School children are free of bulky jackets, and long to be free of school and outside in the warm sunshine. But wait, it is still May.
Well, it is only May for a few more days. We celebrate Memorial Day with a traditional family picnic on the last day of the month. Then it is June, but schools still have a week or so before they are out for the summer. Your favorite television shows has most likely already had its season finally, with an appropriate cliffhanger to keep you hooked in until the fall. Programming directors and station managers know that Memorial Day picnic will be the first of many keeping you away from the television.
Summer offers a host of activities from a day out in the yard to a day at the beach, and day trips to cross country trips. Our day to day habits change with the season. We go out early in the day, before the summer heat to get our exercise and yard chores completed. In the heat of the day we visit a pool with the kids, or go to the beach. We cook in the backyard to keep the heat out of the house, or take a trip to a park for a relaxing meal in the shade, and maybe a game of ball. Summer movies are an afternoon treat, providing a cool retreat.
Television must compete with all of the summer activities. Their advertising revenue depends upon being able to deliver viewers. Reruns of programming allow viewers to re-watch their favorite shows, or sample competing program. Summer is the perfect time to experiment with programming, as a viewer, or a station. Not wanting to lose your viewer ship, new programming is being promoted.
Summer offerings include many new programs: Scoundrels (ABC), criminals with good family values; The Gates (ABC), vampires with a taste for the good life; Hawaii Five-O (CBS), crime fighting in Hawaii; Farscape (from SciFi to CBS), USA astronaut runs for his life in a distant galaxy with escaped convicts; Nashville Star with Billy Ray Cyrus (NBC); and coverage of the Summer Olympic Games in Beijing (NBC).
There should be enough choices to keep just about anyone glued to the tube, and advertisers happy. Television holds our attention, entertains, and lulls us into inactivity. With overweight being a major health concern in our country for many, programmers have started to address the problem. I’ve watched programs with the littlest members of the family that attempt to engage children physically, by asking them to wavy their arms, hop, stoop down low, etc., to assist with the action on the screen. From what I have seen, there is very limited success in attaining physical involvement. As one who will watch an exercise program while eating my breakfast, I can predict it wouldn’t work on adults any better.
We like television, and sometimes a program comes along that we are willing to adjust our personal schedules to ensure we are free at viewing time. Many of us use a digital video recorder (DVR) to expand our viewing opportunities, while others choose not to watch. For most of us, the important choice is one of balance between the programs we enjoy, and the other things in our lives.
Just like a school kid, I can’t hardly wait for the new summer shows. I mean, I can hardly wait for summer.