Friday, April 29, 2005

I (Don't) Like To Watch

Ann Althouse can't just sit and watch a movie anymore; she's gotta be doing something. She attributes this restlessness to the Internet, and blogging:
Personally, I've nearly entirely stopped watching movies, though a few years ago, I went out to the movies three times a week, and I watched many movies at home. My old weekly total is more like my annual total, and my avoidance is almost entirely a result of enhanced awareness and consequent dislike of the passivity of sitting, trapped in the theater for two hours.
About three years ago, through the courtesy of a film reviewer neighbor, my husband and I acquired a couple of dozen reviewers' copies of feature films. No blockbusters, just some decent movies with people you've heard of, like Marisa Tomei. For the most part, those movies sat unwatched until a couple of months ago, getting moved from shelf to shelf and gathering dust.

We'd intended to watch them on nights when there was "nothing good" on TV, which, you'd figure, would be pretty darn frequently. But usually what we get is a half-hour or an hour between something else we're doing and some show we have to see. On the nights where there really is nothing worth watching for all the hours that constitute prime time, we end up having this conversation:

"You want to see one of the movies?"

"Nah, I don't feel like sitting for two hours."

Yet, when either of us is at the computer, we can end up planted there for four hours at a stretch, impervious to eye strain, migraines and sciatica so painfully sharp it feels as if your gluteals need root canal work. And telling ourselves, "okay, just one more site, honest, and then I'll get ready for bed."

But, as Ann points out, this can be a good thing:

Blogging has transformed the way I read. Before blogging, I was slogging -- reading, frustrated by the slowness of my own reading. Now, my old vice is a virtue. That draggy slogging from sentence to sentence was the pull of my own thoughts, which are liberated by blogging.

Hey, it beats arguing with the TV.

I hope to have some time to liberate some thoughts this weekend. Right now they're running riot through my brain, holding up little picket signs and champing at the bit.

Maybe I'll even have time for one of those movies.

I find as I -- also a late fifties product, as distinguished by the tail fins -- get older I'm enjoying movies more and more...even movies that aren't especially great, or even good. It's nice to be 'taken out of things' for a couple of hours...

I found your blog via a comment you made on Althouse's. I really like it; keep up the good work.

Ron Fisher

I checked out your blog and enjoyed the "1968" entry, especially the observation about "just to be the person we are today we HAD to be forged in a '1968,' a year, a place, another person that sets our course for a long time to come".
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