Live Commenting for ‘A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding’

So I literally just finished rewatching the first A Christmas Prince and I had a lot more thoughts than I anticipated. Let’s hope that’s because I had a whole year to think about it.  Now it’s time for the sequel and Netflix just steamrolled me right into with hardly 20 seconds to decide if it’s really what I wanted.

Before I start, I’m going to make myself a single person mug cake so I can party in style.

A few predictions:

  • The Converses will reappear, probably at the wedding
  • Hopefully Sophia and Simon have a child together and are still awful human beings
  • There will be Christmas hijinks
  • Everything will work out


Note: Below are spoilers and likely errors, but editing is for people who care.

  • This is an abbreviated version of how the first started
  • Her site is ‘Amber’s Blog.’ Compelling.
  • Amber’s a celebrity now. Cool. But she’s still her. Don’t worry.
  • So she’s not a popular blogger because of her talent. It’s because she’s marrying a prince. Further evidence she is a terrible journalist.
  • New father makes a joke about feeling like a brand new man to make a joke about how it’s a new actor
  • Some jerk who will inevitably turn up at the palace stole the dad’s cab
  • Why did this guy not greet them 20 minutes ago? Joseph would be disappointed #GenoviaRules
  • Why is there a new dad actor? Did they need someone with range beyond generic statements of encouragement?
  • More comments about how the previous father looked
  • Okay so this guy is a friendly dad with no understanding of how to treat royal people. I get that it’s who he is, but also he’s not a dumb guy.
  • I’m enjoying their dynamic and the fact that they didn’t instantly get married, so clearly there love is real.
  • Well she’s wearing heels with this cocktail dress so apparently she’s learning a little
  • How is this wedding not planned yet? It’s a royal wedding.
  • Of course the taxi stealer is the wedding planner. I hate him already.
  • I’m also 100% over how Amber calls her dad Pop
  • Princess Emily is a saint and I won’t write anything negative about her
  • She’s sleeping in full makeup. I want a movie that shows women who take care of their skin. We’re underrepresented.
  • We’ve mentioned Jimmy Choo as her wedding shoe and she questioned it. I’m feeling more like my Converse-at-the-wedding-theory is correct
  • How is the dress not done yet? Is it easy to plan a wedding in a week when you’re rich?
  • I love how the modernization conflict is the core of this story. No contemporary dress for you.
  • NowBeat/BeatNow was her magazine and it shut down. Who’s surprised by that? At least they acknowledge it was disreputable garbage.
  • More Christmas carols on the piano. Before I looked up I assumed it was Richard again.
  • Fake Joseph is clearly a progressive saint here to help Amber be herself
  • How do people not know why this country is bleeding money? Is someone stealing it?
  • SIMON!
  • I didn’t like Miss Avril in the first one but now I’m sure she’s the worst
  • Is the father going to fall in love with the chef?
  • I’m taking notes like Amber again.
  • “excuse my pausing, I’m in shock”
  • Richard is still wearing Old Navy sweaters
  • This Leopold man went to Monaco. Still waiting for a map to see where Aldovia is
  • It obviously wasn’t going to be Lord Leopold. Everyone look at Simon like that was a soap opera dream. What’s he up to. I have no idea how, but I’m sure he’s somehow stealing the country’s money
  • He and Sophia are divorced which is a tragedy. One prediction wrong already.
  • Simon is going to screw these people over after they decided to forgive him. SCUM OF THE EARTH.
  • New prediction: Amber will wear Queen Helena’s actual dress
  • Also this dress looks noting like the sketch?
  • okay she’s definitely going to wear Converse for her wedding
  • Even Emily is on the Converse trend
  • This performance will go on, that I am sure of. Also this Tom Quill (is that his name?) is a real cutie patootie.
  • So all of this has to be solved within 24 hours? Unless they put on the play without a real crew. This is a cheesy Christmas movie, of course it will resolve quickly.
  • Will Leopold and Helena find love? It’s been two years since the king’s death
  • I don’t believe in Simon’s sound plan. I believe he is the devil.
  • Or is Leopold the scoundrel? I’m starting to think maybe. Perhaps he set up the plans to siphon money to himself. Maybe Simon can actually save the kingdom.
  • What am I saying.
  • They’re all standing around having a toast while the country is in turmoil
  • They’re still talking about the taxi stealing. Will it ever end. Also they clearly aren’t even looking at Christmas trees. Also she insists on a cone and settles for the Charlie Brown tree only bigger.
  • The queen’s hat is incredible
  • This green screen is horrendous but they’re acting the crap out of it
  • I’m really still thinking Leopold is actually the bad guy. Sorry Simon. Unless I’m wrong.
  • These kids in the kitchen are giving me anxiety. Who’s going to clean this up? The chef gets it. She understands my concerns. Or is she crying because of something other than a clean kitchen?
  • I can’t believe the Internet cares this much about the Aldovian royal family. It must be time for the conflict where she’s told to stop writing.
  • Even my best friend wouldn’t constantly monitor my blog to see if pictures came down from my blog. And my best friend is the best best friend.
  • PROTOCOL is the absolute worst. I don’t know why I’m upset. Protocol is obviously going to change.
  • Chattering will not disrupt makeup. Does this guy know anything? If you’re using high quality makeup, it will last. End of story. Also what kind of makeup can’t handle talking.
  • I WAS RIGHT! Tears of nostalgia from the chef. Also she talks about a hard life and has a vague Russian accent. Makes sense.
  • Amber’s hair would definitely be styled better for a royal portrait. I think it looks fine, but considering these strict standards they’d demand something more traditional. I bet they take a new portrait later where they’re smiling and not solemn.
  • That final project was awesome.
  • We’re doing archery in the courtyard again. But why are they letting Amber handle a bow? OMG she legitimately could’ve killed one of her friends.
  • I don’t think how Amber lives her life is wrong, but why are her best friends best friends with her? They always want to party and she’s about working. To each their own, but why do they want to hang out with her?
  • I’m really on team ‘Simon isn’t the bad guy’ and I want to be right.
  • I’m excited she’s back on her note taking game.
  • Meadowlark
  • Fishy
  • I hope Simon is good AND falls in love with the best friend
  • Why don’t they have the door shut for these conversations?
  • They really hyped a bachelorette party that I would enjoy but it felt like a weird choice for them
  • King Richard is not at all the lion heart like his namesake. Also 100% not his namesake but it’s all I think about
  • Can we just fire Miss Avril already
  • It’s def Leopold. Despite the fact I figured it out early, it wasn’t the most obviously telegraphed storyline, so kudos to that. Or maybe it’s just another case of my lowered standards.
  • This movie is much more dramatic than the last one. It’s definitely more rom dram than rom com
  • Okay I’m all for drama but to pull a bow and arrow on someone is a bit far. You can accidentally release that and maybe hurt someone who wasn’t the bad guy.
  • I mean I know I was hard on Simon but I think his redemption was a good story choice. He’s even the best man.
  • I know they wanted it to be their wedding, but this feels too low-key. But Emily’s boyfriend is there so I’m happy.
  • Where did they get that dress overnight?
  • YEP THERE’S THE BEDAZZLED SHOES. Why does she have to show everyone?
  • I don’t care about this wedding at all
  • Okay so we’re setting up so many couples right now. Just like everyone’s getting paired. Can I come to this wedding to find my soulmate?
  • Really though how long can a conga go

