Don't say it!

I was asked several times today if I had seen a particular TV show that the person I was chatting with had seen (different people, different TV shows). I can only shake my head "no", even when they say "no, really, you must have seen it." Whenever I talk to folks who don't know me too well, the subject constantly comes up. Hell, the other day I even had someone ask me what my favorite commercial is. People talk about their pet television shows or what a cool commercial they watched. They drop what are obviously "in jokes" with others who have seen a particular episode of a particular show and they imitate their favorite characters.

When this happens, I just shrug. What can I do? I've learned that I must keep my mouth shut. If I am so stupid as to tell the truth, I'll regret it. As soon as I say "I don't watch TV", I hear something like "did you read that Onion article about the guy who doesn't have a TV and won't shut up about it?"

I have heard about that article so many god-damned times that it's not even funny. Look, I don't randomly pipe up in conversations "hey, I don't watch TV." In fact, the first time someone asks me if I've seen a particular episode of so-and-so, I just say "no." It's after the subject has come up a few times that I'm tempted to say something because it gets very tiring saying "no, I haven't seen that." You'd be fucking astonished at how many times I can say that before it dawns on people that I don't watch TV but as soon as I fess up to not watching, I'm an elitist prick and an appropriate subject of mockery.

What's happens less often, though it still happens, is that I am called a liar. People insist that there must be at least one show I watch and if I watch it, I watch TV. Since that's not true, I have to deny it. Then I get the "I hate people who don't watch TV and brag about it" bullshit. Hell, I've had people who know I don't watch ask me about what company I use for cable television. Um, I don't have cable, m'kay? (<-- ubiquitious cultural reference that even I cannot escape).

Just to be perfectly clear, I don't avoid TV because I object to it; I avoid TV because I'm addicted to it. I couldn't stop watching when it was on, so I just stopped watching entirely. That's all there is to it. Today, 20 years later, I still get distracted by the damned thing if I'm hanging out with a friend and there's a TV nearby. That's why I don't watch, OK? That's it. That's all. No other reason. So stop mocking me for it, will you?

(Note: if you were there tonight and you're reading this, no, no one mocked me because I didn't admit to not watching. But they did ask several times whether I had watched "X". Grr ...)
  • Current Mood: irritated irritated
i wasn't there tonite, but i only asked about the particular show i asked about because i know you :)

i just figured that you had heard about it in some popular media (the way i heard about it, i think i was on fark), and downloaded it or sought it out (like i did).

so, that said ... pttthbt! :)

the only place i have watched tv in the last 4yrs is at the hospital. We watch movies but don't get the chained to the tv thing...besides why watch tv everyone either tells you all about it or it comes out on dvd as a series no waiting for next week right?:O)

I have had people over who thought i was just not turning the tv on cause they were there .. when they start twitching and say hey i want to see so and such i just have to tell them we don't even get local's said to see the slave's to the tv!
I don't watch for exactly the same reason you do. I found my life was just whittling on past me while I sat thumbing through rerun after rerun of "Roseanne". So I gave up the tube.

I'll still buy DVD boxsets of my favorite shows though. But I find I get much more accomplished when I'm not glued to a television.
Ditto. I manage fine at university for months on end and don't miss it at all and then I come home. If I turn on the telly I'm lost for DAYS, if I leave it off it just stays off and gathers dust.
Hell, I've even more elitist than you are. Although there's one exception that I bought the DVDs for and I do enjoy certain movies, I rarely ever watch sit in front of a powered-up television because most commercial TV just annoys the hell out of me. When I was younger I watched a good bit without thinking about it. Later in life I became indifferent to it and now most of it repels me.

I don't catch much grief for it though. I guess I'm just lucky. I try not to volunteer anything lest I be perceived as the elitist I really am, but if people ask me if I've seen such-and-such I just try to be matter-of-fact about my opinions without getting on a high horse. It doesn't bother me that other people like it.
What do I hate most about LJ? What I hate the most is that when you screw up your grammar in a reply you can't go back and fix it. Can you? Is there way I don't know?
You can't go back and edit, but if it's immediately after that you notice (which it seems to be in this case), you can do what I do:

  • Copy the reply
  • Delete the reply
  • Start a new reply, pasting in the old
  • Fix and repost

So long as I'm only fixing grammar and/or typos, I don't feel like it's a bad thing to delete a reply. :)

Also, there's that "Check spelling and preview" checkbox - I've started using that, and it helps me catch a lot of little stuff. I don't lean on it to catch my spelling, but I use it to get a proper preview before actually posting.
I see a few people do the "delete/repost" bit. I don't mind that at all given that I am habitually going back and fixing typos in root posts.
The only prob to that is when ( like me) people have the posts go automatically to their email then ya have many copies of that reply waiting to be deleted in YOUR mail too!
You know, the solution is simple. Go with the flow. Be that arrogant braggart they insist you are.

Take it from someone who's been there: It's more fun that way. :-)
I haven't watched TV for years. Many many years.

I finally convinced my co-workers of this when they realized that all of the references I made to television were from way back when. It took a few months of training (I was tempted to get shock collars for everyone, but never got around to it).

At least a few of them got it when I said (in response to someone having issues with his computer) "We've secretly replaced his regular CPU with Folger's Instant Crystals. Let's see if he'll notice." Someone else replied "Sheesh, all of your television references are really old."

I'm pretty sure that if one person understands, that comprehension can be transmitted to others if still in the contagious "dawning comprehension" stage.

Oddly enough, though, no one ever references the Onion article you speak of (although I've seen it and was amused).
it dawns on people that I don't watch TV but as soon as I fess up to not watching, I'm an elitist prick and an appropriate subject of mockery.

