I hate to say it….I have an addiction, Reality Television. I know, don’t even say it. It is the worst of the worst. However, since the very first episode of The Real World some 10+ years ago, I have been hooked. I know I have some major voyeur issues.
Many years ago, a gay couple that I am very good friends with had recently added to their family. He was a beautiful Dalmatian with blue eyes named Orbit. We would load Orbit into the car and drive down to the high rent district of midtown and walk the dog. Of course, we were exercising dear Orbit, but it was a great excuse to peer into the windows of those much more privileged than ourselves. Sometimes we would circle a block several times if a certain house and its inhabitants peaked our interest. I realize that this was my first foray into the “reality watching” world. I love watching people, we are a fascinating bunch.
Last night, I indulged in an episode of Bridezillas followed by Top Chef. I sat on the couch shocked at the behavior of the bride named Marsha. There aren’t words in the English language to accurately describe this woman. No one would stick around long enough to try. She was awful. I was hooked. At one point, she made the groom cry…cry on national television for everyone to see. And still, he was moving forward with the wedding plans. Apparently, I had caught the second in a three episode arch featuring this particular bride. I didn’t think I could stand a minute more of the tongue lashing that she was inflicting on dear Archie. So, I pressed the selection button on the remote to find upcoming episodes so I could Tivo the next installment. I couldn’t help myself. Needless to say, Top Chef couldn’t hold a candle to what I had just witnessed. So what if someone’s risotto was overcooked and under-seasoned or someone was a bit heavy handed with the balsamic. Poor Archie just had his pair ripped off by Marsha in the Tony Roma’s parking lot. Doesn’t anybody care????!!!!
You see, I had the family that other people watched from their front door. Let’s just put it this way, my mother and father were not very fond of one another and made no attempt to hide this information from me or anyone else. So, there is a reason that I am compelled to watch these meltdowns much in the same way that our neighbors watched ours as they said, “I would never do that, I would never say that, I am so much better than these people….I feel sorry for these people.” I clean my conscience with the knowledge that all of these reality TV participants are volunteering and compensated for their on air humiliation. So, I watch in shock, sometimes in disbelief knowing that basically I am a Peeping Tom on a global scale. Until I see a case of Reality TV addiction on the next episode of Intervention (by the way, a great reality show on A&E) I will manage my habit on my own….maybe in a healthier way….people watching outside the local Java City and reading other people’s blogs. This is my therapy for these economically challenged times.
Happy People Watching!