Sunday, May 24, 2009

I Want my MMM-TV

I have been a lover of television since I was a small child. (The picture here strongly resembles the first television I had in my own room as a preteen) My life revolved around watching my shows. I am certain that my love of television, as much as anything, lead me to my current job because television was always more important to me than the movies (which I am now required to call "motion pictures").

I have never wanted to be a television lawyer however. Once I watched the taping of an episode of Mad About You and thought that time had stopped. Same thing happened when we spent a hot summer day in a hanger at SM Airport as the audience for the taping of a Scott Hamilton Christmas special. How slow can you go?

When I got a TIVO about seven years ago as "research" for litigation in which my studio was a party against ReplayTV, the ability to time shift easily without putting tapes in the VCR seemed so cool and effortless. I started to watch all television pretty much through my TIVO. Since I had one of the earlier boxes I did not have much storage so I had to keep watching TV regularly or lose the shows as the box filled up and erased older ones.

Suddenly, however, I find myself not at all interested in television anymore. (According to a NYT article, I am not alone although not the norm either. Do you believe people watch on average 5 hours a day!) I doubt that it is the quality of the shows since we all know that my tastes have no lower limit. I used to watch Flamingo Road for example. (Ah Mark Harmon. You cannot act but you are so handsome). I am not a big fan of reality shows. For example, I have never seen American Idol and have only watched the Bachelor once or twice. I do not watch Lost or 24. I have gotten into watching crime shows which seem to be the only thing on other than reality shows. CSI and Law and Order, and their variants such as Criminal Minds, must be on every night on multiple channels.

None of it interests me anymore. This year I watched Big Love and Damages religiously. I eventually watched Grey's Anatomy but have slacked on House and NCIS, which were once Must See TV.

So what do I do now? I wish I could say that I have more hobbies that get me out of the house to plays and concerts and other activities. But I cannot. I do find myself at home a lot because I seem to be tired all the time. I read a lot more now. And of course there is the internet. I aspire to have activities again. I would very much like to resume piano lessons and singing. I want to go to the theater and lectures and concerts, if only they were not so hard to reach. Travel in LA is not easy these days. This weekend is a good example. I find it hard to justify going out when it involves getting into traffic in my neighborhood as out of towners stream in for the Fiesta Hermosa. And soon people will be coming for the beach although typically that level of traffic is never as bad as it is during the Fiesta weekends (Memorial Day and Labor Day) and 4th of July.

So I am ok with saying farewell to television for a while. I know that I have to do something to convert my cable if I want the TIVO to keep working but a part of me is wondering if it is even worth it. Old habits die hard and I bet I am not yet ready to give up the tube completely.

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