Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Love Affair Is Over...

We finally did it.. we killed the Television!

It's something I've been pushing for awhile now, to end our service with the satelite company, but Hubby was resistant, saying he liked to watch the news or some of the other shows. I pointed out that he usually gets his news off the internet or the radio, since he falls asleep in front of the TV before the news even comes on. With all the money we paid for the TV service, and all the channels there were to watch-- there was never anything good on. Almost always reruns and repeats and stuff that we weren't interested in.

I tried the money factor, telling Hubby we were paying X-amount of dollars for stuff we never watch, but it didn't fly. We ended up calling the satelite company and revising our service and paying about $20 less. A few more months go by and again, I bring up the subject of canceling the TV service. "We can watch movies and catch up on TV shows when they come out on DVD. TV shows get released on DVD so quickly now," I'd tell him. But still, he didn't want to let go of the TV.

I tried the kid factor, showing him the language the girls were picking up from the shows they watched on TV. The commercials the girls get bombarded with and then they turn and ask if they can have the latest crying baby or polly pocket or cupcake maker (No No No!). "Wouldn't you rather the girls play outside or use their imagination and play with their toys instead of sitting in front of the TV, turning into zombies?" I'd ask him. Still, he wasn't about to let go of the TV.

I tried the time factor, explaining that we would get more stuff done around the house if it wasn't for the TV. Instead of watching some mindless show and falling asleep out of boredom, he could be working on his projects or reading that book he's been wanting to read. I could catch up on sewing or doing my other projects I've been meaning to get around to. We could go to bed earlier and get up earlier (especially me, night owl that I am). Still, no go.

Then last week, my husband had an epiphany on the way home from work one night. He came home all excited and said, "Let's do it! Let's cancel the TV!" I was so happy. He called and stood his ground when the service person on the other end of the line tried to convince him to change to a cheaper service instead of canceling. They offered $20 off, then $25, then half of what we were paying. Finally, when they realized my husband wasn't changing his mind, our service was cut.

It's been bliss ever since! We have been doing more reading, playing and spending even more time outside. The weather has been glorious lately and we are taking advantage of it and working on the rest of our wood pile. The kids hardly miss the TV and they are watching movies that they haven't seen in ages. I don't miss the TV either. I have actually read 3 books in 4 days! My husband has started writing again and he is finally several chapters in his latest book.

Who knew not having the TV would be so freeing? While we are still watching movies that we have, it is stuff that we approve of and have watched and know that the girls will not be picking up bad language or behavior. I'm just glad I won't have to suffer through any more lousy commercials, especially all the toy ads and diet ads!! Good riddance!


Lisa said...

Please, please tell me what epiphany your husband had!! After all that resistance, i need to know what clicked with him!

sufferingsummer said...

three cheers for you and your hubby!
We didn't have tv for sooooo long and I loved it but then when I was pregnant again it seeped back into our life (only 4 channels mind you, I refuse to pay for television, but enough to derail me) now I am trying again to taper it down so as to get more done in the evening that doesn't include collapsing in front of the screen. In february TV in our area will go digital so the bunny ears won't work anymore and we won't have the few channels we do have so the problem will solve itself but I'm hoping to ditch it before then. Thankfully Indy hasn't gotten into the habit of watching it so it is just my husband and I's problem:)
Will your husband be making any guest appearances writing on your blog now that he's dusting off his skills? I hope so:)

lady macleod said...

I don't even own one! For the few years I did when Q was wee it was the big joke among her friends that I kept the television in the closet.

Lantana said...

Have you ever seen the Netflix website? It is truly amazing and you have complete control over the movies that you receive. For $25.00 a month I get 4 movies at a time, as fast as I watch them. If I do not care for the movie I send it back pronto and they send another. The website is alot of fun to do, too!


gnarlydorkette said...

:-) CONGRATULATIONS!!! You are no longer a slave to the idiot box.

Have been TV-free since July 2007. I am a graduate student, so no way I have money nor time to watch anything on the TV.
I do miss some TV shows, but like you mentioned, I can catch up by renting from Netflix or something. Also, FYI* do offer tv shows online... a VERY few of them are closed-captioning. Whenever I am boring or need to be "brainwashed" just to forget all deadlines and whatnot, I watch "30 Rock" on

:-) I think I can live rest of my life without owning a television.

barefoot gardener said...

Oh, good for you!
I showed this to Mr. Barefoot in hopes that he would be willing to try it, but he shot me down before he got past the first sentence. Ah, well, this gives me hope that SOMEDAY he will see the light.

Lisa C. said...

Congrats! I don't stare at the box either. With school, homework and websites make my life exciting. I could catch up with a $1.00 each Redbox movie when I have a time.

jenny said...

Lisa-- my husband has had many events happen to him related to his faith. When he wanted to quit smoking, he prayed for help and then the next day, the desire to smoke was gone and has never picked up a cigarette since. He did the same for the TV. He prayed for guidiance and then he felt like the signs were all pointing in the same direction:: it was time to cancel the TV. We're not looking back!

jenny said...

Summer-- Here in the moutains, we have no service at all.. not even with bunny ears. we'd have to buy one of those humongous antennas on the roof. I have a few moments of "what have we done?!" especially when I sit down to nurse the baby, but I just have to retrain myself to pick up a book or work on my long-neglected rag rug again. We'll be making a trip to the used books and movies store pretty soon. Good luck breaking your addiction to the TV. I think Hubby may pop up from time to time.. we'll see. :o)

Lady M-- Another friend of mine keeps theirs in the closet, too. I think eventually ours will end up in the closet, or at least in another room. I'd like to get that big thing out of the living room.

Lantana--We used to subscribe to Netflix, but then my credit card numbers got stolen and when we closed it and got a new one, I forgot about Netflix being on the old card. We decided to just let it go and didn't send them our new info. The Library here has a pretty good selection of movies for free, so we're happy.

Gnarly--Thanks for the link. I'd never heard of them before. My husband catches Survivor the next day on the internet, and then tells me who got voted off. I'll be renting the DVD for survivor when it comes out. We'll be saving nearly $700 a year just by getting rid of the TV!!

Barefoot-- HAng in there, you may get him to change his mind yet!! It took me a long time to work on the husband. A year or 2 maybe... seriously! If it wasn't for the internet, my husband would not have done it.

Lisa c-- No redbox around here. Too far into the next town to get one and then go back the next day to return it. Library does the trick for us!

Wendy said...

We've been weaning from the television. I put the TV, VCR and DVD on a power strip, and when no one is actually watching the television, the power strip is off. The powerstrip is difficult to reach, which makes it more of a chore to turn on the television :). It used to be on all of the time (for background noise - which was incredibly annoying for me).

The only ones who watch it now are my girls, and they only watch PBS, because we had our cable cut down to "lifeline" a couple of years ago, which includes the network stations, PBS, and a couple of cable channels - and that's it. They don't have much of a choice of what to watch ;). I'd like to cut that out, too, but I still have to convince my husband, and the price factor won't work, because we only pay $17 per month :).

He's almost there, as we haven't been watching television for a long time, and he discovered (via an email I sent to him on the subject) that most of the television shows he'd like to watch are online anyway, and there's ONE commercial through the entire show that plays (same commercial) about four times during the show, and lasts about a minute. So, what used to take an hour to watch only takes forty-five minutes ;).

We also have Netflix, and love it!

Who needs cable?

Lisa C. said...

Hey, again!
My husband said the other day that he was thinking about cutting his TV dish account hopefully the montly rate will be a lot lower.