LISTENING

Wimps are a band from Seattle. I read a review that likened them to Devo and there’s definitely reason for comparison there. I’d heard of them before and kind of glossed over their music for some reason. Can’t remember why now considering how last week I stumbled on their Live on Pressure Drop TV YouTube video and was completed sucked into their aesthetic. It’s like comedic, self-depricating, angular post-punk. It works. Perhaps it’s my current mindset, but I just dig it. I blast “Dog Pills” and “Repeat” and “Couches” and “Vampire” and “Hello Frustration” in my car and sing along. The lyrics seem cathartic. I even taught myself how to play “Dog Pills” (I don’t even do drugs, I don’t know why this song resonates so much with me).  I concede it’s not everyone’s kind of music, but the joy and fun they seem to have while playing makes me really wish they’d tour in Chicago again sometime soon so that I can attend a show and totally vibe off their energy. My only dilemma right now is should I buy a Wimps shirt?

 

WATCHING

They Call Us Monsters (Lear, 2017) is a documentary about teens convicted of violent crimes being tried and sentenced as adults. It follows three guys – Antonio, Jarad, and Juan – who enroll in a screenwriting class while in prison waiting for their trials. I suppose the idea of the film is similar to one I watched a few weeks ago – The Act of Killing – in which the creative process may invoke some introspection, acknowledgement of wrongdoing, etc.. And certainly it seems like it does to a certain extent, however at times the screenwriting component to the film seems contrived. The films most affecting sequences are the ones captured in the courtroom when everything ceases being fodder for a fictional script their writing and becomes the harsh reality for these kids.

 

READING

I finished When Breath Becomes Air and really must recommend it. It’s so beautifully written. It’s so moving. I cried reading the last few pages. I didn’t want to put it down, but it was over.

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