.: TV or not TV :.
T.V. is the place where the pursuit of happiness has become the pursuit of trivia
... now I am broad minded musically, and an opportunity, well actually a physical affliction, made it possible for me to tune into the Eurovision Song Competition 2008. Where do I start? I _wanted_ to understand the "cultural melting pot" that was eurosong, so invested time [luckily it coincided with moments of lucidity between medication - actually, it might have been better viewing riding a medication wave now that I think about it, but I digress] in watching the semi finals and then the final. Please note this is no little investment of time, as these things go on for hours.
So many things bewilder me about the so-called popular song contest - firstly, the songs are awful and surely would _never_ be popular - nothing like contemporary examples of the genre - bizarre acts with smoke machines, mirror balls and so much hair product that each contestant must be considered a fire hazard. And there there was the Russian entry - what the floop [a guy in bare feet, a creepy leering violin player and a poofy ice-scater doing pirouettes on a tiny ice rink wheeled in just for that song ... and it WON - how?] And Bosnia/Hertzegovnia was like a pair oldies surounded by brides of frankenstein playing hansel and gretel on acid - honestly, I just wanted to get up there and smack them - tell them to sit over in that corner and shut up. The hosts were like nothing else - a sanctamonious prig with a suit that cost more than many of the competing countries gross national product and a statuesque she-male with a voice that should be registered as a lethal weapon; and then there is the voting system that makes no sense until you realise that politics and diplomacy have already determined who has won.
... and how fair is it that some countries [the _major_ sponsors] get a free ride directly into the final without having to compete in the lower rounds - my god, the Spain song was just plain un-tuneful, the Brit song came from another decade and who can explain the French entry - a wierdy beardy who came on in a golf buggy, sang a little, breathed some helium and chipmonked the rest of the song.
Now, I wanted to make sense of this, having heard so much about the cult status of this comp, but yee gods - I gave three evenings of my life to watch this stuff, I feel cheated. The ONE saving grace was the overdubbed comments from Brit commedian Terry Wogan ["ah yes, I can see why she is struggling with that lyric, it must be difficult to sing in that wind" - bahahaha - I love acerbic observations of the absurd by the disinterested]
where toothpaste and cars have become sex objects, where imagination is sucked out of children by a cathode ray nipple
In my opinion, daytime television is best left to ... the daytime, trust me. It is jut as well kids do not get to see this shite. I have napped, read and most other things to avoid watching this dross but how do the stations justify filling the time with "good morning" shows that are all the same, hosted by "australian celebrities" [no, I do not know what that means either] talking in rapturous tones about the latest toaster-oven-grill, capucchino and ice-crushing machine, and how it has saved their marriage by giving them more sustained orgasms coupled with sustained weight loss. Sprinkle a little Dr Phil, Oprah [has that show jumped the shark or what?] and Judge Judy and we see "ordinary, everyday people" in a whole new light ... where do these idiots come from? More importantly, what SPECIES do they belong to because I am sure as hell convinced they are not gene stock I would have anything to do with? Worse, where do the viewing public that request and rate this rubbish come from - presumably form the suburbs surrounding you - there is a scary thought.
T.V. is the only wet nurse that would create a cripple on...
... and do not get me started on Reality Television, I do not know why I find this "fly on the wall" stuff in anyway compelling but they dish it out in so many flavours, so many formats, from many different continents. I found myself watching "Ladette to Lady" [no, I do not know where the term "ladette" came from, who would use it, in what circumstance about whom, but yeah] which goes under the premise: scour the gutters outside a pub late on a saturday night, find the roughest young girls you can, bundle them off to an English "finishing school" to magically make them into ladies. Then, put them in situations where they are surrounded by booze, blokes and are half crazed from sleep deprivation after life-skill classes where they learn how to de-crust cucumber sandwiches; and ask them to behave, then leave them to their own supervision [remembering, carefully to film them thoroughly] ... Is it just me or is that silly - silly but surprisingly watchable [I am ashamed to say] to watch stuffy old english ladies trying to understand why a breast-augmented, sex starved teenagers with a drinking problem would pash the first thing with a pulse she sees.
...or counting the number of times Gordon Ramsay drops an "F" bomb in someone elses restaurant [would YOU invite that egotistical looney anywhere near your place?]
... or check the progress of people who have taken a radical sea-change completely outside their area of knowledge and expertise [interestingly, my wife and I stayed at a cottage run by one such sea-change couple in Tassie, and we loved their "fish out of water" approach to making it up as they went along] - what fun to see them set back but pull through in the end
... or cheer the blue team as they set up camp in a leech infested swamp and compete for basic items [like cheeseburgers, cubic zirconia watches, massages etc] whilst showing tasteful amounts of flesh, arguing colourfully with their mis-matched team mates and being eliminated as the weakest link.
... or silently squirm at the amount that contestant used to eat, how you would never let yourself go like that, and how readily overweight people cry when physically pummelled, deprived of sleep, dieted stringently and exercised by trainers that need a good exorcism themselves. Then surround them with horrifically calorific foods and congratulate them on losing that kilo, only to evict them for being that percentage of their body weight over what the average for the team was - who dreams up this torture?
... or cheer your favourite "new talent" awaiting the opportunity to shine, only to watch her be shot down in the third round because the producer of "so you thought you had talent" decided that she would be too tall to stand next to the guy with the nice teeth and the lady with the funny hair in the semi-final poster photo shoot [lol, phone polls, yeah right, we polled our contestants sensless but had already decided who would end up in the finals].
... or checking in with the newest lot of housemates [no, I have not yet descended to that level] ... the list goes on. I used to think that I understood reality, but it would appear that is not the case if the televised examples of reality are the yardstick on which to go by.
Television, the drug of the nation, Breeding ignorance and feeding radiation
Television, Drug of the Free by Disposable Heroes of Hipocrisy (Michael Franti, 1991) remains an important [if slightly dated] anthem, and interestingly one of the few examples of RAP that I do not mind. Hahaha, sorry, remembered there was a 75 year old Rapper in the Croatia Euro song entrant that called himself "75 cent" - he even "scratched" a 75RPM record on an old Phonograph [or rather pretended to, live music is a thing of the past, lip-synching is the way of the future - that way, everyone has their chance to be famous].
say "Hi" to your mum for me.
fiblag (n.) The period of time that elapses when a police officer asks a suspect a simple question, such as, "what is your last name?"
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