The love nest in the sky is just about settled, only a few details remain to be finished or tweaked. We knocked off a huge one yesterday when I spent my morning hanging out with a couple of guys from Best Buy as they installed our brand spanking new TV. Mr. Smith and I have been TV-free since the middle of June when we gave our old TV to our son Elliot and his family. I missed it a bit at first, but we quickly adjusted to spending our time other ways. But with fall quickly approaching and the thought of curling up with a bowl of freshly popped popcorn and a good movie sounding awfully appealing, we decided it was time to go for it.
Other than catching a little news and the weather in the morning, I rarely turn the TV on during the day, but that must not be true for many people. According to The Nielsen Company, the average U.S. adult spends five hours and four minutes per day watching TV. That’s 77 days per year! That’s a whole lot of TV. I can understand the appeal of an occasional TV binge, but with all the evidence that prolonged viewing can hurt your health and reduce your quality of life, I will continue to strive to keep my watching well below the national average.
When my boys were in elementary and middle school, I had some concern about how much time they were spending watching TV and playing video games so I came up with TV tickets for them. They received seven tickets per week. Each ticket allowed them 30 minutes of TV viewing, with video games costing double. They could not piggyback on their brothers’ tickets, if you were watching TV or playing video games, I was collecting a ticket. In my benevolent way, I would allow them to binge watch all in one sitting if they chose or spread their ticket use out over the week. No TVs in their bedrooms for our family. There was one TV in the house and it was in the family room.
I am delighted that for the first time since we left our house in Indiana, we have been able to arrange our home so the TV is in a separate room, not the focal point of our living room. The centerpiece of our living room will remain the remarkable view with reading, listening to music and conversation the main events. We will need to make a conscious decision to go in the den to watch TV, it won’t be sitting there staring at us tempting us to turn it on.
With days getting shorter and temperatures getting cooler, I’m sure we’ll enjoy many a movie night with yummy snacks in our cozy den. And I won’t ask Mr. Smith for his TV ticket.
C’est la vie.