Avatar of admin

by admin

Stuff I’ve Been Consuming: Jan – Aug 2014

August 22, 2014 in Books, Movies

 

Who’s responsible for the non-updates on fiftyfifty.me?! Oh wait, me. Whoops. Well, let’s take a half year-ish look at what’s been going on. As of late August, the numbers look good…on the movie side. It’s 60 movies and 12 books for me so far. Clearly I have a lot of books ahead of me, but the good news is that I’m definitely one hundred percent gonna make it this year. I made a blood pact with Susie and Lilly that we were all gonna do it this year. I mean, Susie’s even throwing in fifty new tangible skills. That’s impressive!

First recommendation: Saga Vol.1, which is a graphic novel series written by Brian K. Vaughan and illustrated by Fiona Staples. I wrote earlier that “Saga is like a master class in cliffhangers” and that’s definitely true. The third volume came out in March and I’m eagerly waiting for the rest to follow. Second recommend: If you’re into animals and philosophy, John Berger’s Why Look at Animals? is a slim collection of essays exploring the relationship between man and beast is a must-read.

As for old time classics, I did give The Giver a read-through before watching the movie, and I must say that I was impressed. I had mistakenly written The Giver off for years because I thought it was something like The Secret. Instead, it’s the progenitor of YA dystopian and I was super impressed with how efficiently and effortlessly Lois Lowry builds her world. It puts a lot of the modern stuff to shame. I wouldn’t say The Giver is a great book, but I can understand how it might have been amazing back in the day. The classic that I did like quite a bit was Katherine Paterson’s Jacob Who I Have Loved, featuring finicky/plucky protagonist Sara Louise, who is trying to escape from the shadow of her perfect twin sister.

And I’m really giving The Goldfinch a go, because everyone said it’s amazing, and I want to love it too, but it’s not really working for me for some reason.

Now let’s take a look at movies. I give pretty much all Marvel films a sterling grade, so you’ll have to excuse me there. I saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and Guardians of the Galaxy at least twice each. Overall it’s been a pretty weak movie year, and it’s possible that Her, which came out last year but I only saw in January, will end up being my favorite film of the year. I saw pretty much all the summer “blockbusters,” and can only recommend Edge of Tomorrow and How to Train Your Dragon 2. Tom Cruise still has it (he’s never lost it, if you ask me) and the more buff Emily Blunt in my life the better. As for How to Train Your Dragon 2, it’s easily the most fun movie I’ve had in a movie theater in 2014. If you loved the first one, this is even better. Dragons, dragons, always more dragons!

For the quieter stuff, try out Margin Call, a tense thriller about the 2008 financial crash, Le Passe from Iranian director Asghar Farhadi (he made 2011’s incredible A Separation), and the charming and hilarious Obvious Child. I had semi-mixed feelings about Boyhood, but I’m certain Richard Linklater is a genius so it’s impossible not to give it high marks. And please keep a special eye out for my friend Ursula’s documentary, 9-Man, which focuses on a volleyball-like streetball game that has flourished exclusively in Chinatowns.

Avatar of admin

by admin

Podcast: Episode 004

March 4, 2014 in Podcast

5050-boxers

Our special guest this episode, Susie (Boygirlparty), did all of the visuals for our site and we’re indebted to her forever and ever. We’ve been trying to grab her in-between all her extensive books/movies consuming to come podcast with us. Listen along as Lilly and I chat with Susie about how our new year is starting off, if we prefer to watch movies alone or with people, and then some recommendations plus raising the possibility of teaming up next year to complete challenges! [25:11 mins]


Download fiftyfifty.me Episode 04 | (Direct MP3 link)

Avatar of admin

by admin

Guest: A Challenge Newbie!

February 21, 2014 in Books, Guest, Movies

A guest post from Melissa, an artist, illustrator, and maker from Michigan! Visit her portfolio at www.melissadettloff.com (pssst don’t miss her blog) and say hello on Twitter @melissadettloff. Thanks Melissa!

This is my first year participating in fiftyfifty.me! For the last four years I’ve kept track of what I read and want to read on my Goodreads, and when I got an email from Goodreads noting the pathetic number of books I read in 2013, I decided to commit to reading fifty books this year. And watching fifty movies, though admittedly I’m way more interested in the book part than the movie part.

