Wife, children, writing, reading, role-playing, Doctor Who – I can’t take on one more interest; I don’t have the time.
Now, let me be clear, the new show Dads that premiered on Fox Tuesday night was never likely to be a show I watched. I hear it’s insulting and offensive on several levels. And it’s a sitcom, a style of television that I’ve never enjoyed. Oh, and we have chosen not to have TV in our house, just internet. But still…
There is very little new material (TV shows and movies primarily) that I have the time to take in. My choices have to be made very carefully, and with a purpose.
As an example, I consider myself both a nerd and a geek to my core – and yes, there’s a difference, which adds to my nerdiness. But in spite of my nerd/geek status, I’ve never seen a second of The Big Bang Theory. It’s not that I’m a snob, or elitist, but when would I watch it? Instead, I’m watching Boardwalk Empire right now, because it’s research for my current role-playing game, and also because of a novel I’m working on that takes place in 1918. And I still get through only one or two episodes a week. Another example would be the sci-fi show Defiance – which my friend Eric assures me is well worth watching. I have only seen the first half of the pilot episode and it wasn’t amazing enough to hold me.
So I find myself – because of time constraints – doing something that I generally hate in others. I’m embarrassed to admit it, but it’s true. I judge TV shows by their promotional material, and the buzz I hear from those who have seen them, and if I’m not amazed, I don’t watch it.
I am prejudging, with no personal experience of my own, and this is exactly what I have done with Dads. I will likely never watch it just because of some negative comments I heard on NPR, so I’m excluding it without ever learning about it. If I saw you doing that, I’d probably tell you how that’s a bad thing. If you said to me “I don’t like (person/group/thing) because I hear (it/they) are (place stereotyped or prejudiced description here)” I’d get angry. But here I am, doing the exact thing I dislike.
Does that make me a bad person, or just one who realizes his limitations? And does that mean I have to reconsider the prejudice in others?
Let me put a very fine point on it. If I don’t watch a TV show because I believe I won’t like it, how is that different than somebody not talking to a certain person or group of people because they believe they’ll have nothing in common?
Something to consider.