Okay so there was more political intrigue in this one and not enough Christmas for my standards. But overall a real achievement.

Here are my movie three predictions:

  • It will be about the queen marrying Fake Joseph
  • Amber will be pregnant or coming to terms with being pregnant
  • Hopefully Simon is the star
  • Everyone just lives in Aldovia now to make it easy

Live Thoughts About ‘A Christmas Prince’

Not to brag, but I was an early adopter to A Christmas Prince. Before the insane amount of attention, I was just a girl, sitting in front of a screen, trying to decide how to spend my Friday evening. A new Netflix movie had released and I’m generally a fan of the Netflix content I’d watched, so I thought why not.

Man. Woof.

Here we are a year later, celebrating the long awaited sequel. Despite having watched the movie multiple times last Christmas season, I strangely hadn’t been back in the time since. Before diving into The Royal Wedding, I wanted to recapture the magic of those two days where our leads fell in love.

Let’s see how this goes.

To set the scene, it’s 6:30 on a Friday night and I’m naturally already in my pajamas (a nightgown saying ‘Let’s Sleep In.’ I only wear it when I can actually sleep in the next day). My dinner is beside me – a delicious plate of pizza bagel bites and macaroni and cheese. This will surprise you, but I’m actually an adult in my late 20s.

Please forgive the typos I inevitably make because I’m not editing this at all.

