Another one of my anti-TV threads 'cause I'm really grumpy today -- FNLLY ANSWRD SRRY - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-17-2004, 07:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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As I post this, there are 13 threads out of 19 active/non-sticky threads on the first page of this Forum that are about TV or "screen time".

:


Dull, dull, dull.
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Old 09-17-2004, 08:36 PM
 
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So people are dull because they like to watch television?
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Old 09-17-2004, 08:40 PM
 
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In my world, yes.

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Old 09-17-2004, 08:44 PM
 
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Luckily, I don't live in your world.
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Old 09-17-2004, 09:22 PM
 
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I used to be TV free and would look down on TV watchers.

Then I started having health problems and started watching a lot of TV. I am addicted to a few shows.

Having been on both sides, I am no longer judgemental about TV watchers. There is fun to be had in TV land. "Amish in the City," Enterprise," "America's Next Top Model," and "Dr. Phil" have gotten me through many a week.
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Old 09-17-2004, 09:58 PM
 
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I don't think the OP meant to be judgemental.

I don't look down on people who watch TV, but since we get just network stations and tend to watch just a couple of shows, it is tedious for me to come to this forum and see that all the new threads are about TV shows I've never seen, or in some cases, never even heard of.

My fantasy for this forum would be to see that someone had started a thread about an obscure book that I had also read recently.
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Old 09-17-2004, 10:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daylily
My fantasy for this forum would be to see that someone had started a thread about an obscure book that I had also read recently.
Why not start the thread yourself? Maybe the premise of the book will pique the interest of a dull television watcher.
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Old 09-17-2004, 10:51 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daylily
My fantasy for this forum would be to see that someone had started a thread about an obscure book that I had also read recently.
ever read anything by shirley jackson?

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Old 09-17-2004, 11:11 PM
 
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My family loves TV We rent movies, watch sitcoms, cartoons, and music videos. We adore Adult Swim and and The Simpsons. Books rock too of course...

"The true measure of a man is how he treats a man who can do him absolutely no good."
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Old 09-18-2004, 02:36 AM
 
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Well, if I can ever find the time to actually sit down and read any book uninterrupted, I'll let you know. Until then, it's TV for me
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Old 09-18-2004, 04:08 AM
 
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I am a single mom and since having my son have not had a moment to sit and read a book , something I used to love doing.TV keeps me company while I do dishes , fold laundry , or even while I paint clothing.It's my friend
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Old 09-18-2004, 04:09 AM
 
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Why don't you just start threads about something else?

I don't know why I feel compelled to defend TV watching--since I only watch one hour a week (Six Feet Under which is now gone till next season--will have to wait till Curb your Enthusiasm comes back on!) but I really think it is okay for people to not only watch a little TV, but to discuss it too. You obviously don't think this is okay, and I don't know why?

I think my online time is much more mind numbing than my TV watching--and I notice you are on here quite a bit. I don't get out to the movies ever now (I have 3 kids and don't get out much) but find that there are a few quality TV shows that are just as good (if not better) than many movies today.

My grandmother (the original AP mama) who had 7 children and 16 grand children has watched The Young and The Restless for 25 years now, and loves to talk about it like she knows the characters. It gives her pleasure. You know--happiness? She also bakes her own bread, babysits, knits, goes to church every week and is the lovliest, most joyful person I know. I am glad she is very social and has a very rich life.

Nothing in life is all or nothing--there are always shades of gray. If the women here want some fluff escapism and want to talk about a show they watched, why not just ignore those threads and start another one about a movie you saw or a book you read? I love to read and find more escape in that than in TV, but it is harder to talk about that online because often people are not reading the same books as me at the same time like the way TV shows are on.

TV is a common shared experience and is not to be taken seriously--some things in life are just for fun.

Take care,
Lisa
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Old 09-18-2004, 06:03 AM
 
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ITA with Lisa.

