Monday, July 09, 2007

Why not turn off the television...

So, I have come to the end of my television free week and I thought it would be useful to have a ponder over how it actually went.

The summary is that it was fantastic, easy, refreshing and peaceful.

I am not sure if it was easier because I had already planned four evenings of social engagements with friends, or if I would have found it a doddle anyway, but either way it was fun all round.

After a shaky start with flu-like symptoms at the weekend, the week got better with me finding time to catch up with old friends. The evenings that I did spend at home, I found myself being able to spend more time with 21st C Dad and not spend too much time using blogging as a substitute. Although by the end of the week, I was obviously full of enough energy to turn my hand to becoming the local neighbourhood busy-body.

So how did the other members of the family get on? The children accepted the fact that the TV was broken. I'm not sure I agree with their request for daddy to buy a new one. However, after the weekend, they didn't mention it again and just got on with playing with their toys or going out for walks in the rain and jumping in puddles.

My plan completely collapsed when I forgot to bring our babysitter in on the plan. When I returned home from a workshop one afternoon, I found them glued to the TV.

The response to my over-exaggerated cbeebies style comment "How on earth did you fix the TV?", my eldest replied "Silly mummy, it was just unplugged at the back".


Clever mummy thinks...next time, I'll take the fuse out!

Oh I nearly forgot 21st C Dad.... He's used the time to practice his solitaire skills and on Saturday night we celebrated with a recording of the last episode of Doctor Who.

However, the TV has been off since and I think it will continue to be so.


7 Comments:

a.n.other said...

Congratulations on your T.V. free week.
I would like to think that I could do it too, but the only way I can get through my ironing is to watch a couple of movies at the same time.
I do think it's a pity that kids are so into telly, computer games etc. When mine were little we had a few years of iving in a country where there was hardly any T.V.,only a video now and again,and as they had limited access to toys,they had to rely on their imaginations.
They were always busy and happy, building dens and such like.
Kids have fantastic imaginations and ideas,they really don't need to be electronically stimulated all the time. Maybe I'm old fashioned!

Councillor Paul Farmer said...

I completely agree a.n.o. The irony is that TV has got worse and worse over the years. It was worth watching when there were only 3/4/5/channels and we did other things. Whenever do we get a good play - rarely/never, because its too expensive.

Oooh, how nice to have a moan like everybody does most times at me!

a.n.other said...

We used to be so selective about the programmes we watched.
I can remember looking forward to 'serials', dramas in several parts thet kept us on the edge of our seats for weeks on end, but I never feel like that now. I have wondered if it's because I am getting older,but maybe it's because the quality is not so good,perhaps there is too much misery and angst being depicted, what's wrong with a happy ending?Paul seems to be suggesting we just have too much choice.I agree.
Or maybe all this reality T.V. isn't as good as it's supposed to be. Sorry, but Big Brother just doesn't do it for me!

21st Century Mummy said...

a.n.other - there is a lot of misery on TV these days isn't there.

Paul - My old favourites were the made-for-tv plays, giving that added edge. Shame we don't get so many of these any more

I'm still a bit old fashioned. We have digital TV, but only Freeview and the only thing we really benefit from there are the excellent Cbeebies programmes.

My dissertation for my degree was on the effect of American TV on Europe. This was written in 1989 and I remember an important point was the value of the US export market, with programmes being imported to European broadcasters.

I certainly think that it is the value of the export market is one of the key drivers in production these days, focusing on programmes as "brands", which can be exported successfully to other territories. It's back to the old economics of supply and demand. Pull in reduced production costs and profits are boosted. Programmes like Doctor Who are exceptions to the rule, which is why they are such a treat if (like me) you like that kind of thing.

Now I have got to ask...does anyone remember Redifusion?

david said...

Our next door neighbour in Walkden in the 50's & 60's worked for Redifusion so there was often one of their vans outside the house.

Television is vastly improved since I first watched it in 1953. Some of that is due to technical innovation but generally the programmes are better than before.

I watched the first ever episode of Doctor Who, broadcast live on Saturday 23 November 1963. It went unnoticed simply because of the assasination of President John F Kennedy the previous day.

Later that Saturday evening, That Was The Week That Was paid a tribute to JFK and it wasn't until the Daleks appeared for the first time that Doctor Who got a sizeable audience. Even then it on quite early - about 6ish - and it should be remembered that until 1957 the BBC used to shut down for an hour at 6 pm so that the working-class could eat a family meal together without the distraction of television.

If anyone thinks I'm joking - I'm not!

21st Century Mummy said...

David - what a great account of the development of TV. My first memories of TV were 3 channels in b&w. I remember the launch of Channel 4 and the Breakfast Television. I also remember TV shutting down but I don't seem to recall at what time of day. Just imagine if TV was shut down for an hour these days. hmmmm :-)

21st Century Mummy said...

David - what a great account of the development of TV. My first memories of TV were 3 channels in b&w. I remember the launch of Channel 4 and the Breakfast Television. I also remember TV shutting down but I don't seem to recall at what time of day. Just imagine if TV was shut down for an hour these days. hmmmm :-)