  • It’s starting but I realize I don’t actually remember how this movie starts
  • Ah yes, city at Christmas porn
  • “Ugly Christmas Sweaters of the Stars”
  • I forgot she’s a “real” journalist who’s stuck as a junior editor and getting rejected left and right. She’s probably not a good writer
  • No one cares about royalty from small countries. Also why would a celebrity magazine send her editor to cover this political matter just because of his ‘royal hotness’
  • That’s right. Every girl is recovering from a serious breakup that happened a long time ago but they still aren’t ready
  • The dad thinks it will be a big break but apparently he doesn’t know that no one cares about royal drama from non-existent countries
  • I do like that he’s not laying on the guilt trip because his wife is dead and he’s going to be alone for Christmas
  • I want someone to show me on a map where this country is. It has to be England adjacent because they all have English accents
  • Yeah the prince was selfish taking her cab but he was actually really polite about it so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • Journalists grumpy because they’re covering a press conference that was supposed to feature a notorious flake of a prince. Are press actually this “ahhhh” and “ohhh”?
  • My favorite part about all these Christmas movies is when people are outside bundled up but they clearly aren’t cold. Do you know what happens when you’re outside in the frigid air? Your eyes water, your nose runs, and the wind is insufferable. It aint cute.
  • Wouldn’t you also ask her name instead of just saying it at her? Or saying she must be a tutor? I don’t know why I’m dissecting this dumb plot point
  • Mad that press is in town and call them parasites but you also called a press conference which means you invited them?
  • Prince Richard looks straight up homeless and not in a hot hipster way
  • So immediately we can tell Richard is not in fact a douche because he’s a great big brother
  • “Who are you and what are you doing in my palace?” Savage
  • I will say I like Richard more than the piece of cardboard who was in The Princess Switch which is surprising
  • Editor supporting this crime in a foreign country. Solid journalism.
  • “There’s nothing loose about this goose”
  • She freaks out at the mouse even though she said she liked mice to prove she’s *cool* but is clearly surprised and terrified to see it there
  • I keep saying she. I don’t know this character’s real name. Fake name Martha.
  • Why does Princess Emily know she’s from Minnesota?
  • Why does she assume she’s wondering what’s wrong with her? As an adult Fake Martha probably has her own assumptions and isn’t concerned about her wheelchair
  • Okay so Richard is doing archery in a garden three feet from a target. You can say you’re adjusting your sights but I know. Now you’re showing off your skills like you’re some master archer
  • I’ve already taken so many notes. This is exhausting.
  • When Fake Martha says “Awesome High Five” she sounds like a robot trying to express excitement
  • Her friends are the opposite of interesting and helpful
  • I just remembered she always wears Converse. You’re not an emo teenager from 2003, Fake Martha. Be an adult and wear real shoes. It’s annoying but also I’ll be disappointed if she doesn’t wear them to her wedding?
  • Also she’s the most obvious photo taker of all time. ALL TIME.
  • Okay so the more I see Prince Richard the more I genuinely enjoy him. In my defense, I’ve watched a lot of Hallmark Christmas movies recently so my bar is low.
  • Also this douche Simon is awful and overcompensating. Probably because his name is Lord Ducksbury
  • She is not blushing
  • “Where there’s a tiara, there’s dirt. Trust me.” Okay.
  • Let me obvious film Prince Richard playing the piano and no one will think I’m either an undercover creep OR I’m obsessed with the prince and I’m going to try to kill him
  • Lady Sophia is clearly the worst. Why is the queen trying to make fetch happen.
  • If he would’ve dropped her heart ornament I would’ve moved this movie to the top of my favorites list
  • Also Fake Martha’s journalism is about as good and thorough as this list I’m writing
  • Amber. Her name is Amber. Thank you Princess Emily
  • Where did these rumors about Prince Richard come from? Why do they exist if he is clearly boring?
  • Poor Richard gets interrupted every time he’s trying to get his Christmas piano playing on. Man just wants to be festive
  • I can tell this is a fake country because there’s no security around all these royals. Even Genovia gets security.
  • Why do these small countries always have quaint little orphanages? Why do orphans sell so well?
  • These adults are romantically romping about while poor Emily is just lying in the snow
  • Why are Sophia and Simon on a carriage ride? She clearly doesn’t like him or the cold. I mean I know it’s for the plot but it’s real dumb.
  • Amber’s notes again. Holy cow. It’s not surprising she gets so many rejection letters for freelancing
  • This horse chase sequence is entirely too long
  • The whole wolf scene. I forgot about it.
  • Richard’s sweaters also look hella cheap. Hopefully the costume budget increases in the sequel. Or maybe Old Navy sponsors Aldovia.
