Saturday, June 04, 2016

Warning: 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 NCIS 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 the Kardashians.

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

Me? I see it as an opportunity. 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. It's the weekend.  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. 

19 comments:

Mike Barer said...

Interesting!

Cat said...

But there is a ten hour Fargo season two marathon on today! I'm dead for sure!

Stephen Marks said...

After reading Ken's post look to your right and you'll see an ad for "Must Kill TV" by Ken Levine, I think this is called cross-promotion, like the St. Elsewhere staff getting drunk at Cheers or Stoney Curtis on the Flintstones promoting The Sweet Smell Of Success, or R.J. Wagner starring in the Titanic flick A Night To Remember and then 20 years later, will you know.

B.A. said...

I've read plenty of studies by Australian scienticians and they're a waste of dollaridoos.

SharoneRosen said...

Perhaps I should start getting my affairs in order

MikeN said...

So you can watch 25,000 hours of TV, and your life is reduced by one year.

I would say the TV content can be more deadly. Either encouraging violence, drug use, or promiscuity.

Friends alone has probably produced lots of kids with single mothers who found reality of raising a baby substantially harder than what they showed for Rachel.

JB said...

Your math skills are only slightly better than mine, and that's nothing to brag about. 6 times 22 equals 5 years? Oh, wait, did you convert it to Celsius? Kidding aside, I like BA's conclusion. Mostly I like his invention of "Dollaridoos."

Almost 50 years ago, I went to Vietnam. Astonishingly, 49 years ago, I came home in one piece. 10 years ago, while riding my beautiful crimson and gray motorcycle, a huge van, a Toyota Conestoga, made a left turn in front of me. Once again, I survived with only minor injuries, a few broken bones and a math impairment. I could've experienced a far more tranquil death if I'd just stayed home and watched TV!

Incidentally, the other night I just happened to catch the MASH episode where Hawkeye goes to the peace talks. One of my favorites. Didn't realize that you and David wrote that one. Hats off - see my red hair?!

David said...

BTW, that great graphic is Tubey, the snarky mascot of the late great TV recap-and-discussion website Television Without Pity.

Howard Hoffman said...

At least with porn, there's SOME physical activity. [EDIT] So I hear.

AlaskaRay said...

I just did a quick calculation and realized that I must have died 5 years ago. Thanks TV!

ZombiesvRobots said...

I wonder what the study would say I'm playing video games. From experience, gamers have some of the worst diets around. Tried Hardcore gaming for one year and gained 20 lbs.

H Johnson said...

Ken? Ken?

Are you getting this? 'Cause according to your article this is being sent to you from the great beyond. It's not too hot here so I assume it's the great beyond. It's sure not Heaven. It's not even Iowa. I have to tell ya I'm a little disappointed. Oh. I'm in Kalihi. I'm at least a couple miles from Heaven. I wish I hadn't binged watch the Sopranos now.

Aloha from ?

Johnny Walker said...

Christ, I'm a web developer, and I enjoy TV when I'm not working. Somebody needs to hook up an excercise bike to my computer.

Mike said...

@JohnnyWalker: Somebody needs to hook up an excercise bike to my computer.
Does your computer need to exercise? Bloatware problems, perhaps?

Cap'n Bob said...

By my estimate I've been watching TV for 63 years. I think they need to recalculate their figures.

Donald Benson said...

I know people who keep television, radio or both going in the background even while talking on the phone. And suddenly they're reading something off Wikipedia so you know there's a computer in the mix. Such people seem to live forever, but those of use who deal with them are deteriorating at an alarming rate.

Mike Botula said...

I would imagine that television writers...who spend countless hours at their computers being creative...not to mention the huge number of hours they also spend watching every conceivable program, are extremely susceptible to this kind of early demise. My hat is off to every television writer who lives past his or her 21st birthday!

VincentS said...

Now that this information is out there's only one thing to do and I'm sure the folks in Silicon Valley are working on it as I type this - Find a way to watch porn while exercising!

Karl said...

I'm not sure a study was needed to point out what is obvious. Most of us spend far too much time sitting on our butts in front of various screens and far too little time moving around doing much of anything, all with detrimental effects to our overall heath and our waistlines. I read a magazine article not long ago that talked about how we know so much more about good nutrition and exercise than we ever have, and being very snide and condescending about how ignorant our grandparent's generation was about such things. Perhaps they were. However much more we may know, though, Americans are still a hell of a lot fatter and in worse shape than they were.