Lawrence of Arabia & Doctor Zhivago

I must tell you how important it is to have enough space. As many you are apartment dwellers, you’ll be able to identify with this. Eventually you run out of storage space. You may out-grow some of your clothes, or you just tire of them, so you buy new clothes.

Meanwhile, your books, CD’s, and DVD collections continue to grow. Your collection is too big for your present set of bookcases and storage racks for your media. So the overage gets moved into your closets, competing for space with your coats and shoes, etc.

But someday, you will have to let them go.

Why did I toss them?

Here’s why. The need for space is paramount for a city dweller. And when one’s girlfriend complains about not being able to walk into the walk-in closet and hang up her coat, something had to be done, and something had to go. Would you believe four boxes of videos?

Yup, they’ve been carefully carted away by the New York Sanitation Department. No doubt a good many of you have similar issues with your magazine, VHS, and DVD collections. You too may have to deal with this question of space someday.

Speaking of spaces — and most of us need more — I’m reminded of two major films, both of which were epics, and both directed by David Lean, and both won Oscars. The titles are Lawrence of Arabia (1962), and Doctor Zhivago (1965).

In these films, Lean positions his cameras in places where the magnitude of the open spaces and the majestic scope of the land dwarf individual men as well as mankind. You can see it in these images.

Scenes of shimmering deserts, soaring mountains, frozen tundra, and majestic forests all serve as backdrops to the stories of T E Lawrence and Dr. Zhivago and his love, Lara.

These films carted off many Oscars, and unlike my recently discarded videos, have withstood the test of time by retaining spaces in our hearts and minds for about 48 years for Lawrence, and only a few less than that for Zhivago.

 I still need more space, but the situation is no longer critical. Our usual array of topics may or may not take up more page space than we thought going in.

Other topics may also may have distinct spatial problems — specifically asking me to find them after they been stored for so long in some dark and hard to reach recesses or synapses of my brain .

However don’t be dismayed. To have a look at some fine examples of subjects in and about the arts, you won’t need to trek across frozen Siberian wastelands, nor the Arabian deserts – just read this column on occasion.