  • Do kisses get interrupted in real life like they do in movies? I get the horse neighs and maybe the moment passes, but don’t you still want to kiss? Maybe I’ve been single for too long but after the prince came back after checking on the horses, I’d be like I think we need to re-enter that moment.
  • If you found a scoop as big as this adoption I would not talk to my dumb friends over Skype. Also “this will make your career” because you lied your way into the palace and snooped and stole information. You will break a story but also not be a respected journalist.
  • Of course Amber sees the kiss but not the breakaway. OF COURSE.
  • Also, Sophia calls Amber a peasant. Are real royals that out of touch? Maybe it’s all the inbreeding. I assume in a place like Aldovia that tradition still runs rampant.
  • I HATE WHEN PEOPLE SAY LISTEN TO YOUR HEART IT ALWAYS TELLS YOU THE TRUTH. Hearts are notoriously stupid. Do not listen to them. Trust your gut. That strange feeling is always correct.
  • I guess you wouldn’t anticipate people coming into your room, but wouldn’t you lock your ID and the adoption papers in a safe somewhere? Seems much smarter to leave everything incriminating on the bed.
  • ALSO Richard falls in love with the very supportive Martha who’s really Amber trying to get details for her story. That’s betrayal.
  • That bracelet looks like something my mom brought me back from the Bahamas when I was 14. Granted, it’s from a little girl, but it falls into the category of things she’ll never wear.
  • I would give up all my wonderful Christmas Eve traditions to go to a Christmas Eve ball. Even Christmas jammies.
  • She looks good, but like everyone turn and stare good? It’s not like she was a hideous troll before. She’s always been very beautiful. She’s just in a dress with a lot of eyeshadow.
  • I like that a piece of drama isn’t Richard and Martha/Amber’s relationship. Clearly Queen Helena thinks it’s chill
  • They spent a lot of that dance swaying back and forth like it was a preteen dance at a firehall
  • I really need to pee
  • I want to be on the creative team who makes up these country names.
  • Simon and Sophia are just watching waiting to spill the secret and it’s super childish. Just shows they are garbage humans.
  • “This Fraudulent Christmas Prince” ROLE CREDITS
  • I feel really bad for Richard. His entire life just fell apart. He’s adopted. The woman he loves has been lying. Everything he believed was true is a lie.
  • WHY ARE THESE PEOPLE APPLAUDING SIMON AND SOPHIA AS NEW ROYALTY?! You just watched them publicly ruin your prince’s life and now you’re like aww this is nice. LIKE WHAT
  • They show so many shots of this statue in front the palace. It’s at least three or four. Always close ups. No wide shots.
  • I honestly don’t hate this scene between Richard and his mom where she explains everything. It seems like he’ll probably need counseling but it wrapped up nicely.
  • One thing I know for sure is Aldovia isn’t an international hub. Those United flights are a sham. You’re definitely flying a terrifying small plane to a major city in a real country.
  • We’re going to fight this by showing up and demanding it’s delayed even though we don’t have any law on our side and then just give up when we’re told we can’t change things.
  • At least these people in the parliament or whatever understand the travesty of this situation
  • How did the king amend a law without anyone else, including the Prime Minister, knowing?? I’m not a monarchy expert, but I feel like you would need at least a discussion about that.
  • Also he’s not blood but he’s a great guy so obvs he deserves to be king – Richard’s dad
  • I really really need to pee but I won’t pause now
  • Further proof Amber is actually a terrible journalist is she works for a horrible magazine and that was probably the only place she could get a job
  • She’s quitting to blog because that’s a completely lucrative way to make money
  • 20,000 likes and she doesn’t have ads. No one cares.
  • Oh wait she works at the restaurant. She has a job. My b.
  • Seven minutes from the end and I had to go to the bathroom. I was sure I was going to pee my pants. Made it, though.
  • I’m not a wine expert but that wine on the table looks like Kool aid
  • Okay so this prince isn’t on the sidewalk. He’s literally standing in the middle of a street
  • “Emily showed me your blog online” the online is redundant doofus
  • They’re still in the middle of the street
  • Okay like do you have to engaged? Can’t you just date?
  • You don’t have a career. You have a blog.
  • “We can come back whenever you want” UH I think you’ll be busy ruling your country
  • Granted, I would definitely say yes to him. He could walk into my apartment right now and if his first words to me were “marry me,” I’d say yes.
  • This ending just reminds that they watch this movie The Princess Switch and everyone is crying because it’s so beautiful. False. There are some makeup scenes that I live for because you can just tell both parties are incredible kissers. This is so-so to the max.
  • Now Netflix is just automatically rolling into The Royal Wedding. It didn’t even give me a choice.

