Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Year three , the voice in my head is my own, christmas hate, vintage chalkware fish

Year three of  no tv.  And something interesting is happening.  No Christmas hate!  OK, not NO hate ...but severely diminished..
Those who know me intimately, know I have had some pretty serious Christmas hate going on for   pretty much most of my adult life.  The saturation  marketing is enough to make me  primal scream on a daily basis.  The gitmo droning Christmas music  that fills every inch of   every building  I  walk into makes my ears bleed.  The implied threat of  loss of affection from friends and family, if I don't comply with purchasing  regulations, is  anxiety provoking.  The flickering  perma images of faux happiness make my teeth grind.  Usually by the day before Thanksgiving I'm hiding under the bed in a fetal position begging for the torture to stop and  knowing that it wont....not for another month!
But not this year.  I have delightful company coming tomorrow for dinner and all I'm worried about today is getting the house clean and getting my 1950's chalkware fish up on the freshly painted bathroom wall.
I attribute my new holiday serenity to a complete and total lack of tv.    I feel like an addict that has been clean for three years.    The voice in my head is my own.   I'd like to say that again.  The voice in my head is my own.

I've been noticing for some time now how much better I feel  without  a thousand voices telling me what to do.  How much better I feel  without  flickering lights whispering  how inadequate I am in every area of my life .  How much better I feel now that there isn't a box full of hypercritical assholes  in my living room  telling me I'm fat, I stink, I have bad breath, my car sucks, my house sucks  my clothes are all wrong, my hair is wrong and telling me I have the symptoms of every disease that has ever been identified in medical history and some that haven't.   The hyper criticism of  product marketing is  outdistanced only by the fear mongering of  service marketing.  Don't have 'our'  insurance? This horrible thing will happen to you. Use our financial services or wind up homeless and living in your car. If you don't use our  security services your whole family will die.  Modern television is modeled after Norman Bates Mom and we wonder why our  country is full of psychos that are popping off everywhere on a more and more frequent basis.

  The greatest advantage of  no tv is a more content life with  a major reduction of  generalized anxiety and depression.

Now, there are some drawbacks to not having tv.  I get left out of a lot of conversations these days.  It doesn't matter what  social environment I am in , eventually someone says "do you watch.....?"   When I say "I don't have tv"  a couple of things happen, about 10 percent  just change the topic of conversation (love those folks).  about 60 percent  try again with  'oh then you  Hulu?, Netflix?'  When I say no to that as well, I can see the frustration behind their eyes.  I can also see the judgement call they make.  I can see  'elitist F$#%' flash across their faces (one  sweet  individual who was trying to let me know that they  'got me' said  " cousin is a vegetarian too".  ..?!?!!...).    About 20 percent hear 'no tv',  and simply wander off to find someone else  to talk tv shows with.  But the final 10 %  are pretty entertaining in their response.  They  just freak out.  "WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON'T HAVE TV?!?!?   Then they proceed to ask all kinds of questions.   'Why?' is the big one and this is the next one: 'But......but,  what do you do?'  They ask it  in a tiny  frightened voice as  though a world with out television is empty and bleak.   Most are very interested in my answers and some are very kind and try to be understanding, compassionate and helpful  "I have an old antenna in storage , if you would like to have it.".     Then there are the folks who don't even factor in to the math.  They are like me and don't have TV.  When I boldly state ,in a crowd, that I don't have TV, sometimes I hear a voice in the wilderness say 'I don't have TV either!  Then the words have wings. We start with a  warm greeting and  then begin to tell each other how we spend our time. We almost always find a common ground within the first few minutes.  It could be the arts, cooking, craftsmanship of some kind, gardening,  stone masonry, knitting, sewing, brewing. Anything could be on the list.  I have yet to meet  a  zero tv-er who didn't have a whole list of things that they 'do' or  want to do.    Even  no tv musicians have at least one  or two other things they like to do besides compose and play music!
Yep! Three years clean and  life is better than good!  I might even make it through this holiday season  with my sanity intact.


  1. I completely agree about the marketing on television. The last time I saw commercial television there was an amazing ad for a drug that promised for about 10 seconds that it could fix your entire outlook on life, but for the next 50 seconds it listed all the potential risks and side effects, including death, which one of the better outcomes. I am happy to do without networks and cable, but I can't wean myself from my BBC, so we still have our Roku. You are stronger than I, my dear friend!

  2. You know how I feel about the tube, although I do enjoy ranting at the ads when I'm at my mom's ("You can't play sports like you did when you were 18 because you're getting old! Low T my glorious golden ass!").