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in defense of television


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In my entire life I've only had cable for one year. Now I've been selling ExpressVu and Personal TV for about six months and ogling all these specialty channels and I finally caved and got some digital cable.

I have to agree, there is some total shit on tv. However, this week alone I have seen an interview with Chuck Palahniuk, a documentary on Canada's coyote problem, an expose of Frank Lloyd Wright, a few episodes of a wicked show called Don't Forget Your Passport (obviously a travel show) and a documentary where I actually watched a woman die of old age! There are so many amazing ideas being explored on television. It is an extremely powerful and pervasive form of communication completely creating a global village. TV can really help expand your mind if you use it properly. If TV is misused then it becomes a problem, but personally, I think digital cable is one of the best purchases I've ever made. I have learned a ton this week that I otherwise would be oblivious to. Don't get me wrong, I have also watched a lot of Family Guy, the Simpsons and this wonderfully ridiculous show called Iron Chef, (My Iron Chef cherry was popped with the episode with the vegetarian buddhist monk on the yam theme night) but I like the brainy stuff too.

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Our tv nowadays only really gets used for movies; we have neither cable nor satellite, and the fact that Global barely comes in means that the Sunday night Simpsons ritual just hasn't happened in ages.

I think the only thing I've made a point of remembering from time to time is that Jon Stewart is on most midnights, but I'm usually in a panic at that point about getting enough sleep to survive the next day to take much advantage of it.

That said, as a medium, I imagine that TV would blow the mind off of 99.9999999999% of humans that have ever lived. It's a pity so much of it has gone to so much waste (or worse).

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