Ryan Thomason

Geek Dad Report: Back on the Movie Bandwagon

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Hustle and Flow 2 casting didn't go wellThis geek dad has seriously been missing out in the movie department, while I was able to find time for the big releases of the past two years there were tons of movies that went by the wayside.  Now before you start laughing at me for my lack of geek I’ll throw down the honest truth, the good movies, are usually 2.5 – 3 hours in length.  I do not have that sort of time just hanging around for me to pluck and use.  I get up at 5, play with my son until I go to work, get home and play with my son until he goes to sleep around 7:30.  From there I get to spend the next 2 hours with my wife for the day before heading to sleep.  I COULD try to fit a movie in that timeframe but A) She needs to be willing to sit through it and B) My brain needs to not be a pancake from an exhausting day so I can focus on the movie.

It wasn’t until a month or so ago, as I was looking for some Double A batteries for one of my kids toys that I found and remembered that I had purchased a portable DVD player for the trip to Washington D.C. we took last year to keep my son occupied on the plane.  I still had my dad’s 1980’s humungous headphone to listen with and I could only grin at my discovery.  I made an impromptu trip to the store with son in tow, to pick up some toilet paper, even though we had just bought some.

I told my wife it was for the survival kit I’m building, which I may detail in a different column. Moving on, where I live, there are magical devices called a Red Box.  You walk up to wherever they are located, and using a touch screen can rent a DVD for the day for a single dollar, the DVD spews out of the side after you swipe a debit card and bam, cheap movie rental.  Stuff that up your corporate you know what movie rental stores!

Thankfully, as I browsed trough the current catalog, nearly every geeky movie was still available, which didn’t surprise me.  District 9? Why yes thank you!  That night, after the first show my wife and I watched together, I told her she could watch some of the Oprahs she had recorded on the DVR, and that I wasn’t leaving the room.  Whipping out the DVD player, I coyly slipped the movie in and settled on the headphones.  Though we weren’t essentially doing something together, at least we were still in touching distance of each other.

I’ve been on a tear ever since, trying to get it down to twice a week now I’m either watching an old favorite, or catching the summer blockbuster that slipped through my fingers.  I’ve even been taking this into the bedroom, no, we’re not watching porn or something together on a tiny portable TV that would just be lame.  The first time I took the DVD player into bed because I wanted to just watch a movie and go right to sleep, I got a bunch of scornful moans my way because the screen was too bright.  Now, like I’m some 12 year old with a flashlight reading a book I couldn’t put down.  Sheet thrown over my head because I didn’t want the lamp because my mom would see the light coming from under my door and know I was awake.

That is what I am back to, though, as I giggled under my sheet, finally watching The Hangover after 6 months of people telling me it was hilarious, I didn’t care that I was practically hiding.  I get to have the sound on as loud as I want on my headphones, and because it annoys everyone except for me, I got to have subtitles on so I could further understand what people were saying.  With hearing as bad as mine, I LOVE subtitles, I usually miss the run up for jokes, or major dialog and only laugh because others were so I don’t appear awkward.

That’s why I don’t normally watch movies at night in my living room, which happens to be situated right next to my 2 year olds room.  If I want to actually hear what is going on, I have to have the sound up pretty good, and for you normal folks, it’s pretty loud.  In a way, this works out better for me, because I get to have everything at a closer vantage point for my visual and auditory sense. It may be on the small….small screen, but hey, it’s better than totally missing out.

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