I made a pact with myself that I would watch LESS TV this fall.  I realized that I had so much glorious free time over the summer to do things like…cook.  Exercise.  See friends.  Go outside.  Go to bed at a decent hour.  It was awesome!  When I finally stopped to figure out why my life was so much more full of goodness I came to an uncomfortable realization:  During the primetime season, I’m tied to my TV schedule.  This is simply because I’m in the dark ages and don’t have TiVo or a DVR…and I’m also in the ‘Poor’ ages and I’m without home internet at the moment.  All of these extenuating circumstances make it so that “AUGH! I CAN’T MISS MY FAVORITE SHOW THE FIRST TIME IT AIRS!”  That’s hugely irritating. 


Last year I had a TV schedule for every night of the week, Sunday-Thursday, 8-11 PM.   I know some folks have it even more structured than that.  Luckily, being in the poor bracket of society keeps me from having full cable with a zillion channels.   I struggle enough just with the lame 10 channels that I have!  (Some of you are probably wondering how I can even exist as a Geek in the absence of all of these necessaries.  The short answer is: Internet at work and Netflix.)


Anyway, on to my ‘Less TV/More Other Stuff’ goal.  It’s working.  Sort of.  When I stopped to think of it today, I realized that I’m still tied down three nights out of the week.  *sigh*  I just couldn’t abandon my Monday night comedies, How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory.  If I’m feeling benevolent (and not tired) I also try to do my part in the ‘Keep Nathan Fillion Employed’ cause by watching the oh-so-unbearably-cheesy-but-sort-of-cute Castle.


And then there’s Wednesday nights.  *sigh*  I can’t abandon Tyra, people.  I just can’t!  Not even when she’s working with shorties.   And the Discovery channel is awesome on Wednesday nights.  We get Bear Grylls and his smoking hot really cool naked journeys through the muscular wilderness of various countries on Man vs. Wild.  And in Bear’s off time, we get Adam, Jamie, Grant, Carrie, and Tory committing hilarious scientific hijinks on Mythbusters.


Even though it doesn’t look like it to the casual observer, I really am watching less TV.  I’ve dropped two Law & Order series (I love you Elliot Stabler!) and I’m watching almost NO hour long serial dramas.  I have to say that that last one is the biggest relief.  Who knew my life would be so much less stressful sans the worry that the writers will ruin my favorite dramas?  Whew! 


I heard that Flash Forward is awesome, but I resisted.  And then there’s the 10 new dramas that take place in a hospital…which I also resisted with much less effort.  (Honestly honey, if you’re a trauma paramedic, are you really going to have hair blowing into your mouth and enough makeup on to convince your patients that you have a seedy night job?  Really?)  My music friends are a little miffed that I’m not watching Glee.  (That one was hard seeing as how it looked hilarious and I’ve spent the last 25 of my 30 years of life singing in and teaching choirs and show choirs.)  But I held fast.  In fact, I’ve rather prided myself on not adding any new shows to my lineup.


Well, except for one.  Of course my Thursdays are for The Office and 30 Rock, but I’ll be forever grateful for that because it was watching those shows that helped me stumble upon the new sitcom gem that is Community.  


Community is about a lawyer with a law degree from across the pond (Cambridge, I think?) who needs to get an American bachelor’s degree to practice law in the US.  I think that’s the premise.  It’s a relatively weak premise, but that’s beside the point.  Anyway, he shows up at Greendale Community College with a plan to cheat, lie, and laze his way through what he sees as a total waste of his time.  Enter a pretty girl whom he convinces to join him in a ‘private’ Spanish tutor session to which SHE invites the rest of the supporting cast and POOF!  Magic. 



Don’t get me wrong, Joel McHale (you’ve seen him recently in The Informant and The Soup) grows on you as the cocky smart-ass main character.  But the real magic happens when you get the ensemble together to study Spanish.  (There’s even more fun to be had in Spanish class once we meet their slightly insane, highly insecure, and quite dictatorial teacher, Señor Chang.) 


The combination of characters who fill a stereotype, snappy writing, silly stories, and a bit of Chevy Chase (showing his funny supporting side) was enough to hook me after the first 2 episodes.  I’ve really enjoyed watching these characters get to know one another and become friends.  They’re all insane (in a totally unrealistic way, of course) and I love them.


So, all in all, my plan to watch less TV is working out … not at all, really.  I’m still stuck to my TV 3 out of 7 evenings.  Alas.  However, if you’ve noticed, I come back for the funny.  ‘Tis the season to wrap yourself in a blanket (or a Snuggie if you must have sleeves) and laugh like crazy.


(Watch an episode of Community at NBC.com or head over to YouTube and watch one of my favorite clips of the show so far: Krumping.  Or, if you’re still in the Dark Ages like me, check it out on Thursdays at 8/7 c. on NBC.)


What are your shows this season?  Have you added any new ones?  Are they any good? Speak up in the comments and give us your recommendations!