The obsessions of 2004

Table Talkers recall the year reality TV was preferable to reality, iPods ruled and the Sox finally broke the curse.

Published December 28, 2004 6:48PM (EST)

Elaine C. Kaspian - 12:37 pm Pacific Time - Jan 13, 2004

Yes, my little lambs, you have been sucked into the vortex known as REALITY TV. Welcome.

You will notice how at first you only watch some "respectable" reality. A little "Apprentice." A snippet of "Bachelor." A taste of "Trading Spaces." But after that first hit, you start to crave a little more, then just a little bit more than that, and then. Well. Soon, you must have bigger doses to get through the night. And just a little more to get through the day. After a while, you don't know the difference between night and day. All you do is clench tightly to that remote, scanning the channels for your next fix. Anything will do -- "Jerry Springer," "Extreme Makeover," "Odd Autopsies," "Top Model," "Life in the OBGYN." Your family and friends don't understand. A few will want to try just a sample, and become just like you. Others will bemoan the fact that you're spending all your time sweating on the couch in a dark room with your TV and remote. They'll worry even more when you spend the mortgage money on a big-screen TV and satellite. An intervention will be planned, but alas, anyone who enters the Reality TV sanctum will also be sucked in.

The only thing that will cure this addiction is lack of electricity. By that time, you've been thoroughly ravaged by the onslaught of C-level celebrities and has-beens. You must be sent to the Reality Reeducation Camp (coming soon to a city near you, courtesy of Bunnim/Murray). Hopefully with the shock therapy and chemical "helpers" you might get clean.

But you must be careful, for there are always temptations -- since your rehab more and more Reality has taken over the channels. Your new un-reality life will be filled with knitting remote cozies and collecting birdhouses. Your friends and family are no more. Your only friend is that clerk down at Best Buy who beckons you with his plasma TVs and flat screens. Nirvana is only a click away.

Be careful, my pets, be careful.

sarai - 12:20 pm Pacific Time - Sep 22, 2004

A moment of silence, please, for Larry the iPod. He was a 2nd gen 20GB, and now he has gone on to the great beyond. His last words were a folder with an exclamation point, and a failed hard drive test. Resuscitation attempts were intense, but Larry could not mount so that he might be revived by the software updater. His hard drive simply gave up. He was too good to live. He is survived by his car charger. Funeral arrangements will be made by auctioning him for parts on eBay, with the proceeds going toward the Larry Memorial Mini iPod Foundation. A green mini-iPod will be erected in his honor.

Davis X. Machina - 07:23 pm Pacific Time - Oct 21, 2004

I know they're a bunch of sweatshopping bastards, but I cried for half an hour. My grandfather took my dad to the last game Ruth ever played, at Braves Field, in '35, I think. My dad was seven or eight.

My grandfather came with us when my dad took me to my first game at Fenway, to see a really bad Sox team play a really bad A's team in 1964, ... or '65. I was seven or eight.

My dad was at the sixth (Fisk) game in '75, watching the game, but worrying about my grandfather, who was in the Beth Israel a few blocks away. (Fenway is in the heart of Medical Boston.)

Granddad died in '77.

Now I'm watching with my son, and it's his granddand, my dad, with prostate cancer (doing fine so far, thanks be to God).

It's not just a game, dammit ...

By Salon Staff

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