Tuesday, June 25, 2019     Volume: 20, Issue: 16

Santa Maria Sun / Humor

The following article was posted on February 24th, 2016, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 16, Issue 51 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 16, Issue 51

Netflix and chill

In the Krider household it's no longer movie theaters and popcorn


I know nowadays it’s hard to imagine, but my wife and I found each other without the help of the Internet. In the World Wide Web’s defense, back then the Internet was mostly used for stealing music, not really for making matches. We didn’t have Tinder or eHarmony or any other digital assistance for finding someone of the opposite sex. We just had to walk outside and see what was nearby. Pretty easy concept if you live on a college campus, difficult if you’re in prison.

My wife and I simply met each other without any computer help when I was walking across the grounds at Cal Poly, and I caught a glimpse of her wearing a very skimpy pair of tight green shorts. She didn’t need an app to meet boys; she had great legs.

I convinced those great legs that I was a funny, charming guy, and that we should hang out. One of the first things we did was go to the movies and watch a family film called Pulp Fiction. Over time, she and I fell in love with Quentin Tarantino’s violent graphic movies, and we also fell in love with each other. We shared many evenings hanging out at the theater, eating Whoppers and popcorn, while sucking down gallons of Cherry Coke from the snack bar. You could say the start of our relationship was somewhat of a Hollywood tale.

As our relationship grew into marriage and kids, our trips to the movie theater dwindled. It isn’t appropriate to take toddlers to see Quentin Tarantino films (although I have seen parents shamefully do it). 

Since we couldn’t make it to the theater as often, we learned to put our kids to bed and enjoy a rented movie from Blockbuster. For you younger readers, Blockbuster was this building with lots of shelves where you could wander around for hours and look at empty boxes with little movie posters attached to see if you wanted to rent a particular film for the night. When you finally found the exact movie you wanted to watch, Blockbuster would tell you the film had already been rented by someone else. Undeterred, you would stand by the door and harass people coming in who were returning movies to see if they had the movie you wanted to see. It was a major part of our society back then, complete with late fees and little stickers that said, “Be Kind Rewind.”

My wife and I enjoyed hours and hours of time together watching rented movies. We were even troopers through the transition from VHS tapes to DVDs, even though it meant we had to replace our entire Disney movie collection (now I own two different formats of Bambi, neither of which I am currently watching). 

But like all good things, rented movies came to an end. The Internet, with its TV show streaming capabilities, shot a bullet right through the head of Blockbuster, similar to what has happened to many characters in Quentin Tarantino movies. Now, my wife and I, like everyone else, have transitioned to Netflix. Instead of watching one rented movie and killing two hours, we kill seven hours binge watching shows on Netflix.

“Should we call it a night and go to bed? It’s already 10 o’clock.”

“No, there are only three episodes left of House of Cards. Let’s finish them tonight. I need to know who gets killed next.”

“OK, screw work. I’ll just be late in the morning.”

My eyes have literally bled from watching too much Netflix. How many documentaries can you endure about the economy? I’ve watched 17 of them and my bank account still doesn’t have any money in it. These films and shows are compelling and addictive, but I’ve decided I need to cut the cord and roll ’90s style. Now that our kids are older, I want to get back to the days of going to the movies again. Quentin Tarantino has a new flick and I want to see all of the gooey red blood on the big screen. Surprisingly my wife, whom I love, won’t go with me.

“I like being comfortable in my house. We can wait until it comes out on Netflix.”

“Yeah, but I want to see the movie now, before everybody at work tells me all about it.”

“Just stop listening when people are talking about it.”

“That’s a bit unreasonable.”

“I think it’s a bit unreasonable to pay $15 to see a movie in a crowded movie theater and they don’t even give you a remote control so you can pause the movie when you need to go to the bathroom.”

And that was when I realized my wife’s true motivation for boycotting the movies: She isn’t in control. 

At our house, she’s definitely in control. She controls the show we will watch, she controls the volume, she controls when we pause the movie and go to the bathroom. Somewhere along the line it was decided I’m not a responsible enough person to hold the remote control and make major decisions in life, like what show to watch (probably because I made her watch 17 documentaries about the economy).

It suddenly occurred to me that ever since we stopped going to the movies and started watching films at home, whether it be Blockbuster rentals or Netflix marathons, I haven’t viewed a single film all the way through without it being paused by my wife for a multitude of reasons. She needs to use the restroom. She needs to grab a glass of water (which will just make her need to go to the bathroom again). She needs a snack. She needs to pet the dog. She needs to talk to her mom on the phone (minimum 40-minute delay).

While my wife goes through all of these interruptions, I just sit on the couch and stare at the non-moving screen. It’s pretty boring. Now a two-hour movie takes at least 3 1/2 hours to get to the end. I’m tired of it. All I want to do is find out who kills who. And if my wife pauses the movie one more time … I think we all know who’s gonna get it. 

Rob would never kill his wife. Like his holding the remote control, it’s not allowed. You can read more from Rob Krider or contact him at robkrider.com.

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