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Friday, January 03, 2003

New Year's TV Resolutions

I watch too much TV, and everyone seems to know it except me.

Granted, I have it all justified pretty well. The way it was working this past fall:

Had to watch: Boomtown, despite the sinking quality, and Angel.
Watched occasionally: Alias, because Vartan is pretty and I could practice the guitar while it was on.
If I was really trying to procrastinate: AMC's The Essentials - five minutes of Rob Reiner and two hours of quality cinema goodness.

Had to watch: Nothing
Watched occasionally: CSI reruns on TNN, as I could curl up in bed with my remote and fall asleep before they caught the bad guys.
If I was really trying to procrastinate: Nothing, really. I was forced to channel surf HBO and find a movie there or something. Monday was a dead night for me.

Had to watch: Buffy
Watched occasionally: 24 - only the premiere and the latest episode.
If I was really trying to procrastinate: God help me, everyone's so pretty on Smallville

Had to watch: Ed and West Wing
Watched occasionally: I made an occasional effort to catch Birds of Prey, because it's my kind of show. But my kind of show turns out to be easily canceled.
If I was really trying to procrastinate: I'll be honest and admit it - I saw more than one episode of The Bachelor. Even though it inspired near-homicidial rage in me.

Had to watch: Nothing
Watched occasionally: CSI, when I remembered to tape it (I had a late class)
If I was really trying to procrastinate: I didn't have anything due on Fridays, so there really wasn't a need.

Had to watch: Firefly
Watched occasionally: Oh, who am I kidding? I watched John Doe all the friggin' time.
If I was really trying to procrastinate: If I wasn't going to be at home, I would TAPE John Doe. Even though I really don't like it that much.

That was six hours of must-see stuff, six hours of occasional viewing, and five hours of procrastination viewing. EVERY WEEK. And this doesn't even cover hours of movies on HBO, Simpsons and Friends reruns, The Daily Show...

I know this isn't a horrible amount of TV. But the one thing I really agreed with in Stephen King's On Writing was this: you have to push TV aside. And I don't like the sway TV has on me right now. I don't like how much of my time it takes. And there's a lot I'd rather do - work on this website (catch up with my reviews!), exercise, practice guitar, WRITE...

So, I'm going to have to give up some stuff, especially since there is new stuff coming that I want to see. That's the major concern. I want to make time for Farscape and American Idol and Miracles... And even with Firefly sadly off the air, I still have some choices to make.

Here is an attempt at a revised schedule. With NO MORE procrastination television:

Have to see: We'll give Boomtown one more episode to shape up. Then I have to say goodbye. In one of the stupidest programming decisions ever, Angel is moving to Wednesdays for a while, so that frees up my night.
Occasionally watch: Alias - just so long as I'm doing something else while it's on. My guitar skills need a lot of work. Otherwise, aim for an entire night of freedom from the idiot box.

Have to see: David Greenwalt left Angel, in part, because he fell in love with the pilot script for Miracles. It deserves a shot, at least.
Occasionally watch: Nothing. I have to resist Joe Millionaire (even though he is kinda cute) and I'm going on a CSI diet. I like the show, but too much of it just makes the flaws in its writing stand out more clearly.

Have to see: Buffy, absolutely. But I'm going to see what's happening with my American Idol friends. If I can work out a way to watch both, I will. But if I can't, then I'll remain true to the Buff.
Occasionally watch: I might still pop in on 24. Watching it with a friend was fun.

Have to see: Ed, West Wing and Angel. This means that I'll either always have to be home at 9 PM Wednesdays, or my roommate will have to get her VCR fixed. I'm aiming for option 2.
Occasionally watch: Screw you, Bachelorette. I have enough to watch.

Have to see: Nothing. Hahahah! I'm FREE!
Occasionally watch: Maybe CSI. But not too much. Don't want to be a glutton.

Have to see: Farscape. I've come this far, I'll see it through as far as it goes.
Occasionally watch: Well, Stella finally got around to asking out John Doe. And I was rooting for her, and so I'm happy about that.

That comes to eight hours of must-see programming (seven if I give up on Boomtown, six if American Idol doesn't work out, and five if Miracles doesn't hold up to its promise) and only three once-in-a-while shows. That's good. That's managable. That's certainly better than what I was doing before.

Of course, The Essentials still lurks on the horizon. There are episodes of The Simpsons that I can't turn off. And if I watch Jon Stewart enough, maybe one day he'll love me back.

But this is progress. And that's all I really wanted.

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