Jan. 10th, 2006

juthwara: (Default)
We have about 12 bazillion new cable channels at the moment. We never intended on having all of them, and they're not staying for long, but it's certainly interesting now that we have them.

Normally, we have digital cable because the cable box comes with dvr, but only a basic cable channel package. I did some rather arcane math a while back and discovered that we could save money if we ditched the cable modem for DSL, but only if we didn't have any digital cable channels. So we cancelled the one pack of digital channels we had (the "Family Pack") without a qualm and save ourselves $10 a month. And normally it doesn't bother me a bit - I don't watch half of the channels we have, so why do we need to pay more to have more channels I don't watch? Somehow, the lack of twelve versions of the Golf Channel in my life is not keeping me up at night.

But then I discovered that Turner Classic Movies is showing Miyazaki movies every Thursday in January, including two movies that haven't been released in the US. And I cursed and gnashed my teeth, because TCM is a channel we don't have. I made sure my brother was going to be taping them. And then I realized that we in fact had it in our power to add the channel pack that has TCM for $5 a month, and when we had seen what we wanted to see, we could have it turned off again. Amazing! And when you figure in that we would gladly spend more than $5 to rent those movies if they were available on DVD, it's actually quite a bargain.

Until you realize the fact that digital channel packs are like a gateway drug. I realized that the Movie Pack (a bunch of Encore channels that run movies that weren't that popular the first time around, IFC, TMC and the all-trauma, all the time Lifetime Movie Network), didn't have much that I wanted to watch besides the Miyazaki movies, and if I was going to treat myself for the month, I might as well have some channels I like. So we added the Family Channel back so I could indulge in the guilty pleasures of the various childbirth shows on Discovery Health and Degrassi: Next Generation on Noggin (I can explain the childbirth shows pretty easily: I like babies. I like to see other people's babies. It's not that hard to understand. My fondness for Canadian teen melodrama, on the other hand, can probably only be explained by years of probing psychoanalysis, and I have plenty of other issues I would work out in therapy before this one. In my defense, I watched the original Degrassi when I was a teenager). And then when we called the cable company, we found out that they were offering free Showtime, so we figured, why not?

And voila, we now have twelve bazillion channels, of which I watch about 4 1/2. I've found I'm not actually watching that much more tv than I was before, just different channels. It's actually kind of fun. I've watched a couple movies I had been kind of interested in, but wasn't willing to pay to watch, even just a rental fee. I've seen the last twenty minutes of some movies that I wasn't interested in watching all the way through, but was a bit curious about how they ended because I could see a few potential ways the resolve the plot(for that reason, there are times I would love to find a movie version of Television Without Pity. I don't want to watch crap, I just want other people to watch crap and tell me about it). I saw The Gods Must Be Crazy the other night, which I hadn't seen since I was 12, and was very pleased at how well it held up to my memory. It's still a silly, sweet, hysterically funny movie. And thank to a New Year's marathon, I've caught up on Degrassi. And that's about it.

So despite the fact that between Discovery Health and TLC, I could quite possibly watch a baby being born every hour of the day, the extra channels are going off at the end of January and I doubt I'll really miss them. I'll just have to slake my thirst for Canadian teen melodrama through Disney Channel (which has ordered a new season of Kim Possible - yay!).

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