Isolation and the Pandemic

Anybody else feel like this pandemic has made them antsy to start going out and doing more, to have more of a life? I’m an introvert and tend to isolate a lot anyway due to my poor mental health, but it’s like not being able to go out and do things has made me want to. At the beginning of this pandemic when everything was starting to shut down, I’ll admit it felt kind of nice not to feel like a freak anymore, not to feel like I’m in the minority of people who have absolutely no life. That we’re all in the same position now. But that initial feeling has turned stale, and I’m just as unhappy as everybody else in these circumstances. I’m glad there’s a vaccine and I hope it’s made available to everyone soon. I want to take a sewing class or something when we can and it’s safe not to wear a mask the entire time. I know I could take one online or use a YouTube tutorial, but I want to get out and be around people a bit more, while pursuing a hobby I’m interested in. I think it would be good for me.

I Miss the Library

Has anybody else been feeling the poignancy of the temporary loss of libraries in their life? The ones in my area have been closed for almost a month now, without notice. It was with heavy heart that I placed my last set of borrowed books in the return slot outside, not knowing when it would re-open.

Walking into a library (or writing about one, I’m now finding) never fails to lift my spirits. My mom instilled in me a love for reading since before I even learned how to read, and my great uncle took my younger sister and I to the library, as children, on a weekly basis to check out books, read the paper, read articles on microfiche, and attend (free) classical music concerts.

Many people only picture books when they think about a library. Libraries are about so much more than just books, although those do happen to be some of my favorite things in this world (at least, the kind you can hold in your hands with real pages to turn that have that “classic book smell”).

But the library is more than a convenience, luxury, or entertainment venue. It’s an essential asset to many members of the community, especially those belonging to vulnerable populations. The library allows access to a safe, warm, quiet environment with a bathroom. It offers internet access so that those without computers or internet access at home, as well as those without a home, can create a resume, apply for jobs, print paper documents, and learn about what’s going on in the world.

Libraries also offer DVD’s, CD’s, board games, and, depending on the library, other items such as work tools and musical instruments for rent. They offer free, fun, educational activities for kids and teens. They offer workshops and classes for adults, such as tax prep, gardening skills, mental health, etc. They offer resources to victims of domestic violence. And yet they are constantly on the front lines facing threats of defunding.

I’m sure I will make it until my library opens back up. I know I have other alternatives available to me, such as ebooks and ordering used books online for delivery. And I am lucky enough to have a warm, safe home, internet access, and even a job, to say nothing of my comparatively great health in a time when so many others are getting sick.

Keep your chins up, fellow library fans! Our precious institutions of old will not be inaccessible to us forever. In conclusion, I will leave some of my favorite library-related quotes for you to enjoy.

100 Films From Hollywood’s Golden Age Not to Miss

I hope everyone is doing well and taking care of themselves and their loved ones during these uncertain times. I know I have been gone for a while and decided to make a list of some of my favorite “black-and-white” or “classic” movies as my first come-back post. Many of these can be found free on the internet (especially on YouTube), and I know many of us have the time to sit down and enjoy a movie now that we’re quarantining. It’s interesting to watch movies from past eras when different norms and standards ruled society, to note the similarities and differences between how we think and act now. The use of different lingo and different word meanings can also be fun to learn. The slower pacing of older movies often helps set a film’s ambiance and causes viewers to feel more invested in the film’s ending. In no specific order and representing a variety of genres, here are 100 of my favorite movies from the 1930’s-1960’s:

1. Twelve Angry Men (1957)

2. Double indemnity (1944)

3. Dial M for Murder (1954)

4. Vertigo (1958)

5. Wait Until Dark (1967)

6. The Great Escape (1963)

7. Rebecca (1940)

8. House on Haunted Hill (1959)

9. And Then There Were None (1945)

10. Witness for the Prosecution (1957)

11. The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)

12. All About Eve (1950)

13. Citizen Kane (1941)

14. Whatever Happened to Baby Jane (1962)

15. Sunset Boulevard (1950)

16. On the Waterfront (1954)

17. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)

18. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

19. The Grapes of Wrath (1940)

20. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

21. The Children’s Hour (1961)

22. Casablanca (1942)

23. A Patch of Blue (1965)

24. Les Diabolique (1955)

25. Laura (1944)

26. The Bicycle Thief (1948)

27. Imitation of Life (1934)

28. Pollyanna (1960)

29. Repulsion (1965)

30. Shadow of a Doubt (1943)

31. Rear Window (1954)

32. Strangers on a Train (1951)

33. Rope (1948)

34. Gaslight (1944)

35. The Caine Mutiny (1954)

36. Freaks (1932)

37. The Masque of the Red Death (1964)

38. It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963)

39. The Producers (1967)

40. The Dirty Dozen (1967)

41. 36 Hours (1965)

42. Ace in the Hole (1951)

43. Lilies of the Field (1963)

44. The Stranger (1946)

45. North by Northwest (1959)

46. Charade (1963)

47. Anatomy of a Murder (1959)

48. Psycho (1960)

49. Birds (1963)

50. Marnie (1964)

51. To Catch a Thief (1955)

52. Notorious (1946)

53. Lifeboat (1944)

54. The Trouble With Harry (1955)

55. I Confess (1953)

56. The Dark Corner (1946)

57. Scarlett Street (1945)

58. Foreign Correspondent (1940)

59. Stage Fright (1950)

60. Spellbound (1945)

61. Suspicion (1941)

62. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

63. The Wrong Man (1956)

64. Wild Strawberries (1957)

65. Adam’s Rib (1949)

66. Black Narcissus (1947)

67. Le Trou (1960)

68. The Innocents (1961)

69. The Most Dangerous Game (1932)

70. David and Lisa (1962)

71. The Uninvited (1944)

72. Compulsion (1959)

73. Black Widow (1954)

74. Blackboard Jungle (1955)

75. Knife in the Water (1962)

76. Finishing School (1934)

77. The Big Heat (1953)

78. The Lost Weekend (1945)

79. Fahrenheit 451 (1966)

80. A Town Like Alice (1956)

81. The Manchurian Candidate (1962)

82. Dead Ringer (1964)

83. Dark Passage (1947)

84. The Maltese Falcon (1941)

85. The Love God (1969)

86. Where the Sidewalk Ends (1950)

87. The Long, Long Trailer (1954)

88. Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation (1962)

89. Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)

90. The Shaggy Dog (1959)

91. Stagecoach (1939)

92. It Happened One Night (1934)

93. The 39 Steps (1935)

94. The Lady Vanishes (1938)

95. The Letter (1940)

96. The Third Man (1949)

97. The Apartment (1960)

98. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

99. Inherit the Wind (1960)

100. Life With Father (1947)

If you find your own favorites on this list or have faves of your own to share with me, please let me know!