Escape Your Television - Diary of an Addict

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Day 2

I had a good night's sleep and woke up before the alarm feeling fresh at 6:45am... this is unusual. Maybe it's coincidence that I didn't watch television before bed.

Well, another 24 hours has passed and I've avoided watching any programming. I think it's helped by the fact that I've pulled the power cable out of the Sky box so I'd have to scrabble around amongst all the cables to power it up again. Those 30 seconds would hopefully bring me to my senses.
As an added disincentives, I've found an alternative use for the Sky box electricity socket. I've plugged in my lava lamp which has been sitting, redundant, alongside the telly for over two years! I'd forgotten how funky it looks, definitely a good move.

I've missed two of my current favourite programmes this evening; Most Haunted and The West Wing. Never mind, I've lived and while I wonder what happened on the episodes I can't say I'm really that bothered plus I've gained an extra two hours by not watching them. Instead I did an hour of kung fu tutorial through a DVD. I know, I know.. I used the television but I did agree with myself from the start that it wasn't the television so much as the content that's at issue. By watching the DVD I had full control of the output and I wasn't sitting on my arse I was up following the moves and exercising. I know I can't learn kung fu through a DVD tutorial (even if this one is very good) but I'm just using it to practice basic moves, positions and balance. That way, when I join an evening class I'll at least be able to keep up and won't be learning from scratch. Well, that's the plan at least.

The other thing I did in this salvaged time was to write an email to my financial advisor on all the questions I didn't understand in the pension document I completed yesterday. So, another chores out of the way and another weight off my shoulders.

The way I see this progressing is that initially I'm not going to find I've got lots of spare time as I'm clearing the backlog of chores that television use has caused to accumulate. Then, once all the chores are cleared I'll start finding new and interesting things to do with the spare time.... we'll see.

One thing of concern I've noticed is that while working on my computer I keep catching myself day-dreaming whilst cricking my neck, eyes staring at the blank television screen over my left shoulder. It's funny that the TV is as stimulating switched off as when it's switched on.

On a side note, the two friends who were at the pub discussing this experiment with me at the weekend have also unplugged with no apparent side effects. They've had to resist the impulse to turn on the telly as soon as entering the house but both have just retired for the evening with unread books.

Right, time for me to rest with a book too. While I regularly read long extracts of non-fiction books (often heavy going on the nature of reality, consciousness etc) I have not managed to read an entire book of fiction in over 14 years. The last book I read cover to cover was more of a documentary, Michael Moore's, Dude Where's My Country.
So, tonight I'll start on a book I bought on holiday back in February, Pompeii by Robert Harris.