Friday, December 14, 2012

Netflix Guilt

I love Netflix. It's convenient, reliable and cheap. In fact, it's so affordable, Nathan and I have separate accounts! I have one of the cheaper accounts, which just gives me two discs at a time, and Nathan's account includes the streaming option. Separate Netflix accounts may be one of the modern secrets to a happy marriage.

With Netflix, you can freely add as many discs as you like to your queue. You just have to carefully manage your queue to make sure you always receive the disc you actually want. It's one thing to add a documentary about The Great Depression to your queue; it's another thing to actually sit down and watch said disc.

Sometimes, a red Netflix envelope appears in my mailbox and when I tear it open, my stomach sinks. Oh no, it's that Marilyn Monroe movie that I thought I wanted to watch but crap, I just want to watch the latest season of How I Met Your Mother. Then the Marilyn Monroe movie sits, and sits, and sits, on top of the DVD player, taunting me. Every time I go to watch t.v. alone, I consider watching the old Marilyn flick, and every time, it feels like a boring homework assignment. So instead, I dig up a movie from my chick flick stash and save Marilyn for another day. Two months later, the Marilyn Monroe movie is still tormenting me with its dusty glare, and I still just want to watch the next season of How I Met Your Mother.

I call this Netflix Guilt and I know I am not alone.  Across this country, there is a brotherhood growing every day, and it is The Brotherhood Of People Who Forgot To Manage Their Netflix Queue And Now They Have A Kubrick Film They Don't Want to Watch But Once, After Reading A Magazine Article, They Felt Inspired To Watch All Of Kubrick's Movies, And Now They Feel Guilty If They Send The Disc Back Before Watching It.

There is no shame in belonging to this Brotherhood. But this year, I challenge all members of the Netflix Guilt Brotherhood to forgive themsleves and to return all unwanted discs, whether watched or unwatched. You do not have to watch The Artist just because it won Best Picture. You do not have to watch Hugo just because your sister said it's amazing. And you do not have to watch Battleship Potemkin just because your film major friend said something pretensious about "early Russian filmmaking" that made you feel like an idiot. You are not idiot and I don't care if you ever watch Battleship Potemkin. But you are an idiot if you let your Netflix Guilt get the best of you and you keep the Battleship Potemkin disc for six months when you really just want to join the Downton Abbey bandwagon. Put the Battleship Potemkin disc back in its red envelope and get ye to a mailbox.