How Deb Kelly almost ended up like that lady in the snuggie commercials. The leopard print snuggie commercials.

I have a confession to make. I love TV.

Oh yawn, right? Who doesn’t love TV? The Wire—that was a seriously good show. And Top Chef. Tote’s addictive. Amiright?

No, I mean I LOVE TV. Like, love the local news where dogs cover the top animal stories (really). Love season 39 of ANTM. Love the infomercial where two weirdos clean floors, all sorts of floors, with a $200 steam vacuum, and then die of joy from the process. One time I watched a program on public access that showed slo-mo footage of bacon frying on a grill while Phish albums played start to finish in the background. I watched that. Watched it stone cold sober. The bacon never got fully cooked.

So when I say I love TV I mean all TV, regardless of merit.

Which is why I had to quit it. Like all things that are wonderful in moderation—wine, taffy, guacamole crema in black bean soup—I overindulged until I was sick. My skin took on a minty green complexion. My tush started to reach sofa-like proportions. My knowledge of the intricacies of shows like Design Star and The Biggest Loser was beginning to make me a liability at parties. I heard myself tell a friend, “Well, according to Oprah…”. I had seen every episode of Hoarders and Hoarding.

The cable had to go.

At first, as with any dying love affair, I tried to find ways to hang on too long. I logged on to FoodNetwork.com and watched a few seasons of Food Network Star, just casually. I could quit any time. During middle of the night nursing sessions I watched dozens of episodes of House Hunters and House Hunters International on Hulu. And yes, there was a time when I invited myself over to a friend’s house to watch a Lifetime marathon of Project Runway. (And she let me. I have some very patient friends.)

But over time I began to see that in fact, there could not be 10 new Food Network Stars every 5 years without changing the definition of either “star” or “food network”. The Biggest Losers were putting the weight back on in months. Oprah retired or something. The hoarding reality shows didn’t even impress me anymore. After I heard myself remark during an episode of Hoarders Incorporated something like, “You call yourself a hoarder? I can see your carpet, you big drama queen. Call me when you get some cats!” I knew it was time to move on. TV and I were through.*

And thank God for that. Just as I was starting to really get over my tether to the tube, my infant son was getting over that whole “sleeping for more than 20 minutes at a time” thing. My evenings became a whirlwind of diaper laundry, toy corralling, disgusting-old-leftover-reheating, and falling asleep on the bed fully clothed. By the time that the infant sprint was turning into the more manageable toddler marathon, I was mostly over the tube… and as a result, had the time to take out my knitting once more, email old and new friends, read appallingly large stacks of thrillers and romances, and yes, catch up on sleep. I wasn’t enslaved by the need to know whether Lemone or Minqo would be sent home this week on America’s Next Top Biggest Super Talent Factor (I hope it was Lemone. That guy’s a jerk).

And it was good.

Almost as good as Season One of Hoarders.

*Ha ha not really! I still love NBC’s Thursday night lineup and Gilmore Girls reruns and does anyone have the first season of Revenge I could borrow?

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KellyW

30 thoughts on “How Deb Kelly almost ended up like that lady in the snuggie commercials. The leopard print snuggie commercials.

  1. Oh crumbs, I already forgot to pick a book cover of a book I love to go with this post. Well, that lasted a week.

    I want to fix it but no titles are springing to mind at the moment pre-coffee. Suggestions anyone?

      • Hah, I should write a post just so I can post the cover of IN NEED OF A GOOD WIFE. It could be about online dating, or Nebraska Cornhuskers football. (For those who haven’t gotten their mitts on this terrific book yet, it’s set in NE.)

        But alas neither IN NEED nor LOST SUMMER have word one about TV in them. Or maybe not alas. What a different world we’d be in today if Louisa May Alcott had put off writing Little Women so she could watch one more episode of Toddlers and Tiaras.

        We’ll have to hear KOM’s thoughts on that when she comes back to the grid. She is coming back, right?!?!?!

  2. LOL! Well, the first step is always admitting you have a problem… *grin*

    (Pssst…I’m with you on House Hunters and House Hunters International. Mainly because I’m incurably nosy about the inside of other people’s houses.)

  3. We were definitely separated at birth! I love TV…but when DVR joined our family, I found it much easier to manage and it doesn’t get in the way, of let’s say, real life or writing!!

