Sunday, October 11, 2015

Day 11: The Martian

Certain favorite bloggers of mine have taken up the assignment of blogging 31 days in a row (#write31days), and in an attempt to re-galvanize my own writing, I decided to join in the fun. The idea behind this particular blog-a-thon is to be as real and vulnerable as possible, which is (almost) always a healthy exercise. I've tried blogging marathons in the past (to varying degrees of success), and my seminary schedule does not allow for much flexibility. so the process may be fitful or short-lived, but it couldn't hurt to try!

Day 11: The Martian


I just got through watching the Martian at a theater in East Windsor, about twenty minutes out of Princeton. I'd never been to the theater before but had been hunting for a good one since I got here. The Starplex, as this one is called, attracted me with its cheap admission ($5.50), student discounts, and reclining chairs. All in all it was a lovely Sunday evening, even if I had to go it alone. I thought about inviting a friend, or at least a peer, but just about everyone on campus spends Sunday nights reading in preparation for the week to come. It's fine, though. I am of the firm opinion, in spite of vehement opposition from some, that there is nothing pathetic about going to see a movie by yourself. 

I'm not even sure who I would invite if I wanted to. I'm still in a bit of a relational limbo here. There are plenty of charming, friendly people, and all in all I get alone fine with everybody, but so far there's a notable absence of, how shall I put it... best-friend material. Nobody to scratch that itch for me yet. 

Which is why, for the bulk of the Martian, I felt a bizarre kinship with Matt Damon's protagonist Mark Watney. For those of you who haven't seen it, the story centers on a botanist from a Mars expedition who gets left behind on the red planet after his shipmates escape during a dust storm. The balance of the film portrays Watney's ingenuity and survival instinct while he waits, alone, to be rescued.

And I guess that's why I related so much to the character. Not that I'm waiting to be rescued (per se), but I sure do feel alone. I mean, the situations don't really compare; Watney was the only human on his planet. I'm just having trouble making friends, no matter how surrounded I am by people.

Still, there was something that echoed within me about the character's attempts at survival. He expended every bit of his effort just to get by, for more than a year.

Just getting by. Alone. 


It's not nice, but it is familiar.

At least Watney got a happy ending. We'll see about me.

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