Ned Gallagher in Havana.

Ned Gallagher:
What I’m Up To


Spring Break 2021 update



The Pandemic, One Year On

The last night I did not sleep in my own bed was March 12, 2020—I was on a red-eye flight from Los Angeles to Hartford that evening actually. Since then, I've been living mostly in lockdown mode. Haven't left the state. No team training trip to Florida this March. No seeing movies in the cinemas. Precious few restaurant visits. Rare in-person time with family and friends. A pretty scaled back version of life as normal for me.

No complaints, however, as I recognize I've been very fortunate, all things considered.

And now there is hope that the worst of the health crisis is behind us. I've had the first of two vaccine shots, with the second coming in a couple more weeks. Most students are back on campus for the spring trimester (twice-a-week COVID testing, masks, and distancing are still routine). My tennis team will play a competitive season this spring, with matches against a handful of schools following similarly strict pandemic protocols. And one can start to imagine things like travel and social gatherings opening up in the months ahead.

So when I post the next refresh of this page—likely in June, about the time the school year wraps up—hopefully we all will have turned a corner in this pandemic.



What I’m Reading

Working On Now:

  • Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes, Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency
  • Cass Sunstein, #republic: Divided Democracy in the Age of Social Media
  • Abraham Riesman, True Believer: The Rise and Fall of Stan Lee
  • Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

For Courses I’m Taking This Spring:

  • Thomas Aquinas, Treatise on Law
  • John Locke, Second Treatise on Government
  • Immanuel Kant, Grounding for the Metaphysics of Morals
  • Dante Alighieri, Inferno
  • Linda R. Monk, The Bill of Rights: A User's Guide

For Courses I’m Teaching This Spring:

  • John Hersey, Hiroshima
  • Ed Guerrero, Do the Right Thing (BFI Film Classics)
  • Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, Watchmen
  • Bernard Schwartz, A History of the Supreme Court
  • Leon P. Baradat and John A. Phillips, Political Ideologies: Their Origins and Impact

Recently Finished:

  • Dorian Lynskey, The Ministry of Truth: The Biography of George Orwell's 1984
  • Garry Wills, Augustine's Confessions: A Biography
  • Steve Berry, The Kaiser’s Web
  • Tim Fielder, Infinitum
  • Robert Jones, Jr., The Prophets
  • Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kohima, Lone Wolf and Cub, Volume 1: The Assassin’s Road
  • Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kohima, Lone Wolf and Cub, Volume 2: The Gateless Barrier
  • David Denby, Snark: It's Mean, It's Personal, and It's Ruining Our Conversation
  • Leon Kass, Leading a Worthy Life: Finding Meaning in Modern Times
  • Guy Kawasaki, Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions
  • Simone Weil, War and the Iliad
  • James K. A. Smith, On the Road with Saint Augustine: A Real-World Spirituality for Restless Hearts

On Deck:

  • Natalie Haynes, A Thousand Ships
  • Stephen Greenblatt, The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve: The Story That Created Us
  • Virginia Woolf, To The Lighthouse
  • Lawrence O’Donnell, Playing with Fire: The 1968 Election and the Transformation of American Politics
  • Leon Kass, The Beginning of Wisdom: Reading Genesis
  • Mary Beth Norton, 1774: The Long Year of Revolution
  • Apollonios Rhodios, The Argonautika
  • David Vann, Bright Air Black
  • Amos Oz, A Tale of Love and Darkness
  • Roy Tomizawa, 1964: The Greatest Year in the History of Japan—How the Tokyo Olympics Symbolized Japan’s Miraculous Rise from the Ashes



What I’m Watching


  • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (Disney+)
  • ZeroZeroZero (Amazon Prime)
  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, Season 8 (HBO Max)
  • Superman and Lois, Season 1 (CW)
  • The Circus, Season 6 (Showtime)
  • Real Time with Bill Maher, Season 19 (HBO Max)
  • See, Season 1 (Apple TV+)
  • Axios, Season 4 (HBO Max)

Recently Finished—Television:

  • Halt and Catch Fire, Seasons 1–4 (Hulu)
  • Lupin (Netflix)
  • Derry Girls, Seasons 1–2 (Netflix)
  • Tiger (HBO Max)
  • Inside Pixar (Disney+)
  • River (Amazon Prime)
  • Unforgotten, Season 1 (PBS Passport)
  • Prime Suspect, Seasons 1–3 (Hulu)
  • Collateral (Netflix)

On Deck—Television:

  • Hinterland
  • Shetland
  • Happy Valley
  • The Bureau

Recently Finished—Films:

  • A Stranger in Town (d. Roy Rowland, 1943)
  • The Way I See It (Peacock, d. Dawn Porter, 2020)
  • Palm Springs (Hulu, d. Max Barbakow, 2020)
  • The Personal History of David Copperfield (d. Armando Iannucci, 2020)
  • Raise Hell: The Life and Times of Molly Ivins (Hulu, d. Janice Engel, 2019)
  • Workplace: The Connected Space Documentary (d. Gary Hustwit, 2016)
  • Waiting for Guffman (d. Christopher Guest, 1997)
  • Force Majeure (d. Ruben Östlund, 2014)
  • The Hours (d. Stephen Daldry, 2002)
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Disney+, d. JJ Abrams, 2015)
  • Advise and Consent (d. Otto Preminger, 1962)
  • Black Panther (Disney+, d. Ryan Coogler, 2018)
  • Shoplifters (Hulu, d. Hirokazu Koreeda, 2018)
  • Captain America: Civil War (Disney+, d. Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, 2016)
  • Mrs. Dalloway (Kanopy, d. Marleen Gorris, 1998)
  • One Night in Miami (Amazon Prime, d. Regina King, 2020)
  • Keith Haring: Street Art Boy (BBC iPlayer, d. Ben Anthony, 2020)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (Disney+, d. James Gunn, 2014)
  • Judas and the Black Messiah (HBO Max, d. Shaka King, 2021)
  • Godzilla (HBO Max, d. Ishirō Honda, 1954)
  • Godzilla: King of the Monsters (HBO Max, d. Ishirō Honda and Terry O. Morse, 1956)
  • The Peacemaker (Paramount+, d. Mimi Leder, 1997)
  • Dog Day Afternoon (HBO Max, d. Sidney Lumet, 1975)
  • Fifth Form (IndieFlix, d. Adam Orman, 2009)
  • Zack Snyder’s Justice League (HBO Max, d. Zack Snyder, 2021)
  • John Lewis: Good Trouble (d. Dawn Porter, 2020)



What I’m Listening To


  • Willie Nelson, That’s Life
  • Jacob Collier, Djesse Vol. 3
  • Peter Gabriel, So
  • The Sixteen, Vivaldi: Gloria in D Major
  • Depeche Mode, Violator
  • Stevie Wonder, Music of My Mind
  • Stevie Wonder, Talking Book
  • Stevie Wonder, Innervisions
  • Stevie Wonder, Fulfillingness’ First Finale
  • Stevie Wonder, Songs in the Key of Life
  • Tears For Fears, The Hurting
  • Talking Heads, Remain In Light
  • Elton John, Tumbleweed Connection


  • The New Yorker: Politics and More

Audiobooks/Radio Drama:

    David Sedaris, The Best of Me



What I’m Looking Forward To

  • warm weather
  • a haircut (maybe!)
  • socializing
  • travel
  • movies in the theater


Thanks to Derek Sivers for his concept of the /now page.
Revised: 21 March 2021