So we were driving around today, the kids and I, running errands.
Bank, Costco, oil change...that type of thing.
And as is often the case when we're out and about, my mind was on all sorts of things. Today it was on my morning post and the question as to why we don't have a tube. My thoughts were everywhere from what it was like growing up with one, to the choice of not having one, and to how tired I get of them when we are on vacation and then to the interesting case of how I know more than one person like me who grew up with one and chooses not to have one, and even more who grew up without them and do have them. It's one of those little curiousities in human behavior that I find fascinating...like there's some sort of hidden message in there somewhere that I can't quite put my finger on.
So as we're sitting at the tracks waiting for the train to rumble by I was composing this part of the blog post in my head.
And Allan pipes up.
And he says, (this is the ooo-oooh part) "Mom...isn't it weird how that some people who grew up with a tv don't have one now and how others that didn't have one growing up, do?)
And I got goosepimples and shoved my fingers into my ears real quick-like so he wouldn't find anymore of my thoughts. I mean, seriously...how did he do that? It's not something we've talked about and he doesn't read my blog. I even asked him then how he even KNOWS who grew up with or without one and if they do or don't have one now and he confessed that that's odd..he doesn't know how he knows.
I did grow up with a television. And, truth be told, I have fond memories of snuggling up on the couch and watching a Disney classic with the family. Old Yeller, Snow White, The Parent Trap...we watched them all. I remember that my dad was pretty strict about what we could watch...Disney and Jacques Cousteau were on the can watch list. And I remember lazy Sunday afternoons watching the classic movies. I always crossed my fingers and hoped it would be another Shirley Temple movie - I adored Shirley Temple.
But somewhere along the line, as is often the case, I think they got too busy to keep an eye on what we were watching. We had a full time babysitter and I peeked around the corner more than once to see what was going on with the Guiding Light gang. And I recall when the cousins would come over it was sometimes hard to get them to play because they didn't have a tube so they'd be slack-jawed in front of ours giggling over the Beverly Hillbillies and trying to figure out the difference between the show and the commercials. And I remember how frustrated I'd be when my brother didn't want to play because he was watching a Brady Bunch rerun for the umpteenth time.
And I remember when I began babysitting. I must have been ten or eleven. (Mom...you can stop reading now)
And I remember one specific evening when my mom and dad told me on the way out the door, "don't watch any tv tonight"
And I turned it on.
And I ran to the window every five minutes to see if they were coming home.
And from start to finish - how my siblings survived my babysitting I have no clue - but I watched some movie on child pornography. And I had nightmares for a really long time. And I learned a lot. And to this day I remember that movie vividly.
So I don't want one.
To me it offers too much temptation. To me. I know myself, and I know that I would be hooked on reality shows. And others. And I don't really see any value in that, for me.
My kids manage to see a few things now and then at a friends house, the neighbors, at school - and that's enough. More than enough.
And we have it on vacation one or two weeks a year, and by the end of vacation it makes my skin crawl. I don't crave it at all. My every once in awhile stint at the hospital with 60 plus channels to myself for 2 days is enough to remind me that I'm not missing anything.
So we've been tv-less our entire marriage, almost 15 years now. And in that time we did rent one once - so I could watch the winter olympics for two weeks. I love the winter olympics.
And the only other time that I wished I had access to one was during 9/11. So I went across the street and watched at the neighbors.
So, that 'bout sums it up. It boils down to a personal choice. We're not unique...I know plenty of others that don't have them either. And I don't judge people for choosing one way or another - we choose for us, because we know how we'd be with one.
And Al's question this morning? He's wondering if he's destined to have one when he grows up since we don't have one now.
That'll be his choice
But I hope that he remembers all the hours that he spent at creative play, carving, reading, outdoors, etc and decides he doesn't need one either.