Be thankful, not sorry

I decided I would fast something monthly in 2018, mainly because I’m bad at choosing things to give up. I wanted a plan so each month I knew in advance what was happening instead of going back and forth and ultimately not fasting at all. Which is what I usually do. After doing some Internet searching, this is the list I created:

  • January: No social media
  • February: No Netflix
  • March: No necessary opinions
  • April: No negativity
  • May: No idle snacking or PTO
  • June Fast: Only Christian books and music
  • July: No sleeping in
  • August: No YouTube
  • September: No complaining
  • October: No curiosity (be okay with not knowing everything)
  • November: No music in the car
  • December: No diets or lists

Being in the penultimate month of the year, I’m actually excited to say I think I’ve done fairly well. Most months, with the exception of June and July, I managed to stick to my fast without issue and found it was much easier than I anticipated.

Then I realized it was November and time for no music in the car.

My original thinking for this was it’s November, so I’ll spend my time in the car praying and thanking God. And then last week I almost fell asleep while driving home from an event and remembered I need to be stimulated while driving or else I will fall asleep. If I had super powers, I’m sure my kryptonite would be putting me in a car and you just start driving. I sleep in cars. It’s kind of my thing.

More than the safety issue, it didn’t feel right. Partially because it sounds a little miserable (sorry God) and partially because I made this list a year ago and things change. I wanted to do something that was more impactful for my life now. So I decided I would spend this month saying thank you.

It’s not like I don’t already say thank you a lot. I’m a very well-mannered human bean. My issue is, like most women, I apologize for everything, and someday I fear I will apologize my existence away.

Sometimes you need to say sorry, like if you step on someone’s toe or accidentally open their stall door while they’re going to the bathroom. But most of the time I apologize when I should say thank you.

For example, I have to ask a lot of questions about where to find files at work because I’m really bad at finding things. Usually I apologize for being such a goof to my coworker, but the other day I took a different approach. Instead of groveling in my inadequacy, I simply thanked her for her patience.

When you apologize instead of saying thank you, you’re demeaning yourself. It’s an immediate arrow that points to you and lets the world know you did something wrong. Sometimes this humility is good, but too often it’s incorrect.

Here’s how I know it’s an issue. Nine times out of 10 if I bump into a woman at the grocery store, we’ll both begin a parade of apologies to each other. Nine times out of 10 if I bump into a man in a grocery story, I’ll apologize and he’ll either ignore me or say it’s okay.

It’s ridiculous and I want it to stop.

If I start talking about my feelings too much, I tell my friend I’m sorry for dumping on them. Or if I start to go crazy at a meeting, I apologize for being long winded. In both cases, I’m discrediting myself and putting the burden on someone else. It’s much easier to thank a friend for listening and thank co-workers for hearing my ideas. It’s so much nicer, too.

Similarly, I’m going to stop adding qualifiers to my thank yous. Like the other day I accessorized one of my work shirts well and received a lot of compliments. My response to every single person who liked my outfit was “thanks, but my skirt isn’t zipped.” The “thanks, but” will be the death of me.

