What do you call a film buff that doesn’t watch films anymore?

Sunday 29 March, 2020

I love films. I can’t give an accurate idea how much I love films. I eat, sleep and dream films. I can analyse films, reimagine films, recast films and quote films. I have binge watched franchises, I have rewatched the same film multiple times in a week, a weekend and a day. Ask me about how I only had four DVDs for about 16 months and so just watched them, or at least had them on in the background, over and over and over again whilst I did my coursework for my GNVQ. I love the cinema! I once went to the cinema three times in one week, I once went two days on the run. I’ve seen two films in one day at the cinema at least Twice and i’ve seen the same film more than once in a run because i’ve liked it enough to go see it with two or more people, one at a time!

Except…

Except when my Mum went in to hospital, my concentration went down hill. We watched crappy films with my auntie as we waited for the phone call the first time we were told it wasn’t looking good, and that’s the last time I watched a film.

I’ve tried to watch films I like, and I just lose interest. I’ve tried to watch new films and it feels off and then I switch it off because i’m not paying enough attention to warrant ruining the movie for myself. I’ve even tried to watch crappy movies, something I won’t ruin by emotional association… and that didn’t work either.

I’ve got DVDs there that I bought around my birthday last year, that I never got around to watching because first i was saving them, then I came down sick, and then uni started up, and I fell further and further behind until I deferred, and then I spent a few days catching up on much needed sleep, and then I needed to get into Christmas mode. And then it was Christmas. And then my mum went in to hospital.

The DVDs are sitting there ready to be watched, I just can’t bring myself to watch them.

I’ve got films saved to the digital box. Some are two years old because I was waiting for my mum to be in the mood to watch them with me, they are films she liked enough to ask me to tape them for them and I didn’t have the heart to watch them without her and she always wanted to watch other things instead of these films. I can’t bring myself to watch them without her. There’s other films there that I recorded for myself. I don’t want to watch them either. It’s a mixture of “can’t be arsed”, “Mentally exhausted by the idea” and “I know I’ll lose interest ten minutes into it so what’s the point even starting?”. There’s also the fact that when I am sad, and I watch new films, I then associate the film with feelings of sadness I felt at the time. I can’t watch Lilo and Stitch anymore for that reason. I can’t bare to ruin a film I’ve not even seen yet just by watching it at the wrong time.

My netflix is mostly going unused. I’ve re-watched sections of 6 Underground a few times, but not the full film since the first/last time I watched it, which I watched with my mum and it was the last film we watched together.

I planned to go back to Cinema Paradiso before all this happened, and go back to renting DVDs from the library. I had a list, I had a system. I had all four corners covered and it optimised my viewing capabilities. Now with the corona virus, I don’t fancy receiving DVDs I have to handle, open, and send back through the post system, so that’s Cinema Paradiso out. I still have the list, it lays discarded underneath my bed. I keep picking it up and leaning it against my bedside table but it keeps sliding down. I can’t be bothered to move it elsewhere.

I let my CEA card expire and between this and the corona virus, I don’t see me renewing it any time soon.

The other year when I deferred last time, I watched at least one film a day besides during the world cup when it was just wall to wall football. I’ve not watched a single film, not properly, not taking it in from the background, since the 26th of January.  And I think, at a time like this, when I’m being forced to stay at home for my own health, some sort of entertainment would be a good idea… but it just hasn’t happened yet and I don’t know when it will.

So… What do you call a film buff who doesn’t watch films anymore?


I’m a blogger, so let’s blog

Monday 23 March, 2020

I honestly don’t know what to say about all of this that’s happening in the world. I thought last year was pretty bad, and now this.

I mean I had a chest infection which put behind on uni work, I had to catch up on the uni work and my laptop broke. I had to go to the library and borrow the communal computer on the weekends to get my work done, and then my wheelchair broke. I spent most of seven months in bed, eating cold foods and food I could eat by hand. I got a very low mark for my module and, needing a better set up for next module, I ended up having to put a lot of stuff in storage to re-organise my room so that I could have my overbed table in my room for the laptop.

I got another chest infection, fell behind on uni work pretty much as soon as I started, had to deal with DSA and Student Loans messing up yet again, and alternative formats for books I needed to read over the summer arriving days before my module started. Alternative Formats, by the way, which were not compatible with note taking. I was already reading slower than usual, slower than everyone else on the course, and making notes as I went along slowed me down even further because there was just no efficient way to do it. By the time everyone else was doing their second deeper reading, I was still only half way through my first reading, and that was because most people got familiar with the novels in the summer so didn’t need to spend all that much time reading it for the coursework. I fell further and further behind, needed an extension, missed a deadline on groupwork and deferred. That was in december.

And then we had to rush my Mum to hospital on the 8th of January. I say rush, but actually we waited about 7 hours for an ambulance to turn up. And first it looked like she was getting better, it looked like it was an infection that had just thrown everything out of sync. But then she went downhill again, and the doctor took us into a side room and told us though they weren’t out of options yet, we did have to prepare for the worst.

And another week went by, we were told if the last combination of medication didn’t help, we were going to lose her. And then the Sunday she was put on end of life care, and we lost her on the Thursday, the 30th.

We had over two weeks of sorting the funeral out, and I had to deal with social services because not only was my mum’s care package on the brink of being started just before she went in to hospital, but I’d sked for some emergency help with my mum being my primary carer, and in hospital. And my emergency care to help deal with the fact my primary carer was in hospital took until the week after we lost Mum to start up.

Shortly after the funeral, the coronavirus took over the world.

If borders had been closed, if holidays had been cancelled, if the prime minister of this country hadn’t have said “we just have to take it on the chin” and “I have to level with you, people will lose loved ones”, maybe it wouldn’t be as bad around the world as it is now. But it is, and I am a constant ball of anxiousness.

I’m scared I will get it, I’m scared my Dad and brother will get it, I am scared my friends will get it. I see the blase attitude the general population has and I despair. It’s not just their lives they are risking, it is everyone’s.

They’ve been talking about a possible lockdown all weekend. I wonder, why the wait? It should have been on the table as soon as we saw what it was doing in China and in Italy.

I worry at every cough – even though i have chronic acid reflux and that gives me a cough. I worry everytime I feel a bit hot – even though I have chronic fatique syndrome which throws random fevers at you for a couple of hours, randomly. I have chronic pain. I’m meant to watch out for body aches? I don’t have a single minute where something isn’t aching! How will I know? I worry about being asymptomatic and passing it on to somebody else. I can’t believe there are people out there not worried! If not them, it could be their loved ones. If they don’t care about My loved ones and me, you’d think they’d care about their own!

I’m sure many people feel the same as me, if not worse, because people have actually died but… could the world just stop for a minute? Could I not have gotten my bearings over my degree, and over my mum, first before staring down at the face of an apocolpse? Would that have been too much to ask?