Best non-fiction read for the first time
- Christian Texts for Aztecs by Jaime Lara: an academic-press glossy-paged wonder of a history that involves feathered sanctuaries and sunburst monstrances and is the coffee-table book in my dream house.
- The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander: I’m not one to have my worldview changed overnight by nonfiction; this did it.
- Why Does He Do That? by Lundy Bancroft: a practical manual to recognizing, understanding, and escaping abusers. I would urge everyone to educate themselves by reading it—you may not know it, but someone in your life probably needs an ally.
- Alternative Academic Careers for Humanities Scholars by the #Alt-Academy collective: in the most academically and professionally challenging year I’ve had to date, this book gave me hope and excitement.
- A Book of Migrations by Rebecca Solnit: I tend to disregard “travel writing” as a genre. This more than justifies the beauty of it.
Best fiction read for the first time
- Írisz: as orquídeas by Noemi Jaffe: Whenever this gets translated into English, we’re having a bookclub.
- Marlena by Julie Buntin: I love nothing quite so much as messy girlhood.
- Swing Time by Zadie Smith: Except maybe a furious London.
- House of Day, House of Night by Olga Tokarczuk: Or a sprawling Polish epic.
- El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes: I loved studying this more than I liked reading it. What a playground for literary theory. What a weird year, that that’s a sentence I just unironically wrote.
edit 12/26/17: add, star, and highlight the overwhelmingly good La verdad sobre el caso Savolta by Eduardo Mendoza, which became an instant favorite.
Best movies/TV watched for the first time
- Joan of Arcadia: Consistently moving, honest, beautiful, brave. What an unlikely and wonderful thing to have been made.
- Ugly Betty: I’m glad I’ve finally admitted to myself that I just super love telenovelas.
- The Good Place: Got in on the ground floor and have been laughing ever since.
- Slings & Arrows: I watched season one in a blast of paper-finishing relief. It made me miss theatre more than I already do. I want to make things again.
- Silence: Not only did I love this movie, I really loved the review I wrote of it.
- Love’s Labors Lost
Blackfriars Playhouse, Staunton, Virginia
October 14, 2017
- DC United 1-0 New England Revolution
RFK Stadium, Washington, D.C.
August 27, 2017
- Fall Out Boy
EagleBank Arena, Fairfax, Virginia
November 2, 2017
- John Mulaney
DAR Constitution Hall, Washington, D.C.
November 3, 2017
- Verónica Sala
Thelonious Jazz Club, Buenos Aires
June 25, 2017
- Cómo atrapar el universo en una telaraña
Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires
(my review here)
- Museo Brocheriano
Villa Cura Brochero, Córdoba, Argentina
- The Life of the Art Object
The Fralin Museum of Art
Best posts or articles by other people read in 2017
- Elizabeth Bruenig, “On the political uses of evil”
- Phil Christman, “On Being Midwestern”
- Julia Flanders, “Time, Labor, and ‘Alternate Careers’ in Digital Humanities Knowledge Work”
- Fr. Maximilian, “A Helpful Homily”
- Amanda McLoughlin, “Career Advice for Millennials”
- Matthew Sitman, “Against Moral Austerity”
Best posts or articles by me
- Path of Duty: the tragic, holy obedience of Mother Cornelia Connelly
- teach us how to pray
- self-preservation is not instinct to me, it’s craft
- ❤ ❤ ❤
- notes from bible study
- é só trabalho
- bonus: I was on Spirits to talk about Our Lady of Guadalupe, and Weyward to talk sports, nationalism, Christianity, and more.
[James Madison voice] Highlights
in roughly chronological order
- I had my first role in a Spanish-language play (Salinas in El gesticulador).
- I learned TEI and got to work on a really cool text-markup project.
- I got to quiz Argentines about the American Revolution at a bar. For work.
- You know, for a while there, I was the happiest I’ve ever been.
- My Catalan improved a lot. (It’s only been like seven years in the making, lol.)
- I met my niece!
- My best friends got married.
- I got a tattoo that I absolutely love.
- I started working at the UVa Library’s Makerspace.
- I started a newsletter about Latin America. (It’s awesome.)
- I presented about my fav colonial friar to our department.
- Thanks to America, I got to cross “get on a magazine cover” off my bucket list!
- I taught 70 university students intermediate Spanish, and I did a pretty good job.