TV for Dummies
Cable TV? It’s so 2008. But it could be very much 2010 if you don’t hurry and kill it already.
Unsheath your dagger and get ready to pounce: “watching TV” is no longer something you have to do with a cable box or even a TV set in the living room. Nor do you need to follow someone else’s broadcast schedule.
In fact, you can be wearing nothing more than a blank expression when you turn your laptop into a personal entertainment robot any morning at, say, 4:00 a.m. You can take your compliant computer into your private dungeon and peruse anything from classic television to popular shows currently on the air. The only inconvenience is when it takes a day or two for an episode to post on line and you need to avoid water cooler chatter until then.
The networks serve up entire buffets of their shows on the silver platters of their web sites. If you can’t even be bothered to source the right show to the right network, you can get on Hulu.com, the all-you-can- eat smorgasbord of network television treats.
For the spicy pay cable stuff, with swear-word-peppered shows offering nudity, there’s Netflix, or any other DVD delivery service. This allows you to develop the delicious habit of holing up in a darkened apartment with several bottles of wine to watch an entire season of Sex and the City in just one evening. Is this really a doable activity? Indeed it is.
This migration of television to the internet, backed up by mail-order DVDs, is what James Barnett, a freelance editor in Scottsdale, Arizona, calls “nerd cable.” Nerd cable means means never spending anything on cable service. Nothing! Imagine how infuriated the major cable providers must be.
This, my viewing friends, is our moment to drink the flowing nectars of free cable television and watch the big companies shrivel in agony. For I strongly suspect they will somehow find a way to make us pay. They always do.
And I am planning on an old age where my TV-watching comrades meet me on a porch somewhere. We will remember these golden, on-demand days, and we will say things like:
“Were they in purgatory on ‘Lost?’ Or was it a real island?” and “Remember when I used to hunt monsters with my brother Dean every week?”
Torun Harrah is a French-speaking personal assistant and professional organizer in San Francisco.