01 May 2007

TV Turnoff Week 2007: The verdict

TV Turnoff Week 2007 is finally over, and it couldn't have ended a moment too soon. I'm telling you, Heather and I almost went crazy. I spent the week staring at anything shaped like a box, hoping for a moment of TV entertainment. I didn't know what day it was without a TV programming routine to remind me. Worst of all, I cried myself to sleep each night, and dreamed in technicolor sitcoms, reality shows and crime dramas.

Or not.

It was actually quite refreshing. Newsflash: there are other things to do with your time than watch TV.

On Monday, we went to go see A Friend of Mine, a film that was part of the German film festival in Sydney last week. It was billed as a comedy, and while there were funny/amusing/cute parts, it was a drama. But it was good. Not what we were expecting, but good. (By the way, some of you may be questioning going to a movie during TV Turnoff Week. The point is that we were out of the house and met with friends, rather than sitting at home in front of our TV. Also, it was as much a cultural event as a typical night at the movies.)

On Tuesday, we played Scrabble, which Heather always beats me at. No different Tuesday: she won 2-0. But what are you supposed to do when you have FOUR 'O's?!?

Wednesday was ANZAC Day, so Heather and I were both off. We planned to go to a 4:15 sunrise memorial service and even went to bed early, but when the alarm went off and it was raining outside, we didn't get up. However, I did go to a 12:30 service at the ANZAC Memorial near our home. I have video from that that I will be piecing together soon to share, so check back for that. Other than that, Heather got some quilting done and I read a lot.

On Thursday, I conducted our satire workshop. We read Swift's 'A Modest Proposal' then we read some samples that I found on The Onion last weekend. Highlights were 'Bill of Rights Pared Down to a Manageable Six' and 'Millions Participate in Cuban Version of Survivor'. We talked about target, audience and satire technique, analyzed the purpose of each one, and talked about how we would have approached the same topics as a satire.

By the way, The Onion has gone video now. Here are two good ones.

Breaking News: Something Happening In Haiti

Immigration: The Human Cost

After that, we played Scrabble again, but this time I stole a game. I think she let me win.

Friday we saw Hot Fuzz, a British comedy. Not a drama with funny/amusing/cute parts. A real, over-the-top, satirical/parodic (I looked that up) comedy.

Saturday we did some quilt fabric shopping and I finished Don Quixote. Three stars.

Sunday we read about South America and did some general planning for our trip later this year. At the moment, Mexico City, Cusco/Macchu Picchu, Peru and Rio, Brazil are looking good.

So what will I take from this? I'm not going to sell my TV and XBox and cut off the internet now, but taking a break for a week has been nice. It helps you realise that you don't need to be constantly wired in, that there are other things to do with your time. I'll be more careful not to automatically turn on the TV when I get home and end up sitting in front of it all evening. I'll still watch what I like, but when it's over, I can turn it off and do something else, rather than flip channels all night looking for something mildly entertaining. The official TV Turnoff Week is over, but I recommend you give it a try, even if it is just for one day. Find something else to do, preferably something with other people that sparks conversation. I just don't recommend playing Scrabble with Heather—she's a killer.

1 comment:

raditha said...

Glad to see that you survived TV turn off week when the cricket world cup finals were on.