While I am still working on those silly recipes for my Christmas gifts, I have been thinking about TV and Internet in our everyday lives. Those two things I personally believe are things that have much to do with the rate of obese children (and adults, certainly) perhaps even more than fast food and unhealthy eating habits. I fully acknowledge the fast food addiction (I used to eat McDonald's at least three to four times a week, and when I decided to stop all fast food, I became depressed, listless, and could only think of a burger. True story.) However, it is possible to refrain from eating those nasty fast foods and improve your general eating habits in a myriad of ways.
However, living without Internet or TV, sounds extremely difficult, see impossible for most. Those two things have become our primary source of communication, of experiencing, of knowledge, and of getting news from around the world. Yet do we ever stop and think about how, for example, your brain literally tends to shut off while watching TV, or how your body becomes immobile for the amount of time you are on the web for whatever reason? And lets face it, for most of us born in the late eighties early nineties, we barely remember a time before TV, and we were present for the debut of the world wide web. If I think back, I remember when the first computer that my step-father brought in to our home, and I remember how slow dial-up was, how frustrating that was (even though I was just a child!), the sound it made when trying to find a connection. I also remember never ever watching TV, actually turning it off to go play outside no matter the weather.
That was then, this is now, and I can fully admit that I wouldn't turn off an interesting documentary, or delete my blog or Facebook page to have more time to play outside. But, more and more, I have been realizing that TV and Internet have been leeching precious time off of my already busy schedule. Because lets admit it, when we are on the web or in front of the tube, most of us don't stay there for 10 mns. We stay there in increments of hours. A show on TV lasts on average an hour's time, and during that time, we are bombarded with advertisement and commercials that are repeated again and again, targeting our soft brains that are shut off and attempting to brand them with images and suggested desires which we really didn't want. However seeing that delicious looking smoked meat sandwich, for example, makes us want it and think about it, even if we just finished eating a few minutes ago. The Internet is also full of images and advertisement that works a different way. Flashing, beeping, shocking imagery all intended to grab your attention even just for a few seconds just to make you think about it. The media takes control of what we think of, what we want, and we fully engage in letting it by falling into this trap, the poison of media.
Now I am not saying lets all quit TV and the Internet, because I have no wish to do so, and because I fully realize that in our world of today that is quasi-impossible to do. I don't want to retire from our society, I want to be more involved. That is why I had decided at first to limit my TV and Internet use to an hour maximum each day ( this was before the start of Advent) and what would happen is that I would sit to watch TV, then realize after 5 mns the precious time I was wasting when there was so much to be done. So I would immediately switch the channel to a music channel and get up and start doing things. The result was a cleaner house, and lots more baking! When the sink seemed to be always empty of dirty dishes, and that I almost always had something baking in the oven, and that I was actually keeping up with all my schoolwork and extra work for the job, I was happy. Which led to a general lifting of my spirits in general, which in turn led to a better performance at work, better marks at school, and a better relationship with Jeff and my family. I believe that if everyone put such limits on thei concumption of TV and the web, the outcome for our community in general could be wonderful. People would (hopefully) be healthier and be merrier. What could be better for this world?