Polyester Pants

Reality TV. Isn’t that an oxymoron?

I remember watching television as a child, or even as a teenager (I do not watch TV now. I have three children…need I say more.) to get away, or be taken somewhere. Love Boat, Fantasy Island, even All in the Family. As the years went on, Dallas, Falcon Crest, or game-shows…What was the one with “No Whammies”? All of these shows were escapes and they took their audience somewhere for a 1/2 hour to an hour that they would never normally be and created characters too over the top to believe.

I do not understand television today. More specifically, I do not understand Reality TV.

My first exposure to Reality TV was at a take-out Chinese Food place in Stratford Upon Avon in the UK. We were there on vacation and had the late night munchies. We went into this place and 2 grown men were glued to the little 19 inch set in the corner of the small dining area. They were watching Big Brother. I asked the man behind the counter what was on and he said it was a show where this group of people live in this house and the cameras are on them 24 hours a day. I looked up at the screen and sure enough one of the women was brushing her teeth. “This looks dumb. This show will not last.”, I thought.

Apparently I had not idea what I was talking about because shortly after that Reality TV exploded in the United States. There is “reality everything” now and I personally think it is the equivalent of a circus or a freak show. We bring out our weird or disjointed and parade them around for all to see. I am sure it is an advertisers dream, but it is a sad reflection of our society. Fat people, people on drugs, people getting plastic surgery, rich people living a meager life, poor people living the good life, men and women shopping for the perfect man, and has been actors looking to relive their 15 minutes of fame, or infamy.

Recently I heard of a show where people that suspect their partners of cheating can confront them on camera. What the hell is this and what intelligent person is going to give up an hour of “their own” life to watch people freak out and scream obscenities at each other? Did we not have enough of this trash already on talk shows? Television has never been a great think tank, but it was a place to escape or watch something funny. Now funny has turned into watching others misfortune or stupidity and if there is not enough misfortune or stupidity, I am sure they can make it up. That is all from the laundry room.

Wishing you Private Pillow Time!

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