How Low Can You Go In TV Limbo?
Last night, it happened again. I had a minor medical procedure earlier this week, so I wasn't in the mood for hitting the 'hood last night. Sure enough, there I was, the public television station locked into place, watching a program called Show Cattle. I got to learn all about the lives of dairy farmers in Maine and how they show their cows at the Fryeburg Fair in heated competition where often Machiavellian moves are made against Bessie to better place the superior Daisy. The Supreme Champion trophy is some Holy Grail to them and as elusive as The Golden Fleece. I half expected to see some farmer out in the pasture, studying a patty like it was The Oracle.
that all night, I turned on the television again and now I had some A&E Bill Curtis production about a murder in Florida where a rare poison was put into a Coca Cola bottle to kill a neighbor. Is nothing sacred? Altering little cokes to ill gain? What was really great is that the A&E channel is promoting this series as "Sentenced to Death Week." I love it. Can't you imagine some overly morbid child addicted to this stuff, and the parent saying, "Billy? You'd better clean up your bedroom, or I'm not letting you stay up to watch "Sentenced to Death Week."
Speaking of death sentences, I also watched American Idol last night, something I never watch, and I found it repulsively fascinating to see these kids from God-knows-where, and they are all tv ready, which is to say, they may have been attending Polk County Community College a week ago, but by God now it's $400 haircuts and an eye that can follow the active camera wherever and whenever it is in their vicinity. It seems like we've become a nation ready for our moment. One day you are sitting in your cubicle, working on spreadsheets, and the next day you are having your day in the sun. With everyone engaged in such active preparation for when that day does come, it begs the question, "Who's repairing the washing machines?" I was talking to a friend about this today, and he shot back, "Guest Workers."