I'm also a single mom, and other than my parents, I don't know anybody in this town to spend time with (except for a couple of other MDC mamas now!!). The library here is literally about 1000 sq. feet -- 2 shelves of childrens books, 2 shelves of reference books, a small magazine rack, and about 4 small rows for the fiction and nonfiction books. They were supposed to link up with the other libraries in the county over the summer to do an intra-library system, but it fell through. So in other words, I don't have much of a choice when it comes to getting library books, and buying a new book to read is not an option for me right now. There's the internet, but I have really slow dial-up connection and can't usually get online until late at night so that I don't tie up the phone line. I enjoy watching TV, and I probably watch more than I should, but hey, it's an escape for me, and it's cheap entertainment. If that makes me a dull person in your book, oh well. Not much I can do about it.
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Old 09-18-2004, 10:12 AM
 
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It's funny, I didn't take this thread as quite so judgemental as some here. Maybe because I also don't watch tv?
For me it's like this- we had a tv and used it occasionally to rent a movie or play a video game, but after the baby we did that less and less. When he was about 8 months old we realized we'd used the tv less than 6 times since he was born! So we gave it to the soup kitchen.
Part if it is we live out in the woods a little bit so if we don't pay out hte nose for cable we get nothing. Nada. Zilch. In the city we could at least get abc for news and some sitcoms, but not out here. TV just isn't a big enough priority for us to find room in hte budget for it, we usually ask ourselves when we move somewhere new 'tv or high speed internet?' because they cost about the same, and for us it's internet every time.

Where was I going with this?

Oh yeah, so I don't watch any tv except what I might catch at someone elses home and I don't go out to movies(can't bring hte babe, don't want to leave him that long for that). So when a conversation is all about a show, or full of obscure movie references I can get a little irked because it's so hard to follow.
I guess the point is that it's not like I think I'm better at AP or NFL than anyone here. Not by a long shot! But since I don't personally watch tv, seeing a million threads about shows I've never so much as heard of can seem a little boring.
Does that make any sense? It's not a finger in the face saying 'I'm better than you!' it's more like a timid hand being raised in the back of the room and a small voice asking'please, can we discuss something I can relate to?'
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Old 09-18-2004, 12:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Why not start the thread yourself? Maybe the premise of the book will pique the interest of a dull television watcher.
I've done that several times and usually get very few responses. Sometimes, I get no responses.

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ever read anything by shirley jackson?
Not yet, although I probably did read "The Lottery" in high school, but can't remember much about it. But she's on my long mental list of authors to check out.

Quote:
It's not a finger in the face saying 'I'm better than you!' it's more like a timid hand being raised in the back of the room and a small voice asking'please, can we discuss something I can relate to?'
Yes, exactly.
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Old 09-18-2004, 12:18 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SarahNH
it's more like a timid hand being raised in the back of the room and a small voice asking'please, can we discuss something I can relate to?'
So we shouldn't discuss TV because you don't relate to it? I don't relate to every thread on MDC and you don't see me popping in, calling them dull, and asking for a topic change.
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Old 09-18-2004, 12:26 PM
 
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Sohj
I have simlar feelings to you-
My main beef about TV is it prevents people from doing- they watch and watch but never do anything. They would rather watch hockey on tv then actually play or watch decorating shows rather then paint there own ugly walls.
I do watch a few shows we download, but i set limits.
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Old 09-18-2004, 12:28 PM
 
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I'm not really asking anyone to stop talking about shows they like or anything. It just seemed that posters were feeling offended, like they, personally, were being called boring. My post was just to try explaining that it's not a holier-than-thou thing, just a boring topic to some of us and why that might be the case.
Seems that I too have offended, sorry.
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Old 09-18-2004, 12:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annelizabeth
My main beef about TV is it prevents people from doing-
Maybe in your case, but don't make incorrect generalizations about others.

TV may be a boring topic for some, but for others it's not. I don't go into the Ohio forum and tell the Ohioans to stop talking about Ohio because it bores me or I don't relate.

I think it's extremely rude and holier-than-thou for people to come here and post that watching television prevent people from doing things or that they're dull.

What is the reason for this thread?
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Old 09-18-2004, 05:16 PM
 
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Hi I just wanted to point out that I wasn't trying to be snarky in my post here.. just chit chatting really. I didnt take the OP to be rude either. Those who like it should watch tv, those who don't shouldnt lol. Works for me

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Old 09-18-2004, 05:30 PM
 
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I'm really surprised that this thread has provoked such strong negative reactions. No one is saying that talking about TV shouldn't be allowed, just that it might be nice to see threads about something other than TV as well.

