Thinking Aloud On a Sunday

Watching television.

From my preteen years until very recently, I always complained that there was ‘nothing on’ when it came to TV watching. We went from two channels to three, then to four, and soon had many more to choose from. My current set-up has almost one hundred channels, though many of those are ‘Plus 1’ of others, starting one hour later, and some are the best-avoided shopping channels.

In addition, there are the channels available via the Internet, using NOW TV by paying a subscription, as well as Netflix, which I have not long had access to. The four channels of the BBC alone provide enough viewing across all genres to satisfy most people, and the numerous commercial stations offer more populist alternatives if you want them. I also have four free film channels, showing a mix of familiar re-runs, alongside films that have often only been released this year.

As the ‘Good TV’ season arrives every Autumn, the different broadcasters compete by showing all the best stuff at the same time, usually 9 pm. We have a PVR that can record two channels, and allow us to watch a third, but four is still a stretch. But we also have the ‘catch-up’ services on the Internet, where we can see a programme broadcast up to twenty-one days previously, as well as being able to binge-watch an entire series in one night, should we wish to do so.

I study my TV magazine (strangely still called Radio Times) religiously, and play around with the timer settings on the PVR until I can squeeze in everything I want to see, including the series record of those serials I have become addicted to. This sometimes takes so long, I could have actually watched something instead of doing that. Then once I am satisfied it is all scheduled, I can sit back and relax.

But the real problem comes next. I have all that stuff recorded, but little or no time to watch it, because of having to watch the actual ‘live’ TV that is on now and cannot fit on the recorder. I have been learning very quickly that there are not enough years in a life to watch everything I want to see. And that’s without even mentioning Netflix!

At the age of 67, my cry of woe is very different. I no longer say “There’s nothing on”.

That has changed to “There’s too much on!”

Let’s be careful what we wish for.

52 thoughts on “Thinking Aloud On a Sunday

    1. I suppose I am now old enough to be like a lot of Dads, Abbi.
      (And many granddads too)
      But I am slowly weaning myself off watching too much TV.
      It’s actually rather liberating. πŸ™‚
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Like

  1. I am addicted to have the tube on while I do other tasks. I like to binge watch programs that I like. I rarely watch anything on prime time here, because it is usually not my taste.
    I recently was turned on to Call the Midwife. I binge watched all the seasons on a weekend. Many choices, but not much I really enjoy.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. This is the definition, Lauren.
          It is a very ‘British’ word.
          Twee
          /twiː/
          adjective BRITISH
          excessively or affectedly quaint, pretty, or sentimental.
          “although the film’s a bit twee, it’s watchable”
          synonyms: quaint, sweet, bijou, dainty, pretty, pretty-pretty;
          Despite the show featuring many harder social issues, the overall feel of it was rather ‘sentimental’ in excess. πŸ™‚
          Best wishes, Pete.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. So true, Pete, every word. We shuttle between watching nothing and then discovering something that we binge watch. I have given up recording programmes as they sit on the hard drive and we watch them on catch-up or one of the streaming services. We’ve recently discovered Vera, which we are enjoying.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. If I wanted to do any watching at all, I’d have to give up blogging or some other component of life. A parallel for me is radio. I’m usually listening to something, either music or news or documentaries, sometimes both at once (streaming one on the computer and the other on an actual radio). I know there are all sorts of podcasts out there, but I haven’t subscribed to any because I doubt I’d ever get to them. I’m impressed that you manage to watch all kinds of things, take Ollie on long walks, and write two or three blog posts every day. Not to mention your fiction serials. Impressive!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Audrey. I write in the mornings, take Ollie out after lunch, and don’t watch TV until after dinner. I manage to fit it in. πŸ™‚
      I don’t listen to the radio very much anymore, and I have never heard a Podcast.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. We’re a tough group to satisfyβ€”too little, too much, not enough of the right programs, etc. I find that even though there is much more to choose from, I watch less and less.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We have a small flat screen TV here, but it’s not set up for broadcast, cable, or satellite, so it’s only use is for occasional DVD viewing. I have no internet subscriptions. I sometimes watch news broadcasts on YouTube, but prefer to read online articles instead.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pete, we are in the midst of a content overload here in the US…5 broadcast networks, more than a hundred cable networks, pay cable channels and streaming services popping up every day…there is just TOO much to watch!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know what you mean, John. More and more streaming services are starting up here all the time, and I just don’t have enough years of life left to watch everything I want to see. πŸ™‚
      (And that’s without catching up on all my unwatched DVD films!)
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. We have even way more channels – not because we want all of them but because they come in a bundle with the (few) channels we really want. We record quite a few programmes/movies.shows to watch them later. And then sometimes delete them without even having watched. But that, I belive, is the good thing about being able to record.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Lucky you Pete! We have found over the summer that with so many repeats on TV we hardly watch anything anymore, even especially the news is to be avoided. We do like the foreign programmes, but other than Poldark, we haven’t even bothered with many of the dramas. We loathe reality TV and there aren’t many new films any more. I see a day when we won’t even bother with it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been watching Poldark, The Handmaid’s Tale, Keeping Faith, and some great Euro-drama serials on BBC4 too. Julie and I tend to watch very different TV, so much of our PVR gets filled up with her ‘medical programmes’. πŸ™‚
      Best wishes, Pete. x

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah, well we avoid ALL medical programmes, especially at the moment! I wasn’t hugely taken by Keeping Faith and didn’t bother with the second series. Sometimes I think (as in Killing Eve) one series is sufficient.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I know exactly what you mean, Pete. I always try to limit my viewing to no more than four hours per day (and then very rarely before 20:00, except at the weekend), but I still feel guilty that this is too much. I do try to catch a few of the Prom concerts, while the season is on.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. We don’t even bother looking at what’s on TV anymore. Now and then we read a review or see an advert for a series and decide to give it a go, and also now and again we see something we wished we’d started but can’t be ar**d to start it now! I have ‘saved’ a lot of photography programmes on Prime and watch them when I’m doing the ironing!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Sorry, but we had to laugh out loud, dear Pete. πŸ˜€ How right you are – yes, let’s be careful what we wish for … Although we don’t have a telly, we’re very aware of this dilemma; it goes for good quality DVDs (we watch them on the iMac) that we have carefully collected over the years as well. We actually very rarely get around to watch them. Too much going on, too little time. πŸ™‚

    Wishing you a happy Sunday,
    best wishes from Norway,
    Dina x

    Liked by 2 people

  12. I agree there is nothing on TV that I want to watch…..there are about 5 channels I watch to include a couple news….some sports when car racing is on…..because there is nothing serious on anymore it seems to be all “Reality” based which I despise. chuq

    Liked by 2 people

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