I was feeling a little bored last night – wasn’t in the mood for reading, just wanted some popcorn and a little drama. No, I don’t mean picking a fight with the missus, I mean watching a play – the missus was at work, anyway.
When this particular entertainment desire comes upon me, I’ll click on the tv, see what’s on the (cheap) Encore channels, or visit my DVD library. Same as you, yes? Well, here’s how I often imagine this sequence happening, perhaps you could imagine it the same way.
So, I picked up the phone, in this case it’s the BLUE phone I use for special occasions. I called up the Character Storeroom, where they keep all the players from the movies. You know, the guy who says, “Round up the usual suspects”, or that one who says, “Frankly, Scarlett, I don’t give a damn!”
The Chooser Helper answered the phone, and I began to describe what I wanted to see. Miss Helper started trying to read my mind as we progressed into the conversation.
I told her I wanted to revisit that scene where the one guy was telling another where he could find something buried under a piece of black volcanic glass. She hemmed and hawed, then punched a few buttons. Without further delay, my tv switched to the scene in “Shawshank Redemption” where Andy DuFresne is telling Red to look for a particular hayfield near Buxton – “You know where Buxton is, right, Red?” Wonderful! Always love seeing that scene. So glad the Characters weren’t busy when I needed them.
Later, I picked up the BLUE phone again, and the lady promptly agreed to assist me. I began, “What was that scene where the fellow carrying the briefcase seemed to be walking across the surface of a lake?” This time, hardly any delay at all – she remotely turned my tv on, and the final scene from “Being There” popped up, with Chance Gardener dressed in his dapper suit and carrying that briefcase. I’ve discussed that final scene with others, by the way, and we always wondered what that last scene signified. I guess I should have asked Jerzy Kosinski – he wrote it, after all. So glad to see that played out, again. I was on a roll now, watching my favorite parts without having to spend hours waiting for them. It’s so nice, having this Character Storeroom, and the Characters are always willing to re-play their parts for me.
I picked up the BLUE phone once more. Pleasant as ever, Miss Chooser answered, ready to serve. I’m often amazed that she is ever so helpful, never short-tempered or exasperated. I rarely remember the movie titles I want, only the scenes or perhaps the character names, but she gets it right, every time. For this part of the evening, I started my description of a scene with, “ You know that one where the guy is the minister for this mining village in Wales, or Ireland, or someplace, and he is reading to the boy who is sick in bed. Does that sound familiar at all?” She chuckled a bit, then said, “Why, of course, you are talking about Mr. Gruffyd, and he is reading some of the classics to young Huw, now bedridden after his fall into the frigid stream. No problem at all!” And, in a moment, “How Green Was My Valley” was on-screen, and kindly Mr. Gruffyd was right there! How wonderful!
My evening was well gone by now, but I elected to make one more choice for my bill of fare, and I gave it a bit of thought, then picked up the…… wait for it….. BLUE PHONE, again. It was as if Miss Chooser was waiting for my call, because after I was only a few words into my request, she, without interrupting me, channeled “Zulu!” onto my screen, and the warriors on the hillside were rhythmically beating their assegai spears against their shields and chanting, making a sound much like a very large locomotive coming down the track. Ah, Rorke’s Drift, you’re in for it now!
Finally, eyelids drooping, I decided to head for the bed. I gave Miss Chooser one last call, just to thank her, and in way of parting, she directed my tv to come on, and Richard Collier and Elise McKenna walked away into the clouds, hand in hand, forever together, “Somewhere in Time”.
Pleasant dreams, Miss Chooser!