Thursday, January 03, 2019

January Currentlies

Here I am in 2019, checking in the same way I've checked in every month for who knows how long.

Current clothes: Jeans. A gray sweatshirt featuring the definition of the word "abibliophobia": "The fear of running out of books to read." Aka the reason why I have 922 unread books on my shelves. Well, OK, one of the reasons. Also, white socks. And bunny slippers, because my feet are cold.

Current mood: Not too bad. A little rushed-feeling. I'm working evening shifts this week, and it always feels like there's not enough time to do very much before I have to leave.

Current music: Nothing, really.

Current annoyance: There are many, but the dominant one is the weather. Temperatures that drop down towards the single digits (yes, Fahrenheit). Snow that doesn't melt before more snow falls on top of it. Treacherous ice everywhere. What is the point of living in New Mexico, I ask you, if I have to put up with this sort of thing? Fortunately, next week looks like it's going to be warmer.

Current thing: I don't know if it counts as a New Year's resolution or not, but I'm going to at least try to spend less time on stupid time-wastey stuff and more on things I actually want to do.

Current desktop picture: It's still the TARDIS with a Christmas wreath. Time to change it again!

Current book: Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke. It's the final book in a trilogy of kids' books. It's a good story (and one that appeals to my book-loving soul), but overlong, especially this volume.

Current song in head: "Good King Wenceslas." Which is weird and annoying, because I know barely any of the lyrics, because I honestly have no idea who Good King Wenceslas even is or why I should care about him, and because Christmas is over, already!

Current refreshment: Nothing, but I must have some lunch soon.

Currently watching: Most recently, the Doctor Who New Year's special. It occurs to me that I haven't talked about my thoughts about the most recent season of Who here. I hate to say it, but I've found it kind of disappointing. There are lots of specific things I've really enjoyed, mind you. And I think Jodie Whittaker is good, and I love the new companions and the way their relationships with each other and with the Doctor are being handled. But Chris Chibnall's particular weaknesses as a writer, especially when it comes to plot, seem to trip my annoyance triggers hard. And while I think this incarnation of the Doctor being a kinder, nicer version makes a lot of sense in character terms (and manages to avoid feeling like a gender stereotype, fortunately), I long for Whittaker to be allowed to have just a little bit more of an edge to her. Now. All that having been said, I actually really thoroughly enjoyed the New Year's special. In fact, it got me feeling all excited about the show again... just in time to launch us into a hiatus of more than a year. Sigh.

Current happy thing: I always get weirdly happy at the turn of the year about having a whole new year's worth of reading in front of me. This time I'm going to make even more progress through the TBR shelves, I'm sure of it!

Current thought: A raise of the glass to all of you who have been really loving the current era of Doctor Who so far. Lots of people are, and I am delighted for them! And am trying not to be jealous. After all, in Steven Moffat's run I already got a version of the show that -- while I certainly can't say it never made any missteps -- hit my own personal fannish buttons really well and made me feel very satisfied and happy. And it's somebody else's turn for that now. That's pretty much just how Doctor Who works.


  1. Is it Bean Bunny's voice you hear singing "Good King Wenceslas"? When I get a song stuck in my head, I try replacing it with "Cake for Breakfast" or "Bras on 45". They're equally sticky, but I like them better. Although "Bras on 45" isn't suitable for Bean to sing.

    1. It's not. That would be more pleasant, I think. It's pretty much just me humming it to myself in my head, somehow.

      My own go-to when I need to replace a song stuck in my head is the theme tune to "I Dream of Jeannie." Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. I only use it when I'm desperate, though, as I worry about it getting stuck in there instead.

  2. I've been pretty disappointed in the new season of Doctor Who as well. Not for the cast--Whittaker and the new companions are genuinely great, and I like the interesting new "fam" dynamics--but for the stories. With the exception of "Rosa," which was incredibly well-intentioned but way too on-the-nose, there haven't been any particularly memorable ones. For all of Moffat's increasing faults as a showrunner, he could still knock out a killer episode when he wanted.

    That said, I also really enjoyed the New Year's special. It did everything I wish the rest of the season had been doing--while playing to the strengths of these four characters. I don't know that (minor spoiler) a return of old villains is necessarily the way to go, but it definitely gave the show a much-needed booster shot, in my opinion.

    1. Yeah, that sums up a lot of how I feel about it, too. "Rosa" is an interesting example, because it was, in may respects a really good episode -- calling it "on the nose" is fair, maybe, but maybe some things are worth hitting on the nose, and I thought it did a pretty good job with them -- but for me it was unfortunately undermined by the really poorly thought out bad guy and the anticlimactic way he was dealt with. It isn't even that he was simply a plot device. That wouldn't necessarily be a problem. It's that he was such a poorly handled plot device. And that's a pattern I saw repeating over and over.

      Moffat's plots were often big old messes, but they were always messes I at least found fun and interesting. Chibnall's too often are messy in ways I just find dull and frustrating. But I recognize that that's very much a matter of taste; I know a lot of people who feel the exact opposite.

      But, yeah, the New Year's ep worked, and I'm really hoping that it's a good sign of things to come. Fingers crossed! And I liked what it did with the familiar villain. It felt fairly fresh, which isn't always easy to pull off.