As many people already know, we cut cable several years age. We haven’t always eschewed television. Once, we had digital cable with over 300 channels. Shut up. I know that’s like a basic package these days, but back then, it was a big deal. For the record, though, it was still 300 channels of nothing to watch. Eventually, we cancelled service completely and never looked back. Until now.
We have the converter box thingy that makes everything all digital-like, but we don’t pay for extra channels. Our television cost us $10 at a garage sale. Four years ago. No need to gild that particular lily. So the regular programming we now have available consists of three different PBS stations, CBS, Fox, and NBC, which really is three stations too many, since network television now seems to boast nothing but B-list celebrities in reality shows. And PBS has Sherlock. I’m covered. And then came the Olympics.
I get NBC. I figured we were all set. We brought our Olympic-sized snacks down to the family room to get our game on. The Padawan is the only one in the house who knows how to actually turn the television on (don’t get me started. Apparently the cables have to be just-so if you have been playing the Super Nintendo or the VCR.), so he worked his magic, and we were good to go. And what did we get? Women’s volleyball.
Before all the athletic supporters of the world tie me in a net and spike coconuts at my head, let me say I used to like volleyball. I did. I even played. In gym class and stuff, but whatevs. I was good.
I distinctly remember the day my gym teacher approached me and my friend on the court. He said “We’ve got a spot on the team. Are you interested?” I said I’d think about it. Turns out, he wasn’t actually talking to me. He was recruiting my friend. With all the diplomacy he could muster, the coach said “We’ve got a spot for you, too. We need a statistician.” Yeah. A score keeper. That’s like your best pal getting asked out on a date by the cutest guy in school and being invited to go along. As the driver. I watched my Olympic dreams go up in smoke that day. I’m not bitter. Nor apparently am I good at volleyball.
I tried to watch the game. These are Olympic athletes, after all. God bless the whole world, and all that. But, and this is strictly off the record, I did not enjoy it. In high school volleyball, the best teams are the ones that actually get a volley going and keep it going. If you’re good, the ball stays in the air for longer than a serve. Olympic level volleyball goes something like this:
Ball is served.
Ball is hit.
Ball is hit again.
Ball hits ground.
Everyone hugs each other and holds hands.
Maybe that last is just the women’s teams. I didn’t stick around for the guys’. In tennis, the score would be love-15. In volleyball, it’s love everybody. I wouldn’t enjoy playing at the Olympics. Too much hugging.
The ball was touched about three times before it hit the ground, leaving the impression that both teams stink. Score one for the Olympics. Or don’t score. I’m not sure. After forty-five minutes, I went upstairs to
gouge my eyeballs out make popcorn, and when I came downstairs again, the score was the same. I think. My TV is kind of small.
While I was making popcorn, I made the mistake of checking Twitter. There, someone in my feed was discussing Dressage. I followed the conversation, and it was then I discovered that everyone else in the country could watch Dressage, or swimming, or even archery. Oooh, there’s a sport! Who doesn’t dream of shooting holes in things with arrows and winning a prize for it?! No, really. I would totally watch archery. Especially if my only option was volleyball. And why were my choices so limited while my friends had the world at their fingertips? Because my friends have cable!
No matter. We’re cool.We would just catch the highlights of all the good stuff after 7:30pm. After dinner, armed with my super-sized box of Junior Mints, we resumed our position on the couch, thanking the Olympic committee that Women’s Volleyball coverage was good and over. And had moved on to Beach Volleyball.
Kill me now. And sign me up for cable.