My Monthly Wrap-Up | August 2022

Hi guys,

The month has come to an end and it’s time to do a quick wrap-up of what has been done.

Reading Breakdown.

Novels read: 2 (↑1).
Comic books read: 3 (↓4).
Manga volumes read: 16 (-).

Viewing Breakdown.

Movies Watched: 8 (↓5).
TV Series’ Seasons Watched and completed: 2 (↑1).

Gaming Breakdown.

Horizon: Forbidden West (Completed and review to come!).
UNCHARTED 3: DRAKE’S DECEPTION: REMASTERED (BACK ON IT!).

BOOK REVIEWS.

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl.
Elevation by Stephen King.
End of Watch by Stephen King.

MANGA REVIEWS.

Dragon Ball by Akira Toriyama.

MOVIE REVIEWS.

Batman Returns (1992).

TV SERIES REVIEWS.

Avatar: The Last Airbender (2005-2008) Season 3.
Moon Knight (2022).

MISCELLANEOUS POSTS.

Europe 2022: Italy.


TOP BOOK.

Dragon Ball Z Vol. 11 by Akira Toriyama.

As I work my way through Dragon Ball Z, a nostalgic reread, I find myself highly enthusiastic and joyous about reliving the epic moments of this series, including this 11th volume that officially reveals the first Super Saiyan!!! 😀

LEAST FAVOURITE BOOK.

Chew (Vol. 12) by John Layman.

Over the summer, I wanted to read and complete this beloved comic book series, which, up until volume 11, was ALWAYS a lot of crazy fun but this final volume didn’t end as good as I thought it could. While unfortunate, I’d still recommend the series to anyone looking for a story about a cibopathic federal agent with the ability to get psychic impressions from what he eats.

TOP MOVIE.

(c) Blu-Ray.

Out of the 8 movies I watched in August 2022, Ennio (2021) was my favourite. Any fan of his work would adore this documentary and those who have never heard of him will realize how omnipresent his work has become in popular culture.

What is Ennio (2021) about? It’s a well-rounded portrait of Ennio Morricone, the most popular and prolific film composer of the 20th century, the one most loved by the international public, a two-time Oscar winner and the author of over five hundred unforgettable scores.

My thoughts: This was such an inspiring and formidable documentary celebrating the life and accomplishments of the legendary Italian maestro Ennio Morricone, beautifully following his journey of respect and success, while also highlighting his memorable and timeless cinematic score masterpieces.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

CURRENTLY READING.

The Outsider by Stephen King.

Working my way through more of his work, it was time to try another one of his more recent stories. It’s already an HBO series and, without even realizing it at first, it’s apparently tied in some way to the Bill Hodges trilogy (which began with Mr. Mercedes). I guess it was just destiny for me to pick it up now.

PERSONAL LIFE.

Ahhh, the final month of scorching heat before fall settles in and winter comes rushing in. Did it come and go as fast as ever? Absolutely. I enjoyed the evolution of this month, filled with a lot of activities and events, yet still feeling like I was able to have some more peaceful moments to do the things I want to do for myself. Among other things, a Rammstein heavy metal concert was the absolute highlight of it all. It’s not a genre that I chase after but there are a couple of sub-genres within heavy metal that are formidable, considering my penchant (among other things) for rock. Most of the reason for doing so goes to my girlfriend’s love for the genre and I have to say that this concert was by far the best one I’ve ever been to. From the pulse-pounding rhythmic music to the insane pyrotechnics, a quick look at what a Rammstein concert is like on YouTube would give you a good idea of the amount of explosive fun I had!

There were also a couple of activities that my girlfriend and I planned out throughout the month that were fun to do, from a visit to a museum and a couple of expositions on various subjects, including one on Native Americans and the way towards reconciliation, to a trip to an Asian Night Market where dozens of little food stands were organized for people to come to eat various dishes they wanted to try.