Even if I don’t say it out loud, I think it. If you compliment something I’ve created, I’ll tell you thanks and think about how I’m actually not great and if you actually knew all the dumb shortcuts I took. But most of the time I’ll say “thanks, but it was actually easy,” instead of just accepting praise of my work.

If you’re like me, and I knew too many of us are, I challenge you to try this too. It’s November so be thankful, not sorry. Any time you’re tempted to apologize, decide if a a thank you works better. I’m positive you’ll find that most of the time it does.

Thank you for taking the time to read my writing each and every week. I appreciate your support and acceptance.


I don’t have all the answers

I like knowing things. Fortunately, I’m alive in a time where I can just ask my phone a question and learn the answer. I don’t have to wonder how old an actor is or when a book was originally published. The Internet is an information super highway that takes the wonder out of situations. Curiosity is cured with a quick visit to Google, with more than 5 million results in .04 seconds.

It wasn’t until a year ago I really began to think about how frequently I let myself live in a world of knowledge vs wonder.

One of my goals this year was to do a fast each month, and surprisingly I’ve been mostly successful. Naturally, I turned to the internet last year for ideas, and came out with some like Netflix, complaining, and social media. One of the strangest suggestions I found was curiosity.

What does it mean to give up being curious? Why is having questions a bad thing? In theory, a healthy sense of curiosity is the foundation of learning. Much smarter people than me have asked the right questions for centuries and solved problems and cured diseases. That’s the good kind of curiosity. I’m talking about the dark side.

With social media, nearly everyone in the world is accessible. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard a name and immediately began an in-depth online investigation. I’ll go through tagged photos and end up traveling through five people’s accounts across three social networking sites and realize I’ve reached posts from 2004.

Did learning any of the information in my creep session actually benefit me? Of course not. It just means I’m a creep who probably knows more than she should about a stranger.

Consider these common situations. Maybe you’re watching a movie and want to know the ending or who an actor is. Without thinking, you’ll pull out your phone and do a search online. When you’re with friends and you’re debating something, you’ll make someone look up the answer to determine who was right.

Technology like this is a gift that I think our culture abuses. In moderation, it’s an incredible way to learn more about what you don’t know and become a more informed human. In excess, it’s a way that we remove all the mystery in our never-ending quest for knowledge and control.

Solomon didn’t live in a time where he could Google everything, but the guy had a lot of answers. God gave him the gift of wisdom, so people came to ask him questions and he always had the right response. Turns out, knowing everything isn’t necessarily the key to being fulfilled.

“Everything is wearisome beyond description. No matter how much we see, we are never satisfied. No matter how much we hear, we are not content.” Ecclesiastes 1:8

After a long life and 1,000 women, Solomon was tired and a little cynical. The summary of the book of Ecclesiastes is ‘everything is meaningless.’ He married foreign women and followed their gods and the more he learned, the more he lost focus.

Even though it’s unlikely any of us will have 700 spouses and 300 concubines, we have similar opportunities to be distracted by the things we can know. Instead of wondering about something and let it go, we close the gap and solve the problem that likely wasn’t even important.

In my own life, I know this search for knowledge is because I have such little control over everything and like Eve in the garden, I want to eat from the tree of knowledge so I know things, too. This problem is about more than internet searches for me.

I’ve watched the finale to a show I’ve never watched just so I knew how it ended. I’ll watch award shows I don’t care about just so I can be a part of the conversation. I’ve binged shows I didn’t love so I could have conversations with people who are fans.

Perhaps my worst curiosity flaw is needing to know the end of a story. Most people are appalled by my lack of concern over spoilers. Regrettably, I’ve ruined movies and shows for people because to me it isn’t a big deal. I want to know how it ends so I can enjoy the ride. The moment-to-moment anxiety is gone because I know what’s going to happen.

Even this morning I went to Wikipedia to read a plot of a movie to make sure the dog didn’t die. It only occurred to me after I began writing this that I clearly broke my ‘no idle curiosity fast.’

We all want answers for different reasons, but I believe endless searching can put us in the same place as Solomon. Even when I know more, am I any more content or satisfied? Definitely not.

“The Lord our God has secrets known to no one.” Deuteronomy 29:29

We are never going to have all the answers. Even if I can Google most questions and learn the correct responses, I’m never going to be fulfilled by my knowledge. There will always be more.

