More on the Murderous Boob Tube

About a month ago, I announced my rash decision to sell my TV — partly to recover the productivity of my weekends during the long football season, but also due to health scares such as this one: “Every single hour of television watched after the age of 25 reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes” — New York Times.

Now, I’ve made it, somehow, through the playoffs without seeing a single game. I did go to a bar to watch the Big One Sunday, that is, until Beyoncé blew out the power or something and it looked like the worst Super Bowl ever. I went home and, yes, worked on something creative until 1am.

(Speaking of creative, here’s Shaq live from the Bowl)

Back to the point: Yes, it was kind of hellish to be without my weekend football fix–at least at first. Each week, as my friends told me about Colin Kaepernick’s latest indescribable on-field exploits, I did feel a tiny part of myself die.

But, like many addictions, or near-addictions, I didn’t miss it so much after a few weeks. And man, did I ever get a lot done in those three contiguous 3-hr blocks of every Sunday normally dedicated to inhaling that giant oval pigskin block of crack cocaine.

I did allow myself to watch Sports Center highlights on my iPhone–but only while logging reps on the elliptical. So that doesn’t count right?

Anyway, by my best scientific calculations, I have now increased my lifespan by at least 12 hours. Plus I filled those weekends with family time and tons of personally meaningful creative work.

And then there’s this: “Men who watch more than 20 hours of television a week risk halving their sperm count, researchers warn.”

(CORRECTION: Upon further scientific calculation, I believe my life expectancy may have only increased by 11.87645376 hours. I apologize for the error.)

  1. Tommy De Seno
    C
    Nathan Harden:  “Every single hour of television watched after the age of 25 reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes” –New York Times.

     

    If this is true, I died sometime around 1847.

  2. Tommy De Seno
    C
    Nathan Harden:

    And then there’s this: “Men who watch more than 20 hours of television a week risk halving their sperm count, researchers warn.” ·

    4 kids is enough for me.

    Anything good on tonight?

  3. Nathan Harden
    C

    TV is the most entertaining form of birth control on the market!

    Tommy De Seno

    Nathan Harden:

    And then there’s this: “Men who watch more than 20 hours of television a week risk halving their sperm count, researchers warn.” ·

    4 kids is enough for me.

    Anything good on tonight? · 0 minutes ago

  4. Misthiocracy

    Heh heh heh. He said “boob”.

  5. Duane Oyen

    “Colin Kaepernick’s latest indescribable on-field exploits”?

    Oh dear.  He will tear up his knee by the time of the 2014 playoffs.  There is a reason that we have gone through the “Tomorrow’s QB will be a runner and a thrower and revolutionize the game!” roughly every 10 years since the Sport Magazine story on Tobin Rote in 1953 (yeah, the next big QB star was indeed immobile Unitas).

    Running QBs almost always sustained knee injuries and stopped running, they had to learn how to pass in the NFL.  Most did not, because they couldn’t adjust.   Landry, Grogan, Cunningham, Culpepper, and most recently RGIII- all share the same physique as Kaepernick.  Some learned how to play QB, most didn’t and they disappeared.

    I predict that RGIII will eventually learn how to play QB, so will Russell Wilson (who is less likely to tear up his knee).  After Kaepernick’s eventual knee injury, I have my doubts.  He is more of an athlete like Culpepper, less a student of the game.

  6. Devereaux
    Anne R. Pierce

    Nathan Harden: I believe laughter has been proven to be excellent aerobic exercise, Rob. So any show you produce is obviously an exception to the rule.

    Rob Long: I find this entire thread offensive.

    Television is good for you.  The more the better.  

    (Especially if the show has my name on it.) · 9 minutes ago

    1 hour ago

    Exception with a capital E.  I’m convinced we’d be an Entirely better country and people if it weren’t for insipid, inane, crude, propagandistic, violent, not-funny television. Boycott, anyone? · 7 hours ago

    Edited 6 hours ago

    Ha! Seriousness in an otherwise tongue-in-cheek thread.

