Chad Love: Television vs. the Outdoors

One of the first blogs I wrote explored the correlation between television sales and those economic stimulus checks we all got last year. At the time I thought it was a sad commentary on the current state of the American psyche and I urged everyone to put down the remote and forcefully engage reality by getting outside.

I wrote:

"Wasting time seems to have become our main pastime. We desperately need to hit the off button, get outside and make our own reality, but it seems most of us prefer to watch someone else's. High definition, digitally-enhanced surround-sound apathy is still just that - apathy. I don't claim that hunting and fishing will solve our economic problems, but as a stimulus for actually giving a damn about the state of our world there simply isn't a better way to clear the media fog we all seem to be stumbling through."

And here, finally, is the proof that validates my long-held suspicion that absolutely no one out there pays any attention at all to what I think

From the story:

NEW YORK - Americans watched more television than ever in the fourth quarter, The Nielsen Co. reported Monday, even though the Internet is providing another way to watch. The average American older than 2 years watched television for 151 hours per month, Nielsen said. That was up from 146 hours in the same period the previous year.

That's almost five hours per day. To put that in perspective, it's like watching "The Godfather" and "The Godfather II" every day of your life. If - as the data indicate - TV watching is actually becoming a primary lifestyle choice for an ever-increasing segment of our population, what does that say about our ability to cope with challenges both personal and communal? What does that say about our capacity and desire to care? About anything? And even more troubling, what does that say about the future of hunting, fishing, hiking, camping or any activity that nurtures an appreciation for the natural world?

Yes, things generally suck right now. But when given a choice of grabbing the remote and losing yourself in 500 channels of make-believe or getting off your ass and doing something tangible and spiritually rewarding, I think I'll stick with the latter.