August 31, 2011, get ready for the end.
The end of free TV.
Now, I’m sure there are many of you who scoff at the idea of free analog TV. Those of you with your fancy digital cable packages and your high-tech satellite dishes. Those of you who have ditched rabbit ears or towering antennas atop your roof for high definition channels that show every pore on your local newscaster’s red nose.
I, for one, though, am not looking forward to the conversion from analog to digital, which will mean the end of my free ride.
- Farmer Vision
- Poverty Cable
- TFC (three friggin’ channels)
I am opposed to paying for TV on my student budget. I’m sure many students wouldn’t think of giving up their cable packages; however, with a few rare exceptions, I have lived my entire life with only three channels (I’m currently sitting at 2.5 channels.)
I’m not a relic. I dig technology. I have a cell phone with texting capabilities. I have high speed internet. I have two computers: an old desktop and a wee netbook. I also have a James Bond car with OnStar.
However, all those fees are more important than paying for television.
For one, I hate reality TV shows. I don’t care if they dance, sing, or jump off cliffs. Snore fest. Bring me your dramas and sitcoms.
Two, even when you have cable or satellite, you complain of not having much to watch. I can do that for $30-50 less a month, thankyouverymuch.
Three, I love movies and stock up at Blockbuster or Wal-Mart. I’d rather buy a few movies each month and have them forever. I like having something to show for my money.
Four, most shows are available through my high speed internet connection. If I have a burning desire to watch Big Brother, I’ll just watch it on the network site for free.
Five, I’m not much of a sports fan (apologies to my brother) and couldn’t care less about catching the latest NFL game. I’d rather poke out my eyeballs with a piece of paper.
Finally, six, I’m an avid reader and writer. If there is nothing on TV, I’m quite happy picking up a novel and losing myself in a literary landscape. And since I buy most books second-hand, I find it a much more affordable form of entertainment.
It’s probably inevitable that I’ll have to buy a digital converter by August 2011, however, even though I decry having to pay for something that ought to be free. I suppose at least when I pay for the converter, it will be mine to keep. That doesn’t make me feel any less indignant that I have to spend $50 of my hard-earned money for that. (Actually, I don’t have hard-earned money. I’m on a student loan/credit card plan which is my future hard-earned money. So I like paying for TV even less.)
Maybe the day networks start putting on fresh shows with witty scripts, and dropping the nauseating parade of stupid commercials, I’ll consider getting cable.
Until then, it’s TFC for me. At least there’s no Kate Plus Eight on that cable package.