Tuesday, 31 January 2017

What's Occurrin' - January 2017

I promise myself every New Year that I'll read more books; watch more TV; try out new styles of clothing, cooking and, well...everything else, really.   Do I stick to it? To some degree.  Have I made the same resolution for 2017 despite mostly failing every other year? Yes. Yes I have.

These are the new fings I tried in January: 

Amazon Prime:

Sneaky Pete: 
I recently ditched Netflix after realising that Prime had a million seasons of my favourite show 'Forensic Files', because sometimes when I get home from work I need gruesome true-life crimes to cheer me up, y'know? 

I jest, of course.  Nothing cheers me up after a crappy day at work that doesn't involve wine. Anyway, after having a wee scroll through Prime, I happened upon (and by this I mean it was right there at the top of the page, waving at me) this new original series, produced by and featuring Bryan Cranston. How, I ask you, could this possibly not be amazing? 

Pete is a conman who is released from rosin in the first episode and can't return to his neighbourhood as he owes a LOT of money to Bryan C.  He rocks up at his Grandparents house and ends up joining the family bail bond business.  I'm only a few episodes in, but it's already looking good.   It's also been commissioned for a second season, so that gives me another box set to add to my list of Things I Never Have Time To Finish Watching   

Movies:

Deliverance:
In an effort to 'branch out', I have potentially already taken things too far.  Nothing like starting with an easy one, huh? Made way back in 1972, before I was even born, Deliverance is a classicly dark tale of four friends who decide to canoe their way up a river in the deepest, darkest backwoods of the American South. Georgia, if I recall correctly.  And this Georgia is vastly unlike the state I've visited so many times.  I ain't never been canoein' though...


Anyway, it starts off with a sense of foreboding and then slams you down and beats the utter crap out of you until you can take no more.  I've spent literal years thinking Norman Reedus' Darryl from TWD was so sexy with his crossbow and I am now entirely repulsed by the sight.   Of the crossbow, I mean; not him.   

If you haven't seen it, do brace yourself for all the wrong type of action, but feel free to revel in the amazing cast, which includes a very dashing Burt Reynolds and an exceedingly baby-faced Jon Voight.

Books:

Peter May - The Firemaker:
This title is the first of Peter May's 'China Thriller' series and is, appropriately, set in Beijing.   I've read a few of his earlier titles, which involve a different character and were  set on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland, so I had a bit of knowledge of the author before picking this up.

Aside from the fact that May is a fellow Scot, I was interested in these books from a personal point of view.  As my husband and his family are Chinese I find that, as a Westerner with little knowledge of the culture, I sometimes struggle to really understand it.   I thought this volume, based on an American forensic pathologist who travels to China to work and has problems fitting in with the expectations of women in the east compared to her native USA, would be quite interesting.  And it was.

Being fairly bolshy, confident and opinionated as a woman in the US is one thing, but for Dr Margaret Campbell, having to taper this so as not to upset the sensibilities of her host nation is a completely different ballgame.   Between her medical expertise and involvement in solving a series of crimes, Dr Campbell has to tread a fine line between doing her job and not alienating her colleagues in the male dominated society.

Music:

Miranda Lambert -The Weight of These Wings:
Anyone who reads the blog knows that I'm very much a country music girl, so it will come as no surprise whatsoever that my January has been spent blasting put Miranda Lambert's new double album, The Weight of the these Wings' at full volume from my car back and forth to work.  

The album has been a hit of a slow burner for me as it is quite different to what we're used to front the Texas songstress.  Reflecting back on her split and subsequent divorce from fellow country star, Blake Shelton, it's perhaps not surprising that the album has a more melancholic feel.   My favourite tracks are 'Running Just in Case' and 'Ugly Lights'. Also: did I tell you I have tickets for Miranda's Glasgow show this year?  I am already unnaturally excited.   I LOVE this woman.  

What have you been up to in January?

Suz x


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