Thursday, May 13, 2010

And now the news....

I have a filthy habit of watching the news after I wake up. No good ever comes from it. Yet I continue to do so because of some odd fear that I might miss something important. Since September 2001, I have yet to miss anything important. Take today, for example. I learned a great many number of people were either killed or displaced by tornadoes and severe storms. I learned an airliner crashed and killed everyone on board save for one child. I learned some maniac in China has been hacking up kids with a meat cleaver. I also learned the plan to stop the huge oil leak in the gulf failed, the EU will bail out Greece, the UK has a new conservative Prime Minister, and bacteria-riddled romaine lettuce is being recalled.
I stopped reading the newspaper years ago. Why? Try this test: go through the paper (doesn't matter which day) and look at the headlines. Now, count the number of headlines that refer to death, disease, pain, crime, or immoral behavior. Yeah. See what I mean? Comedian Richard Jeni had a great bit about TV news. He said they should just call it The Bad News. The anchor would say, "Welcome to the news. Now here's who's dead..." Of course it's all for ratings. Why else would they spend literally hours a day on Tiger Woods, Lawrence Taylor, or any number of other celebrities who act like morons? Sex and violence still sells. What you need to ask yourself is, why am I buying?


  1. Hmmm....perhaps you should check out the Las Vegas Review-Journal, affectionately known as "the R-J". I've looked at the last 3 days' papers and I can honestly say the headlines weren't at all about death, disease, crime or immoral behavior. Mostly they're about politics. Oh - oops - maybe they are about crime or immoral behavior. Anyhow, there is joy to be found in the media if you look hard enough. Every Tuesday, the paper has "The Mini Page - Especially for Young Readers" - that would be me. I get to do the Mini Spy puzzle and the "Try 'N Find". Every week. And I learn factoids put in the most simple terms so I can understand. This week was about summer fun and reading with a list of 12 different books I may need to check out at my library. And this page also has easy recipes - except you may need adult supervision.
    But you did get me going about TV news. Do you realize they, like many of us, are on productivity? I think it's one "breaking news" item per news segment, not sure of what the criteria is. Jeez. And when did people aggressively start going missing instead of being missing? I go shopping, I go to work, I go home, but to go missing? I don't get it. So I'm thinking maybe you should spend more time enjoying some of the weathermen --I mean, weatherpeople-whatever they're called. There are no fewer than 4 amusing weather TV people here in Vegas. That could brighten your day.
    I'm enjoying your blog. Have fun.

  2. Maybe papers in larger cities make a more conscious effort to add uplifting stories than the ones in smaller towns. Given all the bad things that undoubtably occur in Las Vegas on a daily basis, you could fill the whole newspaper with nothing but bad news. And as far as the folks who do the weather...that's a whole separate blog issue I'll be getting to later. (They make me crazy.)