So, I like to think I’m a fairly straightforward kind of fella. I get up most weekdays, and go to work, and I come home in the evening and have dinner, put the children to bed, and watch a bit of telly.
I’ve got some podcasts I listen to on the way to work, and I’ve bought a few e-books off of Amazon to keep me occupied when I’ve got a few minutes spare. I’ve bought a few DVDs of some good quality dramas to watch when there’s nothing on the telly. And I collect a few comics because they’re another form of escapism.
The trouble is, there is just too much stuff to consume! Our TV hard drive is running out of space, we have about ten per cent left of a 1GB capacity. Yes, the girls have a lot of films that stay there, but I have quite a few series lined up to watch: the latest Walking Dead series, a couple of Nordic thrillers – The Bridge, Trapped, Jordskott, a few American dramas – Tyrant, Suits, Vinyl, The 100… When will I get the time to watch them all? God only knows.
Then there’s the DVDs of shows I’ve heard are good: The Wire (currently up to series 3, have 4 & 5 to watch), Battlestar Galactica (I’ve forgotten where I am, will have to start from scratch), Community 1 – 4, the first series of The Good Wife, Braquo and Spiral 1 – 3. These will all have to wait until I’ve cleared some space off the hard drive, and we aren’t in danger of running out of space.
At least I know when I can listen to my podcasts, that is train time. Except that I record too many to listen to, and am currently listening to current affairs programmes which are a month old. I suppose the interesting thing is to see how things which have been predicted / discussed have turned out, but I’m not sure that is the intention. I have Today in Parliament, The Now Show, Westminster Hour, Any Questions, the Guardian Politics Weekly podcast all waiting to be heard. Then that’s not counting Richard Herring’s RHLSTP, Android Central’s podcast, and others. At least Parliament is in recess at the moment, and Herring is between series, so I have a chance to eat into the 16+ hours of aural pleasure to eat into.
But where do the Kindle books fit in? And now I have a few physical books to read as well; the first Stephen Donaldson White Gold Wielder trilogy, a new (ish) PJ Tracy thriller, some Christmas-themed chick lit books (I like them, and I’m not ashamed to say it. I’m not the type of bloke who has to have a “grown up cover” on my Harry Potter books…). Amazon keep offering some Kindle books at 99p, and they look good and have good reviews, so I buy them but don’t read them; at least I don’t read them quicker than I buy them. So they are beginning to stack up… Currently I’ve got more than 100 books on my Nook reader and those are the ones I haven’t read. I’m currently enjoying “47 Things” by Lilliana Anderson, and it is enjoyable, but it’s a really difficult choice to make on the train – podcast or e-book? Which is a better use of time? Which do I need to consume, in order to reduce the backlog of “stuff” I have to get through?
I haven’t even mentioned my comics yet. I started going to the comic shop to buy Daredevil and X-Men comics, and, fair play to the guys running Uncanny Comics, they’ve pointed out some good stuff for me to read in the years I’ve been going there. But the result is that I buy more comics than I read, and now I have a bookcase groaning under the weight of all the unread comics I’ve got still to plough through. Currently I am reading “Powers: Bureau” by Bendis / Oeming from 2013, which is a cracking read, but I’ve only just picked it up again after starting it a few months ago.

With all this good stuff coming at me at 100mph, I feel like I’m drowning in a sea of quality entertainment. There are times when I question whether I am using my time most efficiently, which is not the best frame of mind to be in when I’m watching a thriller or listening to an intense Parliamentary debate, or reading the latest e-book I’ve chosen. What I need, I guess, is to retire. Then I’ll have an extra eight hours a day to submerse myself in this sea of escapism that I’m building up for myself. But then that raises a question: do I really want to sit on my arse when I’m 65 for a couple of years until I’ve consumed all this stuff that I’ve built up over 20 years? Will my tastes even be the same then? Who knows… But it will be worth keeping an eye on all this stuff, and in a year’s time or so, seeing whether there is more of it, or less.. Am I like Canute, maybe, trying to stop the tide coming in? Well, I guess even if I am, it’ll be an enjoyable way to go.


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