I don’t have a lot of free time on my hands. Between full-time fatherhood, full-time freelancing, part-time blogging, part-time vlogging, and everything else, it doesn’t leave me with much leisure time. But I feel compelled to find the time to relax and enjoy myself every now and then, whether that means picking up a book and picking up my Switch.
The last time I highlighted some of my interests and indulgences was back in the spring. So, let’s update that list with what I’m into right now for the summer.
These days, I watch practically zero cable television and the extent of my TV watching comes by way of Netflix. And I’m mostly looking for an escape in bite-sized portions.
- Aggretsuko: Most people think of Sanrio as this cutesy-wootsy company with Hello Kitty. Aggretsuko has some of that, with Retsuko the quiet office lady by day. Oh, but she also unleashes hot fire with her death metal karaoke at night. The contrast is both familiar and jarring.
- Kim’s Convenience: Here’s a sitcom about a Korean-Canadian family running a humble convenience store in Toronto. I just started watching the second season and there’s just the right amount of cultural representation (and comedy) without getting into patronizing territory. OK! See you!
I still need to finish This Is Us and the second season of GLOW just dropped recently too. And then there’s Rapture and Unsolved too. Truth be told, I’ll never see the bottom of my Netflix queue.
More recently, I’ve been listening to “old” (and I use that term very loosely, because they’re clearly not that old) artists who are exploring a “new” sound or a “new” side of themselves.
- Christina Aguilera: It’s clear enough that Liberation is quite the departure from being a genie in a bottle or a shocking Xtina. She looks very different with no makeup (some people say she ages in reverse); the resulting sound is both more mature and true to the vocal prowess we’ve come to expect from Christina.
- Mike Shinoda: After Linkin Park lead singer Chester Bennington passed away last summer, many of us didn’t know how to react. This hit Shinoda especially hard and that’s what led to his first solo effort with Post Traumatic. It’s not Linkin Park. It’s not Fort Minor. This is his own thing and it’s deeply moving.
I got the Nintendo Switch last June and I really haven’t been able to play it as much as I would have liked. I did recently pick up a couple of new games though.
- Fallout Shelter: Do you remember Tiny Death Star? This is like that, but within the Fallout universe. You manage your “dwellers” in the “vault,” ensuring they’re well-fed and performing jobs suitable to their talents. And you’ve got to give them the best outfits and guns too. It’s a free download on the Switch, though there are in-game microtransactions should you feel so inclined.
- Mario Tennis Aces: Nintendo and Capcom have figured out how to get me to buy almost the same game over and over again. I have multiple versions of Street Fighter and Mario Kart across multiple platforms. Mario Tennis is much the same, except this newest Switch title almost plays like a fighting game, complete with meters, supers, matchups, and even tier lists.
I can’t remember where I read this, but it certainly rings true. Bloggers want to be YouTubers and YouTubers want to be podcasters. And some of the best happen to be named Casey. Go figure.
- Couples Therapy: Casey Neistat is known for his incredible vlog series and this podcast with wife Candice Pool is very much a side project with an entirely different focus. It’s fascinating listening to their challenges as working professionals, creative entrepreneurs, engaged parents and complicated spouses.
- Chatting With Casey: He’s a different Casey. This is Casey Palmer and he’s a Canadian Dad based out of the Toronto area. Casey’s got a lot on his mind and he’s got plenty of stories and opinions to share. And yes, he even inspired this week’s vlog! Are those flames or flowers in the background?
So, what are you into right now?