Our older son’s name is Lincoln, and occasionally someone will say, “Oh, I like his name. How did you pick it out?” I’ll explain that of course we love the historical significance, and we generally like older-sounding names, but we actually got it from the show Prison Break. Keepin’ it classy. Yes, Lincoln Burrows was the inspiration for our rule-following first-born son’s name.
See, when we were expecting Lincoln, I had more free time than normal. I’d finished grad school the previous May, so for the first time ever I could do some serious binge-watching. As in, I could watch, like, two episodes of a TV show in a row. With Lincoln, Bryce and I really struggled to come up with a name. Then one night during a Prison Break screening, Lincoln Burrows did something awesome to protect his younger brother Michael, and I said, “I like that Lincoln Burrows. Huh. I like the name Lincoln, too.” Bryce said, “I was just thinking the same thing.” The rest is…history. We also considered a few other names, like Luke (which is an awesome name!), but Lincoln just stuck.
I’m remembering that relaxed, Netflix-infused season of life because somehow over the past five days I managed to watch five movies. Five. I have two kids, a job, and an always-messy house. How did I just watch five movies?! Amazing. It’s one of those “Should I be proud of myself or mad at myself?” type of things.
Here’s what happened. Bryce found out I hadn’t watched the Star Wars movies, so in the midst of wrapping Christmas presents he squeezed into one of our storage closets–probably with a headlamp on–and found his old Star Wars boxed set. That must have been December 23. We both had December 28 off, so we decided we could go see The Force Awakens if I could catch up on IV, V, and VI by then.
I did it. I stayed up too late, I didn’t clean, and I skipped two opportunities to take naps when both boys were sleeping. And you know what? It was delightful.
Star Wars is so unapologetically creative, humorous, and relational. I appreciate its lack of gratuitous violence, its bizarre creatures, and its undercurrent of cheerfulness. In The Force Awakens, there are two scenes early on where the main characters, who are just getting to know each other for the first time, survive an attack–and then immediately praise each others’ respective battle skills. I’m glad our culture, which can be so cynical and crass at times, can still have fun and embrace the joyride and good vs. evil themes of these films.
So, my five movies of Christmas “break” 2015 were:
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
Stars Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens
And…Sisters with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, which was actually quite crass. I went with my sister, and my tepid review of this movie is water under the bridge because we had a great time catching up and eating chips and guacamole at En Su Boca beforehand.
Bryce knows I’m always indignant this time of year because I find the commercialization of Christmas distracting and, well, crass. What I want to do is slow down and relish the scriptures and the songs that point me to Jesus, but I find myself in spreadsheets and lists running hither and thither. Ironically, it was the commercialization of Star Wars that helped me slow down and chill out.
Family, warm weather, and a few big puddles didn’t hurt, either.
May the Force be with you.