3 min read

things i think about while powerwashing 82

I remember the curved black plastic of the VHS player. Its main job was to play orange Dora tapes, and it did its job pretty well. I remember sitting next to the media console, pressing down the rewind button until it clicked in place, the sprockets whirling in reverse at my whim.

The next evolution of home media was DVDs and is the one that I associate the most memories with. Redbox, Blockbuster, and the red Netflix envelopes in the mail were all staples of my childhood. We had a dedicated DVD player but starting with the advent of the PS3 we never looked back, and then we bought a PS4 which we also used for that purpose.

So why am I talking about DVDs? Well If you remember I was on my NCIS kick and right in the middle of that Netflix took the early seasons off the goddamn service. I was on a roll — how am I supposed to finish this off? My binge remains UNSATIATED.

Enter the library. I’ve recently started going back and getting some guidebooks to study up on a future trip, and then I remembered that the library had movies. I go to my local branch and lo and behold — the entire collection of NCIS (not in blu-ray but that’s fine).

The feeling of binging via DVD is a little strange — and kind of soothing. DVDs have a capacity of around 4-5 45 minute episodes, so standing up in order to change out the DVD does offer some type of opening to break out of the media-induced trance. Episodes also don't auto-play, making me search for the remote every 45 minutes or so. But most of all, my media viewing is now confined to the living room. Bringing us back to this idea that when you're at one place, you're doing one thing at a time. Does it bring down productivity? Well if you're talking about the rate at which I complete tasks, kind of. I'm not carrying around my iPad with NCIS playing while doing chores anymore. I sit down and relax and enjoy the highly-dramatized and repetitive mysteries, then do any chores later.

This slowing of pace is definitely a sort of luxury. It requires things — DVD players, TV, a living room to do all this in. If there's anything that modern technology has given us it's the democratization of media and comfort. But it makes me feel good. It feels right to take things slow. To take it one episode at a time. And honestly looking for DVDs in the library is a much better time than browsing on Netflix.

When was the last time you all used DVDs to watch movies? Let me know at ryan @ torrtle.co

anonymous subscriber news

Got some good ones in here! I see two that have to do with sports drafting and it seems this has been quite the week for that. In the NBA we had an interesting draft with our favorite Boilermaker tallboi Zach Edey heading to the Memphis Grizzlies and I guess the NHL misfortunes of the Sharks has lasted long enough for them to draft the hockey version of Victor Wenbanyama.

This is your reminder that this is what the ideal anonymous subscriber news section looks like — hot takes, travel updates, ideally dating updates but also some personal things. I don’t see any info related to you! So submit away.
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animal of the week

Tiger snake eels and the sunset, name a better duo I’ll wait. Apparently people who work here found out they love bread from the dining hall, since then I have also found out they like Mac and cheese, and have a hard time with pretzels. – esteemed subscriber Emi Chan

Emi is on a roll again here, presenting us with a beautiful eel (never seen one live I guess) and a prettier sunset. Must be some island you’re working on buddy. Send me your animals at [email protected]!