Monday, March 22, 2010

Watching Reality Shows is No Way to Get Over the Winter Blahs

It's been a while since I did a blog post. I want to thank all of my loyal fans [all three of them] for not throwing in the towel and giving up on me. I must say, this winter was awful and I think all the snow made me want to just hide under the covers and sleep. Not to mention the fact that cold weather makes me lazy.

While I was luxuriating in my home, I took the time to watch some television--to be specific, I watched reality television. I must say that many of these show are a cheap way for TV studios to get money and fill their programming slots. But on a deeper level, a lot of these shows are an exercise in human misery. I think the most disturbing show I watched was Hoarding: Buried Alive. I can tell you that some of these folks who are hoarders are truly tortured souls. I mean it's one thing to be a collector, but it's an entirely different ball of wax when a person has pizza boxes, diapers, scraps of paper and trash piled to the top of the ceilings in their home. There was one woman who was in danger of having her house condemned by the public health authority because she had so much trash in her house it became unsuitable to live there. I think only in America where we have so much stuff that it literally can be dangerous to have 'too much'. Which brings me to my next reality show.

I watched Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution last night and I must say I was horrified at what I saw. The premise is simple; Oliver goes to Huntington, West Virginia to get the people there to change their unhealthy eating habits. The town received the infamous claim as being the most unhealthy town in America. The opening shot shows the children of Huntington eating the school 'breakfast'--which happened to be sugary cereals and pizza.Oliver was gob-smacked at what he saw and things only got worse when it was time for lunch. Let's just say, the way the lunch cooks made mashed potatoes was not appetizing or very nutritious.

This episode primarily dealt with Oliver fighting the school bureaucracy, lunch cooks, and a rather surly radio host who didn't want to eat 'salads' all the time. The irony in all of this was that as I watching Oliver try to get the people in Hamilton to make better food choices, the health care bill passed. So now we have a bill that will ensure all who need health insurance no matter what. While I think this is fantastic and KUDOS to President Obama--I'm worried what this will do for our culture. I mean, here is Oliver telling people that their decision to eat crappy food will make the sick and more than likely shorten their life, but they aren't listening. They want to have pizza for breakfast, fast food for lunch, and eat lots of sugary, fatty foods. To be succinct, in their view, more is better no matter what the consequences.

So now when these people get sick [and they will believe me] they can tap into the free healthcare provided by the government. Which leads me to the question: Should we hold these people accountable for their actions? For the most part they knowingly contributed to their plight and chose to ignore the facts that diets high in meat, fat and processed sugars will eventually kill you. Wouldn't our health care system be more efficient if we taught moderation in our eating habits? Yes, I know I may be a bit simplistic in my approach, but sometimes I think the simplest solutions work best. In this case more in NOT better.

I wish Jamie Oliver the best of luck because he has an uphill battle in changing how the people in Hamilton, WV think about food and how eating crappy processed food can negatively effect their health.

As a side note, I don't want to come off as some blow-hard food snob in the post. I love junk food, but I do not eat it on a daily basis and I also tend to make most of my meals myself. There--I'm off my high horse.


  1. I so agree that reality television and how it deals in human misery, or just plain banality.

    Three cheer to Jamie for doing the right thing! I wonder how many folk in the town he's helping are tea baggers, I'll bet a ton of them are.

    Oh and one more thing, WINTER WEATHER ROCKS!

  2. I read this morning that part of the healthcare bill will require all restaurants to post the nutrition value of their food. So somebody is thinking about long term eating habits...

    Too much reality TV is like too much snow - it will rot your roots.

  3. clearly all that time watching crap tv could have very well been spent in the kitchen making a certain soup that you have promised to make since 2008. tsk, tsk, sir.