    Still, your statement does have merit. Think back to the 19th century and you find people spent the evening reading the Bible, literature, or in conversation. So much less of that today. No wonder we are a poorer nation socially. And democrat ideas have such sway.

  7. Jim  Ixtian

    Sadly, TCM is the only thing worth watching on television anymore. Even then I can’t justify having a tv just for that. The rest is largely vulgar, forgettable, or trite.

  8. Paul A. Rahe
    C

    Nathan, confess. You threw that bit in about the sperm count because you know that the subject of sex is the only thing that will wake up the members of Ricochet and get them to pay attention.

  9. Pony Convertible

    When I quit watching TV, my life definitely got better.  No question.  Enjoy!

  10. Rob Long
    C

    I find this entire thread offensive.

    Television is good for you.  The more the better.  

    (Especially if the show has my name on it.)

  11. Nathan Harden
    C

    Jonathan Last says we’re doomed if we don’t reproduce more vigorously. I’m doing this for the good of humanity.

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/02/05/New-Book-A-Child-Free-America

    Paul A. Rahe: Nathan, confess. You threw that bit in about the sperm count because you know that the subject of sex is the only thing that will wake up the members of Ricochet and get them to pay attention. · 1 hour ago

    Edited 36 minutes ago

  12. Nathan Harden
    C

    I believe laughter has been proven to be excellent aerobic exercise, Rob. So any show you produce is obviously an exception to the rule.

    Rob Long: I find this entire thread offensive.

    Television is good for you.  The more the better.  

    (Especially if the show has my name on it.) · 9 minutes ago

  13. Kozak

    “Every single hour of television watched after the age of 25 reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes” — New York Times.”So if you watched 1 hour and only lost 21.8 hours, you actually GAINED 38.2 minutes of longevity. I may live longer then Methuslah…..

  14. Byron Horatio

    Does anyone actually believe these studies? They all are built on flimsy correlations and small sample groups. Reminds me of the guy who wrote Freakonomics. He had a line he used to demolish correlative studies with. Apologies if its a little vulgar. Something to the tune of: Ice cream prices are higher in the summer. The frequency of rape is also higher in the summer. But no sane person would suggest that high ice cream prices cause rape. Correlation is not causation.

  15. Anne R. Pierce
    C
    Nathan Harden: I believe laughter has been proven to be excellent aerobic exercise, Rob. So any show you produce is obviously an exception to the rule.

    Rob Long: I find this entire thread offensive.

    Television is good for you.  The more the better.  

    (Especially if the show has my name on it.) · 9 minutes ago

    1 hour ago

    Exception with a capital E.  I’m convinced we’d be an Entirely better country and people if it weren’t for insipid, inane, crude, propagandistic, violent, not-funny television. Boycott, anyone?

  16. Tommy De Seno
    C
    Nathan Harden: TV is the most entertaining form of birth control on the market!

    Tommy De Seno

    Nathan Harden:

    And then there’s this: “Men who watch more than 20 hours of television a week risk halving their sperm count, researchers warn.” ·

    4 kids is enough for me.

    Anything good on tonight? · 0 minutes ago

    0 minutes ago

    So true! Anytime I meet a guy with more kids than me I usually yell, “Buy a television!”

  17. Elizabeth Van Horn

    Congrats!   You will never miss that TV.   I haven’t owned a TV in ten years.  (Firefly was cancelled! That’s how I keep track of the time!  ; )

    Welcome to the Future! 

  18. zepplinmike

    In both of these studies, the problem is a sedentary lifestyle, not TV watching specifically. If these negative health effects are even accurate, you would get the same results sitting at a computer for 20 hours a week, or sitting and reading a book for 20 hours. I don’t know if it’s the people writing the studies or the media reporting on it that singles out TV, but it’s surely just a way to get attention for the story. The lesson is that laying around and not exercising enough is bad for your health, which isn’t news at all.

  19. Tim H.
    Nathan Harden:  “…reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes”

    It’s really more like 13 minutes, once you take out the commercials.

  20. Tim H.

    Second quip:  But what are you going to do with that extra hour, if you can’t spend it watching TV?!