Television, the drug of the nation, part 2

My article ‘Television, the drug of the nation, part 1’ (here) was inspired by reading a blog entry made by Steve Conway.  I’ve spoken before of my relationship with Steve in an article I penned all about my ‘Steve Conway Envy’ (here).  If you can be arsed, you could maybe read it to get up to speed, but it’s not essential.

Steve singing his version of his favourite Kylie song

So, anyway, my ‘part 1’ article started off being a response to something Steve revealed via his blog, but as is usually the case, I got wrapped up in talking about me and trying to justify my weirdness and talk about how wonderful I am.  So, what was supposed to address Steve’s newly adopted way of life, ended up meandering all over the place before even getting to what should have been the pre-amble.

Eventually I did get round to making general observations about television and how it controls people’s lives.  I alluded to its addictive quality and how people are seriously quite literally addicted to it, living their lives around it, with it always taking a very distracting centre stage over any real dramas in their real life.

I bragged about how in my household TV exists but is very low down in importance to us, how we don’t watch a huge amount, and how days can pass without it even being switched on.  I am happy to live this way, but Steve, it seems, has taken one extra step.  A step too far, maybe.

I mean, I try to visualise doing the same and I feel a great unease, a bit like how I’d feel about killing somebody. Ok, not quite like that, but it doesn’t sit right in my head. I know I would suffer withdrawal, panic, and regret. Therefore, I know I just can’t justify trying to be like Steve.

Steve has thrown his TV away! 

(Well, not ‘thrown’ but carefully carried it into the shed)

Steve now exists in a world without television.

I’ll say this twice in order to let it sink in.

Steve now exists in a world without television.

Ok, I know this seems like an indication of Steve suffering some kind of mental breakdown, but, yes, it’s true, he now exists without television.

How does that make you feel?  Uneasy, eh?  Shudder!

Well, Steve revealed via his blog (here) that he had taken this final leap of faith and was feeling ok, although he did spend a little too long for my liking, saying how he could watch things via his computer anyway.  His shaky voice cracked, “I…I…I can handle it” as he stared at the space where the TV had once been, and eyed the DVDs he’d left to remind him of his loss in the way that an ex-smoker might leave a last unopened packet of cigarettes on the mantlepiece.  His good neighbour and friend Oran, who I gather has a relationship with Steve a bit like a ‘cleaner’ has to an assassin, is on stand-by with hot water and towels should Steve need to be flannelled down at this difficult time.

Indeed, when faced with that last paragraph Steve was forced once again to qualify his actions and his current state of mind by saying via Google+, “I think I was bringing this (watching stuff online / DVDs) in just to show I’m not a complete freak 🙂 But in actuality, my rate of viewing stuff online (low) and watching DVDs (occasional) has not changed at all since getting rid of the TV.”  Again, spending just a little too much time trying to point out that he still has access to the drug when he needs it, and adding that his usage hasn’t increased, honest, since severing ties with his main supplier. I hope Oran is ready with those towels.

But, joking aside, it seems a little too extreme for me, as we do use the TV, just not a lot.  Certainly not as much as everybody we know.  Oh, and I need it for work stuff, of course.  Phew!  I can justify it.  Panic over.  Mop brow, stop sweating.

I think Steve is very brave, and I wonder if he might start a trend.  I really applaud him for his new lifestyle choice.  I’m sure it’ll keep his mind alert and bright, and he is already better for it.

It has slightly made my ‘Steve Conway Envy’ flare up again, so if you don’t mind I’ll stop writing now and see if there’s anything about ‘Steve Conway Envy’ on the Jeremy Kyle show. Oh shit, the show’s already on. I’ve missed a bit! Oh, it’s ok I can catch the bit I missed on ITV1+1. Thank god for that. Got to go or I’ll miss even more. Bye.