I was around 7 when my parents got our first television. It almost shut down my imagination and creative side. My brother and I would walk home from school (across the street) and plop ourselves in our comfy family den and turn the set on (by the way, why were they called a set? It was only one thing), wait for it to warm up and watch one of 3 channels it could receive. Our favorites were “Amos ‘n Andy”, “Dark Shadows”, and “The Edge of Night” ( what a name for a soap opera). Nobody but us and the housekeeper were home so nobody basically told us no TV till our homework was done. Whoopee! We loved it. The screen was tiny but we sat close up. Some nights, not sure what the circumstances were, I remember seeing the Sign Off- the American flag waving proudly against a bright blue sky and the national anthem playing. Then test pattern. Nobody remembers those things, do they?
And then there was junior high where we had to read George Orwell’s 1984 for summer reading. We learned “Big Brother” would communicate with people, even spy on them, through their televisions! Imagine.
Fast-forward to now. Television screens almost movie theater big. Plasma, not radio tubes. My, my. Movies to order, you can TiVo, almost a tv in every room. No thanks.
So recently, an organization I affiliate with, Intercessors for America, challenged its members to a fast. I don’t eat enough interesting food to drop anything there, so I picked TV watching. This began 9/11/13. It’s almost been 2 weeks and I haven’t missed it. Not one thing about it. Before I could not watch enough Food Network’s “Chopped”, or Hallmark channel movies. No distracting, abstract noise in the background. I feel much more focused, more present. When I play with Murphy and Lily (my 2 rescues) I’m all there, they have all my attention. It’s great.
This is a timed event, 3 weeks. Not sure what I will do once it’s over. I am enjoying my peace and quiet very much. No, I don’t feel out of the loop, uninformed. I catch snatches logging in to msn for hotmail, or my Sunday newspaper. I just feel better. Cleaner. More whole.
Maybe I will keep it off. Big brother can’t watch anything here. Not that there’s anything much to see anyways.