Last night, when I could have been writing, I sat in front of the TV for a few hours and watched stuff TiVo had recorded for me. This says more about me than it does TV or TiVo, but I felt like crap by the time I went to bed and I more or less resolved to give up on TV.
I can’t do this wholesale. For instance, when Kelly is over, she likes to watch TV. So the TV will still be around for now; but I’m giving up on it. I’ve decided that at some point in my life, I’ll look back on the time I wasted in front of the TV and say, “Damn! If I’d only made better use of that time!” Last night I could have been writing. But my will-power, in this respect, sucks.
So, here’s what I think I’m going to be doing:
1. Canceling my premium packages. Now that the Sopranos has ended, I almost never watch HBO or STARZ.
2. Cancel the cable and DVR service in my bedroom. In the 1+ year that I’ve had it, I’ve watched TV in my bedroom 3 times.
3. Cancel the TiVo service and unhook the TiVo unit. I had it for a year. I gave it a shot. It’s a remarkably cool tool, but I don’t have the will power to stand against it without some sort of fight.
4. Greatly resisting the temptation to watch any more TV at home.
I’m certain I won’t be completely successful with step 4. But I’ll do my best.
This means giving up a whole bunch of shows that I enjoy watching. But as of last night, most of them are going into reruns because of the strike so it’s a clean breaking point. And the more I think about it, the more I feel I should be writing my own stories, rather than acting as an audience for someone else’s.
Some smart-ass out there (strausmouse or maybe kevnyc) will point out that I am still an audience when I read someone else’s stories. This is absolutely true but I have a love affair with reading, whereas my relationship with television can only be described an unending series of one-night-stands.
Time will tell if this means I actually write more. It certainly doesn’t mean I will write any better, although one hopes that the more one does something, the better they get at it. So by a kind of twisted logic, giving up TV for the duration may actually make me a better writer.
Cable company gets a phone call on Monday. Stay-tuned… (Yes, irony!)