Friday, February 5, 2010

Is It “B-F” Day Already

Sorry for the lateness that this is being posted. I just spent the day watching The Andy Griffith Show Marathon. That Barney Fife is a hoot.

Yesterday I was sitting in one of my favorite restaurants, enjoying my requisite coffee, when I overheard (eavesdropped upon) two guys in the next booth. Their conversation was, for the most part, bor-r-r-ring and unworthy of the time I spent mining for another story idea.

Until I heard the following:

Guy 1: I can’t seem to get my days straight this week. What day is it?

Guy 2: Dude, it’s “B-F” today. How could you forget?

Guy 1: Right. Right. ‘Cause yesterday was Human Target. What about Mentalist?

Guy 2: No, man. I don’t do Mentalist. I’m a Family Guy then.

Guy 1: Yeah, I used to be a Family Guy, but Mentalist keeps me fresh.

Okay. It took me a few seconds to realize what they were really talking about. TV shows. And with that realization, there are a number of things quite wrong with that conversation.

First. If you know what day of the week it is by what show(s) are on TV, then TV is playing way too large a role in your life.

Second. If you refer to the day of the week as, for example, “B-F,” (which I inferred stood for “Bones-Fringe,” shows that precede “The Mentalist”) instead of Thursday, then your familiarity and affection for those shows is definitely out of proportion to their actual relevance and benefit to your general health and well-being.

Finally. If your best friend is speaking the same language, you may want to seriously consider upgrading your friend. As well as your night life. Which, not so coincidentally may also upgrade your day life.

So as a public service to the TV-addicts out there who are looking for ways to beat their habit, allow me to offer the following suggestions:

Rule #1. Figure out what shows you really want to watch, then cut that number in half. Seriously, if you’re watching more than ten hours of TV per week, it’s too much. Heck, ten hours per week is too much. Think about it. Forty hours every month gone and nothing really to show for it. Well, other than an intense desire to eat more fast food, buy that new mauve and chartreuse love seat your girlfriend is in love with, and try some new drug that will counteract the side effects of the drugs you’re already taking for constipation, diarrhea, flatulence and hemorrhoids (but those are posts for another time).

Rule #2. Go basic broadcast. Believe you can’t live without those 47 sports channels, 19 home and garden shows, 172 game shows, 31 cooking shows, I Spy, SyFi, and Wise Guy? YES YOU CAN! More options of shows to watch is like trying to fit a gallon of water in a four-ounce glass. No matter how hard you try, it’s just not going to work. You’re spending too much time watching when you should be doing, spending foolishly when you should be saving wisely and ignoring people, places, and things that demand your attention.

Rule #3. Record and Zip. Whether you watch a little or too much, the advisable way to watch is to record the shows then watch them later but zip through the commercials. Their influence will be dramatically decreased and as Martha Stewart says, “That’s a good thing.” (Sorry, couldn’t resist that one).

Rule #4. Spend one day a week with NO media. No TV. No radio. No players. No streaming. Nothing. Get in touch with the real world, interact with real people and begin to take back your real life.

Rule #5. As soon as possible, kill your TV. You really don’t need it.

So there you have it. Five simple rules to break the boob tube habit. You’ll thank me for it later.

P.S. That remark about the Andy Griffith Marathon. I was just kidding.

P.S. Next post will be Monday. I take weekends off from The Eclectic Chalkboard.

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