United State of TV: Binge watching brings us all together again

Binge watching as an activity that brings people together? When the reason certain of us here at TVWriter™ do it is cuz we can only enjoy ourselves…um, alone in the dark? Scary!

binge watchingby Doug McIntyre

Let me say upfront, I watch my share of television.

I’m not one of those people who shun the small screen for more exalted intellectual pursuits like re-reading the collected works of Flaubert or writing office emails in haiku. My television viewing habits are pedestrian and prolific.

I’m in the Time/Warner web so I have my Dodgers. It’s me and Vinny now through October.

I’m also good for five to 10 episodes a week of History Channel’s “Pawn Stars.” Granted, there’s not much history in “Pawn Stars,” but I feel better about my family after watching these people hate on each other, and I have to have my Chumlee fix.

I also watch “American Pickers” and like most Americans have questions about Frank and Mike’s sexual orientation.

Throw in “SportsCenter” on ESPN and NBC’s “Nightly News with Brian Williams” and that pretty much covers my TV viewing habits.

None of the shows I watch are particularly hip or cutting edge, but neither am I. They provide the kind of mindless distraction I require after a long day toiling in the opinion mines.

As a child of the ’60s and ’70s — OK, part of the 50s as well — I was practically weaned on television. “Captain Kangaroo” and Chuck McCann’s brilliant kid’s comedy shows were must see TV in our house.

Christmas morning 1967, my brother, sister and I stood in our bedroom slippers and robes, slack-jawed in front of the glowing, kaleidoscopic box in the corner of the den. Color TV! Santa had brought color TV into our lives! It was like God had come to our house.

In the age of 6,000 channels, it’s hard to remember when almost all cartoons were seen on Saturday mornings and only on Saturday mornings. If you missed your favorite show, you’d have to catch it in reruns or it was gone for good.

Today TV is portable and downloadable, and that means you watch it on your own time.

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