Another thing that distinguished my August from the usual was this idea my girlfriend had and that we’re doing with her sister and her boyfriend, that is to discover a new country every month. Within the month, once we randomly select a country, we set off to learn about it, eat/make dishes from that country, watch/read stuff about it, and this month was Turkmenistan. No offense to anyone but I wasn’t particularly hyped by the selection because of the lack of stuff to do it would inevitably entail. If anything I learned how isolated that country was and how submissive its inhabitants are to their president’s will. Sure, there was some neat stuff to learn, whether it’s their truly unique white marble architecture, their incredible talent in making carpets, or their food (we made their ishliki for supper), but, ultimately, and sadly, I’ll mostly remember it for the propaganda you’re forced upon there and their insane leaders. However, we’ve already selected the next country and I’m WAY more excited about it: Poland! The idea that I’ll be able to discover more about a place that two of my fellow friends hold dear, @Re-enchantment of the World, is quite exciting. This should allow us to learn way more stuff about a country sadly known (mostly) for the tragedies that occurred there.

A glimpse of the stage lit up in one colour at some point in the Rammstein concert!

Thank you all for checking out my monthly wrap-up and don’t forget to check out any posts that might interest you or that you might have missed out on!

Stay tuned for my Monthly Anticipation post coming out soon. 😉

So what’s going on with y’all? What have you discovered this month? What are your thoughts on the books/TV series/movies I’ve checked out?

Yours truly,

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32 thoughts on “My Monthly Wrap-Up | August 2022

  1. What a great idea, learning about one country a month!
    Yeah, Turkmenistan is just like something on another planet when it comes to the socio-political system and the propaganda. Sadly, because this region has such a long and rich history. But WOOHOO for Poland! You do need to try pierogi, and maybe I could tempt you with some pickled mushrooms 😈!
    How do you approach the topic, though? For a country that existed in one form or another for over a thousand years, how do pick stuff to learn about?

    Lastly, HECK YEAH for DB!!! 😄😄😄

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah, very interesting, pierogi is defintely something to try, I would also recommend potato pancakes or breaded pork chops for signature dishes that are quick and easy to prepare, maybe bigos if you like a challenge that is time consuming and a bit heavy on the stomach… and Polish beer, we don’t drink that much vodka these days 😉

      I’d be interested in what you’re going to watch/read? Netflix has a a nice selection, although I’m not sure if all is available internationally… I’d recommend Clergy, obviously, but if you like historical epics, maybe you can find Deluge online, a movie with one of the best sabre duels in the history of cinema 🙂

      We also have a recent Nobel laureate, Olga Tokarczuk, interesting and mostly translated novels, one of them recently adapted into a movie (Spoor).

      I envy you listening to Rammstein live (ok, they do concert in my general area sometimes, so I can’t complain 😉 ). Oh, when it comes to Polish music, there are some interesting project, check Tulia on YouTube 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Pierogi is the priority, in terms of cooking something up! I also noted down Golabki and Bigos as additional options, if time allows it, but they all look so good and I can’t wait to try them out! We’ll also be visiting a couple of restaurants to try some Polish dishes. That should be pretty awesome too! 😀

        I already started Solaris by Stanislaw Lem and have a book by Olga Tokarczuk queued up (if time allows it, of course), ever since I heard of them both over on your blog from Ola. One of the older Polish movies that I want to check out is a beloved classic called The Promised Land (1975). I’ve noted down Clergy and Deluge, thanks!

        Hahah yeh right now, Rammstein is on a North America tour but I’m pretty sure they’re way more active in Europe! I’ll look into Tulia. I hadn’t added anything music related to our list of things to do yet so that’s perfect!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. We learned so many fascinating things about their culture but their current-day socio-political system was just mind-boggling. Apparently, it’s super duper expensive and complicated to even want to visit (you’d have to join a group to tour). It really did seem like a country from another planet…

      Pierogi is most definitely going to be the primary thing we’re going to try making at home! We also noted down a couple of other Polish restaurants/coffee shops that offer traditional dishes and whatnot. Otherwise, I also got that Golabki and Bigos queued up, if we have time, to make ourselves!

      Obviously, we don’t plan on doing and learning absolutely everything from each country we end up getting. We’ve broken it down in different categories all the things we could do and we try to learn/watch/read/do as many as we can/want to by the end of the month. There’s no real pressure to do everything, the idea is mostly to open our eyes to a whole new country and remind ourselves of their existence. For example, I started reading Solaris (book you reviewed by the Polish writer Stanislaw Lem). While I doubt it touches upon the country’s history/culture, I’ll at least have read something by a Polish writer throughout the month hahah

      YAAAAA for DB! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I wonder how your bigos will look like, from my experience, every family has a slightly different recipe, I prefer my mother’s to any other I’ve ever tried 😉 But it’s something that takes time to do, if you manage to – we want photographic documentation 🙂

        The Promised Land is very good, definitely.

