At Home He's a Tourist

He fills his head with culture/ He gives himself an ulcer.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Haven't posted in a while, so I thought I'd get one in before my end-of-the-month cultural consumption report.

A sign that I'm taking DVDs too seriously: I'm now a member of both Greencine and Netflix. I left NF for GC last year because I had gotten the impression that the latter had more foreign titles. It was the fact that they had Rivette's Jeanne la Pucelle while Netflix didn't which sealed the deal. But a chance conversation with a coworker who is a NF member and a Chinese movie fan revealed that NF has some Zhang Yimou in their catalog which GC doesn't. This led me to discover other lacunae. In fact, there were about thirty films I've been waiting for GC to lease which NF already offers, including occasional titles by big names like Chabrol, Rohmer, and Almodovar. (Frustratingly, GC will often sell some DVDs they won't lease.) GC's reputation as a source of foreign fare is overrated; their real specialization seems to be video-on-demand porn. However, as they do in fact have some interesting things NF doesn't (e.g. a lot more Satyajit Ray, or the Call of Cthulhu fanfilm (more on that at the end of the month)), I'm sticking with GC but downgrading to one-at-a-time membership level; I rejoined NF for two-at-a-time. The NF website is a lot more efficient as well, their delivery times are quicker, and I'm hoping that after getting busted in a lawsuit for "throttling" that they'll play fair from now on.

At work we discovered this week that we're missing catalog records for about 22,000 of our NetLibrary ebooks. We can't figure out how it happened, but considering that L.L., the previous cataloger, was not especially dedicated to her job, I have my suspicions.

For Lent I gave up Internet surfing. The goal is to check my mail, blogs, and online newspapers once a day, and to pick up a book or magazine when I need something to read. The fact that I've fallen off the wagon more than once is probably an indication that this is the abstention I needed to make.

This Sunday is the last service at the local OPC mission. Church shopping has been inconclusive.