“The Study of Reality”

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28 Channels Of Crap Or 250 Channels Of Crap. What’s a Man To Do?
* Comments(3)

Let me preface this post by saying I am of the "Kill Your Television" opinion. In general, TV "makes you stupid and rots your brain" as my 5 year old nephew once said. He’s pretty much spot on. TV is one of the main reasons we’ve become overweight, passive, and under-thinking as a culture. It’s much easier to watch someone do something as opposed to actually doing it yourself.

Having said that, I’ve been faced with a dilemma this past week.

Our apartment complex has an exclusive agreement with AT&T Home Entertainment for all media. This means we get our phone, internet, and TV from AT&T and only AT&T. Take it or leave it. (Choice is bad, remember that.)

Until now, the TV service has been Direct TV. It’s pretty cool. It’s got the built in TV guide thing and you can schedule your favorite shows to turn on automatically.  It’s convenient, but in the end it’s still TV. Then a couple weeks ago we got a letter from AT&T telling us that they were switching to Dish Network so we’d have to cancel the direct TV, ship the stuff back, and get dish network if we wanted TV.

So here’s the dilemma. Which programming package do I get? 28 channels? 200? 250? There are only about 10 channels that I ever watch. The only thing I watch through the week is The Sopranos reruns on A&E. Then on the weekends I watch all the "this old house" I can find, and sometimes I find something interesting on Discovery or The Learning Channel. That’s about it. I only watch TV for maybe 6-7 hours a week.

So I went with the "entertainment essentials" package which only has 28 channels, but includes every one I wanted except DIY network. To get DIY I’d have to get the 250 channel package which is $40 more. It’s not so much the extra $40 a month as it is my Anti-Rampant-Consumerism and TV-Is-A-Waste-Of-Time ideologies plus the fact that most of the 250 channels are lame anyway and I’d never watch them.

When we had 185 channels of direct tv I blocked most of the sports, religious, shopping, kids, soap opera, spanish, and chinese channels. That only left about 50 anyway so what’s the point of paying for 185 much less 250? Most of the stuff on TV is still crap, you just get more crap to choose from. It’s like that Bruce Springsteen song "57 channels (and nothing’s on)", except now it’s 250 channels and nothing’s on. (It’s quaint ain’t it? Back in the early 90’s 57 channels seemed like a lot.)

But the weird thing is, now that I’ve only got 28 channels I feel like I’m missing something. Like I said, I’ve got every channel I wanted except one, but I can’t help but feel like I’m missing something. Sure, with 185 channels I’d often flip through all of them and not find anything good, and now I’m flipping through 28 and not finding anything good either. What’s the difference right? Logically I’m seeing most everything that I want anyway but emotionally I’m (apparently) addicted to flipping through hundreds of channels.

What can I do? Feed the addiction or try to go cold turkey? I’m tempted to call and get the 250 channel package. Can I hold off making the call? Plus the Tour de France starts in a couple of weeks and the VS. Channel is the only one with coverage. It’s the only sports I look forward to all year and the only time that I watch VS but it’s tempting to get that fix, so tempting.

It’s a difficult choice. Maybe in a couple of weeks the desire for more will have ceased. Then will I have kicked the habit for good or will I forever be like an alcoholic who can never touch alcohol yet still craves it? OK, I’m overstating this addiction thing for effect, but I do feel it pulling at me a little. Once I’ve had more, can I be satisfied with less? I can only imagine how someone who actually likes TV must feel.

I think there’s some sort of mind control voodoo ray projecting out of the TV. It was probably put there by either the CIA or the National Association of Manufacturers. I can imagine that someday they’re going to make us all commit mass suicide, or buy wheaties, or support a war under false pretenses or something like that. Oh wait, that last one already happened didn’t it? See I told you! We’re all being programmed like the Manchurian Candidate. TV is the devil I tell you! Stay Away! Stay Away!



3 Responses to “28 Channels Of Crap Or 250 Channels Of Crap. What’s a Man To Do?”

  1. fairlane, on June 23rd, 2007 at 8:56 pm, said:

    “Where is heaven?”
    “Heaven is where drunk daddy’s drive to.”

    You forgot “Wonder Showzen”.

  2. Realitology, on June 25th, 2007 at 4:12 pm, said:

    I feel like I need to do a penance after I watch that show.

    BTW, let’s not forget “Muslim Kryptonite”.

  3. fairlane, on June 25th, 2007 at 6:51 pm, said:

    That show is bent.

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