The Great TV Experiment Part 1: Severence


So, if you have been following me on the Twitter, you may have caught that I have exploring the concept of life with out TV.  Well, sort of.  

The Reason
Ever since this whole (*finger quotations with me now*) “recession” and the whole “no bonuses or raises” and the whole “you might get fired/laid off” chain of events, I have been looking at our finances with every sort of sideways look to figure out how we could strip off some money from our monthly expences.  We started with Sam’s Club.  We attempt to pack more lunches instead of eating out.  We recycle.  We emplore the pets to get part time jobs.  
I am an avid fan of This Week in Media for a few years now, and the concept of “living off the internet” for my television and slashing that cord has been implanted for a good while now.  But I resisted.  How would I watch my wrestling?  My pay per views?  My live sporting events?  
Finally, I figured it out.  
The Rejection
I wanted FIOS.  The service was new and exciting and the bundling with my already existing FIOS internet would have saved some money.  But they couldn’t figure out where I live, and hence, offer me the service.  I couldn’t even get DirecTV for the bundling options and new customer deals.  The pages for the service didn’t even have a clear way to order the service.  And last time I talked to someone on the phone (as they advised me to do to clarify my address), we had some problems.  Verizon services I love (sans Wireless phone).  Verizon customer service can eat it.  
If a company doesn’t make it easy to spend my money with them, they must not really want my business. 
The Principal 
I found that the majority of my television watching was encompassed with USA Network (WWE Raw, Burn Notice, Psych, etc.), Comedy Central (Daily Show, Colbert, Reno 911!), and the free networks I was paying $5 a month for (Heroes, Chuck, Smallville, The Office, etc, etc).  Many times I found myself catching up with these shows on Hulu or network websites on my lunch break instead of visiting my DVR (which I also pay extra for).  So I was watching for free something I was paying for to come into my house, then record, at home.  This is what I call “Hulu-guilt”.  
Suddenly, the $80 a month didn’t justify what we were receiving. 

The High Cost of Cable
Our cable television bill is $65.82 per month. That’s $789.84/year. 

The more I looked at it, the more the idea of simply setting up a computer (though not a pretty setup at the moment), buying some over the air antennaes/converters, and keeping my Netflix subscription (upping to 2 discs at a time, and streaming via my Xbox 360), and picking up anything not provided with above methods via itunes (Law & Order, Reno 911, etc)  I would have just as much, but more focused, television watching, no Hulu-guilt, and save a boat load of money.  
The Disconnect
So, Wednesday night during the Pens game, I called Dish Network.  Now, I’m not mad at Dish.  I love ther service and they’re going to be the first ones I’ll likely call back when I return to TV Land.  
I knew I was in for some fun when I connected to a “Customer Loyalty Rep” after telling a machine I wanted to cancel at least twice.  So I let her go to see what they offered.  I was doing the Top 100 (Plus just added for the Pens games), the starter HD package (love HDNet MMA and ROH) I was taken from my $80-ish bill to about $45 with the same package.  Sort of amazed, actually.  But I was done with it for now.  The experiment would happen.  
So the dive is taken.  I’ve gone 24 hours without my cable television.  I watched Office when it was on.  I have the TV on while I work still.  Is this really so different?  Did I really just kill off the dead wood that may have not been appreciated and draining my bank account just for existing?  
Stay tuned…

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