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Coronavirus Log: Lockdown has freed up some time for me to plug the gaps, says Barry Peters

Editor Barry Peters has been catching up on some cultural treats

Books, films, eating, drinking and FaceTime.

In a nutshell, those have been the hideous outcome of lockdown for many of us - sometimes all in one day.

I've managed to catch up on some books I wanted to read; American Dirt was a page-turner, I'm making my way through Elton John's Me at the moment while Celeste Ng kept me busy for a couple of weeks with two corkers.

covidlog (33594986)
covidlog (33594986)

Eating and drinking pretty much take care of themselves anyhow, let alone under lockdown.

On the question of films, I do have some dirty confessions.

Up until a year or so ago, I hadn't seen the original (and best) Mary Poppins. I loved the Emily Blunt version but the classic from 1964 shades it.

Chatting with the family, I was called out on a number of films I still haven't had the chance to view; any of the Star Wars franchise; any Avengers films; Frozen II; Lord of the Rings and the one which made everyone sit up and take notice, Forrest Gump.

I love cinema as much as the next man. The likes of Amazon, Netflix and Sky beam them direct into my living room but there's nothing quite like the *sounds* of the cinema to set you on edge. I remember walking out of a Cambridge cinema in 1986 having watched Oliver Stone's Platoon and shaking from the experience. You don't get that from sitting on a sofa in your pyjamas, however natty they are.

So lockdown, for me, will have given me the chance to catch up on a few pieces of modern culture...but I'm being selective.

As someone once said:"Life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get..."