Saturday, March 06, 2010

Primetime Meta-critical

I recently watched an old episode of "Bones" where the lead character makes no secret of the fact that she despises TV. She makes a comment about how she has time for many other activities (including deep sea diving) because she doesn't waste time on watching TV. She doesn't have a TV in her house and is happy not knowing anything about popular TV shows, or about pop culture in general.

My first response, as usual, was to feel guilty. Why do I watch TV?!? My life would be so much more exciting if I didn't! But once I thought it through, I decided that—in most cases—it's not a fair comparison. If I didn't watch an episode of "Bones" every now and again or laugh with Keith through "Modern Family" or "The Office," would I be out deep sea diving or traveling the world?

No. TV doesn't prevent me from taking up fabulous, exciting hobbies. General lack of time and disposable income are the culprits there. Most of our time is spent around the house, unless we take advantage of the kindness of family or pay handsomely for a babysitter. Not to mention, I like spending time with Eleanor when she's awake, and she's not allowed to watch TV.

The part that does concern me a bit, though, is what could be accomplished at home in the 30 minutes to 1 hour of watching TV here and there. Could I be writing the next bestselling romantic comedy? Finishing a baby blanket for a friend, or getting to those dusty scrapbooks that haven't been touched for 2 years or more—unfinished scrapbooks of events that took place more than 5 years ago?

I'm still not convinced, though. When I want to watch TV, it's because I don't want to think or do. I just want to be still for a bit. As much as I might complain about the undue influence of TV, I will agree that there's a time and place for it.

I'm not really going to worry until I turn down a chance for a fabulous weekend ski trip or visit to Paris because a "House" marathon is on that weekend.

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