Once upon a time, I, too, used to watch TV. I followed soaps, documentaries and even reality TV shows, and I`d often find myself stumbling onto an old Hollywood movie which I watched till late.
When we got the satellite dish, I`d watch more German telly than British, and I think that`s when I first noticed how much things had deteriorated. Shows I knew from years ago no longer were the same (or replaced by something different altogether), and it wasn`t long until I realised that British TV was no different – apart from the occasional repetition of some Hollywood movie, you could, in simple terms, forget about it. Even the documentaries I used to love were either sensationalist or repetitions.
So I stopped switching on. My husband likes to watch the news, and when those were finished, he`d just leave the telly on, paying no further attention to what it actually was that was on. Eventually, I became annoyed at the inflated cheerfulness and canned laughter and asked him to switch off once the news was over. I can`t for the life of me remember when this was, but certainly years ago. And we miss nothing.
What I do miss is small talk. I never noticed how much of the conversation at work or parties is about what`s on TV until I could no longer contribute to them. I infamously asked who Geordie Shore was.
Sometimes, I feel a little smug. But I`m on the internet a lot, highly likely consuming even more garbage because, unlike telly, there`s no pre selection through people who research what people like. I also spend a lot of time blogging, which inevitably leads to a lot of preoccupation with my own issues, including worries, while you are supposed to distract yourself.
And it`s good to sometimes just be passive and let myself be entertained. To cut a long story short, I signed up for a trial month of Netflix and vowed to blog about what I`ve been watching.
… so here it is after three weeks:
Friday 31 July: Girl Model
Documentary about a 13year old girl from Siberia who was discovered during an open casting and went to Tokyo to be a model. Awful. I kind of knew how this industry works and takes advantage of the very young, but seeing the film hit hard. People commenting on her body right in front of her, and the “apartment” she shared with another model was just a box room. The girls spend a lot of time going for castings but don`t get booked, so they earn no money and cannot pay their extortionate rent to (surprise!) their own model agency…
Monday, 3 August: (The American) The Office
Because they were only 20 mins each, I actually watched two episodes, “Diversity Day” and “Health Care”. I can`t be bothered with this. The characters are all so exaggerated, they won`t happen in real life. And my own office is far more interesting.
Nuff said. Netflix will be cancelled. At least I can say I gave telly another go in this decade.
What I am finding is that I`m reading more books again, good books, which do distract and genuinely broaden my horizon. I should blog about books now and again…