cinema ROI: a vacation SOS.

Sorry if you've gotten used to frequent posts from me this past week--that ends tomorrow (I'll be back to weekend posts...assuming I find something to write about here). I'll be back at work tomorrow; since mid-October, returning to work after a long break is about 1,000 times less upsetting that it has been for the last few years. But still hard and sad to do...mostly, I think, because of all that I meant to accomplish that I did not actually accomplish while off for an entire week. I think because for the first half of any break, I spend a lot of time decompressing from the stress of classroom teaching in a Title 1 school, but also because it's me. It's just me. And I've been analyzing for a few years now this inability I have to address that which needs addressing. Currently, I'm at the Screw It point. Whatever it is will eventually get done when it gets done; pressure tends to make my inner donkey-child get stubborn and refuse to move. 

All that to say: this has been a long week off. For someone who's had a whole week of vacation, I am clinically exhausted. With tomorrow looming ahead of me, I feel for sure now I've picked the wrong profession, and I would like to time travel back to that 20 year old college girl I was, poised with a pen to check off "Education" as her life vocation, and I would like to shake her. I would like to shake her hard. 

Or rather, I picked the wrong profession to be in AND also have my own child. Some teachers appear to do this with great ease: have their own child/ren and seamlessly manage 25-30 other people's all day long. I am finding this challenging. I can do other people's children or I can do my own child. But to do other people's children and then have to go do my own child means I never get a break from children...jesus god, it's exhausting. Because children are exhausting. I'm sorry if you disagree (and I suspect that, if you do disagree you either don't have children or you do but you don't do most of the care taking of said children). Children are demanding and loud and they make a lot of messes and they don't care, and mine will say that right to your face: "I don't care." And then you have to get into these arguments with them about why they'd better care. And mine likes to give me a lot of back talk. And when I try to discipline her, I am co-parenting with someone who tells me I'm too mean about it. And this week I found myself so tired at one point, I just sat and laughed and laughed about all the bizarre things that come out of an adult's mouth when with a loud, demanding child for an extended length of time. Things like: "put some pants on, for god's sake, nobody likes to look at another person's hooha all day long" and "no ma'm you are NOT wearing shorts and flip flops because it's friggin' 25 degrees outside" and "yes you WILL wear underwear with that flippy dress" and "yes I do too wear underwear" (I actually wasn't, but it would have lost me that argument) and "all the other people in Georgia are wearing pants today, sorry if you disagree with them" and "if you break your head open, don't come cry to me--you'll just have proved my point." 

Horrible things, horrible things to say out loud to another human being. Children make adults say horrible and bizarre things, because children are exhausting and messy and they don't care. And for me, there's no where to go, no where to turn. Except for very large bottles of Pinot Noir and sometimes just straight up bottles of vodka disguised as chocolate martinis. And what I would really really like to do right now is have a long weekend at a spa resort with nobody else to be responsible for except for myself. And I would wear underwear AND pants. (Maybe not the whole time and never while by myself.) And I would take myself to the movies and out to eat and I would get lost in a book and while writing a book and nobody would interrupt me to ask weird questions like "Did you know Elsa can make your lips turn blue? Do I look like Elsa with these blue lips?" and I would not then have to have a fight about using too much blue lip gloss and where the hell did you get that stuff anyway? I would like that right now. I would like a true vacation, a relaxing and restorative vacation. 

(I'm sorry if I sound like a bad mother right now; if it helps, please know: I feel like a bad mother right now. But I'm also being very, very bluntly open and honest with you because I think a lot of women often feel like I do. If this is you, you are not alone. You are not alone. Let's meet for coffee and just sit together in adult communal silence. Or get a couples massage together and not speak. Or, fuck it--let's go to a silent retreat somewhere and sleep a lot.)

