Turn Off The Idiot Box

I take the dogs for an hour long walk every night, and get to enjoy this

I almost never see any other people on the trails, but I do see lots of TV lights flickering in the windows of houses.

“Listen lady, if I saw a TV out here I’d get out my cannon and shoot it like I would a mad dog, right in the eye. . . . What’s the principle of the TV, madam? The vacuum tube, madam. And do you know what happens if you stick your head in a vacuum tube? I’ll tell you: you get your brains sucked out.”

Edward Abbey, “Desert Solitaire”

About stevengoddard

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19 Responses to Turn Off The Idiot Box

  1. dmmcmah says:

    I have noticed the same in the Albuquerque area. Even as recently as 8 years ago, the trails in the foothills would be packed with people when the weather is good. But now you are lucky to see 2 or 3 people hiking, maybe a couple of mountain bikers. Its also facebook, twitter and iPad games keeping people indoors plus irrational fears of crime.

    • In my mountain running days, I used to regularly run up from Elena Gallegos up to the crest, or up the La Luz trail. There were always a lot of people on the trails.

      • dmmcmah says:

        La Luz still gets busy, but areas up and down the foothills from Montgomery to I-40 see much less traffic as compared to 8-10 years ago on most days.

        • Gail Combs says:

          8 to 10 years ago us Baby Boomers were still in our fifties and out galavanting in the woods. Now that we are in our 60s ===> 70 we are not as apt to head out. Unfortunately the younger generation as a whole is to darn soft and lazy to get off their rumps and out into nature.

          I can STILL out walk and out work most teenagers. It just hurts a lot more.

        • David A says:

          Hey, I am not in my 60 yet, but still a boomer. and yes, it hurts a lot more! Yet the alternative of not using it, it to lose it. A strong mind can turn many such aches into little more then a heightened sense of awareness.

    • au1corsair says:

      Those “irrational fears of crime” are force-fed by that one-eyed soul-sucking monster used by the mainstream mass media to invade your home, your thoughts and your nightmares: TELEVISION. Violent crime has been decreasing–except in places where Progressive politics results in an army of occupation pretending to be police while the ordinary citizens are disarmed (Washington DC, Chicago, New York City…)

      Perception! It’s all perception. The looking glass distorts.

  2. dmmcmah says:

    Of course more recently, APD executing a man in the foothills hasn’t helped the atmosphere.

  3. Shazaam says:

    Dropped cable in 2005. Never looked back. I’ll watch a DVD occasionally.

    I DO NOT miss commercials. I used to switch the set off in the middle of a movie or program if the commercials were too obnoxious. Drove my wife nuts.

  4. omanuel says:

    We traded contact with Nature (Reality, Truth, God) for contact with False Illusions.

    Loss of contact with reality is insanity!

  5. Bob Knows says:

    I usually walk in the day time, not at night. Last time I was in Albuquerque I spend a couple hours a day walking the foothills. And the trail along the drainage canals are almost always deserted too.

  6. Jason Calley says:

    Even in good weather, few people walk, even in the suburbs where the sidewalks are good. And when it rains? No one walks. Almost no one. One of the really great pleasures in life is to go for a walk in the rain. Wait for a not-too-stormy rain. Put on a raincoat or take an umbrella. Wear shoes that you don’t mind getting wet. Go for a walk. The sounds, the colors, especially the smells — all worth experiencing.

    • Gail Combs says:

      If I am going to get wet (I HATE water) it is going to be in a cave. Nice and cool with NO BUGS… Except for the occasional black widow or brown recluse spider in the entrance.

      • Jason Calley says:

        There was a bat cave in Ocala, Florida, called “Temple of Doom Cave”. The floor was a foot or two deep in guano — and the guano was absolutely permeated with millions of feasting cockroaches. The roaches were so thick that when you looked down at your feet, the ground seemed to boil and move. The walls were covered with so many roaches that you had to brush off a clear space before you put your hand on the rock to steady yourself.

        Ahhhhhhh…… Memories!!


  7. caprizchka says:

    I’d rather be in a dive bar, smoking, with a bunch of degenerates. Oh well, just drinking then. I’ve heard smoking is bad for your health. After all, it killed Churchill, Vonnegut, Twain, Marx… oh wait. It didn’t.

  8. Diogenes Shrugged says:

    Sorry, but those don’t sound like cicadas to me. Cicadas have a higher pitch that regularly cycles loud to soft to loud again. Cicadas also produce their racket during the day, but the sounds you recorded are mostly confined to night or early morning. What I’m hearing south of Denver (same as Fort Collins) is a mix of crickets and frogs. This is unusual, but it’s been raining a lot here for the last couple of weeks.

    Occasionally there is also an absolutely deafeningly loud slapping sound. Mosquitos are rare, but the tricky bastards like to set up shop on my ears.

  9. jst1 says:

    My exposure to Desert Solitaire:
    I took the CD with me when I visited Nevada. On the way to Zion, I stopped the car, put in the CD and then ventured on. Something I will never forget.

  10. theyouk says:

    I was out for a walk/run along the Mississippi in Memphis earlier this week. The sound of a slow-rolling train crossing the Harahan Bridge was arguably the most eerie sound I’ve ever heard. If the word ‘inexorable’ were made into sound, this would have been it–like a train carrying of souls across the River Hades. There were a few cicadas out as well, and (silent though they were) an incredible collection of dragonflies near the edge of the water.

    Wasn’t the initial appeal of cable TV that it had NO COMMERCIALS? That concept is, in general, long gone. Best two words for kids and adults: GO OUTSIDE!

    Have a good weekend, everyone 🙂

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