My Best of 2012

binkleyWell Pal as I read your eloquent post, I am struck that the things you loved in 2012 are things that I know not of. I have not seen Cabin in the Woods. I have never seen an episode of Breaking Bad. I have listened to Last of the Country Gentleman only once (mainly heeding your repeated warnings). So you gave me a list of things for me to enjoy in 2013. Another thing I have noticed of your list is that they all seem appealing to a depraved and twisted mind. I am not very good at math but I am good at identifying walking ducks and talking ducks. I think you might be a walking talking duck you twisted F%@#.

Here’s my best of list. Unlike yours, I think you will find it both pleasant and positive. Nowhere is there a decapitation. My benchmark for pleasant.

Best Album : There’s No Leaving Now, The Tallest Man On Earth

tallestman1 untitled

I really wanted to put this as best concert of the year, but, I can’t. You’ll see why soon. I love the tall man. He is this generation’s Dylan. Sometimes criticized for being too much like Dylan. For me, having the Dylan-like moniker is just fine. I do think that the tall man is his own man. He is a great songwriter and musician adding more complexity with each album he makes. To compare your pick to my pick. Josh T Pearson sounds like a tortured guy still searching for something to search for. The Tallest Man on Earth sounds like he might have figured a few things out.

The Tallest Man On Earth is the guy that I wish everyone sounded like, but I am glad that he is only one that does. The album is great. Poetic, intricate, personal, intimate. I get chills when he matches his guitar phrasing with the rhythm and melody of the song. He does that a lot. Just great. The album was elevated for me when my pal and I saw him live. I had a moving experience at that show that will not be forgotten. Thank you tall man.

Best T.V. Show: Dr. Who


At first, this one seemed clear cut to me just like Breaking Bad was for you. However, a recent contender emerged to fight Dr. Who. A show that in many ways is the opposite of Dr. Who. Subdued, seemingly simple, real, maybe too real. Deserving of an honourable mention.

Due to the wonderful technology of PVR and a holiday marathon on FX, I have been watching back to back episodes of Louie. Louie has some of the most original and real moments I have ever seen anywhere. Such moments as Louie in a subway station watching a beautiful violin concerto while a large half naked homeless man washes himself with a wet rag. Or Louie rocking out to Who Are You with his kids in the backseat. Poking them, air drumming at them, air guitaring for them, and swerving off the road. I do the exact same thing at my two girls. Especially when Roundabout comes on the radio. Louie’s kids seem mildly amused/unimpressed/freaked out. Just like mine are when I am rocking that unbelievable keyboard solo. Other T.V. shows would end this scene after ten seconds, thinking that the point was made. On Louie they did the whole song. That is the point.


Back to the ultimate question. . . Dr. Who

In my opinion, Dr. Who is the most ambitious T.V. there is. Imagine if you had the ability to go to any point in time to any place in the universe at any moment. Imagine a future where the British Nation is kept alive through a symbiotic realtionship with a gigantic space whale (riding Britain on its back). The show is so outside of the box. It owns the box. It feeds the box. It takes the box to the park on sunny days. It rewards the box for being a good box. Ironically much of the show is in a box. The Tardis. It is bigger on the inside than on the outside. Come on pal. The best. The show takes every conceived idea to its outer most possible edge.

The Matt Smith Dr. Who is my first Dr. Who. I have seen others since and I do think that he is the best one. Also, I think that Amy Pond and Rory Williams are the best partners for the Doctor. He should never be alone. And let us not forget River Song. It has been a great few seasons with this crew. Alas, this was the season that Amelia and Rory left. A sad occasion indeed. I admit I wept during the final scenes of the season ender. Oh, that little girl who met a strange man that came out of a phone booth. She waited so long for his return. What great adventures she went on when he came back.

This incarnation is over. Not to worry though. Dr. Who has so many other things going for it. Explorations in theoretical physics, sci-fi fantasy, ethics, humour and creepiness. If there was an award for the creepiest crap your pants villains ever (which there may be), I think Dr. Who would win. My favourite are the Weeping Angles. Statues that want to kill you and feed off your time energy. The catch is that they only move when they aren’t being looked at. Mild mannered statues at one point. Look away. Look back. YIKES! They are in your face. Frozen. Fangs out. Inches from killing you. Don’t look away. Hope the lights don’t go out. I realize this may not be creeping you out. You just gotta see them. In the season finale they made one of them the freaking Statue of Liberty. Coolest thing ever.

Best Live Show: Seeing Both Avett Brothers Concerts in Toronto

Rockin' jam Avet Brothers

Those male romantics. The Avett Brothers. We have seen them four times now, and they never disappoint. The first time we saw them was a few years ago at the Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto. Very intimate. Maybe the best moment at a live show for me occurred that night. You know what I am going to write about. That third encore. They walked off stage and the whole crowd started singing a phrase from their song Go To Sleep. La daaaaa da-da-da daaaaaa. Over and over again. Filling the bar. Not stopping. As if to say, “hey guys, I know you have worked hard for us tonight. The tickets were cheap. We all would have paid more for this. You guys were so unbelievable. You think ya got one more in ya? I think that we are going to insist on one more. La daaaaa da-da-da daaaaaa.” After about five minutes of this, they walked back on stage and joined right in with us. “La daaaaa da-da-da daaaaaa”. And played Go to Sleep. Oh my goodness. That moment can’t be beat. The Avett shows we saw after that one were bigger and musically better, tho’. This year they played two nights at the Danforth Music Hall and we saw both shows. First time we saw the same band two nights in a row. They were amazing. We brought our lovely wives to the first one, which was a tonne of fun. The second night was just for the pals. The set was filled with more deep cuts than the first show. The whole experience felt tailored for us. Thanks guys.

The Avett Brothers are so good live. Like Ferris Bueller says, “if you have the means, I highly recommend picking (some tickets) up”. I have not fully fallen in love with their latest album The Carpenter. However, the first few tracks are as good as any songs they have ever written. I feel like they are moving on from their dixieland past a bit, which I can understand. They deserve the new audience they are acquiring. I ain’t mad at them. I still love them. I can listen to their other albums. Most of all I can remember their shows.

Well that is it pal. A lot of highlights from 2012 and looking forward to 2013.

I am looking forward to march brake so i can spend my one hundred dollar bill in Florida and go to the beach to find shark teeth with my family and family and family. I also want to swim in the pool because I am not a lake or ocean person. this part is by Abbey.


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