Movies: “Sparkle,” with Whitney Houston and “American Idol” star Jordin Sparks, is getting some very decent reviews. Any movie directed by David Cronenberg is worth seeing, though the presence of Robert Pattinson doesn’t make me anxious to see “Cosmopolis.” Television: With the Olympics now ancient history, Sunday-night dramas are manna in a parched August-TV desert: “Breaking Bad,” “True Blood,” and “Political Animals,” which has its finale this week. Music: Lionel Richie and Bob Marley have the top CDs on Amazon: what decade is this? Can’t get into Taylor Swift’s new single. Books: The death of Robert Hughes sent me into an art-historical mood: I’m reading John Richardson’s first volume of his exhaustive Picasso biography. Fascinating. Sports: The Yankees are getting me through the dog days of late summer. I don’t tune in to the NFL until the games are official. Finally: Won’t you be happy when your kids are back in school?