Pacing, back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. How do I know I do it? I know I do it because I remember every single time I do it. Pacing out of boredom is not in this conversation; I just don't do it. Rattling events make me pace, a smile end to end, a suffocating collapse of moldy emotions, or a nervous tickle of the next impending days. I'm self-aware of change that brews in or around me, curled or open, I pace.
The time passed one late Thursday night in 2007 when I was evidently staying up too late. I, budding at the time, had always thought Thursday was the weekend, or close enough to behave like it was. A CRTV towered above me, mounted on what looked like an arm ripped off a scanty T-1000. Ten-year-old me was about to create a recountable memory of the first time he paced. HBO? A realm I had no reconciliation of encountering in my numerous times of petting the north and south arrows on my remote. It couldn't have been more than two minutes past eleven. Those horns, that opening, something so simple that transfixed me. John Williams hooked me right after I had clicked on the blue square in my TV guide that said Catch Me If You Can.
Was that a challenge? Obviously, that's wasn't what I was thinking at the time; I just wanted to watch a damn movie. Looking back though, maybe it was. I clearly wasn't prepared for the seismic change my life was about to endure for the next two hours and nineteen minutes. On the surface, Catch Me If You Can is straightforward charismatic fun. Actually, to this day I still will define it as THE "standard movie," but there was something that ticked nonstop inside my head. If you've seen Catch Me If You Can, you know its pace, breakneck and no less. Maybe that's what hooked me, but I know that's not the whole story. I know for a fact I wondered. And if that's broad, well, I'm sorry, but that's what it's like falling.
I think for most cinephiles, identifying the point where you fell for it all is a brutally important moment. Many of us will have different answers from each other and many of us will have different answers from ourselves from three years prior. Steadfast for a decade plus two, I've had the same pinpointed answer of it all. Two words changed the way I looked at the thing that was always bigger than me. "Knock Knock." I sprang from my bed, attempting to be as cautious as I could be of the noise my two feet created. I was pacing.
"What did I just do to myself?" I thought to myself and, writing this now, I still think that thought remains sanctioned in my head. Tears of excitement welled up in me as my throat became stiff; the switch was on. My face enriched with a smile, my feet creating a fist of elation. It was a fever dream come true. The movie was over. I watched the credits. I promise I did. Listening to the score soothe through my head, I felt my head shake back and forth, back and forth in the certitude that this feeling was mine and mine only. I could swear that night during those six minutes of words scrolling, I was smoking a cigarette down an alleyway getting ready for the morning flight to Atlanta. This is a vivid memory that isn't going anywhere. I paced because I fell.
I fell asleep. Now if you were to put a gun to my head and ask: "What happened the next day, Chris?" I'd be shot real quick ’cause, honestly, I don't have a fucking clue. Midline is where I want all of my love to come to a head; love for music and cinema is pretty impossible for me and most others to describe. It's all personal touch that many like to keep to themselves (me included), but I feel as if it's time for me to share. And I don't know if these words helped you understand it all, but I'm glad you're reading them. Music and cinema are my roots, and I'd love to continue sharing why that is with you and for you.
Pacing, back and forth, back and forth, I'm now suddenly trembling with a giddy reservation that someone will actually read this. I still don't really know why Tom Hanks reciting a knock-knock joke got me to devote any time into anything, but here we are. I've spent years going deep into the bone marrow of thousands of movies since that night in 2007 and between then and now, what's the difference? Nothing. Thursday is still the weekend.