So this sounds a lot fancier than it was. I’d love to say I sat down one-on-one and picked her brain about what is arguably one of the mos successful book responses I’ve ever written for this blog. And we’re obviously besties, I mean Ms. Skloot favorited my “On the Blog” tweet this past year,
but alas I didn’t get to sit down one-on one. However, I did get to attend a really cool talk as part of a Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study of Harvard University lecture series: The Past, Present, and Future of DNA.
I first read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks back in July of 2012, two years after its original publication and a year after it came out in paperback. Apparently this was far enough ahead of the curve that my response was the highest visited response on this site until recently. (Thanks Mr. Coehlo!) Not to be a hipster or anything, but yeah that.
When I found out about the lecture from my friend Martin, I jumped at the opportunity. I remembered really enjoying the book and I knew that it had become this cultural phenomenon through book groups and word of mouth. What I wasn’t expecting was how packed the auditorium was. I’m glad I got there as early as I did because not only was the main auditorium full, but the balcony and two over-flow rooms were as well! It was cool to see Radcliffe up-close and personal as I’ve only ever walked around/by it and never walked through the grounds, unlike the main Harvard campus.
I can’t believe it’s been four months since I last did a Culture Corner (September 2014), but the blog wasn’t lacking for culture! With the end of my 30×30 list we got to visit the Somerville Museum, finish touring the MFA with my friend Caroline and I finally attend the Boston Symphony Orchestra again. But since then, I’ve done a lot of travelling and visited quite a few museums.
One of the big things I’ve never talked about as a cultural experience is travelling. I generally focus on what I do when I get there, but driving from Boston to North Carolina and then flying from North Carolina to Omaha, Nebraska and then back to Boston really made me think about the culture of travelling. I won’t go into it in this post, but I think I’ll probably write about it when I attempt to revive Now Entering Adulthood in the coming weeks. What I AM going to write briefly about and show lots of pictures of are my whirlwind trips in December to DC and North Carolina and my January trip to Omaha! And then throw in a few pictures of my most recent MFA visits.
This post is short on words but has LOTS of pictures. This is because I’m still behind catching up on blogging and this month starts the busiest season for me at work.
A few weeks ago I was staying at Tex’s place and we went for a long walk (you’ll hear more about my laziness in my Workout Wednesday soon) and explored what he called “The Monument.” I had no idea what it was, but it was actually really pretty. Probably counteracting the walk we also went to Ko, an Australian pastry shop. I’m not sure what was Australian about them, they tasted pretty British to me, but they were delicious!
I planned to start with the ridiculous movie theater I went to, but why not just go in order?
If you remember back in March I went to see a live taping of the podcast Welcome to Night Vale and how much fun I had, you’ll appreciate this. When I found out a few months ago one of my favorite podcasts, Throwing Shade, was coming to Boston I immediately bought tickets! The original plan was that Caroline, Hayley, a TBD friend and I would go. I mean it’s a comedy podcast dealing with politics and pop culture, of course it would be AMAZING.
Last weekend I had an amazing weekend. I won’t go into details, it was sickeningly adorable, but suffice to say it was a great weekend. Thanks to my roommate I had two tickets to the ICA Boston that he got through work and gave to me and I finally found time to check it out again.
If you’re at all familiar with the blog, or with me, you’ll know I’m not usually impressed with the ICA. (You can read my rant about most museums here.) The building is architecturally fascinating, but the space usage leaves much to be desired. When you add in the super hipster and uppity staff (seriously, I get they love their jobs and more power to them, but you can love your job and interests without being obnoxious) and the over-staffing of the exhibits and the overpriced everything in their gift shop (really, who charges $2+ for postcards – no other museum I’ve ever been to). I even had a membership at one point, but after a couple of bad visits I cancelled it and I’m still glad I did, but this time I had a surprisingly pleasant visit.
Although I skipped last month, this month’s culture explorations definitely make up for it. From my NYC trip which I wrote about last week and you’ll see a lot of pictures of below to my deCordova trip earlier this week and more I have planned over the next few days/weeks.
I’m not going to write much about the photo sets other than where they’re from and first impressions of the museums/experiences. I probably should’ve written this last week when it was all still fresh, but oh well. This first picture is of the postcard and ticket stub from the documentary Finding Vivian Maier. I’ve wanted to see this film for AGES and was very glad that the IFC was still showing it. It was worth every penny and made me even more excited about her as an artist. If you don’t know her story or her photographs I definitely recommend reading more about her above or at the Wikipedia page.
Most of this post will be about my awesome Nerd Weekend with Pax East 2014 and Captain America, but to start I’ll pretend to be much artsier than I really am.
If you’ve followed this blog for a while you know I’m obsessed with miniature street art. More recently I’ve been focusing on text and wondering whether text is art and if not where do they merge/diverge. I’m guessing this comes from starting to listen to the 99% Invisible podcasts a few weeks ago. A few weeks before I started listening I had to go to Lowell, MA for the a day long conference (which was actually a lot of fun) and one of the first things I noticed in this former industrial town was all of the text: old industrial signs, old advertisements, building/company sings and street signs. And then I just happened to look down at the cross walk (I was looking for the ridged spinning thing for blind people) and I noticed the above text. And I just thought it was kind of cool and even though it’s totally practical, it’s become a part of public space and to me is a type of art! And now for the nerdiness!