During the week of Thanksgiving, the Funkhouser family offers up the facets of pop culture for which they’re especially thankful. Today, Matt Shorr shares the objects of his cultural gratitude:
I am thankful that my wife got me into watching Game of Thrones. I am thankful that she read A Song of Ice and Fire beforehand so that she can fill me in on the details of the 18 different storylines, like who is related to whom, and who wants to kill whom and why. I am not thankful that I knew a single thing about “The Red Wedding” before watching the episode (thanks, internet). I am thankful that an author has the stones, or maybe just the dedication to realism, to admit that the good guys don’t always win. In fact, they often lose in brutal fashion. I am thankful that Season 5 is supposed to start in Spring 2014. (I am also thankful that she got me to start watching The League. What a great way to waste 22-ish minutes at a time! Next up: Eastbound and Down? I’m a little behind the cultural curve.)
I am thankful that my sister convinced me to watch Sherlock. Not that Game of Thrones can’t be cerebral, what with all the gaming of thrones and attempting to keep characters straight, but it’s awfully heavy on the blood and sex. Nothing wrong with that. If you really want something to jolt your brain into functioning, though, Sherlock is one of the best-written shows you’ll ever watch. It is brilliant, clever, engaging, and British enough to warrant a second-viewing to catch the stuff you missed the first time because the dialog is all fast and British-y. Yeah, each season consists of just three 90-minute episodes, so the writers and director and actors have time to get everything perfect. So what? Maybe American TV should take notes. I am thankful that Season 4 starts in December 2015. I am sad that is not December 2014 instead.
I am thankful that I haven’t seen Orange Is the New Black or House of Cards yet. They can’t be as good as everyone says. They just can’t be. Once I start them, I’ll binge watch until 2am for weeks straight and that will lead to finally watching The Wire and re-watching all The Sopranos and then all episodes of The Simpsons and it will start to affect my social and occupational functioning, and then I’ll officially be an addict and my family will disown me and I will wear out all my pajama pants and I’ll end up sleeping on a couch frame with no cushions. Thanks, Netflix.
It’s not TV, but I am thankful that Christopher Nolan is still making movies. Although fellow ‘Houser Kalan didn’t care too much for Interstellar, other cinephile friends have told me that it is one of the best movies they’ve ever seen. I am thankful that a movie can still spark that sort of discussion. I will see it this weekend, and not get my hopes up so that they can’t be crushed. Mr. Nolan, please don’t ever stop making films.
I am thankful for spicy foods, and sauces that make not spicy foods spicy. Garlic Power, Cholula, Franks, wasabi (a different kind of burn, man), but especially Sriracha. I’ve been on the Sriracha train for a lotta years now, so get off my back. I was eating Sriracha on cottage cheese long before Lays was selling it and every other flavor of chip to foodies. Next time you’re in Lex looking for a good, hot bite, try the Sriracha-lime wings at County Club on Jefferson. (Please, please tell me in the comments section where to get other good spicy dishes. Curry, ghost, habanero, Buffalo, whatever. DON’T HOLD OUT ON ME!)
I’m kinda thankful that Kentucky doesn’t have a professional sports team. It keeps UK basketball front and center, where it should be. The fervor, the intensity, the insane dedication of BBN–what other fan base has hundreds of fans fly to freakin’ Maui for an early season tournament? What other team inspires thousands to take a full day of travel time to New Orleans and back nearly every year? Would an NBA team generate that much devotion? More importantly, would a pro team take time and energy away from our beloved Cats? Probably not, but why chance it? Besides, any pro team is going to Louisville.
We, and I, have a lot to be thankful for. To you and yours, have a happy and safe Thanksgiving from all of us here at Funkhouser and KSR.
Follow me on Twitter at @MattShorr