While we’re in our residence hotel until our house is ready, we have about 35 cable channels. Allow me to break them down for you:
-About half are in languages other than English.
-Many of the English language stations are subtitled. One is subtitled in English. Redundant much?
-We have two Al Jazeera channels. I don’t know what I expected, but it certainly wasn’t hot, botoxed, western dressed anchorwomen or a little box at the bottom with a guy in an Arabic style headdress translating in sign language.
-We have MTV Delhi. I don’t watch MTV in the states, but I’ll watch the heck out of MTV Delhi. The music videos are all Bollywood and totally entrance the little explorers. I also caught something the other night that I can only assume was “India’s Next Top Model.” It was half English and half Hindi, so I’m not 100% sure of the details, but I watched it anyway. Like its sister program in the states, there were weird costumes for a photo shoot, a couple of judges hacking away at beautiful girls’ self esteem and someone crying and going home at the end. Let’s just say my lack of Hindi understanding didn’t really leave me scratching my head as to the outcome.
-There are three channels that appear to play cricket all day and all night. This could actually be because cricket matches last for days, or maybe weeks. I think one of the cricket channels is showing a match that has been going on since we got here twenty days ago. There was some big match between Sri Lanka and South Africa that went on for a week or so, even after South Africa apparently won, because, from what I can tell, “best of five” means “We’re going to play all five games even if that means the outcome is 5-0.” Obviously they don't apply the good sportsman run rule they learned in Little League Cricket.
-There is one channel that appears to play sumo wrestling all day and all night. If you’ve never watched that, it consists of a lot of pomp and circumstance followed by about 20 seconds of stomping around, followed by 5 seconds of actual wrestling, followed by another ten minutes or so of pomp and circumstance in which the winner gives some other guy a ladle of soup or something equally not refreshing to drink and then the guy blots his mouth with the tiniest napkin suitable for the job. It’s entertaining for about five bouts, then you realize that it’s really only the stomping and “Mystery Science Theater”-like dialogue that you’re adding that make the sport worth watching.
-There is another channel that appears to play “CSI Miami” –you guessed it—all day and all night. Why anyone would want to watch that much “CSI Miami”, I don’t know….[removing my sunglasses dramatically]…I. Don’t. Know.
-One channel is called DIVA and it appears to be Asian Lifetime for Women. Its major redeeming quality is that it’s currently showing a season of Top Chef I haven’t seen. DIVA appears most proud of the fact that it has the latest season of “The Good Wife.”
-Commercials are a billion ear shattering decibels higher than the show you were watching no matter where you live.
I guess if you’re looking for a moral to this blog post, it’s that cable television is the same everywhere. It’s a bunch of channels with nothing good on to watch. It’s pretty obvious to me that the only reason I miss American TV is that it’s much easier to shut off my brain at the end of the day while watching TV I can comprehend with only marginal use of my very limited attention span. Speaking of which, I stopped paying attention halfway through that last sentence. I guess it's true what they say about TV ruining your attention span. Oh, and I miss watching “Bones”. Darn it.