One thing to know about me is that I’m lazy. Lazy probably doesn’t even cover it. I may even stretch into the territory of slothful. I’m perfectly content to sit on the couch all day long and watch TV. Even if it’s bad TV, even if I don’t care about what’s on. Which is how I got into Big Brother in the first place. I think I watched one episode of one of the first seasons and I didn’t really get it. Then another year, someone whose blog I read really really liked it, so I tried to get into it, but I was not into the commitment of watching any show 3 times a week. That’s a lot of time to devote to one TV show. So I passed on it for many years.
Last year, I watched a whole season of Big Brother for the first time. It was kind of an accident that I watched it - I found it streaming on Netflix after the season had begun. In one day, I watched about 5 episodes. It was crazy, and I still hadn’t caught up with all the episodes there were. So the next day, I tried to be more disciplined about watching Big Brother. “Just one episode,” I’d tell myself, “and then you have to go do something. After one episode, unload the dishwasher. Then you can watch another episode.” I tricked myself into doing those household chores I hate by watching another episode of Big Brother. It worked. In that one day, I was able to do so many things that I had been putting off. And I loved that Netflix (and CBS too, I later discovered) streamed the episode the next day, so if we went out and weren’t home in time, I could just watch it later.
Going back to the laziness part of my story, it really bothered me in years past to admit that I just sat around all day watching TV. As a teacher with summers off, I always felt like I had to take good advantage of my time off. People think it’s 12 weeks of summer, and that you don’t do anything during that time, but my summer breaks had always only been about 8 weeks. 2 of those weeks in August are spent prepping the classroom, so I’m down to 6 weeks of vacation. Usually 1 or 2 of those weeks are spent in some professional development class, so now I’m down to about 4 weeks of vacation. Then if the Mister and I went anywhere for a week, that’s 3 weeks of lazy hazy days of vacation. 15 weekdays. Really, don’t get me wrong, because I’m not complaining that that’s a short amount of time at all. I always just felt like with 15 weekdays, that’s not much, so can I afford to waste several of them watching bad reality TV that I don’t even care about? No way.
Then at the end of the 2008-2009 school year, I got laid off. I was unemployed for the entire 2009-2010 school year. I’ve had a (thus far) 56 week summer vacation. And no end in sight. I have no job for 2010-2011 either, which can be addressed in a separate post.
So now, I have plenty of time this year for Big Brother. 3 hours of TV in a week? Pffft. That’s nothing. Well, when Mister and I moved in March, I called the cable company to renegotiate our package. I asked for more channels or to pay less. They were able to throw in a package that includes some movie channels, including Showtime.
Now I’m obsessed with Big Brother. 3 hours of TV in a week? Oh no, that’s just CBS. Every night, Showtime runs 3 hours of the live feeds from the Big Brother house for Big Brother After Dark. Big Brother now costs me 24 hours a week, and I’m kind of OK with that. Time is what I have, after all.
But the good news about watching 3 hours of Big Brother every day has awoken some part of me that has decided I can no longer be slothful. There is something disgusting about sitting on a couch watching 3 hours of other people sitting on couches. So now, instead of unloading the dishwasher, I try to tell myself that for every episode of Big Brother, I have to spend one hour exercising. Because there’s nothing slothful about people who exercise.
So there, Big Brother! I bet you never thought that because of your dumb show, people would get angry and start exercising and losing weight. Well, I don’t miss an episode of Big Brother, and I sure as heck don’t miss those 6 pounds.