Monday, August 22, 2011

DANGER! A new study says that TV can KILL!!!

It’s bad enough that sitting through an hour of THE VIEW can rot your brain. Now comes a study that says for every hour of television you watch after the age of 25, it shortens your life by 22 minutes. This is according to researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia.

So do the math.  If you watch six hours of television a night, you will die five years sooner. That means that the third largest cause of death, right behind cancer and heart problems, is the LAW & ORDER franchise.

I’m sure the two people in the television industry who have a conscience will find these research findings disturbing. Especially if they’re responsible for crap. There is much blood on the hands of reality show producers. And Jeff Zucker.

Others in TV will dismiss this study. Just like Phillip Morris continues to make cigarettes, Tyra Banks will continue to host talk shows.

Me? I see it as an opportunity. BREAKING BAD and THE C WORD are both doing well (I hope they can live with themselves). I want to create a show about a guy who’s dying because he signed up for the DirectTV premium package. Black humor abounds! “I might as well sell DDT to farmers, I love WHEEL OF FORTUNE”.

Of course the study also admits that it’s inactivity more than the shows themselves that cause this hastened demise. Time in front of the flatscreen would be better spent exercising or being active in any other possible way. And a bad diet may be a factor as well. Personally, I like to think of a Double-Whopper as the food equivalent of Carson Daly.

But the survey goes further. Sitting in front of the computer six hours a day increases your risk of death by 40%. Yikes! Fortunately for me, no one ever reads my archives so I’m not keeping anyone for more than maybe two minutes.

But all of us computer users have to ask ourselves the same gut wrenching question -- just how important is watching porn worth to us?  

And things get worse STILL.  The study doesn’t address it but it occurs to me – if TV watching is hazardous, and computer time is hazardous, what about watching TV shows streamed on your computer? Why that’s just SUICIDE!

In any event, I think the lesson here is clear. Get outside. Do things. Be out in the world. Unless of course you do and get hit by a bus, or fall off a mountain hiking. You’d still be around 22 minutes longer if you were home watching THE TALK. You might wish you were not alive but still. 

Stay tuned for my new series, THE TIVO WORD -- coming soon.  (I'm rushing it so you'll still be around to see it.) 

26 comments:

Kerri said...

I find it interesting 22 minutes is also approximately the length of the advertising content per hour of television.

purplejilly said...

Eh, the last five years of life are not so great, anyway, if my recent experience with my older relatives are any guide. I think I'll be thanking True Blood and Curb Your Enthusiasm when they save me from that last five miserable years in a nursing home!

MikeBo said...

I can't wait to show this morning's blog to my wife, Ken. She leaves the TV on at night while we sleep. Now,I'm sure I won't live to be 100.

Steve Zeoli said...

"Sitting in front of the computer six hours a day increases your risk of death by 40%." Isn't my risk of death pretty much already at 100%? Can't seem the odds really getting any worse!

The Other Matt B said...

What if I'm, um, involved in certain cardio activities while watching porn on my computer? Does that even everything out?

Eduardo Jencarelli said...

So screenwriters working in front of a computer are pretty much screwed.

I'm definitely not the biggest couch potato around, even though I've seen my share of TV. I definitely compensate by being active and eating properly. Hopefully I'm not a statistic, given my own career literally puts me in front of a screen 24/7.

DogsOnDrugs.com said...

"This is according to researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia."

Maybe that only holds true in Australia. Lord knows all that Paul Hogan/Yahoo Serious exposure can't be good for you.

RCP said...

Oh please. According to those calculations, I should have died on August 22, 2011 at 12:32 pm MST. See? it's just another ridicu

Breadbaker said...

My mom is 83, in good health, and watches about six hours a day, as she has since about 1952. How long would she have lived without this?

jbryant said...

RCP FTW!

Yeah, since I watch a fair amount of TV and do all my work on a computer, I have apparently been on borrowed time for a few years now.

Anonymous said...

Since New York is putting WiFi in all of its city parks, I assume we'll soon see the day of thousands of people on the Mall in Central Park, watching HBO GO streaming video on their iPads.

Todd Ayres said...

One person reads them! Your archives made one long bus trip (with wifi) from DC to NYC much much more pleasant. I do skip the baseball ones though. Although I'm sure they're brilliant.

Andy said...

Too bad Lopez didn't know about this before its own untimely demise. "Lopez Tonight" - extending people's lives by encouraging people not to sit on their ass and watch it!

David said...

Does Television Without Pity know you're using its mascot, Tubey? http://www.televisionwithoutpity.com/

Kris Hunt said...

As a follow up to these findings, it was also concluded that for every hour spent conducting research...on how watching TV decreases an average life span, researchers are likely to have lost 44 minutes of their own lives.

As another follow up, I lost several arbitrary minutes myself--by typing this.

Lou H. said...

After watching an episode of Welcome Back Kotter, my father said "there's a half hour of my life I'm not getting back". Looks like he was close!

Ellen said...

Here's a question for your blog, unrelated to this post ...

Do you have any idea why the writers of Entourage decided not to give Ari's wife a name? (Even on IMDB she is referred to as "Mrs. Ari.")

YibbleGuy said...

I was going to list "The C Word" as one of your best jokes ever ... until I looked it up on IMDB, and found out that actually was "The Big C"'s original title.

Wow--the producers really deprived themselves of a wealth of memorable taglines when they changed the name:

"'The C Word' - C U Next Tuesday on Showtime ...."

"Next on Entertainment Tonight, Laura Linney gives us an inside look at her 'C Word' ...."

"'The L Word' never had the courage to show you 'The C Word' ... but our new series will show it to you every WEEK!"

@IFeedUrTV said...

Let's see: working in master control in front of 2-4 TVs and 3 or 4 computers at once (one screen works as both), 12 hours a night, 3 or 4 nights a week...that makes me...oh my god, how am I even writing this?

And to think: all these years I thought I watched TV for a "living."

Pumpkinhead said...

Funny how no one is doing studies to prove that the inactivity of sitting and reading for a few hours a night is killing people.

The verification word for this post is sterslop.

D. McEwan said...

Well, by these calculations, I died 18 years ago, so --- BOO!

Daca said...

This sounds awful. The worse thing is that it's all truth. There are so many many people with heart diseases and too much weight these days. That's probably because we all forgot about daily exercise routines and walking. But, no matter how bad all this sounds, I had a laugh with this last part. Thanks! :)

TV Streaming said...

Hello Dude,

Watching television has already been linked in studies to an increased risk of heart disease and obesity. But many of those studies included participants who were already overweight. Now, a new study examined TV's impact on longevity with participants who started the study at a healthy weight and had no prior history of heart disease. Thanks a lot.....

Anonymous said...

You write:"Sitting in front of the computer six hours a day increases your risk of death by 40%. " but actually...our risk of death is 100%....just the WHEN that is important.

Paul Duca said...

Ken, you are not without sin as a writer/director in yourself. You can't even claim "I was only following orders of the producers" because you're a producer, too.

VP81955 said...

Is watching films on TV included in this? If not, the perfect slogan for Turner Classic Movies: "Live longer. Watch TCM."