And I don't see what's so terrible about expressing an *opinion* that discussions about TV shows are tedious. That doesn't mean that TV watching people are tedious. As far as I know, there's no moratorium here about criticizing TV. If someone posted on a thread about a TV show and said, "Boy, I can't believe you people are so dull that you watch this show!"--that would be rude, but what's wrong with starting your own thread and looking for people who relate to your views?
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Old 09-18-2004, 08:11 PM
 
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Agreed Daylily. The OP is very passionate about her not having TV in her and her families life. And it is in line with Mothering philosophy if I'm not mistaken. Sohj's radical ideals are a breath of freash air and in line with what Mothering Magazine is all about. That's what we're here for, right?
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Old 09-19-2004, 05:50 AM
 
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We didn't own a set for 7 years. We didnt' care. If it was really important to see (like the presidential address), we went to a neighbors house. We now have TV. I watch one program a week (recently Amazing Race). Now I have to decide if I'm going to watch Survivor or The Apprentice. We have minimal cable because it allows us to have the cable modem for internet service. We always agree that internet is far more important than TV. We read tons of books (last week I was at the library 3x and Barnes & Nobles once) and magazines and newspapers. Sometimes I just don't want to use my brain. A little silliness on Survivor is fun to me.

I like reading the TV forums because it's like my pre-child life in cubicle world. When I was employed (pre-child) it was enjoyable to root for or against someone on TV with co-workers.

Oh, I do also occasionaly tape a cooking show. I've made many of the recipes I've seen on TV (taped).

babyj
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Old 09-19-2004, 11:20 AM
 
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No one needs to feel defensive about watching tv. I have a very active life, am well-read, and my girls are exposed to the world beyond pop culture. I enjoy pop culture (TV included) in small doses-it's my way of taking myself less seriously.

"(I) find that there are a few quality TV shows that are just as good (if not better) than many movies today."-LisainCalifornia

So true! I've been renting Angels in America-it's incredible. And I also love Curb Your Enthusiasm. I only have basic cable (the bare minimum to get any reception at all) but have seriously thought of upgrading just for HBO's programming alone. And to get the IFC.
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Old 09-19-2004, 01:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daylily
If someone posted on a thread about a TV show and said, "Boy, I can't believe you people are so dull that you watch this show!"--that would be rude, but what's wrong with starting your own thread and looking for people who relate to your views?
ITA with this. I personally like TV and think in moderation it can be a good thing. I enjoy watching movies, especially when we turn movie-renting into an event, sharing the experience with friends and family. But I too love to read a good book, and notice my days go more smoothly when the TV is limited. So I appreciate both the threads about shows I like, and the threads where people talk about their choices not to have TV in their homes.
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Old 09-19-2004, 04:40 PM
 
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OK, my only complaint is that all the tv show threads are about stupid shows, in other words, ones I don't watch. I mean, do we really need two threads on the front page about The Apprentice?
:LOL Yes, I could start my own thread about tv shows I like, but I'm embarrassed to be the first one to admit it. I've tried to start threads in this forum before, and they usually die right away.

Anyway, I did try to start a music thread, but it didn't get much traffic. I have different taste in music and I feel completely out of the loop. Same with tv.

As far as tv shows go, I watched several seasons of The Sopranos until I just couldn't take it anymore. I can't stand that show because of the casual violence. I stopped watching after Ralph beat his pregnant girlfriend to death. I did tune back in to watch Tony kill him because he was upset about the racehorse. Then my husband comes upstairs from watching it to tell me a humorous episode from the show where the waiter complained about not getting a tip and then Paulie and Christopher shot him. My husband was laughing and thought it was funny and then got ticked off when I was offended by it. He just now said, "I know you don't think so, but that was a humorous scene." Yet he is practically in tears when Melfie was raped. Sometimes I really don't understand my dh. Oh well, sorry to go off on my own little rant.

