Lust for Lists 2011

Sarah Harper

LISTS! ‘Tis the season, y’all, and I love it. It’s only Dec. 14, so we’re nowhere near the end of Listmas. But here’s a small sample of the lists (and gift guides) that have really put the wind in my sails so far:

Pitchfork: The Worst Album Covers of 2011:  MP3s make it easy for us to forget about album art, but CD covers reveal so much about their artists. Steven Tyler’s says a lot about him. Maybe too much.

Flavorwire: The Year’s Most Controversial Magazine Covers: A stroll down memory lane, skipping all the boring parts. 

Frontier Psychiatrist: Top Ten Psychedelic Albums of 2011: The songs are embedded in the page, right there. Minimal navigation – that rules. Best Articles of 2011: grouped the articles into categories – so you can skip over the boring stuff and cut straight to the Sex and Crime articles.

National Geographic Traveler: Best of the World 2012: The yellow-framed over-achievers are thinking ahead. One of the  places on this list is Muskoka, Ontario – it’s only 17.5 hours (and a border check?) away from Minneapolis. Let’s go.

The New Yorker: The Best Tech Quotes of 2011: Emily Nussbaum, one of the New Yorker’s writers, penned a spirited blog post called  “I Hate Top Ten Lists.” And she made great points. After all, nobody’s listened to all the music or read all the books, so where does anyone get the authority to do all this ranking?

But when some of the lists coming from her very own Culture Desk are as great as “The Best Tech Quotes of 2011,” I’m surprised by her ‘tude.


Gravy Gift Guides

Flavorwire: Offbeat Gift Guide for TV Lovers: Are you listening, Mom?

Martha Stewart 2011 Holiday Gift Guide: Are you listening, people buying presents for moms? Holiday Gift Guide: The poetic quotes from Dessa made this a treat to read – why doesn’t she have her own column? Look at how she describes some pens:

 “…Dessa finds that these pens form a ‘lovely line that tapers on the lateral and makes full, robust vertical strokes.’”

Esquire: Gifts Under $25 That Don’t Suck: A $25 limit doesn’t have to mean an Old Navy sweater and a big hug. (Full disclosure: it still can.)

Gawker: Five Gifts Under Five Cents: Now this is my kind of price range.