Sometimes all I want to do is curl up and watch a film I’ve seen many times before or an episode of Friends or Gilmore Girls (yes I like it, yes I’ve seen all seasons multiple times, and what?) There is some deep rooted pleasure in the watching something when I know what’s going to happen. Not pleasure in having the ability to spoil the plot, but something much more rooted in the comforts of familiarity. The feeling you get when you sit on your own sofa or lie in your own bed. Home and a sense of belonging, something that remains the same even if you and the whole world around you is changing. It’s like wearing your favourite lounging trousers, the ones worn bobbly and that special kind of soft from over wearing, whilst listening to your favourite album.
Why do we have these things? Why do we not want new experiences all the time? Because, I suppose, sometimes all we want to do is recline in the past – savour something we know to be a certainty, and in the memory of a previous time – a previous us. There’s a sense of nostalgia – some might say – in the experiencing of these things. A word that means the pains of returning; it suggests a painful experience, and yet is something we often refer to fondly. Perhaps this refers to the pains of returning somewhere we so badly want to be, and yet know we never can truly be there again.
Returning ourselves to something favourite somehow settles us; it’s like all at once these favourite things take us back to the past whilst providing us with a certainty of who we are in the present and in the future. Our favourite things become entwined with the makeup of who we are.