I hate doing year-end lists. They require too much research into release dates and that means looking up other year-end lists. Then your shit is influenced by others and you get all self-conscious that you haven’t yet heard the new Camera Obscura CD or seen The Hurt Locker. Damn you, Hurt Locker. Foiled again!
Besides, I’m perpetually behind and can’t keep up with today’s fast-paced kids and their big sneakers and low-fat margarine. So I’ll just list the stuff I enjoyed the most in 2009, regardless of when it actually hit the shelves. In alpha order because I’m lazy and everyone’s a winner.
Top 15 Albums Thoroughly Enjoyed in 2009
(Buy all of these albums or you are a stupid asshole.)
Bonde Do Role – “With Lasers”
The Bongos – “Drums Along the Hudson”
Boris The Sprinkler – “…Gay”
Buzzcocks – “The Complete Singles Anthology”
The Church – “Under the Milky Way: Best Of The Church”
Echo & The Bunnymen – “Ocean Rain”
Epoxies – “Stop The Future”
FM Knives – “Useless And Modern”
The Go! Team – “Proof Of Youth”
The Holloways – “So This Is Great Britain”
Kinky – everything, but “Barracuda” is 2009
Manu Chao – “Proxima Estacion: Esperanza”
Polysics – anything and everything, but “Absolute Polysics” is 2009
The Smiths – “S/T”
Wanda Jackson – “Rockin’ With Wanda” & “There’s A Party Goin’ On” (tie)
Top 10 Songs Not Included in Albums Above
(iTune this shit.)
Bajofondo – “Pa’ Bailar – Siempro Quiero Mas (feat. Julieta Venegas)”
Beck – “Timebomb”
Brian Jonestown Massacre – “(You Better Love Me) Before I Am Gone”
The Briefs – “Move Too Slow”
CSS – “Alcohol”
Lykke Li – “Little Bit”
Mexican Institute of Sound – “El Microfono”
M.I.A. – “Paper Planes” (You know what? I love this fucking song.)
Rice Rokit – “Dull Boy”
Wire – “I Am The Fly” (I can listen to this on eternal repeat)
Top 10 Albums Recently Rediscovered in My Collection That Have Been Getting a Lot of Play Lately
Calibretto – “Dead By Dawn”
Cats And Jammers – “Wholelottagoddamn”
Chicklet – “Indian Summer”
Diastemata – “S/T EP”
Hidden Tracks – “The Sweet Sound of Excess”
Joe Jackson – “Look Sharp!”
The Femurs – “Modern Mexico”
Over The Rhine – “Eve”
Say Hi – “The Wishes And the Glitch”
Simple Minds – “Cry”
Top 10 Artists I Typically Love But Wanted Nothing to Do With in 2009
They Might Be Giants
Thinking Fellers Union Local 282
‘Til Tuesday (shaddup)
Top 10 Movies Watched in 2009
The Godless Girl
The Idiot (Kurosawa)
King of Kong
Monster X: Attack at the G8 Summit
Richard III (both the 1955 Laurence Olivier version and the crazy one with a psycho Ian McKellan in an alternate-universe fascist Britain, which is actually quite awesome)
Waltz With Bashir (hands down, film of the year, whenever it came out)
Top 10 Best Books I Read in 2009
Ernest Hemingway – For Whom The Bell Tolls (holy fucking shit)
You know what, don’t worry about the other stuff I read. Just grab a backpack full of dynamite, hike a mountain, and read For Whom the Bell Tolls.
Top 5 Best Things on TV
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Note: There was nothing else worth watching and punch anyone who says otherwise.
Top 5 Video Games Played in 2009
Gears of War
Left 4 Dead
Mass Effect (I WILL marry this game!)
Tales of Vesperia
Top 5 Best Events
The Fancy Food Show @ Jacob Javits (happiest day of my life)
Various food festivals, especially the ones in Queens.
The Vaselines (my fave concert in years)
Coolest Places I Found Myself
10,000 Buddhas Monastery in Sha Tin, Hong Kong
Ancient Arabic baths in Granada, Spain
Atop colonial Portuguese forts in Macau
Escaping from alligators in the Pantanal, Brazil
Getting plastered in Denver (damn low air pressure)
Having the Atlanta aquarium all to myself
Museum of Jurassic Technology in Los Angeles (I love that weird-ass place)
Tapas-hopping in old Madrid
(The rest of the time, I’m sitting on my ass playing video games or looking at unclothed people on the Internet.)
Top 10 Restaurants in NYC
Bali Nusa Indah (Hell’s Kitchen)
Dosa Place (Jax Heights)
Fette Sau (Williamsburg)
Spunto (West Village) – Current fave pizza place.
Sripraphai (Woodside) – Yeah, I know it’s gone downhill, but it’s still great.
Taverna Kyclades (Astoria)
Tortilleria Nixtamal (Corona)
Yokitori Totto (Midtown West)
Top 5 Annoying Food Trends in NYC
Waiting in a one-hour line for a freakin’ hamburger
Top 5 Predictions for Next NYC Food Trends
Congee / jook / rice porridge
Designer pizza (again)
Vegan desserts (already here)
Top 5 Most Awesome Things About Me
My ability to quote long passages verbatim from “Get A Life.”
My brutal, merciless proficiency at Scrabble.
My sweet, sweet lovemaking skills, as imagined in my head.
My turkey Salisbury steak that will BLOW YOUR MIND.
The titanium alien technology that got bolted into my arm bones this year.
Top 5 Arch Enemies
Spellcheck. By the way, Spellcheck even spellchecks “spellcheck.” What an asshole.
Vampire books and movies.
Vampire Omar Minaya. (It’s only a matter of time.)
Top 5 Greatest Things In The Universe
Booze & Coffee (tie).
Canadian power rock trio Rush.
My cat Rusty.
My wife & Low-Fat Pringles (tie)