Anyway, I didn't start watching Six Feet Under in time, so I can't comment on it. I'm going to have to buy it on DVD if I want to see it. I never watched the WB channel until Smallville, I never watched Sex in the City. I didn't watch Survivor until the second season and I only watched it so that I could participate in the neighborhood conversations about it, but everyone in my neighborhood quit watching after the first season. I decided to sample the new HBO and Showtime programs (Entourage and Dead Like Me) in case either of those took off. I wanted to be in on the ground floor. So, yeah, I'm pretty boring! I'm only watching these shows so I know what other people are talking about. Maybe I should just give it up altogether since a lot of people in my current peer group don't watch tv.
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Old 09-19-2004, 04:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chersolly
I don't go into the Ohio forum and tell the Ohioans to stop talking about Ohio because it bores me or I don't relate.
T For some reason as a child, I had a big beef with Ohio. I thought it was a horrible, boring state. I used to say it was my least favorite one. I have no idea why I had it in for Ohio. We used to have to drive the Ohio turnpike every year, and I had an older half sister who moved in with us and she was from OH, so maybe that is why. Anyway, this comment reminded me of that. :LOL
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Old 09-20-2004, 06:21 PM
 
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I have to reply to this because I have done a lot of thinking about whether or not to allow my child to watch T.V.

But then I realized that T.V. does have it's good points and bad points but it is our responsibility as parents to weed out the shows that are appropriate and the ones that are not.

Growing up, Sesame Street and Mr. Rogers were the most educational things ever. To this day, I am a Mr. Rogers fan. His messages today are just as potent as they were 25 years ago when I was little.

T.V. is revolutionary in that there are channels that show you things you may never experience in life, the lives of people you may never meet, and ways of life that you could never fathom. It makes you sympathetic to others, understanding of issues and causes, and widens your imagination.

While I won't be subjecting my child to the daily round of Jerry Springer re-runs, I'll definitely put her in front of the Noggin channel to watch Blues Clues, Dora the Explorer, and the Discovery Channel. She loves the Animal Channel!

Anyway, off my soapbox. I just don't see TV as the evil many think it is. I am a booklover like no one else but I also see the importance that television and technology plays in our lives.

We can be AP parents and lovers of technology; we don't have to live in caves and wipe our butts with leaves in order to be good parents!
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Old 09-20-2004, 06:29 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amywillo
Yes, I could start my own thread about tv shows I like, but I'm embarrassed to be the first one to admit it. I've tried to start threads in this forum before, and they usually die right away.
Well, I'm here now and I pretty much Tivo everything and watch it once the baby is asleep. So open those threads because others might come out of the woodwork and express their love for Everwood or Smallville.
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Old 09-27-2004, 04:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi, everyone. Sorry about the delay in responding. Life cranked back up to normal and I've only been on MDC to reply to pm's for the last week and a half or so.

So, thanks for all your comments.

To reply to all of the points (am using quotes for the points, not as a particular reply to the individual, just want to point this out as this seems to be an incredibly "defense-erecting" subject around here these days):


Quote:
So people are dull because they like to watch television?
Well, I know an awful lot of people who actually think that talking about a television show is a conversation. I have actually had real conversations that involve television shows, but the conversations themselves are about, for instance, a friend of my husband's attempt to get a show on the air, not about the show itself. Or, a conversation with a friend of mine in advertising about the ad campaigns she is working on. (She doesn't watch TV, by the way, she only sees the ads on the tape/DVD at the office screen.)

Having someone ask me "Hey did you see x-y-z last night and isn't Mulder/Scully/Joey/Kramer/whoever handsome/smart/funny/wish-he/she-lived-next-door and can you believe what s/he did to his/her friend/enemy?" IS excrutiatingly d-u-l-l. When I discover, as I have all too frequently, much to my disappointment, that that pretty much sums up a person's attempts at conversation, then, yes, I do think that that person is dull. They are substituting nicely packaged characterizations of people and life on a small screen for real life in all its messiness. I guess it is easier, but I find it fake and, ultimately like most fake things, boring.

On the other hand, I don't think all TV watchers are dull, most of them are just addicted. But, I find that passtime particularly dull and, as I don't share in it, I don't have much to discuss on that subject.



Quote:
Then I started having health problems and started watching a lot of TV. I am addicted to a few shows.

Having been on both sides, I am no longer judgemental about TV watchers.
Very sorry to hear you have been having health problems.

