I wrote this 15 years ago. A lot of the references are outdated, but I remember them, and I like them. So...
Television is a mind-sucking social leech.
I had a friend who told me that his ex-wife used to say that television is the great conversation killer.
So why won't I stop watching?
I wake up every single morning, quickly telling God in the guise of a humble request, what I want to happen that day, knowing that He loves me and wants all good things for me. But really feeling guilty because I am trying to rush through my obligatory obeisance to God so that He will give me all good things. I don’t want to talk to God. I want to turn on the television. How else will I know what’s important today? So quickly is my conversation with God ended that I feel as if I am neglecting Him, and perform a mental shrug as I turn on one of two televisions on the way to the bathroom.
Immediately informed of the progress of the "war on terrorism", the latest shootings, muggings, car wrecks, bus wrecks, truck wrecks, assassinations, child abuse/neglect/murder, wars and rumors of war, including death-tolls, all intermittently mixed with the 7,000 forms of sports, and timed smatterings of weather and traffic. An attempt, I determined long ago, to stir me into such a frenzy, so that all I will want to talk about, listen to, and want to watch is the damn television. It seems to have worked as I reluctantly turn off the television to go to work. Ask me ten minutes later what I heard or saw, I couldn't tell you. But someone else is watching TV also, and when the subject is brought up anywhere, anytime that day, we will discuss it with such concern and animation that you would think we eye witnessed the event personally.
On the way to work, the radio is turned on to hear the opinions of the local DJ, to learn what mine are, and listen to songs I don’t even like played in rotation every 45 minutes. It’s getting hot in here, so hot, why do I suddenly feel like taking all my clothes off?
Every day at work is spent gazing directly into a 13-inch computer monitor for seven and half-hours from less than 12 inches away. And when I get home what do I do to relax? Why, I walk into my apartment and turn on the television! My excuse is always the same. I deserve a break today! I want to have it my way! Television, take me away!!
When I turn on the television, thousands of tiny invisible single cell microorganisms are shot through the airwaves into my brain through my ears and eyes. They crawl through to my brain eating it from the inside, sucking ideas and the will to live or to do anything at all right out of my head. GIGO. Garbage in, garbage out. This mind-killing organism has a numbing effect, which is why I don’t feel them entering my body and crawling through my brain. “We celebrate you, Mr. Tiny invisible single cell micro-organism! It’s not easy finding your way through the air into our tiny brains!! Going where no man has gone before! You are the savior of the media Mr. Tiny invisible single cell microorganism!”
Yep, I figured this all out on my own. It’s the only explanation of why I can’t cancel cable and quit watching this soul sucker. It can’t be just that I have become lazy, and don't want to think for myself, or that I let television and the media what the important issues are, and what my opinions are about them?
It doesn't seem to always matter what is on. I have become addicted to the little critters. That’s why it’s so important to hear the voices from the television, to feel the numbness, and then to sink into a place of blissful non-thinking. Isn’t it even plausible that I hear the little creatures say, "Hi Honey!" when I wake up in the morning and, "Goodnight baby." before I retire at night?
I wonder how many other people know about this? Doctors should prescribe it...better than Xanax, better than Prozac-lite! A prescription for 30 days of solid thought-depleting process, and then, return as needed. And by the way, vote for Bush.
I’ve thought about getting help, canceling cable, selling the TV, and found out those little bastards don’t like it when you cut them off completely. I even tried it a couple of times and went through withdrawals-cramps, shakes, dry heaves, and cold sweats. I’ve wondered if I would end up hanging out on the corner of the hood, waiting for some elderly woman to walk by so I could grab her purse, find out where she lives, break into her house and steal her television.
So here I sit, in front of the mind-sucking social leech, taking no responsibility for the way the world is carrying on. The media, creators and sole owners of the brain pets have everything under control. I would go out and get help, but they know when I am thinking about doing that, because fear freezes my mind like an ice cream headache and these thoughts tornado around in my head..If I cancel cable and stop watching TV., how am I gonna know when "You Gotta Eat!!" or to "Obey your thirst!" My life would be dull if I didn’t’ know what “drama” is. I might have to formulate my own opinions. I don’t even know what they are, and, I would have to be alone with the most boring person I know.
You’d think like this too if you had little critters crawling around your brain.