An Alien Without a Television

That’s how I feel.

People spend their time talking about what they saw on TV the night before. I don’t have one and somehow feel left out of the conversation. I don’t know the shows, actors, personalities, etc, so I just listen, fascinated by it, and feeling like an alien.

Not long ago, I was with two couples who were bashing down children nowadays who have no respect for their teachers. After a few minutes, I decided to reverse the conversation, wondering about the possibility of some teachers who could have no respect for the children (hey, I’ve had some very vicious nun teachers)! “Oh no!” replied one man. ” It’s the kids, I saw it on (whatever talk show)!” he said with a wink and a proud smile. There. What can I say? I haven’t seen the show. An alien.

In the evening here there  is a great soap-opera showing 5 nights a week. Yes, even when you don’t have a TV you get to know all the programs. Everyone is in front of their TV at that time. There’s no one outside! We often joke about that if we were thieves, it would be the best time to go for it! One neighbor is very proud of this show. He tells me that his 14 year-old grand-daughter is hooked on it too. I guess that it makes him feel young? When people get together and share what they saw on that show; who’s sleeping with whom, who’s betraying whom; well… , I feel like an alien.

I was invited for lunch at some friends’ house. As I came in, the TV was there like a painting on the wall, and going full blast. I wondered if it was on just in case  our conversation got boring, or if our tongues got twisted up and we couldn’t use our mouths. Lunch was full of talk anyway, even with that background noise. Later we were on the couch, right in front of the TV and just in time for a good cowboy shooting time. I got used to hearing hunter’s shotguns on Sunday mornings every winter, but not indoors, so I jumped when this show started.  At the same time we were discussing a property that they were thinking about buying, but couldn’t make up their minds. He likes rock houses, she likes brick ones. Here there was all this shotgun noise coming out of the TV and they were discussing a serious life decision. Strange, when you are not used to it.

Then came the ads. I learned about some products that are on the market that I had no idea existed! The alien felt out of touch here!

Next was a reality show. Their son came out of his bedroom, looked at the TV and said, “Oh yes, that’s the show where this and that happens.” He obviously seemed to know all about it. So he sat down to watch it again. That was very peculiar to me.

All the time, I have people asking me, ” Wow, you don’t have a TV? How can you do it?” That’s when I feel like I must be  a survivor of some kind, one of the last of a weird species, or an alien.

I wonder how an ET would see it?



  1. chrislipjournal said,

    April 2, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    “How would an ET see it” is a tantalizing question. “People spend their lives watching other people living more interesting – yet imaginary – lives.” 🙂

    Rob Hanson at Chrislip Journal

    • thevoicecontinues said,

      April 2, 2010 at 1:15 pm

      Yeah and those are the same people that tell me that I don’t miss anything by not having a TV!
      Interesting when you are just an observer… peculiar.
      Thanks for your comment.

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