Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

One app for eating and one app for watching TV, plus a historic tweeter

Plan To Eat

Plan to Eat - The Online Menu Planner from Plan to Eat on Vimeo.

We’re halfway through the year, so maybe you left your healthy-eating resolutions buried under the snow in February. I am not here to judge—I had a milkshake for lunch today, and it was delicious—but one of my favorite apps of the past year can help with those half-forgotten resolutions. Plan To Eat is a meal-planning app that seamlessly connects your grocery store to your kitchen. In the year I’ve been using it, the only thing missing is the ability to change your default grocery store (though the workaround is so simple it hardly matters). There are three main tabs: Cook, Plan, and Shop, and within those tabs, you can sort recipes, create shopping lists, and plan your meals either very broadly or very specifically. You can easily save recipes directly from websites using a bookmarklet and add them to a calendar with one click; you can save all the ingredients to a grocery list with another. It’s not a calorie-counting app—those are a dime a dozen, anyway—but you can keep track of each recipe’s nutritional info if that’s your thing. There’s even a “Freezer” category so you know what all that stuff is that’s been dying back there since 2012. Plan To Eat costs $40 a year, and you can try it out for free for 30 days. I happily gave them another 40 bucks this March when I renewed. [Laura M. Browning]


TV Show Tracker 3

Since cutting the cord a while back, the only thing I’ve missed about cable is having everything I watch in one place on my DVR. It’s not because it’s a hassle to remember which shows are available where (though it can be), but simply because I forget about shows if I don’t have them in front of me. Something like Game Of Thrones needs no reminder, but I forgot all about Master Of None after watching a couple episodes. It’s not that I disliked the show; I still want to watch it, but it didn’t grab me enough to binge it. Worse, some apps, like HBO Now, don’t show where you left off with a series the way Netflix, Amazon, or Hulu does. When I got behind on the second season of Togetherness, it took me a while to figure out which episodes I’d watched. I was thinking about starting a list in Evernote of all of the shows I watch, but then I remembered we’re years deep into the app age, so surely someone has thought of this. Turns out at least a couple people have. I downloaded TV Show Tracker 3, a list app that pulls in the episode info for shows you watch, regardless of origin—everything from Louis C.K.’s self-released Horace And Pete to Netflix to AMC and all points in between. For network series, it shows you the live-air schedule (with an episode description), and you can toggle between that and a watch list that organizes every series alphabetically. Switch to another view, and you can swipe through all of your shows in an order you create. After you watch something, tap the check box next in the episode description. Until a service arrives that serve as a cross-platform DVR, TV Show Tracker will let me know where I stand. [Kyle Ryan]


Chaucer Doth Tweet

Twitter tends to represent not just the latest and greatest way of expressing yourself in one very short burst of characters, but also the new horizon of up-to-the-minute news. Many of us now hear about breaking stories first from the social media app, which probably causes the ghost of William Randolph Hearst no small amount of consternation. As a result, Twitter also tends to be full of the very latest in spelling and grammar abasement, as people’s need to fire off their every thought spirals into a cesspool of tweets where even the slang gets misspelled (“dogg u got shitz to do cuz im on fleeek right nowyo” recently passed in front of my eyeballs, and both of them got the vapors).


Thus, it pleases me to inform you that one of the English language’s foremost wordsmiths from the 14th century is now on Twitter. Geoffrey Chaucer, the greatest British poet of the Middle Ages and the man responsible for forcing Middle English vernacular into serious literature, has his very own account. Chaucer Doth Tweet (@LeVostreGC) already has more than 50,000 followers, but he deserves far more. After all, the man not only wrote The Canterbury Tales, he continues to drop bon mots to this day, but now in online format:


Perhaps you already follow Chaucer. Perhaps you’re going to be all pedantic and point out that he died in 1400, so this is just someone’s funny parody account. To you, I pose this question: If it’s not Chaucer himself, why does his bio describe him as “Wryter of verse. Wearer of litel woolen hatte”? Sounds exactly like him to me. [Alex McCown]


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