For those of you who have never read Bryan Allain’s blog, do yourselves a favor and get on over there (after you read this post). I met Bryan after we moved back here to Lancaster, and he’s been kind enough to mentor me through the blogging process. We often meet up for breakfast and daydream about that next book deal. I don’t think his is far off – he is a talented writer and perhaps the most humorous blogger I know.
So, without further ado, give it up for … Bryan Allain!
I’ve met Shawn in person, and for those you haven’t let me assure you that he’s a normal dude. Having said that, let me also inform you that he and his wife (and their 4 kids too) have done something very not normal.
They’ve given up TV for all of 2010.
He’s talked quite a bit here at his blog about why they’re doing it and the benefits they’ve discovered from turning off the idiot box. And even though I understand it, I’m not sure I could ever do it.
Am I addicted to TV? No, I don’t think so. (Stop nodding your head and smirking) But there are some legitimate reasons why I love it. Cue the Top Ten music!
Top 10 Reasons I Love TV
1. LOST – Sure, this last season has had its ups and downs, but I have never in my life been so invested in a show that has delivered time and again. Characters that move me, intricate mythologies that puzzle me, and plots that captivate me week after week. If you’ve never seen the show do yourself a favor and avoid all they hype and talk surrounding the May 23rd finale so you can start watching the series from Season 1 Episode 1 this summer. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
2. LOST – Just wanted to make sure you knew I was being serious in that first point.
3. Veg Time as a Couple – After a long day of work, house work, yard work, running the kids around, running yourself around, and settling 172 sibling arguments, sometimes you just want to sit on the couch and not think…together as a couple. And that’s what the TV does best.
4. Comedy – Writing humor is what I love to do, and TV helps me see the difference between old, tired jokes that go for the easy laugh (most Two and a Half Men jokes, for example) and some of the most brilliant comedy writing on TV today (30 Rock, Parks and Rec, etc.). Seriously, 30 Rock is killing it right now. Tracy Morgan’s character said something to this effect in last week’s episode: “But I CAN’T change, Kenneth! I’m like a chameleon. I’ll ALWAYS be a lizard.” Amazing.
5. Seeing how Your kids react to intense situations – There’s a new show on NBC called Minute to Win it where people have 60 seconds to accomplish a menial, yet difficult task. Right away our kids were into it, which was hilarious, but I couldn’t believe how different their reactions were to the intensity of the show. Kylie, our 8-year old daughter, couldn’t take her eyes off the screen as the seconds ticked down, but Parker, our 7-year old son, ran out of the room yelling, “I can’t watch!”. I guess I need to add “Learning how to handle pressure” to the list of future daddy-son talks.
6. The Local News – haha. Totally kidding. I’d rather watch YOUR kid’s Christmas recital than the local evening news. “Coming up after the break, 3 more depressing stories that will ruin your good mood and a hilarious video of a cat on the loose in the Park City Mall….and a look at that 7-day forecast that you can’t get anywhere else, certainly not on the internet.”
7. Quality Time as a Family – Don’t get me wrong, if ALL you did together was watch tv, you’d suck as parents. But it’s fun to have a couple shows that you enjoy together like the aforementioned Minute to Win it and America’s Funniest Home Videos (very underrated).
8. Live Sporting Events – You don’t need me to tell you why sports are great. You already either love them or hate them. I enjoy watching great athletes perform because I’ve tried to play their games and know how tough it is, and because I love seeing performers excel at what they do. And when you think about it, sports are the original Reality TV. Unscripted moments where people are acting and reacting to what’s happening around them. Which reminds me…
9. Reality TV – No, I’m not joking. I know Reality TV has been reduced to nothing more than a punch line recently, but amid all the crap (and there is A LOT of crap) there remains some good options out there. Survivor and the Amazing Race have their formulas down pat, and always give you a great hour of television. For people who love fashion, Project Runway is the best thing since sliced pant legs, and for folks who like to watch other people live boring lives, there’s always Big Brother. Have I mentioned that Erica and I have never missed a season of Big Brother? No? Good, let’s move on.
10. 22 minutes of sanity – There are times as a parent when you just need to catch your breath and make sure you’re not going insane. In those moments, it’s nice to be able to throw the TV on for the kids and gather your thoughts off the kitchen floor while they watch The Suite Life of Zach and Cody. Sadly, too many parents abuse this tactic and have kids who watch 3 hours of TV a day. But in small doses, TV can be a great way to keep you from going nuts.
So yeah, there’s not quite 10 Things I love about TV. Do you have anything you want to add to the list?
And let me say this too, for every reason I love TV, there’s a reason I don’t like it as well. I’m anxious to hear more thoughts from Shawn on how his TV experiment goes through the rest of the year, and interested to see if he comes back to the idiot box in 2011.
And have I mentioned this show called LOST…
(When Bryan’s not watching TV he’s usually writing about the humorous side of life, faith, pop culture, and living among the Amish for his blog, BryanAllain.com. You can also find him on Twitter at twitter.com/bryanallain.)