There are many positive reasons that you could list for giving up television and my biggest one by far is the amount of time it gives you to pursue other activities. I do believe, however, that there are a lot of good reasons for shaking out onto the “hard-liner” end of the spectrum when it comes to watching T.V.
First of all, T.V. doesn’t respect you as a person, or recognize that you have a human nature. I’m speaking here of profit-driven programming for the most part. Second, T.V. has an agenda, and will use subtle means of implanting its messages into your brain, using peer pressure (remember that from high school?) to make you conform. The funny thing is, most people don’t believe what T.V. proposes, and if you swallow their lies, you’re no better than a high school freshman being cajoled into trying drugs.
Sorry if that sounds harsh, but it is true. Want to get rid of the messages? Get rid of the T.V.
I myself am being a hard-liner on this subject, and I know that I will face some tough choices. My wife and I broke a couple of rules on date night last Thursday. We went out to the store and bought a VCR to DVD converter so we could transfer all of our VCR tapes to digital. The tapes are of our children growing up, and the first one that we popped in to convert was the birth and first year of life of my oldest son.
We were up until the wee hours of the morning, watching. After recording them, I’d glimpsed bits and pieces here and there, but hadn’t seen most of it for more than twenty years. Faces of loved ones who have since died laughed and visited with us. The eyes of ours forty-something selves gazed into the eyes of our twenty-something selves. So don’t get me wrong, I don’t deny that there is a place for the technology enabling T.V., but not the people behind it. When I made my VCR tape 23 years ago, I had no agenda other than to preserve it, and no intention of interspersing it with commercials trying to sell myself a laundry list of crap I don’t need.
And I know that I will have a dilemma when football season comes around again, because I would love to watch the Colts break in Andrew Luck. But I don’t think I’ll be watching it on T.V. I think instead I might fire up the grill, turn on the radio (terrestrial or Internet, doesn’t matter to me), and listen. I might even break out the old pigskin and toss it around the yard with anyone who wants to catch. Maybe we’ll get up a game of our own.
Either that or I’ll hop on over to Indianapolis and see if I can’t score a couple of tickets or just tailgate and enjoy the atmosphere. It is only 30 miles away, or within biking range.
Next post, I’ll be discussing localism. Not as in “buy local” but as in “be local.” Here’s my take: Why travel the world when you haven’t even explored your own backyard? Until next post, be good.