Top 10 lists of remembered joy

While mindlessly surfing social media the other day, I stumbled across a “10 best TV shows of all time” thread. I love lists and so enjoyed wandering through other people’s lists.

Then I decided to give it a whirl. These are the 10 shows I thought of before my brain started thinking “shows that I SHOULD put on the list” as opposed to the first ones that sprang to mind.

Firefly
Foyle’s War
Bosch
Breaking Bad
Jericho
Eli Stone
Buffy The Vampire Slayer
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
X-Files
Hill Street Blues

(There are multiple programs called Jericho; the one I meant is the one about a small town in the aftermath of a nuclear war.)

Lists like this are conversation-starters. The next time I think about best TV shows of all time, I’ll probably have a whole different list. Except Firefly. Firefly will top every list I compile.

My favorite movie list isn’t as fluid. I even have my Top 10 specifically ranked.

  1. It’s A Wonderful Life
  2. The Wizard of Oz
  3. Casablanca
  4. E.T. The Extra-terrestrial
  5. Arrival
  6. Serenity
  7. To Kill A Mockingbird
  8. Raiders of the Lost Ark
  9. ummm …

OK, it gets a little fuzzier after the top eight. (There are multiple movies called Serenity; since Firefly is my favorite TV show, you can make an educated guess as to which Serenity I’m talking about.) Movies that have made my personal top 10 include Field of Dreams, Dances With Wolves, Singin’ In The Rain, A Christmas Story, Joyeaux Noel, The Lives Of Others, Metropolis, The Empire Strikes Back, John Carter

Let’s see what happens when I try to think of 10 favorite books …

Nineteen Eighty-Four
Dandelion Wine
The Scarlet Letter
True Grit
The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress
To Kill A Mockingbird

It gets hard after that, because I have loved so many books. And notice I didn’t number them.

I could bore you all day with this. My favorite albums, songs, comic book stories, order of the Star Wars movies, bands, singer-songwriters, old-time radio, silent movies (Have you ever seen The Wind? OMG) …

In the end, the appeal of lists is that they recall moments of joy and discovery and love, each item bringing back a memory of a time well had.

The longer the list, the greater the recognition of how much joy life offers to each of us.

Published by WarrenBluhm

Wordsmith and podcaster, Warren is a reporter, editor and storyteller who lives near the shores of Green Bay with his wife, two golden retrievers, Dejah and Summer, and Blackberry, an insistent cat. Author of Full, Refuse to be Afraid, Gladness is Infectious, 24 flashes, How to Play a Blue Guitar, Myke Phoenix: The Complete Novelettes, A Bridge at Crossroads, The Imaginary Bomb, A Scream of Consciousness, and The Imaginary Revolution.

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