Every month for Five Things For, one writer gives their personal recommendations for five curated items — books, movies, music, podcasts, games, and more — following a specific theme. This recurring feature is included in our printed magazine issues.
1. The Memory Palace
- Moon Beavers
Interesting, odd, and forgotten parts of history are distilled into short, thought-provoking episodes in this podcast.
He covers everything from the time the U.S. army decided to import camels to The Great Moon Hoax of 1835. The best episode, though, is the three-minute-long “These Words Forever,” which explores Marconi’s idea that sounds never disappear.
2. His Girl Friday
- Warden Tackling
This classic Rosalind Russell and Cary Grant feature from 1940 is a crazy romp of a film. Both leads are in the newspaper business: Grant is an editor and Russell is a journalist about to settle down, get married, and retire from the fast-talking whirlwind of news. Grant also happens to be her ex-husband, and he sets out to remind her just how much she loves her job.
3. The Third Man
- Creepy Bad Guy
Film noir, crazy camera angles, and starring Orson Welles of Citizen Kane fame, this is a great watch. It also has one of the creepiest villains of all time, with some phenomenally evil lines. Set in Vienna just after the Second World War, Holly Martins (Joseph Cotten) shows up looking for his friend Harry Lime (Welles), only to find out he’s dead — and begins to investigate.
4. Ask the Past
- Age-Old Advice
- How To Spit
In need of advice on how not to get expelled? Or, perhaps, how to compliment a lady? (Hint: Definitely tell her that her forehead looks like a castle.) In her blog Ask the Past, Elizabeth Archibald posts hilarious historical advice. People in the past had some incredibly bizarre opinions on everything from how to properly shower to the right way to spit.
5. Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers
- Murder Mystery
- MAN in a Bathtub
Looking for a classic murder mystery but running out of Agatha Christie novels? Whose Body?, written by Dorothy L. Sayers in 1923, begins with a man found dead in the bathtub, entirely naked but for his spectacles. Enter Lord Peter Wimsey, a gentleman and amateur detective. Sayers is fantastic, and this is the first in a long series of mysteries.
If you missed it, check out October’s edition of “Five things for” here.