    • I’m third in that pool, for sure. And I LOVE DVR. Well, we actually have recording on our cable box, so not exactly DVR, but I’m so there. Record it and then fast forward the commercials, and I still have time to write!

  4. Amy, I actually thought of Heat Wave too–Castle is such a guilty pleasure. But the truth is, the book wasn’t my fav. Sorry JP and Richard, loves ya lots!

    DVR is my wildest fantasy. I don’t think it would help me be in control, though. If I had DVR I would probably be watching Here Comes Honey Boo Boo right now.

  5. I don’t watch a ton of reality TV, but man, I could watch Project Runway all day long. Ditto Top Chef. On the scripted side, there’s Modern Family, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Downton Abbey… Sigh. Yeah, I like a lot of shows, too.

    Oh, and as far as infomercials are concerned, did you ever see the “Set It and Forget It” infomercial with Ron Popeil?? A classic!!

  6. Well Kelly, the only thing I can relate to is your love of taffy, guacamole, and wine. I’m a junkie on all 3 of those. However, I do not watch TV. But I’m proud of you for kicking the habit! Did you get more writing done when you quit?

  7. This post totally cracked me up – snorting out loud as I read. That said, I rarely watch TV. The Viking and I have four male offspring between us. Even though there are only two of them currently resident here, they and the Viking have that very stereotypical male thing about the remote. I absorb what is on sometimes. Or, I put earbuds in and tune it out. Very seldom do I actually watch.

  8. Getting rid of cable was one of the best decisions we ever made. I prefer to mainline my tv shows anyway – waiting a week between them is a death knell for someone with no memory like me.

    But whenever I get on a plane, the first thing I do is tune the seatback tv to HGTV and watch me the heck out of some House Hunters for the entire flight!

  9. I just don’t think you can really count yourself as a TV addict until you know the names of at least 10 of the individual episodes of Law & Order (any flavor). Because when one is really hard up for TV and there is no cable, there is always – ALWAYS – Law & Order.

  10. That’s because you’ve never been SO HARD UP for TV that you had to look in a TV Guide for something remotely bearable. And that is where you will find the names of episodes. I think all TV show episodes have names. The episode names for the show “Friends,” for example, generally start with the annoying phrase “The one with the,” for example, “The one with the sofa.” Barf.

  11. I don’t watch a ton of TV, but I LOVE Food Network, particularly food-porn shows like DDD. Mmmm stuff like brisket-pulled-pork-and-mac-and-cheese-on-a-bun. Heaven.
    And I have that $200 steam cleaning vacuum – it rocks. Seriously.

    • Oh, I will knock it, Amy. I have knocked it. It is knocked. (OK, I’ve never seen it. But isn’t that for the best knowing what you now know about me?)

  12. I am with you my Honey BOO BOO and Say yes to the Dress, and the show with the designer gowns for less than half the price.

    Hey Linda you can follow me around for a day when I am showing properties, you will have an education (and lots of material to write about) Let me know when you’ll be here.

  13. I love TV, but I don’t watch it often. Between work, homeschooling a high school senior (one more year…ONE MORE YEAR) and the seahorses, and the writing … and … well, you get the idea. I’ve had to budget my TV time.

    That said, I do love Top Chef, The Great Food Truck Race, The Next Food Network Star … funny, my list looks like a bridge between your post today and Dana’s post yesterday. I sense a theme. My husband and son LOVE America’s Got Talent, and I watch that with them. And sometimes, when I’m just in a trashy TV mood, I do watch Toddlers in Tiaras (I’m ashamed even to type that but it’s true) and ANTM.

    My son and I watch Forensic Files on occasion, and also LOCKUP – but then, I consider that “research” rather than flaking. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  14. I understand the TV problem. I was pretty hooked on re-watching all the seasons of Law & Order, Dexter, and a couple other shows a few months ago. I’d spend all my free time doing that while I was revising and/or writing. I’d tell myself it was just something to have going in the background while I work but… I was far from productive. When I finally decided to turn the TV on and put on some music for the “background noise” instead, I write considerably more and did a lot better job at editing and revising.

    I still give myself sometime to watch TV shows I like. And I’m a total The Voice junkie and now that’s back.

  15. While I concede house hunters (and HH International) how can you give up the Property Brothers and Holmes on Homes? These are must see hgtv! I’m proud of you for breaking the addiction but let’s not go crazy.

    Another great post Deb Kelly! Please keep them coming!

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