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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Monday, April 21, 2014

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In Holiday Guide Commentary

The Femmes' reunion didn't last long ... (PHOTO: David Bernacchi )

2013 picks: Andy Tarnoff


2013 has been a good year to me. My family is healthy, my friends are (mostly) awesome, and business is great. And I did a lot of consuming. Here's what I enjoyed the most:

Book: I especially enjoyed Eric Schlosser's "Command and Control," a detailed look into the surprising and shocking accidents and security lapses during the nuclear age. The longest book I've ever read on my iPad, it feels like a novel, but it's all real. It's rather amazing that we didn't manage to blow ourselves up during the Cold War. We certainly came closer than I ever knew.

TV: This will be the last time I can list "Breaking Bad" as my favorite show on TV. The final season came together so perfectly. No loose ends with total closure. For my money, "Breaking Bad" wasn't just this year's best show, it was the best of all time.

Video game: I may have only played a few in 2013, but "Grand Theft Auto V" on the PS3 is a thing of beauty. The size, scope and level of detail are completely unsurpassed, and it's no wonder it's the highest grossing title of all time. But it's most certainly for adults only. GTA's level of inappropriate has been ratcheted up to an extent that it evens makes me blush. And it's awesome.

Movie: I guess this is what happens when you're a parent of a 5-year-old, but I didn't see a non-kids movie in the theater in 2013. I'm pretty embarrassed about that. But I loved the hilariously campy biopic about West Allis' native son Liberace in HBO's "Behind the Candelabra." Michael Douglas nailed the character in a squirmy, uncomfortable performance that couldn't have been easy to pull off. So where's the bronze Liberace, Stallis?

Concert: Paul McCartney at Miller Park would be an easy choice, and it certainly was a memorable concert. Still, I'll take the short-lived Violent Femmes reunion at Summerfest. This was a show that I never expected to see again, and even when rough around the edges, it brought me back to my happy place. Equally great was sitting at Victor DeLorenzo's house, post-show, for a backyard bonfire that never seemed to end. But then, the Femmes' re-fired Victor. Pretty positive I'll never see another Femmes concert again.

App: It's not new to 2013, but it's new to me, and I'm fairly obsessed with Words With Friends. Unfortunately, I'm not very good it at. I do enjoy playing "qat," "xi" and "yeti" whenever I can.

Milwaukeean: This was a big year for OnMilwaukee.com. We moved into our new office at 735 N. Water St., and several people helped us get here. Our broker, Steve Palec from Cresa, worked tirelessly on our behalf. And Heather Colligan-Clarke from Creative Business Interiors designed and furnished our new space. But our landlord, Sheldon Oppermann is the one who executed the lease, and who lured us Downtown. He really gets our business, and he's a Milwaukee champion like we are. I'm happy to have him as an office neighbor – especially when we sneak out for weekday Brewers games.

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