As I sat in one of my favorite campus coffee shops, I overheard a conversation a couple tables over. They were talking about TV shows, and it sounded like a first get-to-know-you type of meeting, maybe a first date. I continued doing my work, and every now and then I would catch a line…
“…it’s sort of like One Tree Hill, it was so cheesy and agonizing to watch!”
More time goes on.
“Rick and Morty is pretty relevant, if you ask me.”
“I lied before. That’s not my favorite show, it’s …”
It has been a little over an hour.
It’s so common today to have television shows as a natural topic of conversation between two people.
“What’s your favorite TV show?”
Sure, it’s easy. It’s light. It’s a good ice breaker. However, it’s bothersome to me that this topic has evolved from an ice breaker into a compatibility test. I’m not saying I haven’t been guilty of stretching the TV conversation too long, but I feel as though we as a society have reached a really nerve-wracking point. We are defining ourselves from our television interest, whether we like action, fantasy, romance or horror, rather than who we are outside of the box.
It’s time for a wake-up call! When meeting someone for the first time, we should be asking questions that allow us to understand who they are, independent of their television and movie preferences. What was their childhood like? How do they feel about certain things? What makes a day a “good day” for them?
Lately, we have been so enveloped in technology that we forget that it’s possible someone has real interests, real likes and dislikes, real feelings about topics other than the media.
Sure, it would be nice to sit on the couch and immediately agree on a show to watch. But if you can’t have a conversation in the real world, you probably aren’t with the person you should be with.
Maybe I’ll have to suck it up and watch a few god-awful action movies; at least I’ll know that after two hours, I’ll be able to shut the television off.
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