are two things you quickly notice about not watching TV.
The first is that everyone with a telly watches it far
more than they admit. The second is that it gives
thousands of hours of good quality entertainment for
astonishingly little cost. What critics have long
maintained is that TV destroys the mind, but I’ve now
got to admit that people who haven’t got a TV become
restless, edgy and ultimately obsessed with trivia.
tried keeping a diary of the experiment: “Day 1. Life is
so much better without TV. I’m doing so much more, and I
feel a better person…” and so on…The second week was
just dull. I felt slightly numb and dimly aware of
everyone else was having fun while I couldn’t allow
myself to do so. Going out with friends also got
problematic. I now realize that at least two-thirds of
conversations begin:”Hey! Did you see… the other night?”
Of course I didn’t! People started regarding me as some
sort of sad case.
lowest points of the month were two England-Scotland
football matches, for which I joined Britain’s
long-distance lorry drivers and shop staff listening to
the radio. Whilst I was sure life went on as normal in
Wales, life everywhere else in mainland Britain came to
a complete halt that day. I know it because I stared out
of the window watching the rest of the population
hurrying home to watch the matches.
Then total disaster struck. I
got flu and had to spend a day at home. Despite the
thrill of comfort food and reading the newspaper in bed
with the central heating on, there seemed no point in
having a day off sick if you couldn’t watch TV. I was
back at work the next day.
last few days were like being a small child before
Christmas: each minute took twice as long as the
preceding one. Eventually, midnight crept around, and,
like a drowning man finding dry land, I leapt in front
of the set and grabbed the remote control as if it was
pure gold! I had reached an oasis of televisual
delights. And, of course, you’ve guessed it! There was
nothing interesting on!