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| July 5, 2015 | 0 Comments

Living Artfully Without Television

Concetta Antico

Concetta Antico

 

As we embrace the huggable warm months of summer time with all of its outdoor fun and adventure under the stars, you may wish to ask yourself, does television play the staring role in my life?

If the answer is yes (if you can’t compute how to answer this, just factor “yes” if it is more than two, three or four hours of your waking day), then you are living in the shadow of the big screen and not the sunlight of the big world.

In the charming neighborhood of Mission Hills, California where I live, I often take late night walks to take in the night sky and sounds and reflect on the end of the day. That’s when to my dismay I find the televisions are active at dangerous levels in so many homes. Formidably apparent, you can’t help but feel their dronish presence and they protrude from living room windows with a ghostly grey light and a monotone of sound that moans. There’s not a human voice, chat, or laugh to be heard.

I exhale a huge sigh.

Is this how the majority of us pass our one time on this glorious planet? Sadly the answer is yes. I took a brief survey of people I know and found that it is not uncommon for folks to tune in upon waking even while eating breakfast and don’t tune out until sleeping, TVs in every room. Sometimes they are tuned in all day. Others just break to go to work, (and many watch it there too) and then are switching it right back on immediately after arriving home until bedtime.

Even in light of this all-consuming daily flat screen regime, it is becoming beyond commonplace for every café, bar, service retail space, airport, restaurant, government office, medical office, dentist and so many more to have a television on non-stop. Are we living in a TV addicted world?

Ehh, yeah!

Recently in a government office I couldn’t escape the negativity, sensationalism and violence of television. There they were in three different corners of the room – I was surrounded for over an hour – no escape. Then next at the café, there it was. At Scripps Hospital, there it was. At the nail salon, yet again, another TV. What next? Church TV – excuse the pun – heaven forbid!

To help anyone consider removing television from your everyday life, my elimination story goes like this. It was about eight years ago. With two small children in the house and an active and artful lifestyle that I presented my TV sports’ loving husband with an idea: “Let’s get rid of the television?” Of course, as you would expect, the horror at the idea of “NO TV in the house” was all over his shocked face. Finally, mom ruled and away it went, cable bill and all.

The story continued like this. About one month later there we all were, mom reading her gardening magazine, children playing memory game, and dad reading his surfing journal. All were peacefully and happily together. Dogs, cats too with us all in the living room – fire blazing. Peeking up from his page, he looked over at me and said quietly,
“You know, I don’t miss it.” Smiles filled the room and we quietly continued our no TV bliss. The fact was, the space was being lovingly filled with our own real life, not TV life, and we were all content over it.

The other reasons for pitching your cable TV obsession are more obvious and can be Googled to your heart’s content. Television creates serious depression (especially at night), it breeds isolation, causes anxiety, a vacuous lifestyle, it is violent, it creates fear, it influences and consumes your thoughts, it prevents you from doing other more important things, it is based on consumerism: ads, ads and more ads, and ads that make you think they are not ads but altruistic, but they are still ads. And most importantly my friends, it sucks your life away.

So my suggestions for a better quality of non-TV dominated lifestyle are as follows: if you need to know the news read a paper in the garden and read it just once. You do not need to read bad news over and over again – mental and visual assault. If you want to watch a great movie, you can rent it for cheaper than the monthly cable cost, stream it on Netflix or other services, or better still go out to the movies and make a night of it.

If you must see the sporting event – go to a friend’s house and share the experience, or better still go to the game if you can, or go to a place where you can cheer with the crowd.

If you have children, protect them from it and the bad programming that is inherent in everything on television and remove it from your home. Out with reality TV junk and in with your own reality.

I hope I have inspired you to take action against a passive TV loving life and for living an active life back in the real world, or minimally balanced between the two. To desire a lifestyle that embraces so much more real adventure and entertainment than any box could ever provide, no matter the definition or color resolution.

Remember, the only true high definition experience is the one you will live and write yourself. The only real Blu-Ray is the one bouncing off the ocean, or around the moon. Watch these and you and your family will have true “Sensurround” life experiences.

Concetta Antico is mother, wife, Tetrachromat, fine artist, instructor, writer and creative muse. Her stunning Tetrachromatic oil on canvas masterpieces reveal her brilliance and super vision and may be viewed at www.ConcettaAntico.com. “Live Artfully” is a trademark of Concetta Antico and Zenava Inc. Her Salon & Gallery are located at 1920 Fort Stockton Drive, Suite A, Mission Hills, San Diego and are open to the public from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, and by appointment. Concetta welcomes your creative thoughts, comments and ideas at Muse@ConcettaAntico.com.

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