but not in a ‘Oh, I read about  her in the New York Times’ kind of way, but in an actual acquaintance way. Then, it hit me: my sister Sheila used to BABYSIT for the author. A small world indeed. Way to go, Emily.


Watch: I can’t believe I’m writing the words Deadliest Warrior, but I am. If you haven’t taken in this military history/competition show, then you are missing one darned entertaining and informative showover there on Spike TV. The conceit of the show is that two historical warriors are pitted ‘against’ each other in terms of tactics, weaponry and other criteria and then face a final re-enacted battle to see who is the Deadliest Warrior. Think Joan of Arc vs. William the Conqueror or  The Viet Cong vs. The Nazis. Or, most recently, Vampires vs. Zombies! Is it bloody? Yes. But is it a great and engaging way to learn history? Yes. Not just for teen boys, as my nieces love it, too.

Hey, did you hear that Glee hired some writers this year? Pass it on.

Watch: Glee returns to tonight on Fox and I have high hopes that the series can rebound after a “haven’t we already seen this” Season Two. Why? Because the show’s co-creators have finally hired some WRITERS! What a concept. Ryan Murphy will not be writing every episode! Could new stories and fresh character arcs be in store? Let’s hope so,  because this show is too much fun to get permanently stuck in story ruts.

Read: What if the Secret to Success is Failure?  by Paul Trough of the New York Times. Click here to read this fascinating piece on character education-- and what that really means in terms of setting your child up for academic and life success. Here’s a hint: Let them fall, Helicopter Parents! A little Grit goes a long way. I’ll be talking about this piece this week on The Chaos Chronicles Podcast.

Read: The Teen Brain by David Dobbs in National Geographic Magazine. I’m saving this article for later, when Iam fully alert with all synapses firing! My teen son started to read it last night, after the magazine arrived in our mailbox, and said, “I got to the part where the big words started and then my teen brain couldn’t process.” hahaha. Frankly, I’m a little scared Do I actually want to know what goes on in a teen brain?

Click here for this and more recipes

Read: Packing the Perfect Lunch Some tips and great recipes for packing a nutrious and satisfying lunch Thought the recipes are for kids, I’ve enjoyed them, too! Wrap it up, I say at lunch time. And these Apple “Bagels” with Peanut Butter and Dried fruit were a big hit at my house last week.


What are you reading, watching and listening to this Fall? Share your favorites with the Chaos Crew in the comments below.

Related Posts:

Ten Books to Read this Summer

Ten Things to like this Father’s Day

Books from the LA Times Books Festival


Embracing my chaos, Lian



Stephanie September 25, 2011 at 9:00 AM

Hi, Lian. Thanks for the recommendations. Now that school’s started, I’ll probably only have time to read books to recommend to my sixth graders, but I’ll keep them in mind for summer.

I was super-excited about Glee. I liked last season, but the stories were so all-over-the-place that I was glad to hear they hired more writers. Even so, I was disappointed in the premiere. It wasn’t very exciting, but I’ll still be watching next week with the hopes that it will get better.

Thanks for doing the podcast. I enjoy listening to it while I make dinner for the family or while I walk the dog.

Cynthia McKenna September 23, 2011 at 2:18 PM

I just finished reading Shanghai Girls and Dreams of Joy – historical fiction set around the rise of communism in China. The first book is better written than the 2nd but I learned a LOT about China. I’m also reading a bunch of self-help books for client work.

Watched Glee, liked about 1/2 of it but still feel hopeful. I’m a secret Biggest Loser fan and I loved the first episode.

My fall plans include learning how to use Evernote (and why I would even want to) and also figuring out the PopSugar network, blog, twitter, whatever it is.

Also, I have to run a lot.

Sue S from MN September 21, 2011 at 6:50 PM

I have seen Senna with my husband, who is a huge Formula One fan. We both remember the crash when it happened. I would highly recommend this one to any race fans. Thank goodness they have made so many safety changes.

I am a big Glee fan, so I really enjoyed the season premiere. For anyone that watched the Glee project this summer, it was so fun to see one of winners on the premiere! I also caught Zoey Deschenal (sp?) new show New Girl. It could be kind of cute and charming!

I am finally reading the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy. I know, quite behind the times. I finally found some to invest in reading it.

Thanks Lian for the other book recommendations. They look very good.

Cyndi September 21, 2011 at 6:50 AM

Thanks for the recommendations!

Started reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot and want to reread The Alchemist by Paul Coelho … watching Modern Family and listening to CC and SS of course! Also love listening to the History Chicks.

CLSD OPEN September 21, 2011 at 5:00 AM

Lian – thanks for all the links. Definitely need to read the Teen Brain and the Letting Them Fail articles…very timely for me! I always appreciate how you keep up in-the-know on things. ;) Thanks for all you do!!!

gilles September 21, 2011 at 3:36 AM

Thank you for all the recommendations. I’ll be comparing the Teen Brain article with “The Secret Life of the Grown-up Brain” by Barbara Strauch.

Susan September 20, 2011 at 12:36 PM

I’m scared to find out what might be going on in my teenage son’s brain–I just imagine all kinds of sporting equipment, mixed with images of pizza and an occasional Victoria’s Secret model. *Shudder* But I trust you! I’m going in!

The same teenage son is always trying to get me to watch Deadliest Warrior–the last time he did that it was 1000 Ways to Die…which is horrible. I thought this was more of the same. Again, gonna trust you!

I’m such a Gleek I already am excited about this season–writing wise AND with the addition of the winners from The Glee Project!

Podcast wise I just started listening to Tales of Old which is historical fiction, short stories. So far, I like!

Lian September 20, 2011 at 11:03 AM

Kim… a girl after my own heart. I LOVED Sports Night– then and now. Just rewatched the entire, short-lived show on Netflix. Peter Krause and Josh Charles– the best.

Will have to check out that podcast. Lian

Kim September 20, 2011 at 10:58 AM

I just found the podcast “Pop Culture Happy Hour” this summer. I’m going back and catching up on all the episodes from the past year. I chuckled this weekend when I listened to their take on some new tv shows for the fall of 2010. The ones that sounded bad really were, and aren’t back this season. I enjoy their smart, clever take on pop culuture. I find myself discussing their topics with my friends and family later. (i.e. Homebound Culture: How do you entertain yourself when you are stuck at home–like for a maternity leave, recovery from surgery, etc. for long periods of time? )

I’m also watching Sports Night for the first time. Somehow, I completely missed that show. (I think it started the year I had my first baby, so that probably explains it.) As a fan of Aaron Sorkin’s fast-paced dialogue and “walking” camera shots on the West Wing & The Social Network, I’m really enjoying this show. I think it was way before its time, and would have done much better about 10 years later.

I’m also in the mood to find new recipes, since it’s finally cool enough to use my oven again. I’ve been trying lots of them from a website called Mel’s Kitchen Cafe. A good friend recommened this site, and I haven’t hit a dud, yet.

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