My goal is to read at least four books a month. I’m not following a theme or a list, but reading whatever I’m in the mood for, whatever I’m interested in knowing more about, and books recommended by friends. My to-read list is usually pretty long, so I’m not too worried about running out of potential things to read.

It’s the second week of February and I’m on my eleventh book : Gulp by Mary Roach. A friend told me about this one and it sounded really interesting. This year I’ve also read a couple of career guidance books (including the famed What Color Is Your Parachute? one), McSweeney’s Quarterly Concerns #43 and #44, and some art/illustrated books (Cola Madnes by Gary Panter, My Dirty Dumb Eyes by Lisa Hanawalt, and Find & Keep by Beci Orpin). A friend recommended The Circle by Dave Eggers and I read that.

I’ve been keeping track of my books-read in a notebook, and writing down whatever comes to mind after finishing the book and reflecting on what stood out about it. I wrote 2.5 pages of notes about The Conquest of Happiness by Bertrand Russell.

Yesterday I watched my sixth movie of the year, Alfred Hitchcock’s silent comedy film Champagne, which was recently restored and was playing at the Detroit Film Theater with a live piano player. Lest you think I am a fancy film person, the night before that, I watched Predator 2 (and I know according to fiftyfifty.me rules I can’t count all of the Mystery Science Theater 3000s I watch for the hundredth time).

Though some of what I’ve read so far is on the lighter side, I am definitely reading (and watching) more than I normally would thanks to the fiftyfifty.me challenge. And I’m keeping track of it, digesting it, which feels important, too.

Avatar of Lilly

by Lilly

The Year I Didn’t Scramble

January 28, 2014 in Articles

cat-mirrorToday’s post is about this year. I know 2014 has barely gotten off to a start, but I’m here to tell you, to publicly declare, that in 2014 I will NOT spend December scrambling to accomplish 50/50! I won’t have it!

To that effect, we’re three weeks in to the year and I’ve read two books and am part way through a couple more, and I’ve seen six movies. I’m roaring to go. Before this whole fiftyfifty.me thing started, I would have rolled my eyes if you told me I’d voluntarily see six movies in such a short timespan. And yet, here we are. Fiftyfifty.me changes people.

As I start my third year, I’m determined to complete a winning streak. I’m taking a few key points with me on my journey:

1) Value Your Own Time
I still watch long movies or read long books, but if I’m not enjoying it, I put it down. In previous years, I’ve podcasted about “molasses reads”, books that just wouldn’t end. No more. I barely have enough time to relax at the end of the day, so you bet it’s going to be with something I actually enjoy. As the great Sara Nelson said, So Many Books, So Little Time.

2) Get Addicted
I used to read things in the order I felt I was supposed to. Now if I find a topic that interests me, I roll with it. Lately I’ve been obsessed with spy things. The end of fiftyfifty.me saw me watching Skyfall (James Bond) and The Italian Job and other heist movies, and then I continued my spy theme with The Expats, my first book this year. The point is, if you find a topic you like, indulge in it. Fuel the fire. You’ll have fun – and as it turns out, you’ll accomplish more because you’re so stoked on the topic.

3) Try Something New
The more I step out of my comfort zone, the more I find to like. I think part of the stagnation in previous years had to do with me reading the same old same old (which for me is a steady diet of heavy international literary fiction, celebrity trash bios, and chick lit – you can’t say the girl ain’t got range). Lately I’m picking up books I never would have thought to (last year’s poetry bender, for example) and watching documentaries on topics I know nothing about, and I’m feeling smarter by the minute.

Looking forward to hearing how you’re all doing with your fiftyfifty.me, and any 50/50-related resolutions you might have. And since I’m on that spy bender I mentioned before, if you have suggestions, send them my way!

Avatar of admin

by admin

2014 Welcome, and Introducing +PLUS

January 15, 2014 in Site

fiftyfifty-bandwagon

Welcome to our third year of fiftyfifty.me. Can you believe it? Three years! That means for some of us we’ve booked 100 books and 100 movies since 2011. Ahem, “some of us.” No worries though, as this challenge is about challenging ourselves to consume more than we normally would. A book and a movie per week may seem daunting but we’ve been so happy with the people who have undertaken our challenge. This year we vow to do a better job of connecting people, maintaining the site, and um, achieving our goals. So come to the forums to say “hi” and sign up for another year of the fiftyfifty.me challenge.

