I have a small VHS player/TV in my bedroom.
I have access to a pretty large amount of movies through streaming services on other, more modern devices.
But that doesn’t stop me from popping in an old VHS tape and watching something in my room every now and then.
The sound quality is quite terrible, and the volume button is broken (all the buttons are broken in some way). If you press it too much, it starts to rewind the tape, so the volume is stuck at 14 (unless you want to fiddle with it). The speakers are also tinny-sounding, like the movie characters are literally stuck inside the boxy TV screaming at you.
The screen is small, probably 10 inches by 10 inches, a puny square. It practically demands you watch your movies fullscreen instead of widescreen.
My bed is situated on the opposite wall from the TV, but the head of the bed is blocked from directly viewing the screen thanks to a large dresser. I have to lie down with my head at the foot of the bed to properly watch things.
Sometimes I’ll watch a movie while I fold clothes in my room. I’ll push a tape inside and the player will seem to accept it gladly. If I’m packing for a trip to see Alya, a movie will help speed the time it takes. Or if I’m doing some much-needed stretching, a brief story on this sad, square screen will occupy my mind while my body is just protesting.
Other times, I don’t want my mind to be occupied. I’ll lie on my bed and put on a movie just so I can ignore it. I’ll stare at the ceiling and zone out for a good hour and a half.
I have a collection of classic Disney animated films courtesy of my mother’s assiduousness when it came to keeping me and my sister entertained. I also have a pile of rom-coms that my mother was gifted (that she forgot about), a handful of random 90s movies (for some reason), and The Ten Commandments (the obvious jewel in my movie collection).
Recently, when Alya took me to a used bookstore that also sells VHS tapes, I bought The Matrix Reloaded and The Last Crusade. I bought them specifically so I could watch them on this cruddy little TV.
I’m terrified it will break down one day, and I will be unable to fix it.
But for now, it’s one of the best things I own.