There was a short period of my childhood when we had a TV in the house. As people perceived it as being something "relaxing", when I was ill during that time, it was on for me. I found it gave me horrible headaches from the flickering and I found the shows (and movies) generally depressing and manipulative. I always felt worse, physically and mentally, from watching the TV.

I don't, by the way, think I am judgmental about TV watchers. I think I am making a judgment call on the activity. I have a couple of friends who have been drug addicts (and one who still is). I still call them my friends but I abhor their addiction. (Well, the two in recovery don't do it anymore so I regret their past addiction.)




Quote:
There is fun to be had in TV land.
I gather there is fun, too, to be had in cocaine country. But I don't visit there.





Quote:
it is tedious for me to come to this forum and see that all the new threads are about TV shows
and
Quote:
I guess the point is that it's not like I think I'm better at AP or NFL than anyone here. Not by a long shot! But since I don't personally watch tv, seeing a million threads about shows I've never so much as heard of can seem a little boring.
Does that make any sense? It's not a finger in the face saying 'I'm better than you!' it's more like a timid hand being raised in the back of the room and a small voice asking'please, can we discuss something I can relate to?
This was my main point in starting this thread.

The Forum name is Books, Music and Other Media. The majority of threads these days are about TV shows. I think there should be a separate forum for TV so slower-moving print matter threads don't get buried.





Quote:
Well, if I can ever find the time to actually sit down and read any book uninterrupted, I'll let you know. Until then, it's TV for me
and
Quote:
TV keeps me company while I do dishes , fold laundry , or even while I paint clothing.
But, I can read a book for 5 or ten minutes and then go do something else. I'm really pressed for time and can't spare the 1/2 hour minumum required for a TV show. If I have to watch some TV (like, I'm over at someone's house who insists on having it on) I need to have something repetitive in my hands to do to keep more of my brain occupied otherwise I go cuckoo. HOWEVER, anything I do while watching TV I do less well than when I do it without the TV on. That is, I do things with attention, even menial things like washing dishes, and TV breaks my concentration. I'd rather have my concentration broken by my son wanting to help and having to keep him from washing the knives.




Quote:
why not just ignore those threads and start another one about a movie you saw or a book you read?
and
Quote:
Why don't you just start threads about something else?
I have, several times. And I have gone back into the older pages of the Forum to comment on books someone posted about and I only just read or thought about again. And a lot of those threads have been interesting. Daylily has started some good ones (or, I think she started them, -- apologies if it was someone else) But, those threads, by their very nature of engendering more thought and requiring more thought than those about the electronic babysitter tend to get lost and off the front page awfully quickly. Sometimes in as little as three hours. See this quote:
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Anyway, I did try to start a music thread, but it didn't get much traffic.
I'm not the only one where stuff doesn't get noticed.



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I think my online time is much more mind numbing than my TV watching
I couldn't agree with you more.



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--and I notice you are on here quite a bit.
Ummmm....well note the date I had time to come back and give all of you the answers I thought the comments merited.

I tend to be on here in spurts. I get on at work when I am forced to sit at my desk and be available to faxes, telephone calls, and e-mails but don't have anything else to do. When I am waiting for someone to give me some information that without I cannot do anything else. Lately, this has been happening. We have a nice, fat telecommunications pipe here and I read really fast (920 words per minute), so I can get a lot of posting done in a very short time.

As soon as I am off this desk assignment (with any luck because we exit Preliminary Engineering and go into Design/Build -- which I always call "Build/Design") -- and am back where I belong -- "down the hole" yelling at contractors over the roar of diesel engines and drills and hoe rams breaking rock -- you won't be seeing me much around here.



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TV is a common shared experience
Possibly this was true in the days of network TV. Less so now with TIVO and taping, etc. Not to mention reruns and local stations that play different stuff.



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So we shouldn't discuss TV because you don't relate to it? I don't relate to every thread on MDC and you don't see me popping in, calling them dull, and asking for a topic change.
I didn't do this, either. I started a separate thread. But, I suppose that people who regard this forum as a TV forum might feel that even a thread is intrusive as it shares the same Forum with their TV show threads. :

There have been two times I have popped in and been a little sarcastic on a TV thread. Once was then the OP had phrased the title to, frankly, invite sarcastic responses. The other time was when someone "called" upon me in a funny way to perform an intervention ... and I posted some silly emoticons. I didn't get nasty with anyone on either of those threads. They were jokes and it was clear. Otherwise, as long as I realize that a TV thread is just that, I don't even open the thing.



