Arts, Column

In the Summertime, When the Weather is Fine

Well, I’m almost out of the woods. With the mountain that was Arts Fest coverage behind me and a few papers and tests in the forefront, I can safely say there’s a high probability that I’ll make it out of the thicket that is another year at Boston College. Don’t get me wrong—I love a nice stroll through the forest. It just feels like somewhere along the way each year I’ve gotten knocked off my path and have been stranded in the middle of nowhere for the rest of the year, braving the winter, collecting berries to keep myself alive. Each year, however, around this time, I crawl my way out of one corner of the forest, bruised and battered, and retreat to my native California to recharge my batteries for another trek through BC.

Part of that recharging process is made up of doing different work, other than studying.

Whether it’s working at a market or a hedge fund, it’s important to find something that keeps us busy (and keeps a little extra cash in our pockets). Summer, on the other hand, is for more than just working—it’s a time to catch up on all the leisurely reading, TV- and movie-watching, and video-game playing one can’t seem to manage with a busy year. With that in mind, I thought I’d give readers a quick run-through on some of the niches of entertainment that I’ll be diving into this summer. I was going to write a column on my disappointment with Game of Thrones so far this season, but I think I’ll leave that kind of writing to Caleb Griego.

First on the list is a book I’ve been dying to tackle for a couple years now. I would have tried to get through it this semester, but when you’re trudging through Middlemarch with Prof. McAleavey, who has time for a second epic novel? The great Jonathan Fuller, my brother, recommended the 1975 James Clavell classic, Shogun, to me. Described by said brother as a samurai-meets-Game of Thrones tome, Shogun sees the rise of a new daimyo in Japan through the perspective of an English sailor, John Blackthorne. Clocking in at over 1,000 pages, Shogun should prove quite the journey, but I’m sure, with a pinch of dedication and early-morning reading, I can get through it and a few other classics this summer.

When it comes to films, as always, there’s a lot to be seen. Thanks to a column by Ms. Grace Godvin, I’ve grown steadily intrigued by the film production and distribution company A24. I don’t think I’ve ever really had a preference for a production company before, but in watching a few of the company’s hits these last couple weeks, it’s become more apparent that someone over in the A24 offices is running a tight, quirky ship. Having nearly doubled its film repertoire with its releases this year, A24 is becoming a bigger, iconic character in the film world, and I will surely dedicate time to going through its filmography and running up to my local theater (probably the hipster one that would show A24 movies) to see what A24 has in store for the summer.

Keeping with tradition, it’s time for me to start thinking of what 2000s HBO show I’ll try to watch this summer. Last summer I tried to get through The Sopranos, but it was too over-saturated with mafia stereotypes to really enjoy the show. This year, I might try some of HBO’s shorter-lived series or something out-of-the-box—maybe some mix of Treme, Six Feet Under, and In Treatment. Who knows? One day I made a vow to myself that I’d get through all of HBO’s 2000s programs, and I’m slowly, yet surely, living up to that promise.

With summer comes many things—warmer weather, different responsibilities, but above all, a chance for students to culturally enrich themselves outside of the media that’s propagated on campus. At least that’s how it works for me. I’m not stuck hearing about the new Drake album or what happened on House of Cards this season. I just get some time to get through some reading, television, and movies that the school year just doesn’t give me time for. If you ask me, that’s the real rejuvenating element of summer—the time to entertain yourself however you please. All I’ll need is my bike, a groovy playlist, and a good book, and come fall, I’ll be all set for a third round in Chestnut Hill.

Featured Image By Associated Press

May 5, 2016