Today I had a bunch of things to do, but my child was exhausting me so I said: screw this, we need to get out of this house. And we did--we went to see Big Hero 6

Which brings me to the topic of this post: Can we talk about me going to the cinema for a bit? There are a buttload of movies out right now I'd like to see--Interstellar (I'm actually desperate to see this movie), Fury, The Theory of Everything, St. Vincent, Gone Girl, Birdman, Beyond the Lights...there are more, but those are the ones I can pull out of my brain immediately. But these are not movies I can see with a 6 year old, or movies a 6 year old even wants to see. And I am simply unwilling to be one of Those People--you know the kind: the people who want to see Freddie Krueger Part 25 so bad but are too cheap to get a sitter so they bring the kid...and end up mentally scarring their child and ruining fellow movie theater patrons' experience (who dropped $100 or more on the movie AND probably paid for their own babysitters on top of it PLUS dinner). This is nothing but a maw of selfishness, and I think those people should be flogged. I am all for the bringing back of flogging when it comes to rude cinema patrons. So because I'm not willing to be that rude or deal with future therapy bills, what happens is that because I enjoy the act of going to a theater to see a movie, I end up seeing mostly kids movies. Which I don't necessarily have a problem with; many children's movies are lovely experiences and thoroughly rewarding. I mean, my god, today I was in tears TWICE during Big Hero 6 and I walked out thinking: that was an okay, cute movie with a nice message and how nice that it promoted STEM education. Everybody needs a Baymax.

Yet. I'm dying of cinematic thirst over here, you guys. I'd kill to see a grown up movie--alone or with other grown ups. I'm dying to go see a grown up movie, go out to dinner afterwards and talk about it, and just basically have human interaction with someone or someones who don't whine when I refuse to buy candy AND popcorn at the concession stand. Is it too much to ask?

I have a bucket list--I think I've written about that here before. One of the things on my bucket list is to go see a movie with a professional. I come out of movies all the time and go: that was awesome! and then I read a bunch of critical reviews that go: that totally sucked! Or I walk out and go: I don't get it? and then I read a bunch of critical reviews that go: that movie rocks! (On a positive note, usually when I walk out of a movie going: that movie totally sucked, all the professionals tend to agree with me: yes, Amy, it did suck. This lets me know I have some semblance of filmatic taste.) 

So I would like to see some movies with a professional who can tell me why something works or why something doesn't and how in the world they know that. Is it all just subjective opinion? Or is there a training program of sorts one can go through? I don't know.

What I do know is a 6 year old simply isn't someone who can thoroughly discuss a movie to any extent. This was our conversation on the way out of the theater today:

What did you think about Big Hero 6?
(shrugs shoulders)
No, I mean, did you like it? I liked it. Did you?
Well, I mean, what was your favorite part? 
(shrugs shoulders)
My favorite part was when they....(I won't disclose what happened here, in case you haven't seen the movie yet, but it was at the end)
I liked the fist bump. 
(does an air fist bump and makes the fist bump sound that Baymax makes in the movie)
Who was your favorite character?
(sighs, clearly done with this conversation
Can we get a hot chocolate at Starbucks? Can we stop at Target so I can find stuff for my Christmas wish list?

And then later I found out she wasn't even wearing underpants like I'd told her to. We agreed there would be underpants or no movie today. So. You see? That's why I need a professional grown up to see movies with, so I can have a stimulating conversation about what was just seen, and I can hang out with someone who dresses responsibly. So far, I just shell out muchos dolares to see these things, and then get no return on investment whatsoever. I'd like some cinema ROI. And adult conversation.

Instead, I'll be surrounded by children tomorrow--1200 total, but 25 to myself all day long. And we will be having conversations like that. And so on my Christmas Wish List this year is a movie date with a professional movie goer, someone who I can see Interstellar with who can explain to me what was so amazing or sucky or weird or wonderful about it, and I can agree with them or argue with them or wonder about humanity out loud with them. 

We can fist bump over hot chocolate at Starbucks in Target. Anything. Just. Please save me. SOS.

I would like to be here...alone...right now.

But I'd take this, too. Beggars don't get to be choosers.

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