Mad Men Season Two

Wow, we got through the second season of Mad Men on DVD. Amazing TV! This is some of the best written, best acted TV that we have seen in the last few years: and that places it among some of our favorites such as Deadwood, Battlestar Galactica, and Rome. The character of Dick Whitman/Don Draper is fascinating, and the ending of Season Two had some great storylines. A must-see TV show: it's almost worth subscribing to cable just to watch Season Three!


We had dinner (during Restaurant Week) at Periyali, this upscale Greek restaurant. Overall, very good food. We're not sure if we loved it, though, so it gets a "thumbs-up".

The Secret Life of Lobsters

This fascinating book covers many things about lobsters and humans: the economics/politics of lobster fishing and the ecology/societal habits/mating behavior of lobsters, as uncovered by scientists starting in the 1990's. A great story: and lobsters societies sure sound a lot like primate societies, in that they are dominated by alpha males.

The Norman Conquests

We saw "Table Manners", the "first" of the three plays in this intertwined trilogy. Hilarious, biting, and a dark commentary on relationships: this was a viciously funny play. It was fun to see Ben Miles (Patrick from the BBC TV show Coupling) in real life!


We had dinner prior to seeing a show (see my later post) at this excellent Japanese restaurant. The sushi was really well done, and the service was really good. The restaurant was almost empty, though: a sign of the times, I suppose. Several restaurants that we like have already closed in the last few months, such as Maroons and Ghenet.

The Lady Eve

Barbara Stanwyck was great in this old movie. Henry Fonda played his role decently as a mild-mannered buffoon. Entertaining stuff!

Due South Season Two

More TV watching on DVD. This show from the 1990's is charming, and some of the episodes were really fun to watch. The second season felt a little more up-and-down than the first season, though. My favorite episodes were the ones where Benton gets involved with his boss, Margaret Thatcher. Apparently Benton's dog (Diefenbaker) is named after a Canadian PM: fun naming choices!

Flying Colours

For light reading I read another of the Horatio Hornblower novels, Flying Colours. Much of the story takes place on land, which makes it an odd story for a naval genre. Nonetheless, an easy read, and quite entertaining.


This compelling book about medicine is definitely worth a read. The author is a surgeon in the Harvard system, and he talks about the difficulties in improving the medical profession: doctors' behavior, systematic organizational effects, litigiousness, etc. If you care about medicine in the US, you should read this book.

How To Be Alone

This collection of Jonathan Franzen's essays is worth reading. I greatly enjoyed his essay about the Chicago post office, and his willingness to dig deep into his own writing and motivations is fascinating to read. Some of his analysis of William Gaddis and other postmodern writing is pretty dry, although funny (in a weird sort of way).

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

Hilarious! Watched it on DVD from Netflix, but you can just watch it on the web. Created by Joss Whedon for the Web during the writer's strike in 2008. Neil Patrick Harris is awesome!

Nobu 57

We ate here on our anniversary: good food, and an interesting menu, if mildly pricey. Overall, we enjoyed the dining; the restaurant was packed and a bit noisy, though. Although the food was good, though, it was not the best food we've had in NYC: the even pricier restaurants that we've been to are better (for example, Gramercy Park Tavern, Morimoto).


Wow, the 2009 men's final match was as good as last year's. 16-14 in the 5th set: incomparably good tennis!

Mr. and Mrs. Smith

Watched this movie on DVD: entertaining, if silly and unbelievable. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie definitely had chemistry, unsurprisingly.


We have slowly watched the first season of Torchwood, which is set in the Doctor Who universe. The production values are not very high, but the writing is interesting. They vary from character exploration to horror stories (a la The Twilight Zone). Worth watching, if you're into science fiction.