Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wheel of Misfortune
I am not a TV person.  Haven’t had one since I lived at my parents house when I was 17.  I think the programming is mostly shallow useless time wasting fluff or violence.  I know there are exceptions…those exceptions still do not feel like they balance out the utter crap. 
I realize that I am out of the mainstream when it comes to discussing shows that have been popular for either the past twenty years or the past two years.  I asked JC what that show was called with all the good questions and he shook his head and said “Jeopardy”.  I guess that is common knowledge to most people.  Wouldn’t that be a great question to have on that show?  See if the contestants could remember the name of the show?

Where we are currently parked with our home on wheels, we have the misfortune of having TV reception.  Our camper came with a TV as standard equipment.  It is a built in thing that lives in our living room.  Luckily we rarely have reception.  I love the places that have no phone, TV or internet reception. 
JC has been obliging enough to wear headphones so I don’t have to hear about bladder control drugs and the explosive diarrhea I could get from taking an anti-depressant.  I also don’t have to hear what now passes for “news”.  I pass through and glance at the thing every once in a while. He is there with his headphones on watching and listening.  What I see only makes me that much more grateful for not being part of the human/black box relationship. 
There was some “reality” show on when I passed by the other evening.  Some half-dressed young woman was crying about something that didn’t go right on their island.  I laughed at her belief that what she was experiencing on that island was actually reality. 

But, Sunday night I passed by and saw Jane Goodall on the screen.  I immediately unplugged JC’s headphones and found out that she was going to be one of three segments on 60 minutes.

I think I actually sat down in a chair to watch it. Someone should have caught that rare moment on film.

(Here is a bit of personal background:  HOME has been a constant holy grail for me.  I test everything and everyone with my litmus test of “does this feel like HOME”?
I am like Dorothy.  There is no place like HOME and it has been inside me all along. I never left HOME.
Yea yea, whatever….I still have my HOME tinted litmus paper handy at all times.)

So, from my perspective, all three segments of the 60 minutes show were about HOME.  (It's like Woody Allen thinking everything he hears relates to anti-semitism....)

The first 60 minutes segment was about the folks in Silicon Valley who once earned six figures and are now unemployed.  They are collecting recyclables from people’s trash, selling their McMansions and living in everything from stranger’s attics to their cars. What they once assumed would always be their HOME got pulled out from under them.  This is exactly why I never wanted to get used to some fancy high price lifestyle.  I always wanted to know that how I live was sustainable in any economy and in all situations.  I want to always be happy with few material goods and I want to know the ins and outs of surviving during apocalyptic situations.  You want to live near me if the shit hits the fan in this country.  We would survive just fine.

The next segment was about a very popular automobile TV show in Britain.  It is called Gear something or other.  One of the hosts was interviewed.  The big bruiser guy was talking about caravans (that is Europeans call rv trailers).  He said, “Oh yes, just what I want to do, go out in the freezing rain and live in a metal box parked in a field.  With Americans it is different.  You Americans like that kind of thing.”  
Hmmm, here we are with bright sunshine parked in the national forest in the metal box we call HOME….and loving it. JG
Then, Jane Goodall appeared.  Can I just say, I LOVE this woman.  First, her beautiful relationship with the chimps as a twenty something non-academic untrained scientist…then her visit with them as a seventy something spokesperson for all living beings.  The forest habitat that serves as HOME to the chimps is being chipped away at.  Jane points to once forested hillsides that are now barren.  She is delighted to find that many of her old chimp friends are still alive in the forest and have children and grandchildren.  But, their population is a fraction of what it once was and she blames habitat destruction, killing them for bushmeat and killing them to steal their babies for the exotic animal trade.
I feel for these chimps who just want to be HOME…with their familiar surroundings, family, friends and food.

It is really so little to ask.

I cried tears of gratitude for Jane Goodall's clear compassionate voice.  And for just a moment I was glad that the black box brought Jane right into our living room.


  1. Great post!

    Made me laugh b/c Jeopardy IS one of the few shows I allow myself to watch!!! (Although it seems, like most other shows, to be getting more trite and episode this past week had a category on 'weapons' and the contestants knew all the answers! Boooooo!) And I often have to turn it off b/c of the cruelty-filled fast food commercials and now the awful political crap!

    We, too, watched the Jane Goodall interview and were heartened by her compassion and amazing presence.

    Bright blessings to you, dear one, as you travel TV free :)

  2. You need someone who mutes all the commercials for you......
    Glad you saw Jane Goodall, too....isn't she just a beautiful beautiful person?
    Thanks for being here in blogland...

    with love, rae