Introducing fiftyfifty.me+PLUS
We’re still doing majors and minors, we’re still encouraging people to interact with each other, but we’re also adding a new wrinkle for this year. Some Overachievers have already been adding on to their fiftyfifty.me challenges so let’s make it official: fiftyfifty+PLUS, meaning you’re going to try to read fifty books, watch fifty movies, and do fifty of something else. Whoa! Some people have chosen music albums, some people are going for graphic novels, Lilly is doing her +Plus on recipes. Whatever you want! Get creative and tell us what you’re up to. Again, our Twitter is @fiftyfiftyme and email us if you like! Have a great start to 2014!

Things To Do:

  1. Register for the fiftyfifty.me site if you haven’t already. Introduce yourself on the Community topic page if you like!
  2. Sign up for our mailing list, which will be the easiest way for us to communicate with you.
  3. Read, watch, record what you’re consuming and share away (leave a link in the comments below for your blog/Pinterest/etc if you like)! And if you want to guest post on fiftyfifty.me, we’d love it. Just contact us!
Avatar of admin

by admin

Podcast: Episode 003

December 31, 2013 in Podcast

5050-boxers

Here with our third, and final, podcast of the year, Lilly and Jon go over their 2013 challenge results. Namely “Will they finish or won’t they?!” Also, they brainstorm some ideas and talk about hopes and dreams for next year’s fifty books and fifty movies. Thanks to everyone for joining us for another amazing year of books and movies! [18:12 min]


Download fiftyfifty.me Episode 03 | (Direct MP3 link)

Avatar of Lilly

by Lilly

Miracles Do Happen!: A Tale of fiftyfifty.me Magic

December 31, 2013 in Books, Movies

I didn’t think it was possible. I was 30ish books in, and we were closing in on Thanksgiving.  I was close to giving up and slacking through the rest of the year indulging in my new Netflix tv obsession.  Then Susie gave me a look, the look sisters can give you, and said audibly what her eyes already said. “You started this. You can do it.”

So I went home armed with books I would never have picked up myself – short story collections, graphic novels, books she thought would absorb me and haul me, like an Iditarod team, across the icy plains of PROCRASTINATION.

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.37.12 PM

I’m proud to announce that I just put down book #50. I did it!   The recap:

Favorite book this year:

NIGHT FILM by Marisha Pessl. I waited a long time for the sophomore novel from the author of Special Topics in Calamity Physics, and I was not disappointed.   It’s an intense read, and I was couch-bound, enraptured with the world she had created.  Well worth the social points you’ll lose for being a hermit as you read it. 

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.38.20 PM

Honorable Mentions:

Haldol and Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life by Melody Moezzi.  The term bipolar is thrown around, we hear a celebrity diagnosed and then the term fades away again. Moezzi pulls the curtain back in what is one of the most raw, beautiful books I’ve ever read. She compiles her experience, that of the people around her, and medical records, to provide a 360 degree view of something people are often too scared to talk about.

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.38.53 PM

The Mermaid of Brooklyn by Amy Shearn.  It was refreshing to read a humorous, honest narrative of the challenges women who are married with kids might think and feel when they think no one is listening.  The voice of this nov

el was one of the most memorable I’ve read in years.

Books I powered through because I felt like I should:

Cyndi Lauper’s memoir. Also - Don’t Hassle the Hoff.  I know, I know, I deserved it.

Book that surprised me:

10032672The Language of Flowers.  Sometimes I forget the ways in which fiction can crack open a new world for you.  The Victorian language of flowers was a beautiful theme in this novel.

Favorite movie this year:

Saving Mr. Banks. I’ve never once paused when asked what my favorite movie is (Mary Poppins), so to hear the story behind the making was a complete treat. The fact that they didn’t destroy my favorite movie was a bonus.

Honorable mention:

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.39.50 PM

Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. An amazing documentary that reminded me how much of our own health is in our control if we’re willing to take that first step.  I know, a documentary about juicing. I didn’t expect it either!

Movies I powered through because I felt like I should:

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.37.36 PM

Jiro Dreams of Sushi. YAWN.

