As you may or may not be aware of by now, I am a huge American-o-phile. I love America and I want to groom it on the internet before going to a remote location and being caught on camera for an episode of Dateline: To Catch An America Predator. (Has anyone seen the show to which this joke is referring? It is just the worst.)
Anyway, because I am doing a quicksmart blog again today because I am SO important and BUSY, I thought I would give you a quick top 5 rad ways to immerse yourself in American history/culture:
1) HBO's John Adams starring Paul Giamatti. It is brillo and full of the sort of splendid rhetoric that is sorely missing from today's politics. It reminds you of what a genuinely brilliant idea America was at the time. It's been diluted and ripped off a bit since then, but the original idea was great. Get it on dvd and find yourself, once again, rooting for the rebel scum.
2)Battlecry of Freedom by James M. Macpherson. It's a book, sorry word-haters, all about the origins and events of the American Civil War, told with the sort of excellent writing that makes a history book a real page turner. It can be found here.
3) BASEBALL by Ken Burns. Gigantic documentary charting baseball from it's 1850s origins to the present day. It is about baseball, funnily enough, but also covers the vast spectrum of American life that is touched the national pastime which, it turns out, is EVERYTHING. This is a snippet about Lou Gehrig, of Lou Gehrig's disease fame, announcing his retirement from baseball due to his deteriorating health. Warning: Very sad.
4)The West Wing. If you haven't seen this then for God's sake do. It is the best tv show ever made I think. Inspiring, funny and heart-breaking in equal measure. The post-9/11 episode is one of the classiest episodes of any tv show ever and they knocked it together in about two days. Check. It. Out.
5) How to Train Your Dragon. This is the best film ever and as such makes it onto any list of anything I will ever write.
Right, that's your lot. Now sod off.