Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bye Bye Cable Television

The end of football season brought the end to another season at our house.  Max returned the cable box and canceled cable television and our landline telephone yesterday.  When I think about the amount of money we will save each month with this choice, I'm almost giddy!  We'll just hope that he and I don't come up with some other creative way to spend it.

Don't get me wrong, I still like watching television shows - I have my favorites this year and watch many of them on various internet sites.  But, I have to admit that up until a few years ago, television was just invasive in my life.  I was thankful for it when I couldn't sleep at night - I'd watch all sorts of wild stuff on Nick at Nite or TVLand, but then I realized that even though I was trying to distract my mind from the craziness it was focusing on from the day, watching television didn't relax me enough to put me back to sleep ... the distractions just made it worse.

Three years ago, we considered purchasing a large-screen tv, but chose to not do that and spend the money elsewhere.  Everything changed for me.  I bought a Kindle and began reading like the reading fiend I was when I was younger - you know ... back before Cable TV really even existed in small town Iowa.

Max says that right now the only thing he misses is the additional clock on the cable box.  All that is left in that room is the clock on his computer.  Well, honestly, that's all I use anymore too.  He'll adjust - or get another clock.

I really don't want to sound pious regarding this decision - I hate when people talk about 'fasting' from television or the internet or other things that have become conveniences in our lives.  That short period of fasting really doesn't transform them - it just annoys the rest of us.  And eliminating the cable box from our lives isn't going to transform us - unless you call saving that kind of money transformational and by golly, I'm looking forward to that part of it!!!

The other part of this equation is the impact that eliminating cable from many people's lives because of streaming shows on the internet.  The newspaper industry has managed to fall apart because they didn't handle the transition to digital well - will the cable industry do the same?  Will this media industry be better prepared for change, or will they insist that dinosaurs still roam the earth?  And isn't it interesting that an industry that began in the 70s and grew so rapidly for several decades could face decimation because they aren't prepared to change.

It's going to be fascinating to watch!  But not on a television for me.


Fran said...

We are flip-flopping, for years I could have done without the box and now I find that I am enjoying it. Although if I had to choose, my Kindle would win, hands down!

cody said...

we did the same - the day after the college national championship! of course, the NFL playoff games were all on network, so we get them with bunny ears. I must say, between network tv and netflix, I hardly miss it. The big change for me would be getting rid of the screen completely, which I honestly wish I could do. Poor little JC, though, had really gotten used to turning on four-eight (channel 48) in the morning to watch the disney channel, and most of those shows aren't available on streaming netflix. he does just fine with pbs though. :)