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Killing Time 'Neath the Sun-Kissed Sky: Week 1

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How to Fill Your Offseason Weekends

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

This week we saw the last Auburn sporting event until August when the soccer team kicks off.  We here at College and Mag are just as lost as you are but we're going to get through this together.  Here's a small primer of different movies, food, drinks, and other experiences to fill your summer before the fall.  Here are some suggestions for Week One:

Movie:

Big Fish - starring Billy Crudup, Albert Finney, Ewan McGregor, Jessica Lange, Allison Lohman, Helena Bonham Carter, Robert Guillaume, Danny DeVito, Marion Cotillard and others.  This is one of my favorite Alabama movies and is one of the few movies that is definitely better than the book it was adapted from.  Will Bloom is a successful young journalist from Alabama living in Paris with his wife and newborn.  He receives a call one day from his mother.  Will's father, Ed Bloom, has terminal cancer and doesn't have much time left.  Will had a difficult relationship with his father who wasn't around much as a child.  All Will knew about his father came from an elaborate personal mythology Ed had created for himself.  Will goes home to try one last time to really get to know his father and separate fact from myth.

Despite the overwrought, angst-riddled premise, the movie is very charming and funny.  It was filmed in and around Wetumpka, Tallassee, and Montgomery (with Huntingdon College filling in for 1950s Auburn University where Will's parents met and fell in love) so the locations will look familiar to many of you.  It's a good way to spend a Saturday evening in the summer.

Age appropriate for kids 11-12+ per Common Sense Media. It can be streamed online through various services.  Here's the trailer:

Book:

Master and Commander by Patrick O'Brien

Master and Commander is the first book in the twenty-one book Aubrey/Maturin series by Patrick O'Brien.  This series was recently compressed into a really good movie starring Russell Crowe.  This book follows the early career of a fictional British Naval Officer, Jack Aubrey, during the Napoleonic Wars.  Jack's best friend is the naval surgeon, Stephen Maturin.  Jack is a hot-blooded, rash sailor with a talent for capturing enemy ships.  Stephen is a cold, reserved naturalist and scientist.  The book series reads like one long novel and is one of the best things I've ever read.  Even though it's the first part of a longer series, Master and Commander reads well as a standalone novel.

Album:

Waylon Live - I've loved Waylon Jennings since I was a toddler and he was the Balladeer on the Dukes of Hazzard.  Waylon Live is a great album you can stream live on Amazon Prime.  It features some of Waylon's better known hits like Rainy Day Woman but it also has some good covers that you wouldn't find on most of his greatest hits albums.  I'll try to sell you on the album with the opening song, his version of the Jimmie Rodgers classic, T for Texas:

Food:

We're all adults here, so let's eat dessert first.  John Folse's White Chocolate Bread Pudding is a favorite at our house.  Anything that combines white chocolate, french bread, four whole eggs, 6 additional yolks, heavy whipping cream, milk, and sugar can't be bad.  My wife brings this to one event a year and grown men battle each other with sporks to get to it first.  Perfect choice for a summer potluck.

Potent Potable:

It's a summer night and you need something to drink on the back porch while listening to Waylon Live.  I recommend a "New Old Fashioned" mixed with Alabama's official spirit, Clyde May's Conecuh Ridge Whiskey.  Per the Clyde May's website, you take 2 oz. Clyde May’s Whiskey, mix in a bar spoon of maple syrup, add 2 dashes Angostura Bitters then shake all ingredients in a shaker and strain it into glass.  Serve over ice.  Perfect for an 80 degree Alabama early-summer evening.

Outdoor Activity:

Go to Chewacla!  When was the last time you hiked down to the falls and around the lake?  Enjoy the playgrounds; rent a boat; go on the new bike trails. If you're having a hard time getting motivated, watch this 1930s Department of the Interior film showing your 1930s Auburn fore-bearers enjoying the falls and riding horses in Chewacla.

The offseason is hard y'all but we'll get through it together.  In the comments, let us know how you intend to spend your summer!