Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A getaway, even if for a couple of hours...


Some people get drunk and some get high to forget, I watch movies…

I also watch movies "just for fun", but I have recently noticed that I use watching movies, as a getaway from whatever is bothering me. Not that I tend to turn my back to my problems, in fact, I am someone who jumps in, head first. On the other hand, there are always issues which bother you, annoy you, scratch your safety and security, and yet you cannot do anything about them. You are sentenced to wait, and god knows how much I hate waiting to see what happens later without being in control.

I guess this is why some people need something to distract them from the problem, whatever it is. So they become workaholics, shopaholics, alcoholics, or addicted to whatever gives them some kind of "forgetting temporarily". This becomes some sort of escape, an opportunity to forget, even if for an instant, or for as long as the effect stays. These are mostly very destructing activities, and can seriously damage body and/or soul. The common downside is that you have to face the problem again. It won’t go away. You have to finally deal with it. Either solve it, or let it be. But you can never turn your back to it, forever.

Still, every now and then, we might try some of these getaways. For me, it’s watching movies, or reading books. Both can distract me from my surrounding annoyance. Especially if they are fictional. You see, a more serious book or a documentary still attracts me, but it engages mostly my "serious" side. I need my inner child to be entertained. So it’d better be/have a storyline.

Those books, as well as for some movies make me forget what time it is, where I am, what I was doing at the time. Sometimes, I literally have to shake my head to get back to real life. But even with a storyline, not all the books or movies are engaging. Some always keep you at a distance, "Hey! This is not real, this is a movie, this is only a story. What? Yes, there is some smell/noise/scene going on in the background. Did you notice that? I guessed so. See? You still have your nerves in your surrounding world. Told ya!"

But there are few books or movies (or few episodes of some TV series, for that matter), which literally "swallow" you inside. You forget any surrounding parameters, not hearing any noises, not smelling or seeing anything else, you become part of the movie, part of the book. You go behind the eyes of one or some of the characters, and you start to live in that world. You get lost in between the pages, the frames, the dialogues. For 45 minutes, 90 minutes, 2 hours, 5 hours, or as long as the program/movie/book lasts, you forget about everything in the background. Then, you’ll have enough time to deal with your problem later.

Problem is, since I have grown up, less and less movies and books engage me with the same intensity as they did before. Maybe I should add this to the list of all the sharp and deep senses which we loose alongside of time, "smarties" smell less and less chocolaty sharp, the last bite of sandwich bread does not taste as delicious, less stories make me get lost in their world.

Still, reading an engaging book, watching a smart movie, or an episode of a well made TV series, helps me forget about what bothers me at the time. Then, I’ll have time to get back to it later… "Tomorrow’s another day!!"*

*Scarlett O’Hara, "Gone with the wind".

8 comments:

Behi said...

How interesting! This post was like reading MY story written by you :). It's like I reach my comfort zone by going under the shelter of a pleasant story or living in a world that I can feel myself anywhere but not in the one that I can see the problem hanging on me OR not feeling myself at all at some points. At first I thought I was escaping from finding a solution or thinking of that matter but now I think this is like giving some space to my mind to breath and saving or gaining more energy to face the subject differently.

Nava said...

Hi Behi,
It's so comforting to find out that different people have very similar feelings!
You know, it's not a complete escape, as there is really no choice other than going back to the problem, but sometimes it gives my brain the opportunity to "defragment" and sometimes it works, some solutions reveal themselves later. Recently it came to my mind that it's like marinating the meat! You are not doing anything to it, but it's getting softer, and then the cooking is more efficient!!

Anonymous said...

YES! Tomorrow’s another day...
I have wispered this to myself times and times; and I exactly know what you say.
Well-made movies and good books are my own remedy, too. But I have also another gateway: Daydreaming!
Recently I can hardly get rid of my problems through reading or watching things. My mind does not help me! But by daydreaming, I make it go where I want; and it goes...
Of course I know it is not a good way; but what can I do? I cannot help doing it...

Thank you Nava jan; for your thought provoking post!
I gotta give it a second thought...

Nader said...

Hi,

Your post reminded me of a commentary that I had read about the movie "The Science of Sleep". The author had a nice opening paragraph that has stayed with me:

Like most people who believe they are far more complicated and unique than they actually are, I take an inordinate amount of solace in the idea that there are (or must be, anyway) friends, relatives and lovers who understand and appreciate my complexity and uniqueness. (It's the fundamental impetus behind who I am and what I do.) But when those intimates fail to live up to my expectations, or worse, do not show themselves at all, I turn next to the cinema. Like the lyrics of a favorite sad song, there is nothing better to yours truly than the visual and emotional identification one shares with a big-screen signifier of individuality - especially since more often than not things seem to work out well for these iconoclasts and eccentrics in the end.

Here is the link of this full article in case you want to read the rest.
http://movies.ign.com/articles/734/734287p1.html

cuckoo said...

I enjoy books and movies the same way, but i realized after such escapes i feel more depressed ... so now i do some sports that i enjoy to escape and feel better after :)

Nava said...

Hi Parinaz,
Daydreaming was my favorite getaway when I was younger, and still is, it's only that it's not during the day anymore as I'm too busy; It's usually right before going to bed!
But let me tell you something, there is a magical thing about daydreaming. If you manage to find the right pattern, sooner or later you'll attract the same, or very similar scenes to your life. So be extremely aware and careful about what you daydream about.

Have fun, and don't miss most of the movies in coming months. The closer to the academy awards, the better the movies.

Nava said...

Hi Nader,
Thanks for the link, and for visiting.

Nava said...

Hi cuckoo,
Honestly, your escape way is the best. It has all the benefits of getting away, plus the better physical and spiritual shape, minus the hang overs. I wish I could have been more firm on pursuing that.
Thanks for visiting.