Addicted to Netflix by Bill Storie

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Addicted to Netflix by Bill Storie 

I’m not but I thought that header would get your attention.

I use Netflix, I do admit that, and I have to say I have found some wonderful programs or television series in there. So, applause to Netflix. I was rather surprised at how few movies there really is in Netflix however. I imagined there would be thousands of old and new and rubbish movies. But the “Classics” as they call them are pathetic to be honest.

One time I e-mailed them about a particular old movie called “Zulu” that I wanted to watch. In fairness a lady called me to chat about it. She asked if it was a new movie. I said, “No, actually it came out in 1964”. Silence. “Hello are you still there?” I asked. “Eh, yeah I’m still here,” she said with a very hesitant voice. “1964 you said?” I could hear the next question coming a mile away. “Did they make movies back then?” But she didn’t ask. She was kind. I felt old.

Yet a couple days ago I was waiting on a call coming in about some Olderhood stuff. It was going to be at least an hour so I cranked up Netflix and watched a BBC program called “QI” – great show with Stephen Fry. I enjoyed it but realized I was watching it at 9.30 in the morning. OK, I’m retired, so I can do stuff like that – relax. But it got me to thinking.

I remember years ago when I was a kid in Scotland watching television. In those days life revolved around television and specific television programs in particular. Every Monday and Wednesday night back then, we would be obliged to sit at the TV at 7.30 pm to watch “Coronation Street”. Remember that one? It still airs today !!

You couldn’t sit down at 7.35 because you’d have missed the opening scenes. And if you dared ask what had happened you were snapped back into your place by parents. How dare you should be late and then have the cheek to interrupt their viewing. We were controlled by television.

We couldn’t go au toilette until the commercial breaks. Making tea had to be done in the 4 minute breaks. Conversation had to be handled at lightning speed in the breaks.

“So what did you do today at school?” “Well Mum, today we were learning about the French Revolution. Do you know mum it all started when some angry people stormed into a prison in Paris and…………” “Ok, that’s enough the show’s starting again.” Boom. My new-found knowledge of events in history, important or otherwise, was wiped out.

Mind you it meant that I quickly learned how to convey important information about such things as the 100-Year War in 4 minutes. Not bad kiddo.

Yet there I was two days ago watching something at a time of my choosing and having the ability to pause and go make a cup of tea, or tinkle at my leisure (as I said I’m retired !), or heaven forbid go tell my grandchildren all I know about the invention of television. They actually appreciate that I can do it in 4 minutes.

So technology has given me some wonderful benefits that better suit my lifestyle. Nowadays I control the television not the other way around. The old “off” switch has now been replaced by the new “delete” button.

So thank you Netflix. I wonder if they have Coronation Street. Hmmm. I should check because I might be able to replay all of those opening minutes of the shows I turned up late for back then.

There are many things from my childhood that I recall at the strangest of times. Silly little events can trigger memories from forty or fifty years ago. I can’t remember what I had for breakfast this morning mind you, but I recall falling of a bike when I was six – vividly.

As they say, “the mind is a terrible thing to waste.” Was that it? I honestly can’t remember. It was something like that I think. Also “mind over matter”. If you don’t mind then it don’t matter !!

Ok that’s me. I think I’ll go and watch some really, really, really old movie on Netflix… something from, oh how’s about 2005!!!!

See you next week.

By Bill Storie

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