This is why, October and beyond, I want to be more intentional about what I learn. It doesn’t mean I’ll never Google something again, only I’ll think ‘how important is this to know?’ and ‘what will I gain by learning this information?’

I don’t have all the answers, and I never will. I’m going to stop trying to know everything and enjoy the ride as it comes. Even if it means I have to sit through an entire movie and not know how it ends. Yikes.


The eternal struggle of books vs Netflix

I used to be a reader. There was a time when finishing books consumed me and little else seemed to matter. I was the kid who stayed up late, sneakily turning on my bed light to read when I should’ve been asleep. I couldn’t wait to get home from going anywhere because it meant I could read my book again.

When the last Harry Potter book was released, I read it in 24 hours. Literally. I took it with me to a baseball game. I stayed up all night reading. I read it in church. I couldn’t stop.

Now when people ask what I like to do, I draw a blank and feel like the most boring person in the world. I don’t think this is uncommon for my generation, though. We like to watch Netflix and engross ourselves in social media, but that makes us sound like the most boring people ever. I default to reading and taking walks, because I am the most boring person in the world and I actually don’t know what I like to do.

I’m not sure when I lost it, but I did. Maybe it’s all part of adulthood when you think through your answers too much and want to seem cool while impressing someone with the interesting hobbies you enjoy.

Deep down, we know Netflix and chill (minus the sexual connotations of said ‘chill’) is basically the defining hobby of our generation. The ability to access thousands of titles across multiple platforms has made us numb to doing anything else. It’s the easy answer when you want to relax, plus new shows are dropped every day and you want to be in the loop.

We watch until the black screen appears, judging us ever so gently by passive-aggressively asking if we’re still watching. Of course we are, but you’re just being nice. I want to meet the person who accidentally leaves Netflix on and that question is actually warranted.

Before Netflix and social media and really even easy Internet access, all I had were my books. They were my escape and comfort. My imagination grew arguably too large because of the constant immersion. When I wasn’t reading, I was likely creating some elaborate world for my toys to inhabit.

As I got older, I had more distractions and less time to read for endless hours. I didn’t want to stay up reading all night because I was tired. Sure, I still told everyone I was a reader and acted pompous like one, but I knew. Reading was replaced by screens and the easy escape versus the one I have to concentrate on.

Every so often I read a book that pulls me in and I can’t stop. I’m riveted and feel like I’m a part of the world and it just stays with me, causing my thoughts to obsess about the world long after I’ve left it. Too often I start a book, get distracted, put it down and then start a new one. My stack of half-finished books is almost as high as the ones I haven’t read. Oh yeah, I still buy books. A lot of them. Because I’m a reader, and I like books, remember? I like spending money so they can sit on my shelf and remind me that I don’t actually read anymore.

This year, I decided to set a goal of reading 50 books. That’s roughly one a week and kind of intimidating and I’m already behind but hey maybe I’ll pull a couple of quick reads to make up for it. I wanted to find the determination I used to have in reading and the dedication to finishing every story I start.

I mean, I read through the entire Twilight series because I didn’t leave a series unfinished. And it was garbage. It’s okay you like it, we all have things we like that are garbage, but it’s not good.

The bigger issue is in recent years I’ve allowed adulthood to rob me of a lot of things. My temper is shorter and my optimism is waning. I’ll tell you I’m a glass half full person, but I don’t feel that way. It’s rare I wake up excited for anything and mostly can’t wait to go to bed again.

Right now, it’s like I’m in the middle of one of those long rainbow, twisty slides. For years I’ve been letting it happen and winding down, hating the static shocks that remind me slides aren’t as pleasant as you think (seriously why do kids love them). Now I’ve stopped myself and I’m in limbo. I can climb up, but that’s terrifying. I’ll likely slip and lose progress and get all hot and sweaty, but what’s the alternative?

I don’t want to lose myself anymore than I have. Change is natural, but I’ve let the hallmarks of who I am fall because it’s easy to let it happen then fight in a world telling you to give in, this is adulthood, it doesn’t get better. Maybe that’s true, but I can get better.

Reading more books may seem like a strange start, but I know it’s the exact right place to reclaim part of who I used to be and find that girl again. The one who would rather stay up late reading about the adventures of fictional characters than spend hours in text conversations trying to find the exact reason of a social media post. Not that I don’t love sleuthing, but I need more.