Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Day Three of No TV For Me

My decision to avoid television this year has, as you might imagine, been met with much derision by other inhabitants of the Manor.

'You'll never last!' they said when I announced my intention. (I'm not going to name names, Heather, but you know who you are.) 'Something to do with Hugh F-W, or cooking or gardening or dancing will appear and you'll cave in!'

Andy said this morning, 'I see Aleisha Dixon has quit as a judge on 'Strictly Come Dancing.'
'Oh really?' I said. 'That news is of no concern to me because I have forsaken televsion for this year.'

Andy has also tried to sell the benefits of what he calls 'good' television. 'What about wild life documentaries and educational programmes?' he said. 'What about using BBC i-plyayer, so you can record the 'good' programmes and watch them instead of scanning free-view in desperate 'must watch TV' moments where you end up watching 'bad' TV?'

'Bad TV,' is Andy's definition for TV I quite enjoy watching sometimes because it takes no brain power to watch and is just the ticket for after bad days at work. Things like 'Don't Tell the Bride', and 'Celebrity Fat Club,' and Jeremy Kyle car crash stuff.

My definition of 'bad TV' could extend to programmes that Andy likes to watch, because bad TV is all a matter of personal taste, but I'm not going to start TV mud-slinging and mentioning things like, er, Doctor Who and anything presented by Dr Brian Cox.

Long-term resident of Much Malarkey Manor, Olly, has assured me that watching DVDs is NOT the same as watching TV. I am pleased about this; it means I can now watch the second disc of 'Monty Don's Italian Gardens' to progress my knowledge of Italy in preparation for the Italian holiday 2015. My plan is to save the disc for moments of TV weakness which I am realistic enough to accept will happen, probably tomorrow when I go back to work.

But until then, it is now nearly three whole days since I watched telly. Andy has watched telly, but not as much as he would normally watch. He is being selective. However, he has been pretty much glued to the i-pad I got him for Christmas.

So far, I have read a Stella Gibbons novel, done some writing, completed masses of work for school, been on several walks and kept up with the housework. I have listened to several interesting programmes on the radio and given the writing room a good sort-out. I have yet to start my 'Easy Learning Italian in a Click' programme but that's on the agenda for later this week.

There has been no shouting at the TV (there has been a little bit of shouting at the radio, but old habits die hard), no sighing at endless stupid advertising breaks, no mindless flicking up and down the free-view channels and watching some repeat of a film I've seen a hundred times before. I have found it useful to avoid the TV guide pages in the newspaper because if I don't know what's on, I won't miss it, will I? Ha! A cunning plan, you see, is all you need.

Right, back to work. I'm close-reading 'Pride and Prejudice', 'The Yellow Wallpaper' and a selection of poetry at the moment, which I'm hoping is exactly what my sixth formers have been doing this holiday. I'm at the advantage of having read them all several times before. I've told the students we won't have time to read everything together in class. I suspect there might be some excuses of 'not having had any time to read stuff properly at home.'

I might suggest, for the health of their education, that they give up watching TV.

1 comment:

Andy said...

I still maintain that using the freeview recorder and I-player are good ways to watch TV. Ok so I think 'Don't Tell the Bride' is bad TV (I think it scores slightly worse than bad actually but never mind) but if it's what you need to wind down then watch it. But the problem you and I have with telly is that we don't turn it off when there's nothing on but instead we do that soul destroying channel surf, desperately looking for something to stave off the boredom, and when neither of us likes the same rubbish TV then one of us is going to end up watching something we don't like...

Put like that, where should we put the TV so we can't watch it again?

(not that that would ever happen, not until they definitely stop showing Doctor Who)