In 2013 the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year was selfie, the photo taken of one by oneself with a smartphone or webcam and usually shared via social media. That same year, a runner-up was binge-watching. I do not do the former, but I have done the latter, and I have done it often. Selfies always make me look terrible and I hate them. I look tired, old, and as if I have an enormous face. Binge-watching has never done me a bit of harm; that is, until today.
First, a bit of exposition. Some of you may recall that the Dept. gave up cable quite a while ago, and now we live on regular broadcast digital and a Roku, which brings us Jared's Netflix. I've found that I really don't miss anything, especially now that I've found a few new shows to watch. One of them has an actor whose character I like, and it has turned into a Mini-Obsession of sorts, especially now that Daniel Day-Lewis has retreated back into the Gaping Void Of His Creative Space And Marriage. Anyway, the show is Criminal Minds, the character is Dr. Spencer Reid, and the actor is Matthew Gray Gubler.
Here he is with sunglasses and the tously hair, and a little bit of a five o'clock shadow happening.
He's a fan of the messy-haired, but kind of "Just got off the soccer field, but it won't take me long to get cleaned up before we go out" look.
He's got kind of a "Daniel Day-Lewis Meets Johnny Depp Meets Rob Lowe" thing going on, and I like it.
His character is very awkward and nerdy, however, and brilliant, of course, and he gets debilitating migraines. (Aha! say all my Readers.) The big thing is, of course, his looks. He has quite a few of the Necessaries: 1. Pretty 2. Longer Hair 3. Slender 4. Great Mouth.
Good Heavens. If he had a British accent, I'd be in tears every time I watched that show.
But I digress.
I had no negative side effects, as I said before, from binge-watching Criminal Minds with MGG in the past, even though it is a terribly and horrifically violent and bloody show. (Honestly, I have no idea how I am able to watch it. It's truly sickening.) The past few days, however, I have watched it a lot. A LOT. There were some episodes that I hadn't even seen before, and last night I watched very late into the night.
But I still woke up early to take the Prius in to get some recall work and an oil change. The place had generously provided all kinds of coffees and teas and some doughnuts. I had a bottle of water. I was playing against my Maryland friend Leanne in Words with Friends on my phone to pass the time. Suddenly, the elderly lady to my left took an absolutely enormous bite out of her jelly doughnut. Huge red clots dropped down through her fingers and onto her pants. My stomach lurched just a little. She grabbed her napkins and began wiping, wiping, wiping, trying so hard to get rid of the evidence of what had happened. The whole napkin was stained with red now. My stomach felt a little queasy, so I looked away and tried to get Lady Macbeth's famous speech out of my head. I turned toward the television and took a sip of water.
On the screen were obscenely large slabs of raw, red meat. The chef (Bobby Flay) selected a long steel knife and carefully sliced away several cuts. The sound was muted, so all I heard was a service tech, who was explaining something to another woman sitting across from me. As the knife continued slicing, I heard, "We didn't find him in there, no, but we found evidence that he'd been there, all right. There was some hair, some shavings, and some other things all balled up. Those kinds of things can clog up the works pretty well. The harsh winter brings them out, and then they need to find a place to hide out and stay warm." Horrified, I was glad to hear the jingle that told me it was my turn to play a word. I played lye for a decent amount of points, then glanced back up at the television. Big chunks of raw meat were being ground up, and then, a quick cut to shots of sloppy burgers dripping with ketchup. My stomach clenched, and I frowned, suddenly suspicious.
I began to observe the staff as they bustled around, smiling at every single person they encountered. No one came near a door without one of Them opening it for the person to walk through. They were so obsequious and eager that it was creepy. Just what kind of place was this? Why were all the people in the waiting room women? Was I the only one who couldn't hear the TV? And why did it take so long for my iPhone to connect to their free WiFi?
But these were questions for another time. My car was done, and I had to go. They held the doors open for me, and waved me out, smiling all the time.
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