Quote:
They would rather watch hockey on tv then actually play
This is funny! This is actually one of my major pro-sports problems. : : I play, and so do many in my extended family. (My grandfather was an amature champion back in Ontario back in the days when they didn't use any protection. )On any bit of frozen water available, even if it is the driveway. But, we never watch games unless we get tickets to see it live. And I meet so many people who, when they find out that I play hockey, expect me to have watched all the games. : And none of the avid hockey-game-watchers I know actually play the sport.



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The OP is very passionate about her not having TV in her and her families life.
But, I hope it doesn't spoil things if I tell you that I don't go into other people's homes and tell them to turn off the TV 'cause I'm there. We do end up accidentally seeing TV shows, or parts thereof, at other's homes. (These snippets only reaffirm my desire to not have it in my home. They are manipulative and show a particular viewpoint that then weakminded people ape and think is the way to act in the real world. Ally McBeal was especially annoying on that score.) And we even sometimes (like once every six or nine months) have movie nights with people where one person will bring an assortment of movies, one brings the food (usually me) and one supplies the TV and comfy chairs and pillows. One particularly successful night was Smoke Signals, Libeled Lady (with Jean Harlow, Spencer Tracy, Myrna Loy and that guy who was in the Thin Man moves) and a homebirth video from my childbirth educator.



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And it is in line with Mothering philosophy if I'm not mistaken... That's what we're here for, right?
I thought so.



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Sometimes I just don't want to use my brain.
Me, too. But I don't want someone else to use it, either.



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it was enjoyable to root for or against someone on TV with co-workers.
I've seen people doing this and it always perplexes me a little I always felt that was a little meanspirited. I mean, I root for "my" team, but, I don't root against anyone. I want to see good baseball or hockey or cricket or soccer played regardless of who wins. :



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Growing up, Sesame Street and Mr. Rogers were the most educational things ever. To this day, I am a Mr. Rogers fan. His messages today are just as potent as they were 25 years ago when I was little.

T.V. is revolutionary in that there are channels that show you things you may never experience in life, the lives of people you may never meet, and ways of life that you could never fathom. It makes you sympathetic to others, understanding of issues and causes, and widens your imagination...the Discovery Channel. She loves the Animal Channel!
I disagree with this. When I was at a babysitter's with a television and watched Sesame Street or Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, I found them very limited, even at that age. My parents had a wide variety of friends and acquaintences and I met all of them. I usually accompanied my parents to events (after lots of pre-event training so I behaved appropriately) such as musical performances, political demonstrations, Democratic Committee meetings, Union meetings, Civil Rights Organization meetings, in addition to the daily "rub" of people against each other in life. And actually meeting people, not just relying on superficial pablum. They didn't rely on television to teach me.

On the subject of those nature shows, the vast majority of them are about "exotic" animals. I known many kids in the northeast in the country or at least suburbia who know all kinds of details about tigers, giraffes, and hippos from hours spent in front of those "educational" shows, but who cannot recognize raccoon tracks, tell the difference between a doe and a buck, nor have ever seen indian pipes. I think we need to look outside our own front doors, first. Those shows are, by the way, just as "produced" as any sitcom. They have been edited for the excitement factor.

I find the emotional and attention-span manipulation that the television producers engage in (and you better believe that they do that...they have the stuff screened by focus groups to make sure they are getting the right response and some people use psychologists to gauge and tweek the manipulation) makes people less sympathetic to others. It limits stuff to messages easily expressed in a soundbite and reduces the understanding of the nuances of real life give-and-take.

And, frankly, there are always going to be people you didn't meet, places you didn't go, things you never learned even existed. The trick is to learn what you can and learn it well. Pay attention. As the saying goes, wherever you go, there you are.




But, sad to point out that these two statements seen in juxtaposition
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No one needs to feel defensive about watching tv.
and
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but I'm embarrassed to be the first one to admit it.
say a lot to me. People only generally feel defensive if they perceive that they are doing something wrong or are under attack. Defensiveness is not the fault of the person pointing something out. Pointing something out is not accusation.
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