I generally stopped watching TV in high school. Rhythmic gymnastics practice, ballet rehearsal, track meets, violin class, and other not-so-scholarly things just didn’t yield time for TV when I wasn’t in school. I didn’t really miss it, and even went through college not caring about the stuff that used to fill physical issues of TV Guide. The way I saw it, reality TV had ruined TV anyway. I was jumping off a sinking ship at the perfect time.
When I moved out into the real world and into my own glamorized ghetto apartment, I did not seek a TV. I had been living in that spot for two (or four?) months when my dad proactively donated a TV (90s tube era) to me. I went another two (or three?) months before I clicked the remote enough to learn that I was getting free cable access.
And then along came Bill. It took an adjustment to come to terms with the fact that I was dating a guy who planned his Thursday nights around the sitcom lineup on NBC. It was great that he made dinner, but then we would sit on the futon like a bunch of loafers and just…watch TV. Doing nothing else. I was genuinely worried that America’s predestined route was coming back to claim me and put me on the fast track to becoming a couch potato.
Almost four years later, and we still watch TV. We also Netflix and Hulu and pull up old DVDs. We watch things in and out of order of broadcast. My Creepy Memory (It’s basically a character in my life.) kicks in every time we pop in a new series and forces me to play “S/He’s from [Show Title here]!” Here are a few notables.
Lew Ashby is a cylon!
Arlene, why are you hiding in that large decorative barrel? Also, I like your Snookie makeup.
Holly! You found the Russian sex slaves!
Richard, what happened to the pearl thong you gave me? Oh, a police uniform. I see. Role playing!
…And that’s just a few.
I’d been ignoring TV for so long that now I’ve got this backlog of faces that I cannot help but mix and match. I’ve lost the ability to passively watch TV. I knew it was bad for me.