 

 

 

Movie I would recommend to anyone who listens:

The Sapphires.  A movie about an Aboriginal soul group touring during Vietnam. A sleeper, but so good and educational at the same time. The music is outstanding.

Movie that surprised me:

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.37.59 PM

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.40.52 PM

Senna, documentary about the Brazilian race car driver.  Any film that can make me care about something I didn’t care anything about, much less cry about, is a masterpiece.

Same for Craigslist Joe. Such a powerful movie about connecting.

It’s been a good year! Thank you all for being part of the madness and thank you especially to Jon for being the pilot of this wild ride and Susie for your beautiful art and Olympic-style coaching to get me across the finish line.

See you all for fiftyfifty.me in 2014 – and Happy New Year!

-Lilly

 

Full 2013 consumption list with favorites in bold:

BOOKS 

Matched, Ally Condie
The Soulmate Secret, Arielle Ford
Just Kids, Patti Smith
State of Wonder, Ann Patchett
The Age of Miracles
Cyndi Lauper: A Memoir
The Language of Flowers, Vanessa Diffenbough
Priceless Memories, Bob Barker
The Mermaid of Brooklyn, Amy Shearn
Suri’s Burn Book
Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg
My Lives, Roseanne Arnold
Beautiful Ruins
Life After Life, Kate Atkinson
Sleepwalk with Me
Don’t Hassel the Hoff
Haldol and Hyacinths
Since You Asked, Maurene Goo
It’s So Easy (and Other Lies), Duff McKagan
The Art Forger, B.A. Shapiro
Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, David Sedaris
Love, Lucy, Lucille Ball
Night Film, Marisha Pessl
(Night Film is a doorstop of a book = 2 books)
Pretty Little Liars
Pure Drivel, Steve Martin
Clumsy
I Never Liked You, Chester Brown
The Night Circus
Abundance of Katherines
The Silent Wife
Stitches, Anne Lamott
The Impostor’s Daughter, Laurie Sandell
Isadora Duncan, Sabrina Jones
The Vietnam War (graphic novel by Zimmerman)
Ghost World (Daniel Clowes)
Perfect Example (John Porcellino)
Together Tea (Marjan Kamali)
The Reason I Jump (Naoki Higashida)
Thoreau at Walden (John Porcellino)
Awaken the Spirit Within (Rebecca Rosen)
Never Ending Summer, Allison Cole
The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway
Everything Was Fine Until Whatever, Chelsea Martin
Elements of Content Strategy, Erin Kissane
Chasing Utopia, Nikki Giovanni
Incarnadine, Mary Szybist
101 Great American Poems
The Key, Cheri Huber
The House on Mango Street, Sandra Cisneros

 

MOVIES

Life of Pi  
Broken City
Happy Accidents
Extract
Hemingway & Gellhorn
Identity Thief
Silver Linings Playbook
Quartet 
Don’t Stop Believin’
Campaign
Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Piece of Work (the Joan Rivers docu)
The Place Beyond the Pines
The Queen of Versailles 
Matrimonio all’Italiano
The Great Gatsby
The Guilt Trip
Butter
The Internship
The Golden Child
Religulous
What To Expect When You’re Expecting
Despicable Me
The Heat
Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead
Anchorman
Ira & Abby
Along Came Polly
56 Up
After Porn Ends
Jeff Who Lives at Home
Senna
Joyful Noise
Craiglist Joe
Gravity
Mission Impossible 3
Best Man Christmas
Breakin All the Rules
Pitch Perfect
Catching Fire
The Sapphires
Philomena
Romantics Anonymous
The Island President
Skyfall
I Don’t Know How She Does It
Saving Mr. Banks
The Italian Job
Paradise
The Freebie
Avatar of admin

by admin

How Did Your 2013 Go?

December 29, 2013 in Site

It’s almost time to turn the page on another year of books and movies…buuuut we should celebrate 2013 first! Please tell us how you did in the comments below — and include links if you got’em to your site or list. We’d love to know how many of you hit 50 books and 50 movies! Lilly and I will report in with our numbers soon as we’re still in super cram mode. Not so secret admission: Neither of us will conquer 50/50 this year. Although maybe a holiday miracle will happen in the next three days. Onward!

