Monday, 10 September 2007

Six of one....

About two months ago Gord and I decided to discontinue our satellite service, which out here means we have no TV signal at all. I guess we could have tried hooking up the rabbit ears to see if we received a local signal, but we haven't ever bothered with that. It has been an interesting experience, living without TV. Neither Gord or I could remember a time where we had gone longer than the duration of a power outage without being able to turn the TV on whenever we wanted to do so.

Several of our habits changed. We stopped having meals in front of the the TV, and moved to having it over at the breakfast nook-type area of the kitchen. (The table is off-limits: it is largely used as a desk/office area.) At the breakfast nook we would read the paper or a book and occasionally even talk about what we were reading! Sometimes, we'd relax and listen to some music. We enjoyed not being bombarded by food, beer and automotive commercials every ten or twelve minutes. When I would go to someone's house who had TV, I really couldn't find anything worth watching, and the commercials seemed even more annoying than usual.

But, coinciding with cancelling the satellite was the upgrade from dial-up to high-speed internet. And I'm pretty sure that any energy savings we may have gained by turning off the TV have been lost by the fact that now both Gord and I have our computers on at night, often for several combined hours. And there doesn't seem to be much difference between staring at a TV screen or staring at a computer monitor. As they say, it's six of one, half a dozen of the other.

Vanessa at Green as a Thistle has committed to doing less superfluous surfing. I'm trying to get up the gumption to join her, and turn my computer off at, say, 9 pm on weekdays, 10 pm on weekends, but I'm hedging. It is scary to think of how attached (addicted?) I've become to this high speed internet thingy. I'll let you know how it goes.

Picture courtesy these guys.


Becca said...

""This award is for those bloggers who are nice people; good blog friends and those who invoke good feelings and inspiration. Also for those who are a positive influence on our blogging world. Once you’ve been awarded please pass it on to 4 others who you feel are deserving of this award.""

Back to you and thank you :)


Chile said...

I try to limit my surfing to "research" - more ideas to live sustainably. While reading blogs, at first glance, does not seem to qualify, it's amazing how many great ideas we've gotten from other people's journeys.

Though we don't watch TV, we do watch DVDs on the computer. If not too tired, I try to multi-task by doing mending, shelling pecans, or cleaning grains/beans while watching. Those are pretty boring tasks otherwise.

Theresa said...

A lot of my time online is spent doing "research" on blogs as well - I have learned many things from all the green bloggers out there.

Speaking of which, I have implemented one of the tips you gave me a while ago Chile, and found a great little metal shaker can at a garage sale to keep my baking soda in. It dispenses just the right amount of baking soda onto whatever I'm cleaning at the moment!

chile said...

LOL, Theresa, glad I could help. You know, I was just thinking about that today in the shower. Could I dispense with soap if I put a baking soda shaker in there to use instead? (I'd use a plastic shaker rather than metal to avoid rust...)

Scott N said...

It's easier than people make it out to be. I haven't had cable for years but do pull in about 4 channels with the rabbit ears (go to the store and ask some young dude for some and watch his brain scramble). People stand around water coolers and talk about THINGS THAT NEVER HAPPENED at work all the time. It's TV folks.

Theresa said...

Well, we turned the TV back on again after our two month summer experiment and we aren't that impressed. The commercials are loud and obnoxious and the whole focus of our evening changes to be TV-centric. We don't like it and may end up turning the silly thing off for good.

That's a point I'd never considered, Scott -- all that time wasted talking about pretend things!

Scott N said...

People counter argue that "reality" shows are real. I disagree. I think if you took a bunch of those folks and let them loose in the woods, most of them would be dead in a week. It's more like a big outdoor game show.