I’m sure many readers here have figured out by now I’m probably the least philosophical of the regular authors at this site (hey its okay; nice thing about being prosaic, it doesn’t really bother you to get called on it). But with the looming likelihood that this coming season will be the end of Chuck I’ve found myself thinking more than normal about the coming change and ending.
A particularly big piece of news for those of us living in the Ann Arbor area has been the coming demise of Borders Book Stores. Latest news is that sometime in September they will shut their doors for good. I have to confess to being part of the problem for them, I started making my book, music, and movie purchases from Amazon and iTunes years ago. And I am a voracious consumer on all three counts, you can bet one or two of those items are at play in my life a majority of my waking hours. But I can’t help but feel something has been lost. I have so many fond memories of scouring shelves and music bins at the bookstore or reading a magazine in the coffee shop (at least the coffee shops that have sweets and Coke products, I’m actually not a fan of coffee…) And I know Barnes and Noble will carry on, for now. But this is such a huge change of lifestyle. I hadn’t given it much thought as neighborhood bookstores disappeared over the years; I’m of the “bigger is better” school of thought so I’m sure I was part of the problem for smaller retailers too. But being a part of the problem doesn’t mean I’m unaware of what was lost, especially now when there may be no going back. It just makes me a little sad.
I had second harder blow in the realm of business endings this week. I’ve mentioned a few times that, prior to getting hooked on this darn blogging thing, I’ve been an active scale modeler (and war gamer). I’ve long figured that whenever Chuck ends, I’ll get back to “normal” life and resume my long time favorite hobby. Well, I still may, but the environment I do it in will never be the same. Riders Hobbies, my long time supplier (I think my wife would say “pusher”) announced they were going out of business this week. Obviously, I can build models without them; but I’ll have to organize myself differently as keeping my favorite paints, glues, and supplies in stock will now have to be done by Internet. And I fear I was part of the problem here too, many years ago I made the switch to start making my big ticket purchases on-line. But it really struck me when I stopped by the shop today (to pick up a few models I’d had on display there) that there was no going back; after getting scolded by a clerk for being a “stranger” (there’s no way its been two years since I stopped by; is there?) I realized there was a whole social structure at play there that would never be a part of life again. I had taken for granted that my hobby, and this means associated friends, would all be waiting for me when I was ready to return. I guess I was wrong. I wonder if I’ll ever feel the same about modeling, is that silly?
So the application to Chuck is obvious. Barring something really unexpected, Chuck will end sometime early in 2012 never to return. I’m really not ready for that, but change happens whether we’re ready for it or not. I don’t know what the immediate impact will be. I expect, within a few weeks of the end of the show we will all drift away. We may want to write about the show and continue our community here for a few weeks, a couple of months tops; but we will drift away and this wonderful community will come to an end. I can honestly say the community here will be a bigger loss to me than the show itself (hey, I said I wasn’t philosophical; but that doesn’t mean I’m not sentimental!). I expect the fan fiction community will linger longer as many on-going works will need finishing; and I do look forward to that, but I’m not as involved there as I am here. I will miss our discussions, teasing, and even arguments (I love planning out a reply to something I really disagree with!). I will especially miss so many here that I’ve come to consider friends and allies. I’ll even miss some of my regular sparring partners too!
I know this is a bit premature with another season of Chuck still ahead of us. But this is where my mind’s been at lately. And it will be a big change. I don’t envision myself finding a new “thing” to blog about just because I love blogging. Well, maybe if something else comes along that I can get really excited about; but much as I love scale modeling and war gaming those have always been mostly solitary interests to me, I’m not sure if blogging about it would ever feel the same. There’s other shows I really like, but even Burn Notice, White Collar, and Castle I’ve only rarely looked at web sites and blogs. I think the end of Chuck will be another big change and ending for me.