A week without cable wrap-up

I finished my week without cable, and it was both refreshing – and disorienting.

Refreshing because of the unbelievable amount of accomplishments, when there is no background noise as a distraction.  In seven days, I:

  • completely reorganized my computer;
  • sorted through an entire storage unit of boxes and papers;
  • reviewed all VHS tapes and DVDs;
  • transferred all my CDs onto my computer;
  • compiled new music playlists;
  • updated my podcast subscriptions AND found some interesting new programs; and
  • wrote five chapters on a book.

On the other hand, life without constant muttering of a TV program in the background was highly, disturbingly disorienting.  I never realized just how — quiet — my apartment building can be.  I knew, intellectually, that we had great soundproofing — the building is a cinderblock and brick construction, with firewalls everywhere.  My next-door neighbor held a 21st birthday party in his place with 30 guests and the entire Black Sabbath/Ozzy Osbourne playlist — and I never heard a thing!

But without the TV, it was — eerily quiet. No sound to break my concentration, which also meant that after Day 3, I was on the verge of hypervigilance.  A squeaky pipe was enough to make me jump.  By Day 5, I felt like I was in a slasher movie, waiting for Freddie or Jason or Michael to jump out at me!

Still, it was educational.  I learned that I spend a lot of time with the TV as background noise, tuned to a program I’ve seen multiple times and for which I have already memorized the dialogue.  I definitely can stop that, saving some money on the electric bill. 

But I don’t think, after all this, that I will outright drop the cable.  I would miss Anderson Cooper, BBC America’s international news, White Collar, Game of Thrones, not to mention David Duchovny and Californication.  If only there was a way to just get the channels I watch — rather than pay for this extravagent multi-tiered package packed with fluff I don’t enjoy.


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