Sunday, July 8, 2007

Summer Reading & Watching

You know how, when selecting reading material for summer, you are not immediately drawn to the Classics? The giant volumes of Tolstoy, Dickens, and Wharton seem out of place in your sweaty, sunscreen covered hands. You think: it's summer; I'm on vacation/at the beach/whatever, and then you pack up your tote with Judith Krantz, Jackie Collins, Sidney Sheldon, Jimmy Buffet (yes, he writes!), and other literary fare that doesn't necessarily challenge you, but definitely entertains. You want to read something that doesn't involve a great deal of independent thought; something that you can pick up, mid-chapter and remember exactly what is going on; something that will not require frequent reference to your pocket dictionary.

Summer is not a time to try to improve yourself.

Television executives have picked up on this trend, and have provided the visual versions of the trashy summer novel. Trashy Summer Shows. CBS offers "Big Brother", NBC has "America's Got Talent", and also my current favorite - "Age of Love". And then there's the E! Channel's ultimate exercise in idiocy - "Sunset Tan". I have been trying, and trying NOT to watch this show. The trailers provide snippets of the Los Angeles tanning spa chain, and it's MENSA-card carrying employees spending their days with their implants propped up on the counter, discussing the art of tanning.

I SAID I tried not to watch, but after a fun and exhausting Girl's Weekend in Portland, all I wanted to do was lie on the living room floor and stare at the TV. Unfortunately for me, there was a "Sunset Tan" marathon playing, and I am now completely up-to-speed on the Sunset Tan culture and it's people. Damn you E!

I'm not sure how many of my brain cells were killed during the viewing of this marathon, but here's an example of the torture I endured today:

Now, I'm trying to figure out a way to fit my TV set in my beach bag. I have to know if Nick ends up quitting the West Hollywood store.