Movies and noticing stuff

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My wife and I went to see the movie Barbie at the Mcmenamins St. John’s Theater and Pub – a friend suggested seeing Barbie at this particular theater because it might be easier for me to hear. She was right! And this theater has a closed captioning device that sit in the cup holder and has a positional gooseneck!!! This made it possible for deaf me to comfortably enjoy the movie! And boy did we enjoy it!! Had to have a beer afterwards and discuss it! What fun! We discussed the many subtle jokes in the backgrounds, small allusions to elements of consumer culture, in the various scenes. It made me aware all over again of how important small things are in our daily physical and mental lives.

In the walkway leading towards the theater I loved all of the trees and the various colors of greenery…

….and the “enchanted forest” entryway into the theater and pub.

Stepping inside the neighborhood pub itself was magical. It had an old-world  artsy, funky, steam-punky, weird odd whimsical vibe that I enjoyed.

We want through the pub to go inside the wooden domed theater. It was possible to order food and beverage to be delivered to our theater seats. In front of each of the rows of seats were long communal table ledges just wide enough to hold plates and glasses. We didn’t order anything as I felt I had enough to do to prepare to “hear” the movie. The wooden dome and the art all around the perimeter were amazing to look at while we waited for the movie to begin.

The screen was at one end of the round room that seated perhaps 50 people.

When we bought our tickets I requested use of the closed captioning device. Then I wedged one end of the device into the cupholder and positioned the captioning end so it’d be under my view of the screen but yet not impeding anyone else’s view. Here’s me positioning the device.

Then the movie started and I turned my phone off and didn’t turn it back on till we got home. After the movie was over we sat in the pub having food and beverages while talking about the movie. There were so many fun things to see in the pub itself that besides going back for another movie – the captioning device worked wonderfully for me – I want to bring my sketchbook and draw. The food and beers were very good too but there were so many things to notice in the pub and outside around the pub that I ached for my notebook and sketchbook!

As you know, as part of my art practice (fully described in my recent newsletter) I try to notice 7 small things each day. That’s harder to do than it sounds. And I recently  read this seriously-jaw-dropping newsletter by Rob Walker which explains why it’s so hard.

Here’s a look at my notebook where I write stuff I notice every day…

I find it such an odd curious thing, about myself and about most humans, that 9 pleasant things can happen within a day but the 1 unpleasant thing will usually get all of the emotion and attention. And besides that often we wait until something grabs our attention (usually negatively) before we tune in. So I try to be contrarian and give more of my feelings and attention to the good things. Also I try to do my own purposful noticing instead of waiting for something external to move me … but I take the pressure off by only asking of myself that I notice 7 small (hopefully) nice things per day.

This is a book I have appreciated, and highly recommend, about noticing things.

Kirt Vonnegut also writes about trying to notice nice things that happen every day specifically to notice when you’re happy. This book is ostensibly for young people but I figure the young people I’ve been in my 5-years-past-half-century lifetime are still inside me so I reread this book fairly often.

So I hope you’re having many pleasant moments today and that you remember to notice as many of them as you can.

See you next Monday.

8 thoughts on “Movies and noticing stuff

    1. You’re welcome! Thanks for reading! It really was an amazing theater- I just had to share it with you!! We need all the pleasant things we can notice! ❤

  1. That movie theater looks wonderful! Never mind the movie, I’d go just to experience the space. I watched the graduate change video. Totally missed every change because I thought I was supposed to be looking for things out of place, not moving. Yet another good reminder, that it doesn’t pay to make assumptions!

    1. It really was a magical theater and I hope to go back too with time to just absorb the space as you say never mind a movie! And I’m glad I wasn’t the only person who watched the gradual change video and flat missed things!! And here’s me trying to practice my observational skills every day! 🤦‍♀️ Ha! There’s a reason it’s called “practice” 🤣 Isn’t it wild how our mental expectations and assumptions affect our vision? That constantly amazes me. Making visual art helps me to really look in depth at things – drawing often leads me to poetry or prose and vice versa – but I have to constantly remind myself to practice looking with only my eyes, seeing without judgement before or during my experience … or else all I “see” is what I expected to see! 🤦‍♀️ Whenever I’m successful at “just looking” this world is still an amazing place.

  2. What a fabulous theatre. I took my granddaughter to the movie. Maya is 10 and most of the movie went right over her head. Still, from a feminist perspective, I was glad I took her and we had some conversations about what it means to be a woman especially in todays society.

    1. That’s wonderful that you got to have a conversation about being a woman in today’s world with your granddaughter!! We need such supportive conversations all of our lives might as well start early!!

Thank you for reading and sharing encouragements!