Thursday, January 22, 2009

Why I can't get rid of my cable company

I'm annoyed with my cable company (Comcast, if you are interested in knowing which one). They charge ridiculous prices to loyal customers, while giving their new customers the best rates. Also, their customer service is non-existant. I have never run into so many people that work for a company and couldn't care less about customer service. After trying to resolve some issues last week, I was flabbergasted by the lack of quality customer care.

So, I'm on the lookout for a different company. Come to find out, my particular little area of metro Atlanta doesn't offer a lot of choice when it comes to cable television. We've heard bad things about DirectTV, so haven't been interested in going that route. Not yet, anyway.

The aggravation of it all makes me want to just get it all disconnected and become one of those unplugged families. Sometimes it seems like it wouldn't be that great of a loss. I've watched a lot of garbage on TV.

For instance, I used to watch Oprah and Dr. Phil all the time. Every weekday. Had to watch it. I stopped that a few years back. I decided that's just a waste of a couple of good hours. So, while for years I thought I couldn't live without it, those shows have been very easy to give up.

I haven't watched soaps since I was in high school (Santa Barbara used to be my fave -- anybody remember that one?). And those judges shows that dominate daytime TV? Yuck. One of the many good things about homeschooling is it makes you keep the TV off during the day. I don't think I'm missing anything. I might turn it on once in a while to look at the news, but 99 percent of the time, my TV is not on during the day.

I have had to weed out my TV viewing over the past couple of years anyway. Maybe getting it all turned off wouldn't be that big of a deal.

Some of the shows that have fallen by the wayside or are on the chopping block include:

1. Without A Trace -- good show, but not good enough to make the cut.
2. Supernanny -- after a while, I just wanted to smack the parents and take the kids and raise them myself.
3. Wife Swap -- was interesting the first season in a "social-experiment" sort of way, now it's the same thing, different families every week. It was super easy to give this show up.
4. Samantha Who? -- I thought this was kind of a cute show, but I don't have time for cute. It got cut after half a season.
5. Grey's Anatomy -- I tried to hop on this bandwagon, but I didn't get past the third episode of the first season.
6. ER -- I know. I'm horrible. How could I let this show go? I watched ER for YEARS, but every season it stole a bit of my soul. After Dr. Carter left, I had to go too. I've tried to watch this last season, awaiting Dr. Carter's promised return, but I have the last 2 episodes waiting on my TiVo and haven't attempted to watch yet.
7. The Office -- This show has some amazingly hilarious moments, but I'm getting tired of it. With regret, I might have to give it the old heave ho.
8. The Biggest Loser -- Can't handle another season. Yes, I am trying to lose weight, but it's not motivating to me in the least. I wish all the people on there the best, but 2 hour shows every week? Too much. Gotta go.
9. Lipstick Jungle -- Who needs soap operas during the day when they have one on Friday night at 9 p.m.? I have watched 2 seasons of this show and I still don't know why. If it is renewed, I will not be watching it again.

It would be easy to say goodbye to stuff like that, but giving up cable TV would also mean giving up these shows that I really feel like I couldn't live without. Okay, I could live without them, but I would always miss them.

1. Life -- I love Damian Lewis. I love this show. I hope, hope, hope NBC keeps it on for a while. I have fears that it won't make it next season, but I will stick with it until it gets the ax.
2. Lost -- How can this show get better and better? It does. It really does. People, if you don't watch this show, give it a chance. Rent the first season DVDs and you will not be disappointed. Believe the hype.
3. Eli Stone -- I'm holding on to this show, hoping it will get better. The first season was AMAZING and I am not just saying that because I heart George Michael and watching him takes me back to my Wham! days. The first season was really good. The second season (sans George Michael) is not as great. I still hope ABC gives it a chance to make it.
4. Monk -- Evan and I watch this show together. It is consistently good.

I also love catching old episodes of Andy Griffith. I would really miss TVLand. Hallmark shows some good movies sometimes. I would miss the heartwarming stories.

And living without Turner Classic Movies? I don't think so. I think it is the best contribution Ted Turner has made to society (and that includes his billion dollar contribution to the UN). I love old movies and have watched some terrific stuff I would have never known about without TCM.

I am positive my husband wouldn't approve of me giving cable the boot. First of all he could not make it through college football season without it. Then there's basketball, NASCAR, baseball season --- even I would have trouble giving up watching the Braves.

My husband and son watch Heroes and love it. They also watch Smallville. Hubby also likes Battlestar Galactica, Fringe, any sci-fi stuff really. And he just recently started loving House. I don't get that show, but he likes it. Reruns of it constantly clog up my Now Playing section on TiVo. My TiVo.

And that's another reason giving up cable would be hard. How could I say goodbye to TiVo? It has never done anything to harm me. Only making my life easier and making me less of a slave to the schedules set up by heartless TV executives. I couldn't say bye to TiVo. It unconditionally loves me.

So, there's the rub. I want to punish Comcast by taking my business elsewhere, but it seems I am hooked. I'm still gonna look around more, but right now I'm sticking with them.

Feel free to tell me all about your "must-sees" on TV!


Nikki said...

We have Comcast, too, and we have problems, too. We have a DVR instead of Tivo, and I love it. I love that I can tell it to tape a series, and it tapes every single one even the ones that I don't know are coming on. It's great!

I like Fringe, too, but most of what I tape, and I hesitate to mention it because of what you might think of me, mostly I watch Star Trek stuff. There. It's out in the open. I'm a Trekkie.

Tina said...

Hey, Nikki! I have no trouble with the sci-fi stuff at all! I just sometimes don't give it a chance. I should, though. I would probably enjoy it more than some other goofy stuff I watch!

I haven't watched much of the original Star Trek, but I loved The Next Generation. I still like to watch it in reruns and we still have the series finale and the top 10 viewer's choice marathon on VHS. Great show! I miss it!

My husband would love it if I gave some of his shows a chance. I'll have to do that more often. He always says the quality of the stories is better than a lot of the stuff on TV.

A. said...

Agree. We hardly watch anything regularly. Biggest Loser was WAY too emotional. And come on, if I had 8 hours a day to exercise and a house full of expensive whole-grain organic food I could lose weight too. Plus, the little "pretend we aren't doing a commercial" talks for gum and water bottles was kind of creepy.

We used to watch CSI and NCIS and Numbers. But, they got too real. Too much violence and we gave them the heave.

My men-folk like Myth Busters and then there is football season.

The biggest reason we keep Comcast? INTERNET. We can't get DSL. I don't think I could go back to dial up. We use the Internet for school and to keep in touch with family. So, we're stuck.

Tina said...

That's true, A. Internet! We have that through Comcast too and our home phone! So we are definitely stuck.