Wednesday, January 31, 2007

I used to be smart.

Seriously, I was. I read voraciously, stayed on top of issues, researched things I was interested in and was pretty culturally literate. I even had a subscription to the New Yorker. And actually read it.

Now? Eeesh. Perhaps it's really that I now have more than one friend with an actual PhD, so I feel stupider in comparison, but I am beginning to think that by the time I am 60 I'll be watching Lifetime movies and listening to Michael Bolton and actually voting Republican, if this trend continues.

And I know exactly what to blame: CABLE TELEVISION.

When Paul moved in with me, I was living in an upper flat in Detroit, owned by an old family friend who lived in the lower flat. My landlord had a little itsy TV, that he used to watch the news. I had a bigger one, but made a big snobby deal out of how I never really watched televison and think it's stupid. Paul has cable at his apartment, but I refused to consider it. We should talk to each other if we're going to be living together, I said, and plus, I am not aksing Bob to tear up his house just so we can get good tv. Paul acquiesed, with the compromise that we would get cable when we bought a house.

That took another couple years, what with getting married and changing jobs. Plus, this place was a sweet deal -huge, beautiful and the best neigbors I have ever had. Finally, though, we moved in here and I do believe the cable guy came the same day as the moving truck.

I tried to resist, really I did. But cooking shows! Travel shows! Movies! Queer Eye! It was hopeless, before too long I had something I watched every night of the week. We even got TiVo (side story:A very pregnant and past due me set up and activated the TiVo service, and then went to bed at like 1 am. At 2 am, my water broke and off to the hospital we went. Fellow TiVo fans ask me "Didn't it change your LIFE??" I love saing "Yes my life changed dramaticallly ater I got TiVo, but it had nothing to do with TiVo).

This summer, Paul decided he wanted to try life without cable, annd I agreed. There was something we didn't bank on, though.. For some reason, maybe all the trees around here, we're in a dead zone for TV reception. Can't get anything. We mmuddled along for awhile, but with winter looming and a Elmo-addicted two year old in the house, we decided to bite the bullet and get satellite.

I must say, ashamedly, that I LOVE IT. The reception is beautiful, we have music channels and Noggin and all kinds of great stuff. I have seen some really good movies I wouldn't have caught otherwise ("Kinsey"--good!). But here's why I think I have gotten stupid:

I finally caved to reality TV.

I hate reality television. I think it's designed to show off the worst of us as a society and as a species. When the reality TV trend was really hot, it felt like a race to the bottom. HATE.

That said, I am all excited for the finale of Top Chef tonight. (Shaaaame!!!)

I have a couple deadlines to hit and a meeting to attend tonight, but I am making Paul DVR it for me and wait until I can watch, even if it's late at night. I've only watched the last few episodes, but GO Marcel!! Do it for the honor of all of us who've been bullied and risen above it. Cook, Foam Boy, cook!!

Okay, I'm going to turn in my (imaginary) Mensa card now.


Summer said...

At least it's "Top Chef" that's sucked you in, and not something like "Beauty and the Geek" or "Making the Band."

I agreed to give up cable if we could get Netflix instead. And you'd better believe I was tearing open those little red envelopes like mad when season 2 of "Project Runway" came out on DVD!

We can both be smart women with a secret shame, how about that?

Em said...

I used to be skinny and smart. Sigh.

Despite the certain erosion of more IQ points, I eagerly await the Top Chef finale. (I'm still nursing my hurt over Sam's departure.)

Theresa said...

OK, I'll admit to my secret TV shame in an effort to make you feel better. If there is a TV movie about the British royal family on, I'm am in front of the TV. Can. Not. Stop. Watching. The best ones are about Princess Diana.

I'll bet you're feeling like a genius in comparison to me now!

tripmom827 said...

We now have Fox Reality Channel...all reality, all the time. And, I admit, I watch it. Alot. (Puts large paper bag over head). Perhaps this is why I am also experiencing the dumbing down of myself. Truly, how much can one person watch Rob and Amber trying to make it in Vegas before brain cells start to die.