Oh, also, if you’re not on our mailing list, get on now and we’ll have 2014 announcements and sign-ups ready and up and running very soon! [Join fiftyfifty.me mailing list]

newyear-newtraditions

Avatar of admin

by admin

Stuff I’ve Been Consuming: Aug-Oct

November 12, 2013 in Books, Movies

 
Here we go with the late summer and fall edition of things I’ve seen/read. I’m already at seventy five movies watched, which is well on its way to a personal best. The books though, ahem. I’m only at sixteen. There’s a few half read books I need to go back to clean up, but it seems like I’m going to finish short of the fifty books mark. Wait, no! It’s only November, I can still make a big dent in the final tally and try to cram everything in. I don’t know what number Lilly is at but I anticipate another rushed last week of December with my nose buried in books and her throwing down movies by the handful.

The good news is that all the books I’ve managed to finish so far are gems. Fresh Off the Boat I’ve already gushed about. And I did the same for September Girls. While I was out in San Francisco, I was with Mary digging through Dog Eared Books and stumbled upon Justin Chin’s Mongrel. It’s a book of memoir-ish essays and the back cover says, “Mongrel is an exploration and distillation of the experiences and imagination of a gay Asian-American whose sensibilities were formed by the maelstrom of ‘80s American pop culture.” That description about covers it, and I was happy to discover Chin’s work.

And for book club, we read Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah. We had a meeting earlier this summer but it was postponed. It’s the story of an international romance, set between Nigeria, the United States, and England. Seeing as Adichie’s TED Talk, “The Danger of a Single Story” was one of the best (and most viewed) TED talks around, it was a revelation to read her book and to see her work in action. Americanah was full of interesting, and hilarious, observations about race and blackness and I need more Adichie in my life right now.

As for the movie side of things. My three month MoviePass wrapped up, and that’s going to dramatically slow down my movies in theaters. It’s back to careful planning of which films to watch and lots of theater hopping. The three movies I’d definitely recommend without hesitation are Drinking Buddies, Enough Said, and 12 Years a Slave. Let’s go in reverse since I just saw 12 Years a Slave. I know some people aren’t down with watching depressing movies but 12 Years a Slave is near a must watch. Not just because everyone will be talking about it, or that it’s important, but also because it’s damn good. After you watch it, make sure to read Wesley Morris’ incredible review, “The Song of Solomon The cultural crater of 12 Years a Slave.”

I hadn’t seen any of Steve McQueen’s work until Shame but I think he seems to specialize in plumbing uncomfortable spaces. Hunger was about the 1981 IRA hunger strike. Shame was about sexual addiction. And now 12 Years a Slave. McQueen was a visual artist before and it shows through his movies. They are well composed and sparse, and they are definitely an experience. (I did see Shame a few weeks ago actually, but more on that later.) McQueen’s best move is probably to always have Michael Fassbender star in his films. In that, he only rivals Derek Cianfrance hitching his wagon to Ryan Gosling and Nicole Holofcener ride and dying with Catherine Keener in all of her films.

Speaking of, I’ve seen most of Holofcener’s movies and they are all fantastically great. As Slate Cultural Gabfest put it, they’re hoping the mainstream audience starts to view Holofcener like the female Woody Allen, and just line up for each new film she drops. Similar to (classic) Woody, Holofcener plumbs the same depths time and time again, each time emerging with another treasure. Enough Said is laugh out loud hilarious, as opposed to her usual work that is more a consistent series of chuckles. Starring the late James Gandolfini and an underrated Julia Louis-Dreyfus, I’ve been telling people to watch Enough Said as a Holofcener gateway.

And then there’s Drinking Buddies. I got wrapped up in the mumblecore thing when it was big and am excited whenever one of those directors puts something out. Drinking Buddies is Joe Swanberg’s most accessible movie by far and it’s really good. The theme is exploring the grey areas in a friendship/relationship, and it has likeable stars, a casual pace, and was the movie that’s motivating me to write again. I need to give it a rewatch to determine if it moves up to a personal favorite, to see if it holds up, but post first viewing I thought it was right up my alley.

Watching Prisoners took me down a nostalgic drive down to rewatch Se7en and Zodiac, and it’s filled with the perfect amount of tension. It doesn’t measure up to classic Fincher but it’s quite gripping. And man, I really wanted Spectacular Now to be amazing but it fell too short, without enough emotional density or affect. Too bad though, because the movie had a shot at greatness but ended up at settling in at slightly above average.

