My father does not own a cell phone. He had one once. For about twelve hours. Then decided (with a conviction usually reserved for toddlers at naptime) that he definitely did not need or want one. My mother owns a cell phone, one that’s used purely for placing or receiving phone calls, and texting. It’s still impressive to me how quickly my mother can text, especially since when at a computer she types using only a laser-focus and her two index fingers. Lately my dad has started taking my mother’s cell phone with him if he leaves the house for more than an hour. This has been the impetus for the development of a rather peculiar habit of his, which is that he texts me from my mother’s phone. As my mother. Speaking about himself in the third person. This is an exchange that occurred last week:
Me: Hey mom, will you tell dad to call me when he gets home?
Mom (actually dad): Dad has my phone.
Me: Ok, well please call me when you get a chance.
Mom (actually dad): Dad says ok.
I’m not sure why I find this so hilarious. It could be the fact that this is him, genuinely and earnestly texting, doing his best. Considering that his first go-round with a cell phone ended as abruptly as it started, the fact that he texts at all is really impressive. A small part could be due to the fact that it’s not a mode of communication I’ll ever expect from him. The surprise will always feel new and strange, like getting mail by carrier pigeon, or someone throwing a brick through my window with a note attached.
That “new” feeling carries over to plenty of other areas of life, especially (for the purposes of my column this week), the rash of reboots and “long-awaited” movie sequels currently in production. As much as I love the newness of receiving third-person texts from my dad, I am most vehemently against reboots or sequels where the original came out more than ten years before. I’m looking at you, Caddyshack 2, Grease 2, Rocky V, Indiana Jones & The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull, and Star Wars Episodes 1-3. I mean… Jar Jar Binks, you guys. That’s what we’re given when these unnecessary sequels and reboots are made. Certain movies of the past have brought us such joy, that we’d do nearly anything (ahem, Godfather III) to try to recapture the original. There’s really nothing that could though. The closest we can ever come to experiencing that excitement is watching the original with someone who has never seen it. I wish we could just leave well enough alone and stop trying to recreate the formula.
Speaking of which, the lineup for the Ghostbusters reboot has been announced: Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon. To be honest, I feel completely ambivalent about a movie that I can already tell will be rife with jokes structured around tropes of the lowest hanging fruit. Cue fat jokes and pratfalls for McCarthy. If you guys need me, I’ll be watching Labyrinth on a loop until my eyes bleed and everything I look at slowly morphs into The Goblin King’s magnificent bulge. BRB.