If there is one thing my childhood taught me, it is that there is grown-up television and kid television.
I was a child in the glorious days of the late 1970's and early 1980's, when black-and-white televisions were still commonly used as the "auxiliary" television, the VCR was a brand new invention competing with many others, and cable television was still, to most people, an idea for the future. Back then, a "big" television was in the 21 to 25 inch range. 27 inches was positively luxurious.
I still remember our main entertainment center from those pre-everything days: a color television with rabbit ear antennae, no remote control (we had those funky silver dials, one for VHF and one for UHF), and a Hi-Fi stereo system set up next to it so Dad could listen to the baseball game on the radio while he watched it on TV. That was it. In those days, the television would go off for hours at a time every day so we could listen to records or sleep.
In my parents' bedroom was the secondary television, a black-and-white 13-incher that we kids despised. However, it was there we were banished when Mom or Dad were having grown-up TV time, which usually meant "The News." If there was one thing I learned, it was that grown-ups watch the news at least twice a day, every day, and possibly Entertainment Tonight.
I can't do it. I'm sick of the news. I don't watch it anymore. I might have the local news on first thing in the morning long enough to get the weather report, but that's it. I don't even watch The Daily Show anymore. I get too sad with what seems to me to be the needless strife and contention in the world. I don't want to hear it anymore.
However, I have to keep up with the important things. "The Soup" brings me my weekly pop-culture round up. Daily checks of Twitter keep me informed of happenings around the world. Google News shows me the headlines without bothering me with details.
My one, tenuous link to the world of information was NPR Morning Edition. Even that is gone. It was costing me too much money, downloading the Norwegian folk music and feminist rap. I now listen to alternative comedy podcasts in the morning. The up side: my improv chops are coming back. The down side: I have no idea what is going on in the world.
And that's the way I like it.
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