So what, you ask, have I been watching these last few weeks if I haven't really been watching hockey? Well, there are a couple of answers to that question, but I'll get the big one out of the way first. I've been watching pretty much all the Craig Ferguson I've been able to get my hands on.
Back when the Late Night Wars were going on with Conan and Leno, I watched everything regularly for the first time in years, and while I was mostly on Conan's side there, I came away from those couple of weeks thinking that Craig Ferguson was the smartest, funniest, most endearing guy in late night. Even after that, it took a while for him to really take hold though. It was during the last few weeks of the college semester and the long, late nights of studying when I fell in love with him and while I try not to stay up as late now (emphasis on try), I did add him to the DVR and usually have a Craig-a-palooza at some point on the weekend.
His show is just wonderful. Ferguson has a super easy-going and likable presence and he's a really interesting and entertaining mix of sincere and irreverent. (He's also good-looking. And speaks in a Scottish accent.) I'm currently reading his autobiography, "American on Purpose," and so far it's been a good read. He seems like a thoughtful guy with some hard-earned wisdom. Success didn't come early or quickly and he has a good perspective on himself and what he does. Somehow he's able to speak sincerely and beautifully about things like the privilege of voting and the good in America one night and then turn around and use a cranky alligator puppet to host an entire show another night. And he makes both work.
If you've never watched Craig Ferguson, I beg you to give him a try. It's an easy and comfortable hour of TV, and I always feel happy when it's done. Which reminds me, one of my very favorite things about the show is the theme song which is one of the best things on TV period. I never, ever fast forward through it and I sing along every time, much to Mark's chagrin, I think. And he sings it himself! And I think he co-wrote it! Come on, if this doesn't make you smile, well, you have no soul.
While we're talking about TV, I've also been cranking through Simon & Simon, courtesy of Netflix on Wii which might be one of the greatest things ever created. Simon & Simon is an old favorite - I had a mad crush on Gerald McRaney's Rick and named my dog after his TV dog, Marlowe - and I've actually been looking at buying the DVDs so imagine my pleasure upon discovering that all 8 glorious seasons were available to stream right into my home. When I broke my ankle a couple years ago, I discovered the joy of sitting down and watching an entire season or series at one time (at the time I caught up on Battlestar Galactica), and now that there's not much new TV and no hockey, I'm hoping to tackle some shows I've been meaning to get around to. This is not the final list but I'm thinking Sports Night, Burn Notice, and The West Wing for sure. If anyone has any other recommendations feel free to share please!