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Dear Eric Hansen

A Very Merry Christmas to All of BOT - By Eric

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It is almost December 25 here on the East Coast, so I think it’s time I give out this message.

 

So...been a long 12 months, hasn’t it? I’m not going to pretend I’m a genius for saying this, but I think it’s fair to say 2020 was rough for all of us. We all know the big reasons why, but for our box office hobby, it's an obvious one. We were forced to look at VOD charts to pass the time for most of the year, and the theatrical experience is in the most dire straits it’s ever been. There’s a chance this forum could lose the very thing we used to discuss every day. Some may argue otherwise for their own reasons, but we can all agree things look pretty uncertain in terms of theatrical exhibition and communal moviegoing and box office numbers. And when it comes to our personal lives...well, the reasons are too many to count, and we’ve all experienced these hardships one way or another. In many ways, the past 12 months have been some of the worst I’ve ever dealt with.

 

I lost my aunt in January after a lengthy battle with cancer, I graduated when the entire world went to shit, and I didn’t even get to say goodbye to the friends I made at school. I was forced to work full-time at a taxing and overlong job at Bed Bath and Beyond, I often found myself being forced into overtime by the higher ups a handful of times, the past few weeks in particular have really made me feel like a number, and my parents and their careers were consistently in jeopardy. Thankfully, they’re doing fine enough at the moment, but it could change at the drop of a hat. I legit had no motivation to continue my writing career, and finding a solid job in writing or communications was slim pickings. Even when I tried to find work, the stress retail put on my brain bummed me out so much it sucked the motivation right out of me. And even Christmas, a time of happiness and joy, was one turned into stress as I rushed to find gifts and deal with snobby, obnoxious customers day in and day out for 8 hours straight. Things got so bad that I even had a couple mental breakdowns throughout the year. As an aside, a huge thank you in particular to @Wondy, @Water Bottle, and @grim22 for helping me during those emotional moments. But for the most part, 2020 felt as if I was stranded. I was there all alone in a little island, where I did nothing but work and sleep, while the rest of the world slowly burned around me. And I couldn’t do anything to stop it.

 

But now that we’re at the end of the year, I started to think about all that has happened. And I started to realize something...I did it. Even after all the bullshit the year threw at me, I’m still gonna enjoy Christmas and New Year’s with my family like I do every year. It may have felt like an eternity, and things still aren’t perfect. The stuff that happened in 2020 will affect me for years, and I still have no idea what the future holds. But I still managed to get out of it with my head held high. I made it through the wilderness. Somehow I made it through.

 

And really there’s two things that helped me through this. One was Disney+, but another one really was Box Office Theory. The one thing about BOT is its sense of community. There’s a real sense of camaraderie that makes it feel like a family in a way few other websites do. Sure we disagree. Sure we annoy each other. Sure, there are plenty of people who do nothing but troll and wreak havoc. But in general, we have each other’s back, we love to discuss and debate with one another, and we know to look out for each other. Just checking in on what people were talking about, whether here on the forums or in the Telegram group chat, just made things all the better in so many ways. Without you guys, I really don’t think I could have made it through the year.

 

A lot has changed in a year, for better or for worse. However, I think it’s important to realize that we did get through it all. We got through this, no matter how frustrating or depressing it may be. And I think a big reason why we’ve made it to the end is because we had each other’s backs. We had a place where we could all be good friends. We could crack jokes, share memes, vent our frustrations, and have each other’s backs. We even came together to call out the forum members who were making things miserable for everybody else. And while the box office we know could very well be at the end of an era, that doesn’t mean there isn’t something greater on the horizon.

 

So I just wanted to give a huge thank you to all our wonderful BOT members and a very happy holiday. From the fanboys to the number nerds, you guys make this site such a fun and entertaining place to discuss, to vent, and to laugh. You guys have given me so much joy and so much happiness and I am grateful forever. We’re still not out of this completely. 2021 is sure to give us some curveballs. And the box office is still as up in the air as they come. But at least we have each other to get through whatever havoc the new year has in store for us.

 

And just to end this here, I just want to tell everyone the following: stay at home whenever possible, wash your hands, wear a mask, appreciate your loved ones, trans rights are human rights, all cops are bastards, and Black Lives Matter. Love you guys and just remember that we’re all in this together!

 

Hope you guys enjoy watching Soul or Wonder Woman or whatever you plan to watch tomorrow!

 

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Thanks for a perfect message for this Christmas Eve!

 

Merry Christmas to all BOT members who celebrate!  And Happy Holidays to those who celebrate all the other varied holidays this season (even if all you want to celebrate in 2020 is Festivus:)...

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Merry Christmas to all

And thank YOU @Eric Gardner for that post, it feels so real, what a great gift in a year that still feels - to me at least - in a way like an unreal year, maybe like a nightmare movie gone wrong

 

Stay home, stay safe, stay healthy as best as possible, hugs to all of you and your loved ones
 

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