shelter-at-home television

I’m pretty old-fashioned about watching television programming. Not quite as old-fashioned as when we were growing up in rural New England and managed to get all three major networks (NBC, ABC, CBS), albeit not very clearly, with an outdoor antenna. We have a standard cable package but we don’t have any premium channels like HBO or Showtime. We do have a DVR, which replaced our VCR for recording shows to watch later and without commercials. In fact, my usual way to watch television is to watch things from the DVR so I can see the whole show in two-thirds the time as watching it live.

Notice that I also talk about watching television. I don’t usually watch shows on my computer. I can’t even imagine trying to watch something of any length on my phone. I like to have a big screen, although our television is nowhere near the size of what is considered a “big screen” today, so that everyone in the room can watch together. We also only have one television in the house.

There are a few series that we record, but the bulk of my television viewing these days is news programming. Those who read TJCM frequently probably had already figured that out…

When E was living here, she had a Playstation, along with Amazon Prime and Netflix, which I generally ignored. When she relocated to the UK, the Playstation stayed behind. We still have the Netflix account, which I still generally ignore. In truth, I can’t even figure out the Playstation controller.

As a gift for the millions of people sheltering in place, CBS All Access offered a one-month free trial. We signed up specifically to be able to watch the Star Trek franchise shows, the first season of Picard and the first two seasons of Discovery. B and I had watched all the other series in the franchise, but had never seen either of these two paid-access ones.

It’s been fun.

We didn’t do the binge mode, where you watch hours and hours on end. Instead, we would watch a couple of episodes each evening, with maybe a bit more on the weekend when B wasn’t working. B, T, and I have all enjoyed watching the series, revisiting some old favorite characters and meeting many new ones. We even watched some of the shorts, interviews, and behind-the-scenes videos.

Now, we are going to cancel before our free month is up.

After the next season of both shows has completed, we may pay for a month so we can watch everything like we did this time.

Maybe, by then, I will have learned to operate the Playstation.

Probably not.

sharing a meal with whom?

On the CBS Saturday morning news show, they always have a segment called “The Dish” in which a chef makes their signature dishes for the show’s hosts. There is an interview on their history, restaurants, and cuisine. At the end, they sign a plate and answer the final question, “If you could share this meal with anyone, past or present, who would it be?”

I am not a chef, but I’ve thought about whom I would choose as dining companions – Rachel Maddow and Stephen Colbert. I’ve watched them both on television for a long time. They are both smart and earnest and have a good sense of humor. Like me, they were raised in the Catholic church. I think that we would have a very interesting conversation.

Whom would you invite?
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Bayou Corne sinkhole

I have been following the Bayou Corne, Louisiana sinkhole story since it began in 2012. Here is a link to a story on it from earlier this month from a local source:  http://www.examiner.com/article/louisiana-s-bayou-corne-sinkhole-eats-well-pad-people-next

This morning a story about sinkholes was on CBS This Morning, which is a US national network news broadcast. They were doing a story on sinkholes and talked about the Bayou Corne sinkhole as though it was typical of other sinkholes around the country. They had to reference it in the report because research done in conjunction with it may be helpful in predicting ordinary sinkholes, but they should have pointed out that Bayou Corne is an industrial accident featuring hydrocarbon storage and a salt dome collapse, not an “act of God.”

My comment sent to CBS This Morning:

I am watching CBS This Morning on Thursday, April 24. You just aired a piece about sinkholes that twice referenced the Bayou Corne sinkhole in LA. You should have pointed out that this sinkhole was caused by the collapse of a salt dome being used for hydrocarbon storage. This is a totally different mechanism than the typical limestone dissolution and collapse that causes sinkholes in places like Florida. The Bayou Corne sinkhole is an industrial accident, which was preceded by tremors and release of methane and other hydrocarbons. It has resulted in the evacuation and now permanent re-location of 300 people. It is in no way just another sinkhole; it is a criminal act causing huge environmental damage by an irresponsible company, not a natural process. You should have pointed this out in your report.