Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Have you ever done something so out of the norm, you know it will be hard to explain it to people? So instead, you don’t mention it. Unless somehow it comes up in conversation, then people can stare at you as if you have two heads. Well, I did and I kept it quiet at first, especially around my extended family.
Many of you are wondering what bizarre thing could I have done that would shock my family? Did I decide on a sex change operation? Maybe I decided to run off with the gypsies. I could have taken up hot air ballooning as a hobby or became an Elvis impersonator since I know all the songs. It wasn’t any of these.
I gave up television. Really, not just avoiding bad reality shows. By cutting off my cable, I even cut off the local channels. No television ever, sometimes I miss it. When I want to watch a movie, I can do that. The biggest casualty from lack of television I figured would be my daughter. She loves cable, especially the Disney Channel. Surprisingly, she found many other things to do such as ride her bike or paint. I found time to write, call relatives and cook. The family is certainly glad about the cooking part.
With the weather turning warmer, I’ll be able to walk the dogs and garden. With the even warmer weather, I’ll be in my pool or working on the landscaping. As for extra time, I have plenty to do with planning my trip to New York and scrap booking. Still, with all I have without television people tend to pity us as if we’re some primitive tribe.
My daughter and I used to eat in front of the television. Yes, I know how bad that is for the waistline. Now we actually talk to each other. She told me the other night that she actually like me. That wouldn’t have happened if we were both staring at the television screen.
Despite the positives, my mother worries I will be surprised by a tornado. I live by the fire department with their extremely loud emergency siren…there is no way I could be unaware. I live in a slab home with no real place to take cover, but I won’t point that out to my mother.
Strangely, not having television is freeing. I did have favorite shows that I would race home to watch. Now when I go out there is no television deadline that sends me racing home. Nor do I spend my free time watching all the shows I DVR’ed. The greatest benefit is that election season is coming up with all its scurrilous commercials and I won’t see a one. Just makes me smile thinking about it.
My rebellious ways have rubbed off on a close friend who recently turned his cable off. As the CSR asked him why he chose to go cable-less, he explained with gas at four dollar plus a gallon, cable was a luxury he could do without.
Are there any other television-free writers out there? Tell me how your life changed when you gave up television?