change

I was talking to someone at work the other day and he happened to ask about the house.  Somehow during the conversation we started talking about TV and I happened to mention that I don’t have one.  He looked shocked.  “What do you mean you don’t have a TV?”  Well, I mean that I don’t currently own one and I’m happy about that.  *blank stare*  I could just see the wheels in his head coming to a grinding stop…”no TV?  How can that be?  What would one do without a TV?”  The truth be told, I disconnected my cable 10 years ago and aside from a 2-year period where I subscribed to basic cable (local channels + about 4 others), I’ve only used rabbit ears for reception.

When I moved out of my apartment in July, I purposefully left my TV behind.  With the advent of Hulu I can watch just about any TV program that is on the air today.  Who needs a TV?  The real question that I feel bubbling up inside you is, “why did you do it in the first place?”  Excellent question.  I’m glad you asked.

The real reason is that I have a tendency towards depression.  At times when I am particularly stressed, lonely and depressed, TV becomes an excuse for me.  I would go to work early, stay late and then come home and watch TV all night long.  Go to bed and repeat the next day.  That is certainly a life that no one would want to live.  I decided that TV was cutting into time that I could be doing other things and so I made the choice.  I can’t recall a time in the last 10 years that I’ve been tempted to either get a TV or to hook cable back up.  Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love TV and if it were not part of my life in anyway, well, then I might change my mind.  But I am now able to control the temptation of being slothful just a little bit more and for that I am glad that I don’t have a TV.

What about you?  How do you view your TV life?  Do you find that it is an excuse and that you feel that there are other things that you would rather be doing, or do you feel that you have your TV life under control?  What would your life look like if you did not own a TV?

Just for the record, as long as I am being truthful about my personal TV preferences, when I go home for a visit, or I go to Plainfield to visit the H’s, I spend nearly the whole weekend watching TV.  I look forward to my TV weekends and I completely overdose.  But I would still rather not have a TV at home, since that is where I spend a good portion of my life.  TV is a retreat and retreats should be something special, something to look forward do, something that does not interfere with your normal life but instead enhances it for a small, intermittent time.

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3 thoughts on “change

  1. While I was single I never had a TV. If I had my druthers we wouldn’t have one, but I’m married to, and the mother of, TV addicts. I might have a TV with a DVD hooked to it so I could watch the occasional movie, but I think cable’s a total waste of money.

    I don’t watch much TV at all, although I also get into moods where what really hits the spot is a good chick flick or a favorite series (I asked for Season 2 of Mad Men for Mother’s Day!) Most evenings I listen to audiobooks or podcasts while knitting. Or I read.

    Not watching those dancing shows or American Idol or Lost or 24 or Glee does rather isolate me from people, though. I never have any idea what they’re talking about. And then people think you’re bragging about how intellectual you are when you say you don’t watch TV, only in my case it just stems from lack of interest rather than a deliberate desire not to watch.

    On the other hand I just admitted to a group of people AT church IN FRONT OF an elder that I’ve seen The 40 Year Old Virgin. The people who sniggered obviously had, too.

    • tonja says:

      Jane, glad to know that we are on the same wave-length here. Except, I don’t really see you as a “Mad Men” sort of person. Admittedly, though, I’ve never seen the show.

  2. I like Mad Men because it’s so visually stylish, and the actors underplay their parts beautifully which is part of the style. Also, advertising has a sort of love/hate fascination for me, and they incorporate real advertising campaigns from the 60s. And to be reminded how women and “other races” were treated before feminism and political correctness almost reconciles me to the 70s and 80s. If you ever watch it, though, you have to start at the beginning.

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