A Warm Dinner in Front of the TV.
by Regis Boff
My life’s work has been watching TV. The programs and their quietly strewn advertisements decided all that I wanted and consequently needed growing up.
I hadn’t had dinner, except in front of the TV, until going off to college in the early “70’s. The abrupt and painful separation from television that I experienced back then led to my generation’s spectacular use of drugs. We acquired new gifts for producing pictures in our heads with these pharmaceuticals. I had a deep and forgotten skill for this that stemmed from listening to the radio while lying next to my dad on the bed, in the dark, as a little boy.
My early sexual education evolved entirely from the reduction sauce of things my parents forbade me to watch and the tight skirts of hot women on game shows. It took me nearly forty years to love any woman who was not opening a door that had a prize behind it.
Without TV, I most likely would have become a Methodist minister or just another standard guy.
I saw my first black person on TV. Those strange people called the Chinese were an excitement when I came to NY.
Real life ending badly, was unthinkable to me until Vietnam, thanks to TV. Of course, I was reading books that had horrible things happening, but they never climaxed into any potent today for me.
We Americans owe much to our TVs. I suppose my son will write someday that he is all that he is because of the Internet, and that, though foolhardy, is OK with me.
People fasten to others if they can find a shared illusion. We cluster as a species after agreeing on some truly dumb ass shit. But then, just when you need it the most, a Bill Cosby comes along, and we settle together into a warm dinner in front of our TV.