And whatever Joseph Gordon-Levitt wants to do, I’ll support it. His Don Jon, a film he wrote/directed/starred in, is all sorts of fun. Co-star Scarlett Johansson makes a perfect Jersey Shore copycat. Gordon-Levitt’s character is addicted to online porn; she’s enthralled by romantic comedies. And Tony Danza steals the show in his role as Don Jon’s dad. Movie pairing Don Jon with Shame a few days after was interesting too. Tackling similar topics but from very different perspectives and aesthetics. On first brush, I liked Don Jon better, but now that I’m super in on Steve McQueen, I want to review Shame again. Michael Fassbender is the best. Always. If they could somehow cram Brad Pitt and JGL into X-Men: Days of Future Past, that would be my Mt. Rushmore of actors all in one movie. Oh you saw the eye popping Days of Future Past trailer didn’t you?

Disappointments: I’m sorry, Fruitvale Station was laughably melodramatic. There’s nothing funny about Oscar Grant’s story, or what happened at Fruitvale Station, but the movie was all sorts of overrated. Don’t even get me started on Gravity, which was nice but not worthy of all the acclaim it’s getting. Also, I can’t believe I’m saying this but I walked out of The Grandmaster. Wong Kar Wei doing a kung fu movie should have been amazing but I was so over it an hour and a half in. I’m sorry Mr. Wong, I still love you but The Grandmaster was booooooring.

Alright winter, let’s get ready to read some books. My goal is to get to ten books this month. Anything else would be uncivilized.

[Cross posted from jonyang.org]

Avatar of admin

by admin

Duff McKagan and The Art of the Celebrity Bio

August 16, 2013 in Books

duff02I didn’t declare it as my major, but it’s quickly becoming apparent that I will end up having Celebrity Trash Biographies as a thematic focus of this endeavor of ours. It takes the edge off 50/50 to read absorbing personal stories with page-turning writing, what can I say? I just turned the last page of a celebrity rock bio that I’ve been wanting to read since before it came out: It’s So Easy (and Other Lies) by Duff McKagan.

Duff McKagan was the bassist in Guns n’ Roses. Originally a rock guitarist, he quickly realized that LA’s rock scene had its fill of guitarists, so he set out to make his name in bass. And how. The story begins with his younger years in Seattle, his interaction with the rising Seattle music scene, and his arrival in LA. Welcome to the jungle indeed. He gives insight into how musicians work together (or don’t), what it was like to work with record labels, how it feels being on the road, and the image vs. the reality.

Parallel to the rise of Duff as music superhero, we witness his rise as a serious alcoholic and party boy. What makes the book unique is not its honesty – we’ve seen that with other biographies (The Dirt about Motley Crue immediately comes to mind), but his eloquence in telling his tale. The turning point comes when his pancreas bursts (?). I’m not saying I understand the medicine, but I understand the quick 180 he does on his life, realizing how much he has to live for.

Rather than go to rehab as so many artists have successfully done, Duff worked out his demons with some new “addictions” — much healthier ones that I’ll let you read about yourself. Prepare to be inspired.

duff01This one started slowly for me – sure, I was waiting for the appearance of one Axl Rose, which didn’t come til midway through, but once it got its pace it kept going and I was very interested in how that particular interaction ended (won’t include it here – no spoilers!). In The Dirt, a trashy but compelling and sharply written autobio about Motley Crue, the musicians wrote the book with a smart observer, Neil Strauss. You quickly come to think Strauss was the brains behind the operation. Here, Duff himself is the smart observer, willing to poke fun at himself and the rock image, conveying a genuine love of life and the people around him, and showing what can happen and how much your life can change if you just let it.

It’s So Easy is one of the most inspiring rock bios I’ve personally read. It’s even worth having the song on repeat in your head for the few days you’re reading it. I’ve admired Duff McKagan’s work with Gn’R, for a long time (and I may or may not have nearly lost it when he walked onstage with Alice in Chains a few years back), but now I’m a fan of him as a person. And this, my friends, is the litmus test for a celebrity trash bio. Duff gets an A.