This is Pastor Tim’s newspaper article that appeared in the Evening Leader on Feb 8, 2021
The recent delightful turn of the weather has forced me onto the treadmill these past few mornings. I can deal with the cold, but I won’t run through the snow. So, around 6:30am, I roll into Snap Fitness to run on one of their treadmills for 4 miles. This means I have had the opportunity to do something these past few mornings that I have not done for years: watch cable TV.
I cut the cord before cutting the cord was cool. The last time I had cable was when I lived in Marseilles, which I moved away from in 2010. After being away from TV for so long and then suddenly exposed to it because of Mother Nature, I learned some things have changed in the past dozen years.
For starters, the NBA has turned into an all 3-point league. Do they ever try to work the ball around? It looks to be only breakaway dunks or 3 pointers anymore. I also never realized that my favorite player, Michael Jordan, retired. When did that happen?
Furthermore, I observed that in the 40 or so minutes I ran, the time spent on commercials was greater than the time spent on actual content. Maybe I am out of practice but I had a hard time telling where the show stopped and the commercials began.
This morning, someone had on Good Morning America, which has to be the greatest example of a mistitled TV show in the history of television. Apparently, the Super Bowl is this Sunday, and they did an entire segment on how the Super Bowl is going to be a super spreader event of COVID. Nothing says Good Morning America like taking something fun and uniting to remind everyone that by participating they could die. I ran 1 ½ miles while they went on and on about the virus in light of the Super Bowl. Look, I don’t care about the NFL at all. I haven’t watched a game in years. Nevertheless, the Super Bowl is something positive that people enjoy, so can we put the posturing and grand standing on hold for a few days? Good Morning America needs a name change because I did not feel like having a good morning after being subjected to all that doom and gloom.
I must have watched over 50 commercials while on the treadmill and was shocked to discover over 40 of them were for either tax services, food, or medication. Given the time of year and the fact that we all love to eat, the first two did not surprise me. Why though were there so many medication commercials? I noticed that after a short time I began to worry about my skin, my stomach, my sleep quality and pattern, my mental state, and my bone density. In addition, I developed a body image issue because of how many weight loss commercials I saw. It seems for every symptom we have; there is a new medication for it. Are we that sick as a culture? Maybe if we would respond to fewer food commercials, we would need less medication. Just a thought.
As if I needed another reason for summer to return, I don’t know how much more cable TV I can stand running on the treadmill. The thousands of dollars I have save over the years of not paying a cable bill almost takes a back seat to all the commercials I don’t have to see.
To any of you who need a break from the TV, here is my recommendation. Go to a Super Bowl party, cheer too loud, and talk to some people whose face you can actually see. It will do every one of us some good.