Today was Liberation Day at my house. We "unplugged."
Like many Americans, we grew up with a television. It was great and I have a lot of fond memories of sitting mindlessly in front of it. I recall using television to drone on as background noise when I was single to ward off loneliness, it has been a distraction after a hard day, I usually got caught up on the latest news with its help, and cartoons on Saturday mornings were the best.
|Looks like my Aunt Mary...LOL!|
Television's heyday is over, I'm afraid. I flopped on my couch two nights ago and decided to just turn on the TV and watch something, a mindless pastime many of us share. Maybe something would interest me...a movie, perhaps...or an interesting show....or some news? I scrolled through literally hundreds of channels (repeatedly!) and couldn't find anything worthy. Nothing. I settled (for lack of a better term) on South Park. I like watching South Park but it was a repeat episode and I secretly was hoping for something more substantial. It was like eating a cheap granola bar when craving homemade lasagna. You're eating but not even sure why since it isn't even enjoyable.
I stopped watching the television news long ago. I have tried many times, including this week, to give it another try. I am consistently disappointed by the cotton candy soundbites. There is no real content and I've gotten my news online for quite a while now. I used to enjoy reality shows on Bravo but the Housewives and other series are no longer glam, feel contrived, and have become painful to watch. Series on AMC, like Mad Men, can be seen at some time in the future on Netflix. I don't need to see a show as soon as it comes out. It doesn't have a shelf life and if its purportedly good, I'll wait. No big deal.
|A night watching bad television!! There's no joy in that!|
I lived unwillingly without cable tv until five years ago. Getting cable was a small victory and joy when I became single. I had access to all of the shows everyone at work talked about. I finally had more than three stations and the picture wasn't fuzzy anymore; it was in High Definition! I like public television but it was fantastic to have choices. I even signed up for high speed cable and a smartphone and video games. (I'm not much of a gamer but they are occasionally fun.) Technological heaven!
Not long after my available smartphone choices expanded, I stopped reading newspapers and read the news on my phone. I can get real news, not the shallow soundbites and commercials that I get on TV. Apps were born and my big screen TV was hooked into the Internet. No more watching YouTube on a laptop! Netflix is a joy and so is Amazon at times. I can always find a great movie.
|Smartphones are a lot more fun than television!|
As I sat watching South Park, I asked myself, "Why are you watching this crap? What else would you rather be doing?" Here's the list that popped instantly into my head in no particular order:
- sitting on my porch
- calling my family
- walking my dogs
- reading a new book
- working on my crossstitch
- trying a new recipe
Consider it. You might not need your cable after all. Technology and the Internet have given us more choices on what we watch and how we watch it. But, at the end of the day, how much of what is on television is worth watching anyway?