Sunday, October 18, 2009

Life Without TV

When we moved to the Ranch in 1991, we could get only 3 TV stations and the reception was so bad that usually all we could see was snow. I was, of course, delighted. As a writer, I have always considered the TV my arch enemy. We rented a lot of movies and watched them as a family. There were a heap of favorites that we watched repeatedly. My children played outdoors and engaged in creative pursuits. It is not surprising that they grew up to be writers, musicians, and artists.

We did get satellite service after about 10 years out in the boonies. But we discontinued the TV service every year in April during Turn Off Your TV Week and we didn’t turn it on again until September when the football season started. No laying around on the couch in the summer and watching TV for my children. And when we did have satellite TV service, during the winter, we had rules about how much TV was allowed per day and per week. We still watched a lot of rented movies. That TV is a time suck. I can’t understand how people can leave the TV on all day as background. What a lot of inane racket. I would always tell my children to turn the thing off and read a book, play music, or draw a picture. TV is the antithesis of creativity. To this day, I still think that my children watched too much TV. In reality, we had far less TV in our home than in most.

Last week I emailed Sudi to ask if he had watched a TV show that his sister recommended as being pretty funny. I was astonished when Sudi replied that he doesn’t watch much TV, doesn’t care for it, and is happy that we had little of it when he was growing up. Wow. Sudi is not much of a reader, but he went on to say he was looking forward to reading a book he had selected for his English class at college. He warned me not to get too excited. (“It’s just one book, Mom.”) Nevertheless, I’m still trying to wipe this sappy grin off my face.

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