        Well, all nations are complicated. You can learn about the US from the 50ties sitcoms, or from The Wire… many Poles would try to sell you the heroic picture, but I’d recommend balancing it out with something like Clergy…

        Enjoy your Polish month, I’m inspired & will try to convince my wife we should also do it, at least movies & food 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s a great idea to learn about a new country every month! Especially when you add in the food element. It reminds me that I should be reading more books in translation than I do, and from more parts of the world.

    Sounds like you had a great month, Lashaan! I hope September is great for you, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a great month of August you had, Lashaan! I’m veeery jealous of the Rammstein concert but I’m really glad you liked it – even though I had zero doubts and I really feel like anyone would love it, even just for the “show”! It’s true that Turkmenistan doesn’t have much, but I feel like Poland does have A LOT, so picking something will be quite hard!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It sounds like a great month Lashaan! I loved the trailer for Ennio and have added to one my film wish lists.I’ve never heard of Rammstein but will definitely check out one of their YouTube videos to check out all those fireworks. Here’s to a fantastic September, looking forward to hearing about your Polish adventure!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a lovely summer month. It’s nice to explore and get new experiences, but also have time to relax. Great idea to learn about a new country every month, at first I thought you were going to travel to a new country every month – that would be amazing, but quite ambitious!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sounds like a full month indeed, Lashaan. I was not aware there was a documentary on Ennio Morricone. Truly one of the all-time greats. I have heard Rammstein puts on a great show, They played in Philly just last night and I read a review earlier in the day which praised their performance from beginning to end. Discovering a new country each month is a worthy venture. I have some friends who do that kind of thing when they get together monthly to make/share a meal. Happy September!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was quite a big loss in the musical world when we lost him in 2020. The documentary does a wonderful job of capturing his legacy, that’s for sure. Ohhh sweet! They’re on their North American tour right now and I’ve read some funny articles here and there, even out here, where people living in the neighbourhood around the event went on to complain to the police that it was too loud hahah! That’s pretty cool to make it a monthly get-together thing where everyone discovers a country! Hope you have a fantastic month of September as well, Bruce.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I love that idea to discover a new country each month. That sounds awesome. How do you all choose? Pull names from a hat? And to think of you at a Rammstein concert still makes me smile. They really are a very visual group (and sometimes a bit gruesome if I recall correctly).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s sort of like pulling names out of a hat except it’s a website alone that generates it randomly. Hahahaha I find it funny too that I went to a Rammstein concert. Pre-Ramstein-me would never have imagined such a thing possible. But here I am and now a converted fan of their live-action event! 😀 And yes, really gruesome. They brought out a giant stroller and put it up in flames, with a projection in the middle showing a deformed baby melting, zombifying, and then vomiting… a colony of flies (?). Quite the show!!! 😀

      Like

  8. Is the Ennio documentary on any streaming service?
    If so I’m going to tell my mom about it. She a bigger movie buff then I am. I might of seen some movies that he did the film score for. I can’t think of any movies right now.
    Have a great September.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. For some reason, I didn’t really put Rammstein and you together. I haven’t heard anything about them recently. Are they still recording, or is it just old stuff?

    I like the idea of discovering a new country every month (my Fun with Countries segment… I hope to restart). A few years back, I had a subscription to culinary boxes that came every couple of months (that’s how I had it set up), and they contained a couple of food products from that country, together with recipes and other facts about the country and culture. I really liked it. I moved, so I stopped my subscription. Might have to look at it again. Hopefully, they added some new countries because, in the past, they had the same boxes every year, which was rather disappointing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I still have a tough time putting those two together too. They’ve released new singles and an album for them recently so they’re still going strong to this day hahah The show contained new and old hits.

      That was indeed such a segment, discovering absolutely random places thanks to that. The culinary box thing sounds pretty cool. I hope their business survived covid and whatnot…

      Liked by 1 person

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