IME, telling people the reason I don't have a television is because we shot the last one staves off much of the mockery.
Oddly people don't usually argue with me when I tell them I don't watch TV. *shrug*

Perhaps it helps that half of the time I've never even heard of the show so just look at them blankly when they ask so I have to find out it's a TV show before I can tell them I don't watch TV.
It looks like you are certainly not alone honey! I too have no access to commercial TV. I have a DVD player, VCR and three different gaming consoles that I rarely use already. Real Life is diversion enough for me!

Has anybody actually called you an elitist to your face or are you making an assumption about what people think? Nobody can ever know what another person is truly thinking, especially if they don't speak their thoughts. If it's an unspoken assumption, stop it. You are telling yourself a negative lie for no good reason. One of the first keys to loving you and your place in the world is to stop assuming that people are thinking ill of you without them actually saying anything.

Oh and even if they do call you an elitist:

e·lit·ism or é·lit·ism ( P ) n.

1. The belief that certain persons or members of certain classes or groups deserve favored treatment by virtue of their perceived superiority, as in intellect, social status, or financial resources.

If this is not you, then even if you are called an elitist, they are wrong.

Personally I am very much an elitist and I'll be the first to admit it. I believe that smarter, more compassionate, and generous people should run things.
I don't watch too much TV these days. I used to be really bad about it. Oddly enough, my TiVo is what I used to break the habit.

There are really only about two shows that I like to watch on a regular basis now: Scrubs and Alias. My TiVo grabs new eps of those, and I watch at my convenience. It also randomly grabs other things, so if I do have 20 minutes where I'd like to sit and watch something, I have different stuff to see. However, I don't spend hours and hours watching TV anymore, which is really nice.

TV on DVD is also a fascinating way to control the watching. For example, this awesome television series called Robot Chicken just had its first 20 episodes hit DVD. Each ep is only 10 minutes long, so it's great for short bursts of humor. Something tells me you'd find it terribly amusing, and you can watch an ep in 10 minutes, so it's a nice way to fill little bits of time here and there. Worst case, you burn a couple of hours watching most of it, so it's on the level of a movie at that point.
An extra bit I meant to elaborate on but forgot: I think the reason that things like TiVo and TV on DVD really help me not sit and watch it for hours is that I'm in control of the timetable. I don't have to be at my TV at 7:30 on Tuesday night for an hour - I can wait until Sunday morning at 10:32am and only have to be there for 40 minutes, and if I have to get up and walk away, I can pause it and get back to it later. It makes such an amazing difference. I watch so little TV, and yet the $12.95 a month I spend on TiVo is some of the best money I spend each month (outside of my WoW addition :D).

Also, you'd probably really like Mythbusters. It's quite entertaining with some educational aspect.
I don't watch television except at work....we don't have cable nad get no reception otherwise....but then I haven't actually watched TV for abotu maybe 10 years....I will admit that every now and then in the past I would pull out hte rabbit ears and watch reggreen or some other show but those times are few and far between it seems like to much work ha....but I find now that I don't watch when there is a television around I just zone
I remember once waiting for the bus and this guy came up to me and asked if I watched the oscars to which I replied no....he asked why and I explained that I don't watch television (at that tie though i don't think I even had a set) he looked at me rather strangely and said "I heard about people like you" then walked away guess I was just too freaky for him
Try telling people you don't OWN a TV. I did that until I finally got one this past year. You sound even more out there to the "normals" if that is possible.

Thanks again for calming me down yesterday.

Am I still charmingly neurotic or am I just neurotic now?

Yesterday sucked. I talked to my sister and Steve in Madison last night. That helped, too. Then I slept for about eleven hours. I forgot to reset my alarm apparently. I woke up this morning at nine. That's when I am supposed to BE at work. Of course I had a 10am meeting about my job responsibilities that I was late for. Not good. Work is ramping up and now is not the time for me to fall apart emotionally. Two more days. That is now my mantra.

See you Saturday?
Anyone who thinks that not watching TV makes you an elitist prick is not worthy of your consideration. Why would you care what such creatures think of you?

FWIW, when you finally move to .uk you'll find a much more healthy attitude to such individual choices.
Life is too short to watch TV!!
I'm like you. Dont have a telly, for much the same reasons. Also have stopped accessing mainstream news via newspapers, radio & the web too - because I found it both addictive and depressive.

I do watch dvds, when I hear about something particularly cool that I can borrow from a friend or get from the library. But again tend to watch them compulsively when I have them. I simply dont have *time* to have a television.

Oddly, I've never been given a hard time over it. I constantly get double-take / "WTF???" when I am asked about a certain show or advert & respond that I dont have a tv in my house. But then folk generally just accept it. Of course they then forget, and ask me a similar question days or weeks later... yawn. But never been accused of snobbery. I think you may find that therealrhyde is correct in his assessment of this - even tho we are generally a nation of addicts.

Life is too short to watch TV!!
I watch some tv but most of the time I don't. Hell, I just bought a tv for my bedroom ONLY because it has a built in dvd player cause I do like to watch movies till I pass out. I'm an insomniac. I do watch the weather channel. I like to turn it on for the music while I'm dilly dallying around the house or such! I occasionally sit and watch star gate or something but when it starts going into reruns, forget it. Somehow I think we were better off without this particular invention. :)
I"m so sad I didn't read this post until today. It would've made for some fun (ahem) ribbing last night.

Glad you came out! It was great to see you and mingle at least a LITTLE bit, and it was good to meet/see your friend (whose name I will not attempt to spell at this time).

Oh, I even forgot to tell you about the wine tour last w/end, which of course was not the same without you and mo. Soon, though...

Here’s how I would define “TV” to someone who didn’t know what it was: “it’s like a boring version of the web, and you can’t block the popups.”