Recently I spotted a thought provoking sign and was compelled to take a photo which I have attached below.
Back in 1949 when I was only 6 years old, a miracle was taking place inside our house. We were one of the first families in the neighborhood to buy a black and white TV. We loved our new fangled gadget with the tin foil wrapped around the top of the rabbit ears antenna.
So there I was, right after breakfast, with all my neighborhood pals laying on the floor watching TV. Well, we were not really watching TV. Our eyes were glued to what was known as the test pattern, which was a bull’s eye design with an image of an Indian wearing a headdress.
Today, I am confident someone would declare the test pattern to be politically incorrect, but back then we still had freedom of speech. As far as we were concerned, there was no insult intended and no insult was taken. The actual TV programming did not begin until about noon when Howdy Doody lit up the screen. Once 5:00 arrived, TV was over and the screen went dark after some ceremonial TV fanfare and flag waving.
TV changed greatly over the decades following its debut in 1949, but in my opinion, not for the better.
It seems to me there is too much over-stimulation for no justifiable reason. Thousands of bits of TV hurtled at us every second including an excess dose of sex and violence.
The screen goes into fits of starts and stops as bits of programing are wedged in-between commercials, sometimes 7 commercials in a row before returning to the programming.
Stand back and take a look at your TV, not to watch the program, but rather to watch what is happening on the screen. The electronic visual assault on viewers is amazing, but we are so use to it, we do not normally notice what is happening to us.
At best, TV watchers are simply watching others live their make-believe TV lives. Some viewers might be better served if we could bring back the peaceful Indian head test pattern.
I challenge you to conduct an in-home study to calculate how many hours a day, a week, a month and a year you spend watching TV. Once you have an inventory of how many hours you watch TV, ask yourself what alternative uses you might have for the time you spend watching instead of doing.
While it is your life and therefore your choice, at least make a conscious decision as to how you choose to spend your time which in final analysis, is your life.
Ray RR says
I see what you did there, Joe. You talk about illiteracy and then say “laying” instead of “lying”. You were seeing if we were paying attention. Always the teacher…
Joseph Boyle says
Ok, you got me. I was watching telebision when I rote the story.
Nancy Covert says
Joe: I’m one of those early TV folks, too. We had one of the first sets in our Pittsburgh neighborhoods. About the mid- 70s we decided to eliminate TV- would much rather read and research–TV deadens the brain cells since folks don’t have to think at all. Sad for them. I was definitely a Howdy Doody fan, though; then Star Trek–ah, the good old days