Cross Circuited

I am a champion of the notion that almost all television is, for me anyway, unwatchable. I find most programs insulting and degrading to my intellectual sensibilities, and I find most of the musical scores, particularly of commercials, offensively loud. You might call me an intellectual snob for these attitudes, but I challenge you to do the following experiment:

"Who made you Judge Judy and executioner?" -Homer Simpson
"Who made you Judge Judy and executioner?" -Homer Simpson

Watch the first four or five minutes of a program on Spike or HDTV or some other themed cable network at a volume level sufficient that you can make out all the dialog, then in the middle of that, mute the volume.

I think you will find that silence as golden as any you have ever heard.

I thought of this today because I was thinking about television from the 1960s and 1970s, and how, for lack of a better word, cheap it was. Watch a 1970s sitcom intro at and prepare to be amazed by the absolutely sh!tty the production values. Some of these things probably took no more than 30 minutes and a two-man crew with one 16mm camera to produce.

This all got started in my head this morning when I thought of a phrase uttered by one of my childhood science fiction heroes, Star Trek‘s Mr. Spock. In the midst of struggling to recover the Captain during a perilous beam-up, he says, “Cross-circuitiung to A,” followed a few dramatic moments later by, “Cross-circuiting to B.”

When I was 10, that sounded incredibly cool. Now that I am 48, I can’t believe how lame it is. Cross-circuiting to B? Really?


  1. I remember being impressed and even overwhelmed by the 24-hour news channels a few years ago — CNN, HLN, and even FOX News — but now when I watch them it seems they’ve been dumbed down quite a bit and focus more on “conversations” and opinions rather than reporting actual events. CNN in particular is hard to watch because they like to run around the studio touching and dragging their new monitors, instead of just presenting the information.

    I don’t know if they’ve actually been dumbed down or if my viewpoint has changed.

  2. friends, we are currently witnessing the devolution of the history channel into the fuckwit conspiracy theories, redneck activities and occasional random-ass topics juxtaposed with hitler channel.

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