The Great TV Time Suck

I made a major decision while house sitting for my parents last weekend. After racking up seven hours of TV watching on Sunday, which, for the record, is about six hours more than I typically watch in a two-month span, I decided once and for all that the flat screen I'd been eyeing at Best Buy was going to stay at Best Buy.

It started with some Vin Diesel movie. He wakes up in a cafe, beats the shit out of everyone in sight and then a scar-faced Samuel L. Jackson informs him that he's just passed "the test." Not at all my kind of movie, but mind-numbingly ideal nonetheless. When the action sequences began to wear on my nerves, I started toggling back and forth between Vin and some show featuring women who gave birth despite having had no idea they were even pregnant. Uh, hello? You had no idea you were pregnant and you carried a baby to term? How is that even possible? Apparently, I needed to know because I watched a good two hours of that.

When I found myself laughing out loud at the clueless men--one of whom was pretty sure his girlfriend's intestines were leaking out of her vagina and another who consider pushing the baby back in--I settled on something called Daisy of Love on VH1. After enduring several episodes of Daisy burning pancakes, prancing around in next to nothing and eating her first-ever chicken cordon bleu (prepared for her by one of the tattooed and monosyllabic wankers competing for her affection), I decided I needed to know what was so special about Daisy that she'd have her own show. Nothing, it turns out. She was the runner-up on Bret Michaels' show Rock of Love. And that seems to be it. My guess is her runner-up status was the second reason TV execs handed her a show; the first being her natural ability to be a complete train wreck. Daisy, thankfully, was my TV low point. From there, I settled on a cheery, hours-long news report on human trafficking in the sex industry in the United States.

I was simultaneously ashamed and fascinated that I was able to waste so much time watching TV on a single day. Thing is, I haven't had what most people would consider a proper TV in my house since 2002. In a neglected corner of my upstairs loft, a small 10-inch-ish TV sits unplugged most of the time. When the digital conversion happened, my better-half and I shrugged off a converter box, but we did go window shopping for a new TV. I take plenty of flak at work for not knowing what's happening on Nip/Tuck or not having a favorite on Project Runway. I thought maybe it was time to pay a little more attention to pop culture via TV, and Sunday was just a trial run through life with cable.

But then I caught a commercial for a women's razor with a not-so-subtle bush metaphor (as the narrator says, "leaving you smooth and trimmed," a standard garden bush self-shapes from unruly to a perfect triangle), and I decided I'd had enough. More than enough, in fact, for a long, long, long time.

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