Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Ode: Why My DirecTV is totally worth $70.00 a month

I just thought I'd weigh in on a little debate I heard about last night (wink wink). Look at is this way: you all probably know that I don't get a lot of time to myself that doesn't involve playing Candy Land, making peanut butter and honey sandwiches, doing mass quantities of laundry, baby butt wiping, nose wiping (or wiping of any sort). On the same note, I almost never get a chance to go out to the movies, see a concert, eat at a restaurant other than a "kid friendly" T.G.I. Friday's, or sit a the bar and down a couple of gin and tonics. That's fine. What I do have is my TV- my wonderful, glorioius source of escapist entertainment. At the end of the day, I love to turn on my TIVO and see what golden nuggets of entertainment it has stored away for me. HBO and IFC especially provide me with hours of enjoyment that is worth (to me) even more than what we pay for it now. Now, if I wasn't a parent and had time to spend more money on other ways of amusing myself, maybe I wouldn't feel the same way. However, in the past three months I have been to exactly one movie in the theater which involved driving one hour to the nearest babysitter. I also waited months for the chance to go see Henry Rollins speak at the Rave in Milwaukee. I don't know when I last had a few beers at a bar and I couldn't tell you the last time I saw a show in Chicago. If I want to do these things I can either go by myself, drive to Rockford to utilize our family babysitters, or trek two hours to Milwaukee to do them with Steph. Most of the time, though, I enjoy hanging out with Jason close to home so instead we opt for taking pleasure in the joy that is our satellite TV. I enjoy turning on my TIVO and seeing it filled with crude cartoons like South Park and Spongebob. I love my Jon Stewart's witty cynicism. I love the movies I get on Sundance and IFC and of course, I treasure the moments I spend with HBO on Sunday nights. Maybe it's a bit lame and sad, but it's my indulgence so there! (I'm also lucky Jason feels the same way I do since the fact that my job pays me in drool and cracker crumbs would make it a bit hard for me to pay the bill.)

In closing: Different things are worth different amounts to different people.

I Heart DirecTV
I Heart TIVO
I Heart HBO


  1. The (wink wink) was to me folks. I'm the guy that thinks 70 dollars a month is too much for TV, even if it does include HBO (which is rightfully deserving of praise).
    Is it worth something? Sure. But not 70 bucks (at least in my opinion). Of course, I don't have kids and I have the luxury of going out whenever I want, so in that sense I can't weigh in.
    In the end, much of this is all relative...but still. 70 bucks. On TV. It just doesn't feel right.

  2. You're right. It's all relative and that's my point. I'd bet the average single person with no kids tends to spend a lot more than 70 dollars a month on going out, sometimes on food and drinks alone (not to mention gas for travelling out of town to shows) and that wouldn't feel right to me, but then again I don't have that option. This is a major source of entertainment for me and I don't spend much anything else so it seems to balance out. Things change a bit when you spend the bulk of your time at home. I don't know. I think if you really enjoy something (and you can afford it, of course) then it's always worth it. (Plus $70 a month works out to only $2.33 a day! Less than that morning latte folks!) Maybe I should just read a book or something, right? I'm just very protective of my addiction, that's all.

  3. You two are obviously in two seperate situations...on one hand, a single guy could use $70 to see 7 movies in a month and maybe even get a small popcorn(psych)
    ...on the other hand I have an at home wife with kiddies and going out just rarely happens. So the TV is a nice wind down..I also enjoy the options it provides for our family. We can all watch something we want...my wife enjoys the trading spaces style shows and I like to watch old movies. The kids also enjoy a good dose of Sponge Bob as well. I watch shows on Airplanes with my son and Animal Planet with my Daughter and because of these opporunities I am learning what their interests are. For me...even though it is only a very small part of it...I will take any opportunity I can to get to know my children better...and if even my measily basic cable affords me that than there is no price that is too much for me.