By: Purvi Goel
Be careful where your eyes go. That’s the hack to life, love, and studying. Wandering eyes are dangerous when it comes to marriage or textbooks. But it’s high time that we take our eyes off the books and put them on a television screen.
It’s easy to get lost in the time-sucking vortex that is school. Schedules fill up too quickly with projects and tests and homework. Time spent off from studying, once valuable for pursuing hobbies, is now well worn with worrying about tomorrow’s test, or tomorrow’s lecture. Study, then worry; worry, then study—it’s a cycle that is bound to spiral out of control.
As MSJ students, this cycle is second nature. Not worrying seems as alien as getting enough sleep; it’s unusual and weird, but it’s high time we get used to it. Worrying helps no one. But there’s no off switch. It’s an innate feeling that grasps at all of us.
There is, however, a button that says “Pause.” And that button is found in a matinee-price ticket to the movies and a buttery bag of popcorn.
Movies provide a sense of escapism, a temporary relief. Watching them is a chance to let go of fear and nervousness, to sit back and find a new world on the screen. It’s an opportunity to forget the failures of today and the “might”s and “maybe”s of tomorrow. There’s a new world waiting to be explored in every film, and there’s no space in your backpack to bring your woes along. Leave stress at the theater door.
The movie will begin and end. The end credits will roll with a pretty song in the background. In those previous two hours of blissful release, perhaps we’ve gained new perspectives and ideas. Perhaps the child watching The Lion King will conclude that death isn’t quite so scary as it seems to be. Perhaps the gaggle of teenagers poring over The Amazing Spiderman will look at their responsibilities with new eyes.
Perhaps it’s enough to wrangle our stress and finally give it the boot. Fresh escapism lets us start with a clean slate. It’s a freedom not afforded to those that spend their waking hours glued to their textbooks, letting their worries sizzle and simmer in their heads for hours on end.
A fair number of parents will undoubtedly write movies off as procrastination, or some strange sort of new-fangled addiction plaguing this no-good, irresponsible, lazy generation.
But that view blatantly mischaracterizes movies. Quite opposite from a time-drain, movies expose us to innovative situations and circumstances we wouldn’t get a chance to experience if we spent our entire day fixed upon studying. Contrary to popular belief, there is a life outside of our math textbooks. Movies are just a way to get to know that unfamiliar world a little bit better.
Sleeping? That’s laughable, really; we never get nearly enough of that.
Stressing? But pressure does nothing but sow more pressure.
So watch a movie, instead. Close that textbook, buy some movie tickets and some buttered popcorn, and relish the reverie.