Since I discovered how to subscribe to podcasts tons of stuff has been piling up on my iPod. As you probably have discovered by now, time is a zero-sum-game. If I’m watching the stupid and stupefying television (Newton Minnow was never more right about TV) then I might also be able to catch up with email but that’s about it. If I’m watching TV, I’m not reading and I’m not listening to good stuff on the iPod. Well, it took about two weeks but I finally quit turning on the TV.
I went through a little withdrawal (I did this in ’93 too when we moved to the UK and left the TV in the States) but after two weeks I was fine. I’ve been promising myself to quit TV. I told myself that I could quit anytime I wanted, that I was just a social telly watcher. After the cold sweats and tremors, however, it’s pretty obvious that I needed an intervention and the writers’ strike came through just in time.
Now, after dinner, instead of heading for the couch I go upstairs to the den and I read or listen to good stuff (or usually both). Norm MacDonald subbed for Dennis Miller earlier this month and I’m just hearing it now. Hilarious. He might be funnier than Dennis. Mars Hill Audio is always terrific. Reading? Well, I’m reading a pre-pub typescript right now that will be useful. I read another typescript last week. There’s been a lot of reading for the conference tonight and tomorrow and Huburtus (–what does one have to do to get a Latinate Christian name?) Drobner’s The Fathers of the Church for next fall’s Ancient Church course. It’s not all serious reading, however. I’m starting a novel by Craig Ferguson. If I can remember some of what I’m reading everything will be copacetic.
Turns out that I don’t even miss TV. Well, I miss The Unit a little but I’m not sure I’m going back after the strike. I wonder if others have gotten over TV too and won’t go back? It will probably be like the baseball strike and afterwards the numbers will slowly climb again. I don’t think I will go back. Life is short. When they’re unplugging me from the machines I’m pretty sure my last thought won’t be, “Man, I wish I had watched more television.”